The night before her 25th wedding anniversary, three hundred pound Mary Gooch lies in bed pondering her life and the whereabouts of her husband Jimmy, a handsome furniture deliveryman who wishes to travel outside of small town Leaford, Canada. Mary’s world has long been defined by her size. Her wearable wardrobe is limited to her work uniform and she thinks of herself as the obeast. Given her low self-esteem, its hardly surprising Mary repeatedly refused her husband’s pleas to broaden her horizons. With her husband’ disappearance Mary sucks it up, gets on a plane and flies to her mother-in-law’s California home with nothing more then a vain hope that she will be able to locate Jimmy. Along the way, Mary meets a variety of people who serve to move her along the path to self-acceptance and liberation.
This thoughtful, lyrically written story starts out a bit slow as readers are introduced to Mary and a supporting cast of finely nuanced characters. One can’t help but get a sense of bulk as Mary copes with her fat rolls, self-doctoring a cut foot and limited clothing options. Readers will cheer as Mary moves beyond her original, narrow confines and onto the path of discovery.
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