Review: Big Girl Panties by Stephanie Evanovich

July 22, 2013 General Fiction, Review, William Morrow 5

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow (July 9, 2013)
  • ISBN-10: 0062224840
  • Source: Publisher

Holly is a thirty-two year old widow. After her husband’s death, food was her only source of comfort. She didn’t plan on getting as large but without anyone to stop her, she frequently binge-eats rather than dealing with her loss. Logan Montgomery is a professional trainer catering to many of the big name athletes. Logan and Holly are forced together on a small flight, both would have preferred first class but were relegated to coach instead.

Holly certainly isn’t the sort of woman Logan would normally find attractive, but her sharp wit and sense of humor intrigues him. During the short flight, Holly frequently makes jokes about her own weight, but also lets Logan see a more vulnerable side of her. Against his better judgement, Logan offers to work with Holly on improving her physical fitness.

Holly turns out to be a natural in the gym, the pounds pouring off quite easily. Simultaneously, Logan sees a newer, more confidant side to Holly. She’s a relief to the perfectly toned, high-maintenance models he usually dates. As Holly transforms, so does Logan, and the two find themselves moving their relationship to a more intimate (and quite steamy) level.  Watching this transformation are Chase and Amanda Walker, Logan’s closest friends and confidants. They see the relationship is more serious than Holly and Logan will let on. Logan needs something more stable and genuine in his life, but once Holly’s new-and-improved body starts turning the heads of other men, Logan finds he has some competition.  Is Logan truly ready to give up his carefree life in order to be with a woman who goes against his typical mold for a partner? Is Holly ready to settle down again, just as her life is reawakening?

After meeting the author at BEA (Book Expo America), I was beyond thrilled to read her novel. Stephanie, much like Holly, is confidant, witty with a sharp sense of humor. What I valued the most is that she, like Holly, is a true, genuine woman. Stephanie has dealt with her weight all of her life and that thereby makes her an author I can trust due to her ability to share her own experiences through Holly’s characters.

Admittedly, going in, I was fearful that Big Girl Panties was a fluffy, chick-lit sort of novel that typically turn me off. Boy, was I wrong!  There is a huge message blended in this truly fantastic debut novel. True, Holly did lose weight in order to be happy, but in doing so she didn’t lose her own identity. And while Logan did aid her in this journey, she didn’t rely on him to make this transformation.  She took off on her own, not relying on anyone but herself to complete this journey of personal growth.

Holly and Logan as a couple…I admit it took me a little while to accept this. I was fearful Evanovich was embarking upon a formulaic path in which the ugly duckling falls for the gorgeous prince. That said, since itwasn’t a a forced or synthetic relationship but one that certainly broke all molds. Oh…and the sex. Whew! Let’s just say the steaminess went beyond the gym and the work-out routines!  Holly and Logan were one hot couple, to say the least!  What makes these scenes different than all others was the fact that Logan found most attractive in Holly the very things she thought would turn him off. He appreciated her natural beauty and found sensuality in aspects of her physique that she believed were her faults.

Ultimately, I was completely taken aback by how much I truly valued and appreciated this novel.  And, unlike many of the books I read and review, I was able to share my experiences with fellow readers almost immediately.  I was fortunate enough to be a winner of one of the Big Girl Panties House parties. Sponsored by the publisher, we received party favors, decorations, etc. During this discussion, we chatted about Logan’s revelations about the definition of true beauty reminded us of the interview in which Dustin Hoffman shares the sudden realization he experienced while preparing for his role in Tootsie. Finally, we were also given the opportunity to as questions of Stephanie live through a Spreecast chat. A truly wonderful and memorable experience overall!

If you are looking for a beach read that is full of genuine characters and a bit of steam, this is the novel for you. Highly, highly recommended!


5 Responses to “Review: Big Girl Panties by Stephanie Evanovich”

  1. Mandi Kaye

    You and I had two very different experiences reading this book. I ended up being very angry when I was finished.

    I am glad to see that there are people who enjoyed it for how the author intended it, I think, but I just wasn’t one of those people. To me, this book just exemplifies the idea that women can’t be beautiful unless they’re thin. Logan’s character was the worst. He didn’t even want to be seen in public with her, even though he loved her, until she lost that last ten pounds. Sure they worked through it in the end, but she also lost that ten pounds.

    Even thinking about it makes me angry all over again.

    • Jenn
      Twitter: jennbookshelves

      But she never really got what we would call thin, just down to a healthier weight. Had she transformed into a model-thin woman like Logan usually dated, I probably would have been angry too.

      And yes, Logan was an ass until he realized that it was his own issues that prevented them from going out in public. As she transformed, so did he. It took him a bit longer to get over his own issues with weight and the perceptions that society put on people who are overweight, but once he did I think it made him a better person and he redeemed himself.

  2. Patti Smith
    Twitter: PattiRSmith

    I’ve been waiting on reviews to see what this one is all about…is Stephanie related to Janet Evanovich?

  3. Lala

    Yes, Stephanie Evanovich is related to Janet Evanovich it’s her famous aunt. She has started writing books to follow in her footsteps.