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Heather Wells #1

Size 12 Is Not Fat

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Heather Wells Rocks!

Or, at least, she did. That was before she left the pop-idol life behind after she gained a dress size or two — and lost a boyfriend, a recording contract, and her life savings (when Mom took the money and ran off to Argentina). Now that the glamour and glory days of endless mall appearances are in the past, Heather's perfectly happy with her new size 12 shape (the average for the American woman!) and her new job as an assistant dorm director at one of New York's top colleges. That is, until the dead body of a female student from Heather's residence hall is discovered at the bottom of an elevator shaft.

The cops and the college president are ready to chalk the death off as an accident, the result of reckless youthful mischief. But Heather knows teenage girls . . . and girls do not elevator surf. Yet no one wants to listen — not the police, her colleagues, or the P.I. who owns the brownstone where she lives — even when more students start turning up dead in equally ordinary and subtly sinister ways. So Heather makes the decision to take on yet another new career: as spunky girl detective!

But her new job comes with few benefits, no cheering crowds, and lots of liabilities, some of them potentially fatal. And nothing ticks off a killer more than a portly ex-pop star who's sticking her nose where it doesn't belong . . .

345 pages, Paperback

First published December 27, 2005

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About the author

Meg Cabot

247 books33.5k followers
Librarian note: AKA Jenny Carroll (1-800-Where-R-You series), AKA Patricia Cabot (historical romance novels).

Meg Cabot was born on February 1, 1967, during the Chinese astrological year of the Fire Horse, a notoriously unlucky sign. Fortunately she grew up in Bloomington, Indiana, where few people were aware of the stigma of being a fire horse -- at least until Meg became a teenager, when she flunked freshman Algebra twice, then decided to cut her own bangs. After six years as an undergrad at Indiana University, Meg moved to New York City (in the middle of a sanitation worker strike) to pursue a career as an illustrator, at which she failed miserably, forcing her to turn to her favorite hobby--writing novels--for emotional succor. She worked various jobs to pay the rent, including a decade-long stint as the assistant manager of a 700 bed freshmen dormitory at NYU, a position she still occasionally misses.

She is now the author of nearly fifty books for both adults and teens, selling fifteen million copies worldwide, many of which have been #1 New York Times bestsellers, most notably The Princess Diaries series, which is currently being published in over 38 countries, and was made into two hit movies by Disney. In addition, Meg wrote the Mediator and 1-800-Where-R-You? series (on which the television series, Missing, was based), two All-American Girl books, Teen Idol, Avalon High, How to Be Popular, Pants on Fire, Jinx, a series of novels written entirely in email format (Boy Next Door, Boy Meets Girl, and Every Boy's Got One), a mystery series (Size 12 Is Not Fat/ Size 14 Is Not Fat Either/Big Boned), and a chick-lit series called Queen of Babble.

Meg is now writing a new children's series called Allie Finkle's Rules for Girls. Her new paranormal series, Abandon, debuts in Summer of 2011.

Meg currently divides her time between Key West, Indiana, and New York City with a primary cat (one-eyed Henrietta), various back-up cats, and her husband, who doesn't know he married a fire horse. Please don't tell him.

* Airhead
* The Princess Diaries
* Mediator

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5 stars
24,125 (28%)
4 stars
29,041 (33%)
3 stars
23,539 (27%)
2 stars
6,421 (7%)
1 star
2,799 (3%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 2,867 reviews
Profile Image for Dr. Appu Sasidharan (Dasfill).
1,037 reviews2,039 followers
September 22, 2022

Meg Cabot tells the story of Heather Wells, who was a pop idol in her late teenage years. Now she lost her boyfriend, life savings, and record contract and is struggling with her life. She gets a new job as an assistant dorm director in New York.

One day, a female student's dead body is seen at the bottom of an elevator shaft. Was it an accident or a murder? Will Heather find out the mystery behind her death? Is there a serial killer behind these unfortunate events? You will find out the answers through this book

What I learned from this book
1) What are the dangers of getting into a rebound relationship?
A rebound relationship is a relationship that we enter based on a reaction to a previous relationship, where one or both members are still contending with issues raised by the past breakup. Many problems are associated with it, like the mental instability due to the absence of proper recovery, comparisons to the ex, and fear of commitment as you think the new relationship will also end soon if you commit yourself to it.

It is better to get over a breakup before committing to the new one as there is a probability that you will fall into a relationship with a predator who tries to utilize your fragile situation, which will further worsen your mental health.
"I'm going to fall in love with someone else just as soon as I can. I swear. But in the meantime, is it so wrong that I enjoy his company?"

2) Why is littering a social problem?
Littering tells a whole lot about the personality of an individual. It causes a lot of social problems in our community. It creates fire and human health hazards because of the micro and macro organisms attracted to it. Multiple serious diseases like Malaria and Leptospirosis are mainly caused by littering.
"I once saw her throw a Juicy Fruit wrapper on the ground in Central Park. She doesn't even feel guilty about littering."

3) Why should we never body shame another person?
This book's story and climax are strongly connected to body shaming.

Body shaming is the practice of subjecting someone to humiliation and criticism for their physical appearance. The author perfectly portrays what will happen to those who find enjoyment in body shaming others.

Body shaming will profoundly affect the mental health of the opposite person. It can cause depression and anxiety. There are multiple instances where people even committed suicide due to the body-shaming they suffered.
“See,” she’s saying. "I told you, Heather. You're too nice to win. Too weak. Not in good enough shape. Because size twelve is fat. Oh, I know what you're going to say. It's the size of the average American woman. But guess what? The average American woman is fat, Heather."

My favourite three lines from this book
“If there are three words in the English language worse than "Got a minute?" they can only be "About last night...”

“And someday
Someday you'll be home.”

“Some people are never satisfied.”

What could have been better?
The author is trying to discuss a very serious topic of bullying and body shaming in this book. She had a golden opportunity to dive deep into this topic and have a serious discussion. She, unfortunately, decided to go through the issue only in a superficial way.

Some people won't like the inherent sexism present in this book that is commonly seen in Chick-lit fiction. This book will give you a decent reading experience if you can tolerate that.

3/5 If you are facing a reading slump and if you love to read murder mysteries involving young people this book will be a decent choice.
Profile Image for Marije.
364 reviews6 followers
December 22, 2012

Okay, let me summarize this book (style-spoiler, but I won't give away anything you couldn't guess after reading the back cover):

"I'm a size 12, which is, you know, the size of the average American woman. So I'm totally not fat or self-obsessed. I work in a dorm - I mean, residence hall. My boss is pretty and ambitious and thin, so she's a bitch. I used to be a teen-star but now I want to be a pre-med student even though I obviously have no clue what a medical profession would be like, only because the man I'm in love with likes smart women. I think the two girls who fell down the elevator shaft of de dorm - I mean, residence hall - are murdered because, you know, girls don't elevator surf. But mostly I think about Cooper (who is - Oh my god - hot and muscular) and obsess about what he thinks of me and also about my size which is not fat, which I have to tell the reader over and over. Totally not a marketing trick. But, um, you know, I have to find out who murdered these girls because the police won't listen to me. Well, okay, maybe they will, but still I have to risk my life to be saved by Cooper."

You know how revelling in annoyance can be a guilty pleasure? That is why I finished this book. It is really my own fault, because this book never pretended to be anything better than it is. It even has the words 'spunky girl detective!' on the cover! So, if that appeals to you, and you don't mind endless repetition of the same 'jokes': enjoy!
June 21, 2022

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So I was a teenager in the aughts, and whenever I revisit chicklit from that era, I am always categorically shocked at how much toxic shit young me devoured in the form of fiction. Like, there was SO much sexism and fatphobia and internalized misogyny, you guys. I talk about this a little bit in my review of another aughts chick-lit called THE NEXT BIG THING, which is a reality TV show where fat women are supposed to lose weight and are basically treated like subhumans. This is another weight-themed chick-lit where, despite the seemingly well-meaning title, actually has some messages in it that are Not The Best.

Heather Wells, our heroine, was a pop singer (think 90s female solo artist, like Jessica Simpson or Britney) until she put on weight and discovered her fiancee and fellow teenybopper idol getting a blowie from her biggest rival. Also, she wanted to go indie and her record label, owned by her now ex-fiancee's dad, was like LOL fuck you Liz Phair, you fucking sadgirl bitch. And when he finished jerking off to his Men's Rights Activist pamphlet, he booted her ass out.

Now she works in a dorm as Assistant to the Regional Director, job duties including: checking pulses in cases of alcohol poisoning, telling those damn kids to stop elevator surfing, and answering Concerned Parental Phone Calls. Unfortunately, it's the elevator surfing that's the real doozy. A girl just fell to her death trying to hang ten on the tenth floor, or whatever. And I'm sure this is A Real Thing That Kids Actually Do Just Like Lipstick Parties and Trading Sex Favors for Jelly Bracelets(TM) and not just something Lifetime made up. Anyway, Heather is convinced that foul play is afoot because "Girls Don't Elevator Surf" (sounds like a Weezer album, tbh). And she beats this Girls Are Way Too Chill to Behave in Life-Threatening Ways drum incessantly, because TikTok hasn't been invented yet.

Also, she will remind you at every opportunity how Size 12 Is NOT Fat(TM) and how annoying skinny people are. No way is anyone naturally skinny, according to nature. The book literally opens with her comparing a girl who is a size two to a chipmunk and being like "lol what's smaller than a size zero, do you, like NOT exist?" First of all, don't dehumanize that girl, Heather, you bitch. Second of all, skinny shaming is a thing. Third of all, for a book that is allegedly supposed to be all 'yo go girl' about the way the MC looks, there is so much obsessing over how fat and disgusting everyone thinks being size twelve is. I think Heather is insulted about her weight at least ten times, and someone says that she's "let herself go" because she went from being a size eight to a size twelve.

I just think this is so toxic. Especially since, according to the MC, size twelve is the size of the average American woman (although this was pubbed almost twenty years ago, and I think the average has moved up to 14). At the time that I read this book, I was a size 12 and I remembered thinking, "Wait, am I fat?" A lot of chick-lit and romance novels do this-- I'm not just singling out Cabot-- but I think it's important to talk about how this cultural mindset was so deeply entrenched that it seeped into the psyches of so many female characters in fiction. I mean, gosh, I just read a Harlequin romance novel from the aughts where there's a throwaway line about how the heroine could stand to lose ten pounds.

Despite all that, I AM giving this book a four-star (rounded up) review because it was a lot of fun to read. I rate purely based on entertainment and sometimes problematic shit is entertaining. That doesn't excuse the fact that it is problematic, nor does it discredit the ratings of people who choose to rate based on how problematic something is, but I personally found the mystery pretty well done (although I have SERIOUS qualms about the motives and treatment of the baddie). I loved the college town vibe, the New York setting, and the author's actual attempt to make New York City diverse. Several of the students are black and Asian, the author talks about racism, several of the employees are Latinx (including her Dominican friend, Magda), and while I'm sure some of these portrayals are-- ahem-- questionable, it's way more than what I remember so many of these other authors doing.

Also, the love interest? He's a hot private detective who loved his gay grandpa and he's good with dogs. Who looks good in a tux. And has black hair and blue eyes. I probably wouldn't rec this to most people now but it's what I grew up reading and it's hard to hate it, even if I probably sort of should. YOLO!

3.5 to 4 stars
20 reviews6 followers
August 28, 2007
Meg Cabot has a fan base like no other, and it's really no wonder. All of her books are incredibly enjoyable so long as you're into chick lit and light reads.

Don't let the title of this one fool you. The idea that the title gave me and the actually content of the book didn't mesh at all. I wasn't disappointed by what I got, it was just different.

In my opinion, the plot lines of the Heather Wells Mystery books aren't all that riveting. But Meg Cabot knows exactly what she's doing with her characters. To me, the plot comes in second to the character development. I read the Heather Wells books because I love Heather Wells. Her mystery-solving doesn't really interest me at all, but SHE does. I keep coming back for more Heather Wells, and each time I just sort of giggle to myself over the plot, but by the end of each book I'm more in love with the characters than I have ever been before.
Profile Image for Lianne.
685 reviews
April 11, 2021
I thought this was pretty typical chick lit, albeit of the mystery variety. It was light, entertaining and didn't require much thinking, which is why I chose it, so no complaints there. I was, however, annoyed by the heroine, Heather Wells, on more than one occasion. Although she saved the day at the end (of course), I found her to be often whiny and passive about everything but solving the mystery. The writing style bothered me sometimes, too - the "size 12 is NOT fat" tagline was used over and over again, and the "dorm, I mean residence hall" line made me want to tear my hair out by the end. I'm on the fence about reading the next one in the series. We'll see!
Profile Image for Chelsea (chelseadolling reads).
1,472 reviews19.2k followers
July 16, 2018
Yet another re-read! I'm a re-reading machine this month. Also, Meg Cabot is love Meg Cabot is life. I would read her grocery lists and love them.
Profile Image for Sara (sarawithoutanH).
459 reviews2,955 followers
February 7, 2017
Okay, so I don't think everyone would enjoy this book. It's the epitome of chick lit. I like to think of it as Veronica Mars meets Bridget Jones. Our main character is very chatty and the writing style is conversational. The jokes are very repetitive and the mystery is easy to figure out but I had a fun time reading this. I'm sure I enjoyed this mostly because it's a book I read in high school and it made me feel very nostalgic.
Profile Image for Elizabeth.
274 reviews721 followers
Shelved as 'not-interested'
July 25, 2018
I read the first two chapters and realised this was a book that would constantly hit me over the head with the pitiful woes of a 28 year-old woman who peaked early and is desperately trying to persuade herself into thinking she's okay with that.

(I guess the title should have been warning enough. You don't have to convince me that a size 12 isn't fat, Heather [Meg] - maybe check in with yourself.)
Profile Image for Rachel Reads Ravenously.
1,802 reviews2,159 followers
March 9, 2016
A cute mystery book about a former pop star who becomes the assistant resident advisor to a dormitory excuse me, residence hall. When her residents turn up dead in bizarre elevator accidents, she takes it upon herself to investigate when the police don't.

Has the Meg Cabot flair we all loved. Great beach read. Got a 3 because it was cute and I liked it but I didn't love it/wouldn't reread it.

Definitely want to see more of Cooper in the other books.
Profile Image for Leila.
77 reviews
May 29, 2008
I decided I wanted to see how Meg Cabot writes for adults, since I like the Princess Diaries so much. And, honestly, what red-blooded American woman wouldn't be drawn in by the title of this book? Size 12 is indeed NOT FAT. So there.

The mystery side of the story is compelling--and a little hard to figure out, I must admit. Heather's love for Cooper is sort of over-the-top (given she just broke up with his brother four months ago!)--and icky. But I enjoyed Heather's spunkiness, and am willing to forgive some of the repetitiveness of certain points: yes, I know you like DoveBars. And Mochas. And think Cooper is hot. And you love your dog. Gotcha.

I have recommended this book to many people, though, so I must have gotten something out of it.
Profile Image for Laurie  (barksbooks).
1,705 reviews661 followers
April 11, 2013
This is a cute chick-lit book with a side of mystery. Heather is a former pop singer who caught her fiance with another woman and whose mom ran off with her small fortune. She's now working as an assistant director at a residence hall at a college and is doing her best to leave her past behind her. I really enjoyed the fact that this girl isn't a whiner like so many chick lit princesses and is getting on with her life on her own terms. She's no longer a skinny young pop star and is living in a rented brownstone owned by her former fiance's gorgeous brother who dates size 2's and whom she has a hopeless crush on. When two female students die under mysterious circumstances in an elevator shaft, Heather is frustrated at the lack of the police action and takes matters into her own hands and starts snooping around putting her life in jeopardy as well.

This book is very much a fluff filled confection with a little side of mystery thrown in but the likable heroine makes it easy to turn the pages and I'll probably read the second book in the series if it falls into my hands.
Profile Image for K..
3,595 reviews1,001 followers
June 22, 2017
Trigger warnings: murder, some fat phobia.

3.5 stars.

I'd never read anything by Meg Cabot before, but I've been intrigued by this for a while now. And it was...pretty solid? I liked Heather as a character. I liked her investigating the crimes and interacting with Cooper and her being all "HEY, STOP CALLING ME FAT WHEN I'M THE SAME SIZE AS THE AVERAGE U.S. WOMAN". All of that was great.

That said, I could have done without all the insipid song lyrics at the start of each chapter. I could have done without every second character pointing out Heather's weight when, like, a size 12 honestly IS. NOT. FAT. (Yes, I know it's a US size 12 and not an Australian or UK size 12. Still not fat, yo.)

Am I interested enough to keep reading? Maybe. But, like, when I finish pretty much everything on my TBR.
Profile Image for Liisa.
266 reviews12 followers
December 3, 2008
If you're looking for a hardcore, edge-of-your-seat thriller, this isn't the book for you. However if you are looking for an entertaining read with a hint of mystery, I recommend "Size 12 is Not Fat" by Meg Cabot.

The downside to "Size 12 is Not Fat" is that it took considerable time to get into the story and I did guess the culprit very early on however the positives include very likeable characters and an amusing and entertaining read.

I liked it enough to decide to read the next in the series, "Size 14 is Not Fat Either".
48 reviews
December 31, 2007
This book was one of the worst mysteries that I have ever read. I hate when mysteries make everyone else in the story so dumb that only the main character realizes that it was murder. Sorry, but any death in a residence hall is going to be given a full investigation, and if a second happens, it certainly won't be shrugged off.

I also found the main character, Heather to be whiny and very unsure of her self. While reading, I had to keep reminding myself that she was 28 since her action and thoughts seemed more to me like those of a much younger person.

The only thing I have to say good about it is that it was a quick read at least.
Profile Image for Ieva.
999 reviews76 followers
February 1, 2020
Tā kā neesmu nekāda detektīvu cienītāja, nevarētu teikt, ka biju sajūsmā par grāmatu kluba mēneša tēmu - omulīgie detektīvi. Bet tā kā man patīk šao mēneša tēmāu pēclasīt to, ko citādi nebūtu iedomājusies, sāku rakāties dažādios sarakstos, kuros iesaka labāko šajā žanrā. Heteres Velsas grāmtās bija vairākos topo - un, būsim godīgi, nosaukums vien piesaistīja manu uzmanību.
Šis nu bija gadījums, kad nejau;si atklāju zelta dzīslu, jo man patiešām ļoti, ļoti patika! Tiesa, esmu pārsteigta par grāmatas labo reputāciju, jo, ja man patiktu dtektīvintrigas, ļoti šaubos, ka šī liktos laba, jo tā gan bija izdomājam pavisam viegli (kaut ne īstas loģikas, bet "lasu-ne-jau-pirmo-grāmtu-dzīvē-un-tāpēc- zinu-kādi-parasti-ir-ļaunie-tēli" loģikas pēc). Un pat izmeklēšanas karstumā, vēl vairāk, pat cīņas uz dzīvību un nāvi vīdū, Hetere ik pa brīdim aizmirstās un apamaldās domās par savas dzīves vīriešiem (arī ptikai hipotētiski potenciālajiem), karjeras nedienām un Amerikas vidējo sieviešu apģērba izmēru. Bet nu man jau galvenais, lai ir asprātīgs sieviešu lasāmbabals ar patīkamu galveno varoni - un tāds gan tas patiešām bija.
Steidzu klausīsties turpinājumu, un tas jau vien ir ko vērts fakts pats par sevi.
Profile Image for Obsidian.
2,705 reviews928 followers
November 21, 2016
One of the commenters on my updates nailed it perfectly for why I really didn't care for this book. The character of Heather is not likable really in this one for me. We find out that the main reason she decides to take the job she does is to go to school (for free) to get a degree to make her more appealing to a man. And she's trying to prove how smart and capable she is to get this same man to fall in love with her like she is with him (this is her ex's brother). We also don't find out much about her backstory and instead choose to focus on her crush on her ex's brother and her justifying everything that she eats by saying size 12 is not fat. I mean that line must have been said almost 100 times during the course of this book.

I now recall why I could not get through this book the first time my friend gave this to me as a gift. The book does not do a good job of developing secondary characters besides Cooper (her ex's brother and P.I.) and the why behind the murders was pretty awful. And I have to say that Heather drove me nuts because her investigation skills were hilariously bad.

Heather is an ex-teen singing sensation who is now broke living with Cooper (her ex's brother) and working as an assistant dorm director at a college in New York. We find out slowly (seriously) that Heather is broke because her mom ran off with her money, that her label dropped her when she insisted on singing her own songs, and that her ex fiancee who is currently part of a boy band or former boy band (I could not keep that one straight) is still trying to force a continuation of their relationship. Between this and the murder mystery aspect it was just too much for the first book in the series.

The writing got old quick. Heather's constant comments about being a size 12 is not fat was headache inducing after a while. That and her describing Cooper, his leather jacket, what someone else looked like and her thinking if they were either too thin or her size. Apparently size 10s don't exist in this world or size 8s either. You are either a size 0, too skinny, or 12.

The flow of the book was terrible. We either have Heather investigating (quotes) obsessing about Cooper, obsessing about her ex, obsessing about her size, or trying to hide from her past in this one.

The setting of New York actually worked in this one very well. I got a good sense of where Heather lived and the dorm.

The ending was a bit of a mess actually. The reveal behind who dun it was all kinds of gross, and honestly I was thinking it may be this person due to process of elimination anyway.

I read this for the Twelve Tasks of the Festive Season: Task the Fourth: The Gift Card.
Profile Image for Lynn.
183 reviews17 followers
September 17, 2012
I'm not even going to dignify this book by a rating. It was one of the worst books I've ever read and I couldn't even finish it. Heather's character is a complete "airhead blonde". She tries to play at being detective. But oh boy!! I felt the need to strangle her throughout the whole portion of the book that I've actually managed to read. Her character is so one dimensional that it's bordering on pathetic. And oh my God!!! What's with all the ramblings. I found myself skimming through passages and passages that are only expressing her thoughts just so I don't shoot myself. Aside from that, on the romantic side, even though she's in her late twenties, she acts like a fifteen year old with a first crush what with all her obsession with Cooper, her ex-fiance's brother. As for the plot, needless to say that it's not the most original or the most exciting story out there.
Profile Image for Summer.
1,355 reviews249 followers
March 9, 2010
I thought Size 12 Is Not Fat was pretty cute. It had lot of the usual humor you expect from a Meg Cabot book. Size 12 is about former teen pop star, Heather Wells, several years after her fame has gone away. Years ago her mother ran off with her money and her agent to another country. On top of that she found her fellow pop star boyfriend cheating on her. Since then she's had to find her own way in the world since her life as a teen star is over. She's decided to make something of her life and by chance gets a job working as an assistant for a residence hall at a college. When suddenly several girls are found dead in the elevator shaft, everyone thinks it was just a tragic case of elevator surfing. But Heather knows that girls do not elevator surf and takes up upon herself to find out what's really going on.

I expected Size 12 to just be some fun, light fluff and that's exactly what it was. It's part chick-lit part light mystery. The only real complaint I had about it was when the big confrontation with the murderer happened it was like 3-4 pages of the killer having their big monologue about why they did it and why they now have to kill Heather that I thought was kinda ridiculous. But it's just a minor complaint, and definitely look forward to the next in the series.
Profile Image for Kathi.
667 reviews14 followers
October 26, 2021
"Darf's ein bisschen mehr sein?" ist der erste Teil einer Reihe von Meg Cabot. Danach folgen "Schwer verliebt" und "Mord au chocolat". Heather Wells ist ein ehemaliger Teenie Star, der zur Untermiete bei dem Bruder ihres Ex-Freundes, einem Privatdetektiv wohnt. Ihr Leben läuft nicht unbedingt so, wie sie es sich ursprünglich vorgestellt hat. Statt Sängerin ist sie nun Hausmeisterin in einem Studentenwohnheim. Einige Menschen haben Heather sehr verletzt. Trotzdem ist sie mit ihrem Leben eigentlich zufrieden und pflegt teilweise sogar noch Kontakt zu diesen Leuten. Sie ist etwas molliger, mag ihre Figur aber. Größe 12 (bei uns 40-42) ist ihrer Meinung nach nicht fett. Heather ist ziemlich selbstbewusst, manchmal aber auch etwas zu gutmütig.

Von Anfang an ist Heather eine sehr sympathische Figur. Ich mochte sie sofort. Heather ermittelt auf eigene Faust, weil sie nicht glauben will, dass es sich bei dem tödlichen Vorfall im Studentenwohnheim um einen Unfall handelt. Zum Inhalt selbst schreibe ich nichts mehr. Die Geschichte ist eine Art Krimi mit gelungenen Hauptcharakteren, einer guten Portion Witz und Romantik. Mir hat das Buch ganz gut gefallen. Es ist flüssig geschrieben, stellenweise aber leider auch etwas langweilig. Gäbe es diese kleinen "Durststellen" und die zahlreichen Wiederholungen in diesem Buch nicht, würde ich sogar die volle Punktezahl vergeben.

Die Kapiteleinteilung gefällt mir. Die Kapitel beginnen immer mit einer Zeile aus einem Song von Heather. Das finde ich sehr schön. Außerdem sind die Kapitel relativ kurz. Daher kann man das Buch auch gut nebenher lesen, wenn man mal kurze Wartezeiten überbrücken muss. Im Großen und Ganzen war die Geschichte recht unterhaltsam. Sie hat mich ab und zu zum Schmunzeln gebracht. Die anderen Bände aus dieser Reihe werde ich bestimmt auch noch lesen. Ich bin gespannt, wie es mit Heather Wells und den anderen Protagonisten weiter geht.
Profile Image for Eshusdaughter.
594 reviews29 followers
September 13, 2008
I had high hopes for this book. Maybe that's the problem. If I'd gone in expecting it to suck, I'd have been mildly pleased that it wasn't a complete waste of paper. Instead I went in expecting the kick-butt characters, fast pace and intriguing story that have characterized several of Cabot's other series. Sadly the first Heather Wells mystery falls far short on all three.

Heather is a 28-year-old washed-up teen pop-star who use to fill malls with screaming pre-teens and now is assitant director at a college dorm. Girls start ending up dead in Heather's dorm and she just knows it's murder and won't rest until she finds the killer.

There are so many bad things about this book. Let's revert to bullet form so they go faster, shall we?
*Heather comes across as closer to 18 than 28; her speech, mannerisms, inner-thoughts and overall character scream teenager, not adult.
*There are some continuity issues here. She was a popular star at 15. She keeps going on about how all she ever was is a teen-pop star. She's called a one-hit wonder at one point in the book. And yet, according to her age she'd have had a 13-year music career and just gave it up a couple months prior to the novel's start. Erm. Okay. And in that time she released several records. Things just don't jive at all.
*Total pre-occupation with food. OMG. Does anyone obsess over food that much? There's something about food and snacks on almost every page! The worst is when Heather is in a situation where she knows she's about to die any second and suddenly she's thinking how good a can of pringles sounds. WTF?
*The whole size-12-is-not-fat thing, yeah that's a running sentence throughout the book. It comes up almost a much as the food thing. It would have been better as a single line and a running, subtle theme.
*The villian does the whole cliched villian soliloquy thing. And, worse, starts telling blonde jokes. Seriously. Villian is about to bash in a head and is telling a blonde joke. It's very, very left field, trust me.
*The pace is slow and jerky at times.
*Heather's inner monologue makes her seem like a complete airhead. Oh and her total and complete obsession with her male roomate? Don't need to be bashed over the head with that twenty billion times, thanks. I was going to scream if I had to read about Heather wanting to rip Cooper's clothes off with her teeth again.
*Heather's career and life goals are totally based on wanting Cooper to fall in love with her. She has no aspirations, beyond her music, that are totally her own. Worse that is a theme in this book repeated by other characters. Geeze, welcome to the 21st century - women can have a life outside of guys! It's just disgusting how sycophantic Heather and one of the other main character's are. Ugh!

This rant could go on, but I'll stop here. I will NOT be reading the second book.
Profile Image for Katherine.
371 reviews52 followers
October 8, 2011
This could have been so much better, but instead the main character says "Like" too much, is portrayed as a role model for women who are not stick-thin and yet constantly obsesses about how miserable and hideous she is before she distracts herself with some sort of chocolate or baked thing, and is surprisingly easily distracted from the recently-witnessed murder scene by her landlord's nice bottom.

There are so many things that don't make sense in this. For example, having worked out who the culprit is, the two main characters go to visit someone else (to confirm what they already know) instead of going to the police who could do this bit on their own. I understand that our dear heroine is a bit impulsive and mentally challenged, but the cardboard cut-out love interest who isn't characterized beyond a few broody glances and how good he looks in whatever outfit he's wearing should, considering his career, be a little more sensible. And why do they take their bloody dog with them? It blatantly ignores the "smoking gun" rule - the dog serves absolutely no function in that scene (or the whole book, mind you) besides getting its paws wet. The descriptions are lazy and result in confusion, and the characterization is pathetic.

I found the main character whiny, self-obsessed and her constant "dorm-er-residence hall" repetition stopped being cute after the first three times she did it. That it continued to the very last part of the book was ridiculous.

If you cut all the cutesy repetition, catch-phrases, self-obsession, complaints about weight (and food cravings), the word "like" and shoddy descriptions of two-dimensional characters from this book, I think we'd be left with a couple of dead bodies in an elevator shaft. And that was the only interesting thing about it.

Come on, Ms Cabot. You can do so much better than this. Also, boo on your editor for not asking what the point of the damn dog was.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Elaine.
978 reviews38 followers
January 2, 2018
This is a fun light read. The pacing of this novel is fast. You move quickly from one incident to the other trying to figure out the mystery with Heather.
Our heroine Heather Wells is a former teen pop star now trying to put herself through college by working in a residence hall. Shortly after the semester begins, young girls start plunging to their death in the elevator shaft. Heather can't help herself and starts investigating and then finds herself the target of a murderer. The mystery was fun and well plotted. Flowing throughout is Heather's inner monologue in which she ponders everything from vanity sizing, exercise, the miraculous effects of chocolate and even the love of a good pet. This hilarious thought process is what kept me so intrigued, not the mystery. It almost seemed as an afterthought - which isn't necessarily a bad thing, in this case at least. One of my issues with the book, that prevent this being a 5 star read, was how certain phrases or scenarios get beaten to death. For example, it's a "residence hall" not a dorm. We get it. Don't repeat it every other freaking page. Heather's history as a pop star also lends itself to some annoying repeats - everyone seems to recognize her vaguely. It gets old after a while.
All in all a fun read!
Profile Image for Maria.
123 reviews20 followers
August 9, 2022
I loved it!! A funny and enjoyable chick lit book with a bit of mystery, with a very likeable main character.

Heather, former teen-popstar, is currently working in a residence hall, when strange deaths start to happen. She suspects the deaths are not accidental (as the police have said) so she starts investigating, with the reluctant help of his housemate.

My favourite quote of the book:

"This isn't true", Patty says. "You'll find someone. You just can't be afraid to take a risk."

What is she talking about? I do nothing but take risks. I'm trying to keep a psychopath from killing again. Isn't that enough? I have to have a ring on my finger, too?
Some people are never satisfied.

I can't wait to read the second book on these series.
Profile Image for Marianne .
263 reviews
October 26, 2008
This book deserved 2.5 stars really. I liked it ok, but not much more than that. The character was cute but a lot of the writing was very simple. I got really tired of the author using the same expressions all the time ( "haven't I seen you before?" and "I know because I read it in a People magazine") I got so tired of them that I almost stopped reading. The storyline is cute and there is a little romance thrown in so it was a great read after a heavier memoir.

Total fluff but a fun read nonetheless.
Profile Image for Laure.
134 reviews66 followers
October 9, 2016
Sigh, I wish I could say better things about this book, but I feel I nearly wasted the few hours it took me to read it.
In a few words - the romance was extremely thin, not really any communication, fun/sexy dialogues or relationship with Mr Right.
And what about that silly murder inquiry? Implausible from the start.
I suppose the redeeming feature was to be the 'fun' and funny? situations and Heather's over the top and cute interior monologues. Well not for me. Actually Heather managed to get on my nerves quite a few times. I will not be reading number 2 in the series.
Profile Image for Emily.
694 reviews2,003 followers
August 29, 2017
Meg Cabot's voice is always enjoyable, but I wasn't that into the execution of the book's central conceit. Heather Wells is a pop star out of the business who is now a size 12, which she reminds the reader at every possible opportunity. She's constantly mentioning the other characters' sizes, and her own, and it starts to feel pretty shoehorned in. And while I liked the idea of a girl detective at a residence hall, I was decidedly not into the central romance of the book, . It feels obvious they're going to end up together, I know just how they get there, and I'm not interested enough to read four more books.

I also had a hard time determining how much time had passed between Heather's first recording contract and her subsequent breakup with Jordan Cartwright (was that just me??). Did they actually break up only a few months previously? Had it been years? It sounds like Heather was popular a long time ago (and she needs time to you know ... get to a size 12), but Jordan keeps showing up in her life at such an alarming cadence that it seems like their breakup was only months ago. Did they date for over a decade?? Inquiring minds need to know.
Profile Image for Nicole.
942 reviews5 followers
September 2, 2008
In typical Meg Cabot form, the first book in a new series introduces us to an imperfect heroine who, by the end of the book with realize her true potential and strive to make herself happy with herself/her faults and then attractive to the guy she never thought possible.

I like Heather Wells and I'm not afraid to say it. Her experience as a pre-Britney, pre-Miley tween queen has brought her to New York University, working part time as a dorm, I mean residence hall, assistant.

The whole dorm, I mean residence hall, thing got to me, but being a former hall council president, I totally get what she was saying. Now the mystery itself was very easy to figure out, but I liked the setting and the characters. You read Cabot to escape for a bit, and she definitely has with "Size Twelve is not fat." I'm going to look at the other books in the Heather Wells series. I have a feeling I already know what's going to happen, but I applaud Cabot for writing a new adult mystery that seamlessly combines chick lit aspects. And the "E! True Hollywood" references were great, too.
Profile Image for Alaina.
6,084 reviews215 followers
November 7, 2017
“I'm going to fall in love with someone else just as soon as I can. I swear. But in the meantime, is it so wrong that I enjoy his company?”

I abso-freaking-lutely loved this book!

Every goddamn page made me laugh and want more. I loved the main character, Heather Wells. She was like a funnier and sassier version of Nancy Drew. I loved every character, even the villain and her ex-fiancé. The villain, who I sort of suspected but not until the last minute, was so good! The ex kind of annoyed me a little because he just kept showing up all the time! Like he has a new fiancé - go be with her and leave Heather alone.

I'm completely shipping Heather and Cooper forever and ever.

He just has to admit he loves her just as much as she loves him. I need more of them in the book.

So, thank you Meg Cabot for making me fall in love with another book of yours. I can't wait to find out what happens next for Heather.
Profile Image for Maureen DeLuca.
1,025 reviews32 followers
December 6, 2016
Heather Wells is a former pop star who must now face an uncertain future after losing her fortune, her recording contract, and her fiance in a short period of time.

Heather now works in a dorm, which the school calls a "residence hall in one of NY top colleges. Of course, then a murder happens... and then another--- so now Heather will be a 'spunky girl detective'

This is definitely a chick-lit mystery and it doesn't pretend to be anything else. Others have liked this cozy- so I would take my review with a grain of salt- read the other reviews and maybe give it a try.

Every once in a while- I like to read a cozy- but boy , I do have trouble finding those that I like. But, I just keep on trying - for you never know! A kinda cute idea- but to me, it was off the mark.

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