From Feiwel & Friends/Macmillan
ALL OF ME is the story of Ari, an overweight boy who loves cryptozoology and role-playing games. He has body-image issues, and he is tired of letting his weight define him. After a move across the country, his parents work selling and promoting his mother's paintings and sculptures. Ari's artist mother needs space to create, and his father is gone for long stretches of time on "sales" trips. Somehow Ari is supposed to prepare for his already late bar mitzvah! Meanwhile, Ari makes new friends: Pick, the gamer, the artsy Jorge, and the troubled Lisa. He is also relentlessly bullied because he's overweight, but he can't tell his parents—they're simply not around enough to listen. After an upsetting incident, Ari's mom suggests he go on a diet, and she gives him a book to help. But the book—and the diet—can’t fix everything. As Ari faces the demise of his parents' marriage, he also feels himself changing, both emotionally and physically. Here is a much-needed story about accepting the imperfect in oneself and in life.
Critical Acclaim for ALL OF ME
NCTE 2020 Notable Verse Novel
A Southern California Independent Booksellers Association BESTSELLER!
A Bank Street College Best Book of the Year
Nerdy Book Club 2019 Award, Novels-in-Verse
"If you have ever felt lost in the world, betrayed by your body or buoyed by a glimmer of hope or the glow of friendship, then All of Me could be your story, too."
- The Los Angeles Times
"All of Me is for anyone who has been in search of a tribe, in love with a friend or in need of answers to questions that they can’t bring themselves to ask. In other words, everybody."
-- San Diego Union Tribune
"[A] beautifully written and psychologically acute debut. Readers will be glad to accompany Ari on his journey to self-discovery."
-- Booklist magazine
"Any reader who has felt like an outsider will be drawn to Ari’s story, which means his audience should be legion."
- The Horn Book Magazine
"Astute and stunning. All of Me is highly recommended and offers an eloquent and often-heartbreaking glimpse into the experiences of a layered, complex and relatable protagonist. Readers will surely root for Ari as his story unfolds."
-- Jewish Book Council
"Baron’s free-verse poetry is immediate and lyrical, allowing us access to Ari’s thoughts and feelings in a way that prose would not. Baron’s first-person narration allows the reader to experience Ari’s pain and revelations, both of which are balanced with moments of grace and beauty....highly recommended for readers of all ages."
"Tackling such difficult subjects as anti-Semitism, self-harm, and family instability with heart-breaking honesty and grace, All of Me deftly explores the complex layers of what it means to come of age. Baron’s evocative verse beautifully expresses the depth of Ari’s feelings; he will be a lifeline to anyone unsure of how they fit in the world."
--Joy McCullough, National Book Award nominated author of Blood Water Paint
"In page after page of gorgeous verse, Chris Baron tells a story of hard-won healing, self acceptance, and hope."
-- Jarrett Lerner, author of EngiNerds and the Geeger the Robot series
"I LOVE THIS BOOK. A moving and raw story that will stay with me."
-- Remy Lai, author of Pie in the Sky
“Chris Baron’s gorgeous debut shines with strength, vulnerability, and humor. Ari’s journey to self-acceptance is hopeful and inspiring.”
--Jen Petro-Roy, author of Good Enough:A Novel
"Ari's story of love and loss and learning to live life on his own terms broke my heart and put it back together again. Beautiful and necessary!"
- Kelly deVos, author of Fat Girl on a Plane