Books

A harrowing collection of sixty narratives—covering over fifty years of shootings in America—written by those most directly affected by school shootings: the survivors.


If I Don’t Make It, I Love You collects more than sixty narratives from school shooting survivors, family members, and community leaders covering fifty years of shootings in America, from the 1966 UT-Austin Tower shooting through May 2018’s Santa Fe shooting.Through this collection, editors Amye Archer and Loren Kleinman offer a vital contribution to the surging national dialogue on gun reform by elevating the voices of those most directly affected by school shootings: the survivors.

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After her husband leaves her for a skinnier, blonder, younger woman, Amye is forced to confront the food addiction that has been holding her back for most of her life and has left her weighing two hundred and sixty-five pounds. With the help of the gang of girls of Weight Watchers, and their fearless leader —former fatty and community college dropout—Pantsuit Pam, Amye spends the next year losing weight and learning to live in a skinny (er) woman’s body. Only being skinny is not as easy as it looks, especially when inside, she will always be a fat girl. Fat Girl, Skinny is Amye’s story, but it’s also the story of anyone who has ever been told: “You’d be pretty…if”.

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The war on body image is fought behind closed doors, in dressing rooms, closets, bathrooms, and in the darkest corners of our society. It is a war that has claimed many lives and will continue to do so as it rages, a war rooted in self-hatred and self-loathing, born out of the media and pop-culture’s idea of what it means to be beautiful. Beauty pageants, swimsuit calendars, “thigh gap,” for longer than we care to admit, Americans have allowed our children- girls and boys- to participate in a culture where they are rewarded for how they look rather than their strong minds and hearts.

Thankfully, the body positivity revolution has begun.

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