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Hunger

A Memoir of (My) Body

By Roxane Gay
Narrated by Roxane Gay / 5 hours 57 minutes
Bookseller Recommendation

“This memoir is about trauma and privilege, self-loathing, and a silent fear kept secret for far too long. It's about our obsession with body weight and body image, what happens when we internalize our pain and become self-destructive, and how very, very large people are treated in humiliating ways. The descriptions of addictive behavior and the journey to want to heal make this book more universal than I expected. When you decide that this is the day you're going to change and you get out of bed and fail, that's pretty normal. You'll have another chance tomorrow - just remember to like yourself enough to overcome the fear of healing and try again. Highly recommend.”

Arcadia Books image Todd Miller, Arcadia Books

From the New York Times bestselling author of Bad Feminist: a searingly honest memoir of food, weight, self-image, and learning how to feed your hunger while taking care of yourself.

In her phenomenally popular essays and long-running Tumblr blog, Roxane Gay has written with intimacy and sensitivity about food and body, using her own emotional and psychological struggles as a means of exploring our shared anxieties over pleasure, consumption, appearance, and health. As a woman who describes her own body as “wildly undisciplined,” Roxane understands the tension between desire and denial, between self-comfort and self-care. In Hunger, she explores her past—including the devastating act of violence that acted as a turning point in her young life—and brings readers along on her journey to understand and ultimately save herself.

With the bracing candor, vulnerability, and power that have made her one of the most admired writers of her generation, Roxane explores what it means to learn to take care of yourself: how to feed your hungers for delicious and satisfying food, a smaller and safer body, and a body that can love and be loved—in a time when the bigger you are, the smaller your world becomes.

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“A work of staggering honesty...Poignantly told.”

New Republic

“Luminous...intellectually rigorous and deeply moving.”

The New York Times Book Review

Reviews

“The book’s short, sharp chapters come alive in vivid personal anecdotes...And on nearly every page, Gay’s raw, powerful prose plants a flag, facing down decades of shame and self-loathing by reclaiming the body she never should have had to lose.”

Entertainment Weekly

“Bracingly vivid...Remarkable...Undestroyed, unruly, unfettered, Ms. Gay, live your life. We are all better for having you do so in the same ferociously honest fashion that you have written this book.”

Los Angeles Times

“Her spare prose, written with a raw grace, heightens the emotional resonance of her story, making each observation sharper, each revelation more riveting...It is a thing of raw beauty.”

USA Today

About the Author

Roxane Gay is the author of the essay collection Bad Feminist, which was a New York Times bestseller; the novel An Untamed State, a finalist for the Dayton Peace Prize; and the short story collections Difficult Women and Ayiti. A contributing opinion writer to the New York Times, she has also written for Time, McSweeney’s, the Virginia Quarterly Review, the Los Angeles Times, The Nation, The Rumpus, Bookforum, and Salon. Her fiction has also been selected for The Best American Short Stories 2012, The Best American Mystery Stories 2014, and other anthologies. She is the author of World of Wakanda for Marvel. She lives in Lafayette, Indiana, and sometimes Los Angeles.


Related Reading

Author Website

Roxane Gay’s Complicated “Hunger”
The New Yorker

Be Bigger, Fight Harder: Roxane Gay On A Lifetime Of 'Hunger'
NPR

Hunger by Roxane Gay review – one body’s lessons for everybody
The Guardian

Author
Narrator Roxane Gay
ISBN 9780062470256
Length 5 hours 57 minutes
Language English
Publisher HarperCollins
Publication Date
Abridged No
 
I am stronger than I am broken. I often tell my students that fiction is about desire in one way or another. The older I get, the more I understand that life is generally the pursuit of desires. We want and want and oh how we want. We hunger. I am weary of all our sad stories—not hearing them, but that we have these stories to tell, that there are so many. My father believes hunger is in the mind. I know differently. I know that hunger is in the mind and the body and the heart and the soul. I often say that reading and writing saved my life. I mean that quite literally. What does it say about our culture that the desire for weight loss is considered a default feature of womanhood?

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