Book: Savvy Sheldon Feels Good As Hell by Taj McCoy
Source: I received a copy from NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Release Date: March 22nd, 2022
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Savvy Sheldon Feels Good As Hell, follows Savvy after she’s dumped by her boyfriend, essentially because she works too much and has gained too much weight over the years they’ve dated. Savvy’s response is to give her life a bit of a makeover, and prove to her ex just what he’s missing. At the same time, Savvy decides to make some changes to her house as well, which means she’s working closely with a contractor named Spencer who seems to like her just as she is.
I requested an ARC of this book, excited to read a body positive Black romance, and I didn’t quite get that. I was very particular with the way I worded the synopsis in this review because I don’t want anyone else being misled the way that I feel I was. This is not a body positive book. While that may be fine with you, I found myself disappointed that the only time the character found herself beautiful was when she had completely remade herself and her curves were now toned due to the exercise regiment she worked so hard to integrate into her schedule.
Let me be clear that I enjoyed reading about Savvy exercising and playing tennis and going to yoga. I just disliked how it crafted a message I find to be quite harmful. I’m all about people making changes in their life. I’m all about people making healthy choices. But I feel like it’s important that self love not be reliant upon the way you look. Nothing really changed about Savvy throughout the book. She’s still hardworking, fun, and loving, but at the end of the book she’s more toned and has a better haircut and that’s when she finds peace within herself. I think there might have been an attempt to sprinkle in the discussion about loving yourself no matter what, but because of the way the story played out, that attempt meant nothing.
The attempt at preaching self love and body positivity
Beyond my issues with the overall premise of this book, I found the pacing and transitions in this book to be extremely odd. We’d go from a scene with friends to a scene where Savvy is at her job, with no transition between the two. Not even a line or two to let you know the setting had shifted! There were several times where I thought I was missing a paragraph and had to double check to make sure I hadn’t skipped a page because of how clunky the transitions were. The area that was affected the worst by this was the romance. There was no chemistry between Savvy and Spencer, because there was never any buildup. Any supposedly steamy scenes just started out in such odd ways that I never was feeling the connection. I truly felt like I was missing the pieces that would make me understand why these two felt like they had a connection!
After all my griping and grousing you may think I hated this book, but that isn’t the case. I just found this book to be quite mediocre. I just didn’t care for most of it. It was a slice of life story, and it could have stopped at any point and I would have been fine leaving Savvy to live her life. Maybe this is just a continuation of the fact that the writing didn’t mesh with me, but at no point did I truly care or feel any stakes in Savvy’s life. I didn’t care about the romance, Savvy’s job, her house, her aspirations. I wasn’t quite bored, but there was nothing that pushed me to read this book either, besides for it being an ARC.
In the end I’m giving this book two stars. I didn’t hate it, though I had my issues, but I just can’t think of anything that I gained from this book either. If it still sounds interesting to you, then read this book! Just because nothing in this book clicked for me, doesn’t mean that this story can’t work a lot better for you. But if anything I mentioned sounds like it would bother you as well, then I’d suggest skipping this story for a more well-developed book featuring the true meaning of loving yourself.