Author: Cynthia Langston
Reading Level: Adult
Released: August 20th 2012
Review Source: Debutante Media Team
Summary: (from goodreads) The Very First Bite chronicles the toils and triumphs of Lanie Albers, who has just ten weeks to mentally and physically prepare for the ultimate day of reckoning: her high school class reunion.
With twenty pounds of extra weight, a dead-end job and a boyfriend who won’t commit, the prospect of revisiting old classmates has Lanie reeling with panic. Not to mention the loose ends she’ll finally have to face, like Chad, her first love, for whom she suspects she might still have feelings. And Candace, her lifelong best friend, who abruptly ended their friendship seven years ago with no explanation.
By examining the ghosts of her past, Lanie begins to prepare for the revelations and confrontations of the big night. She also launches a desperate campaign to lose weight: an uproarious battle with fad diets and disastrous workouts, most of which lead her right back to the cookie jar.
Lanie's is a typical woman who happens to be single. She is in a monogamous relationship with a great guy, Mark, but she struggles with why he can't seem to commit. She has great friends, Sara, Lance and her younger sister Libby that she loves. She also has great job that affords her the luxury of working from home. She is attractive, despite the fact that she is 20 pounds over her ideal weight, and she is on the look for the perfect fad diet to instantly and effortlessly make those pounds virtually disappear. Like so many of us that strive to attain that great fit body but find that a bigger pair of jeans is the easier answer, Lanie bounces from one promise of the perfect diet to another. And to add to the pressure, she has only 10 weeks to lose said 20 pounds before her 15th year high school reunion where she will undoubtedly see her ex boyfriend and first love, Chad Michelson.
Now the latest gossip on Facebook (that Lanie accesses though her younger sisters account) has Chad either divorced or separated. Hmmm, with Mark unwilling to commit to even being labelled her boyfriend, Lanie wonders if the reunion could be the catalyst to renewing her relationship with Chad. She also has unfinished business with Candace, her childhood through college best friend that walked out of Lanie's life 7 years ago without any explanation. She gave up trying to reach out to Candace after months of no response but she still feels immense pain over this abandonment. Candace didn't show up to the 10 year reunion but, again through Facebook stalking, she knows that Candace is in a relationship and has a great job. She is more determined then ever to lose the weight, which she feels will give her the confidence she needs, to face the questions of her past.
Lanie plays out so many humorous, self deprecating scenarios in her head and on paper with her daily diary writings that she finds it hard to stay focused. Throughout the story Lanie is finding her way, amidst very funny detours, to the only real thing that reduces weight permanently....the dreaded reduction of calories and regular exercise. Once on the right path she starts seeing the results on the outside of her body but is still struggling with some of the same challenges with confidence internally.
I loved following Lanie in the course of her journey and found myself routing for her success. I related as she doubted, questioned and wavered. I marveled with each of her epiphanies. I loved the end but I was sad to let go of my new friend. I look forward to reading more from Cynthia Langston.