Chunky

by Yehudi Mercado
Support your local independent bookstore: Buy it there!
Content: There is talk about weight loss and body issues, including some bullying, which might be triggering. It’s in the middle-grade graphic novel section of the bookstore.

Hudi is a bit overweight and his parent and doctors think he should join a sport to lose weight. The only thing that keeps Hudi engaged in the sports — he’d rather be telling jokes — is his imaginary friend, Chunky, who is Hudi’s own personal cheerleader. But when Hudi gets in with a group of boys who want him to be something other than he is, Chunky and Hudi get into a fight (can you get into a fight with your imaginary friend?) and Hudi has to decide what’s truly important.

I wanted to like this one. It’s got a Jewish Latinx main character (and author). It’s sometimes funny. But it mostly just made me uncomfortable. I suppose there are some kids out there who might like it, and perhaps it’s good for representation and empathy’s sake, but mostly this was a hard no from me.

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