Body positivity is something that a lot of people struggle with. Be it males or females, the whole sense of being body conscious, of fearing that maybe the source of your embarrassment is your body, is something that everyone has faced at least once in their lifetime. Such insecurity makes the concept of body positivity a booming area to explore in fiction. People love to read about other people’s problems and how they dealt with it. This is a predominant issue that is addressed in the largely entertaining book that we are reviewing today-My Eyes Are Up Here by Laura Zimmermann!
My Eyes Are Up Here is a very entertaining and hilarious book about a teenager named Greer Walsh. She is trying to survive high school while also struggling with the fact that her ‘developing’ body is a constant source of awkwardness and embarrassment. The book targets the teen audience specifically as it deals with the topics of self-acceptance, body positivity, and navigating through high school at the same time. The story is hilariously relatable. My Eyes Are Up Here is a typical teenager growing up book that every girl struggling with the high school should read!
Before we take a deeper look at what the book holds for us, let’s get to know a little about the author of My Eyes Are Up Here – Laura Zimmermann!
Laura Zimmermann Biography
Laura Zimmermann is a writer and a storyteller. My Eyes Are Up Here is her debut book and is available in five languages! She is a multi-time winner of Moth and WordSprout story slams and has frequently shared stories of her parenting escapades in Twin Cities Listen To Your Mother productions. She lives with her family in Minneapolis, USA. Although not much is known about her, her first novel has done great worldwide and has attracted tons of readers!
Now that we know the author of this delightful read, let’s delve into this amazing, coming-of-age, hilarious book – My Eyes Are Up Here!
My Eyes Are Up Here Summary
In Kennedy High, sophomore Greer Walsh’s opinion, two things are holding her back: Maude and Mavis, her size-30H breasts. She can’t find a bra that fits, and the tops her mother buys for her would “burst Hulk-style” if she tried to put them on. Greer hides in men’s XXL shirts, trying to avoid notice and ignore harassment from boys in her suburban Chicago school. Between her worries about her body and her entirely crazy family, Greer has no illusions about finding love or acceptance for herself.
Then Greer meets Jackson Oates, a transfer student who seems more interested in her mind than her physical attributes. She’s attracted to him, but is romance possible without Maude and Mavis getting in the way? Jackson gives her the encouragement she needs to try out for volleyball. Making the team leads to a series of life-changing experiences, including finding some creative solutions to her problem. These situations urge Greer into accepting and loving herself unconditionally!
My Eyes Are Up Here Review
My Eyes Are Up Here is an amazing book wherein every emotion felt by the primary character, Greer, is totally relatable and hilarious. Her character is very well developed and since the entire book is in her point of view, the running commentary to every moment of her high school struggles gives an amusing flavor to the book. She is a sophomore in high school and her chest has not only filled out, but she has ginormous boobs. So big, that she has names for her boobs- Maude and Mavis! Greer wears oversized sweatshirts 365 days a year and slouches so no one notices her breasts. She is super self-conscious; I mean who wouldn’t be?
My Eyes Are Up Here is entirely engaging and leaves you wanting to read ‘just one chapter more’. Greer’s thoughts, reactions, awkwardness, and just about everything else in the book is very realistic. For example, she is an avid overthinker and constantly worries about how people will perceive her and whether she will be judged for her body. This is something that a lot of girls in their early teenage years can relate to. The grown women are sure to take a trip down memory lane going back to their teenage days.
She sticks to what she knows she’s good at—school and really only being friends with the outspoken and argumentative Maggie (her best friend). She sort of gets used to living a smaller life than she’d maybe like because she’s being held back- she’s holding herself back. What Greer goes through especially in a high school setting happens to so many other girls and women. Our world isn’t free from body-shaming. Greer is so much more than just a teenage girl with big boobs, which is something that she realizes throughout the span of the book.
Another concept that the book wonderfully deals with is the fact that several girls often do not partake in extracurricular activities due to their insecurities relating to their bodies. This is observed when Greer realizes that she has an aptitude for volleyball, something that she never considered due to the presence of Maude and Mavis. She is rather shocked to find out she has an aptitude for volleyball and that she actually wants to make the team. But again, her insecurities hold her back.
All of her bras seem horrible and completely mess up her ability to play the game. Even when she finally gets a good bra, the team jersey is just WAY too tight for her to wear. Eventually, Greer has to decide if she’s going to let her body stop her from experiencing a life or just learn to deal with it and explore her life. And when she does, Greer realizes that the only thing holding her back was herself; that once she stops worrying about what people think of her, she could do things that make her happy!
My Eyes Are Up Here also has a romantic twist to it with the character of Jackson Oates, a cute and funny guy. He is new to Greer’s town and immediately strikes a rapport with her. Greer definitely likes him, but she can’t imagine actually pursuing things with him because she fears her boobs will get in the way. Again! She panics at the idea of physical intimacy and possibly ever revealing just what’s under the big sweatshirts. And she worries her boobs are all everyone notices. Greer even backs out of going to a formal dance with Jackson because there is no way she will ever find a dress that will fit her body.
Despite all of that, what is really interesting in the book My Eyes are Up Here is that romance, even though present, is not something that takes up a major part of the story. Greer does not change because of a boy, she learns so much and becomes such a more confident girl by her will. Her friends and mother help her gain confidence and stand by her through this journey. Yes, the romance was very cute, but it didn’t overshadow the main point of this book.
One of the best characters in the novel My Eyes Are Up Here is Jessa, the enthusiastic volleyball teammate, and Greer’s first friend on the team. Jessa is a happy, excitable character who accepts Greer for who she is and doesn’t judge her for her body. Although Greer finds it weird at first, slowly she warms up to Jessa. Greer’s friends i.e. Maggie and Jessa are the classic support systems that she needed on her journey to accept herself, the kind of best friends who always have your back, and have been portrayed amazingly.
While My Eyes Are Up Here is so much about self-esteem and bodies, it’s also about finding new interests and making new friends. Greer learns to see herself as a team of girls (and not just literally as part of a volleyball team of girls), she learns how to stand up for other girls and let other girls have her back. And while it’s easy to say things like “all bodies are good bodies” and want someone to feel nothing but 100% positive, we all know it’s much more complicated than that.
Greer talks about finding YouTubers who share her experience and how one isn’t angry at her body but is angry on behalf of her body (she doesn’t need her body to be “better” or different, but she needs the world to be better and different). For the most part, much of how Greer feels reflects that—she wishes she could find better bras, that clothes come truly made for a bigger variety of shapes, that society’s obsession with women’s bodies isn’t the way it is.
But she also really would like her body to be different, to cause her less physical pain, to fit better, to feel better. However, by the end of the story My Eyes Are Up Here, Greer accepts her body for what it is and that is the most important thing anyone can take away from this novel.
Not only is this book well-written with great banter and interesting secondary characters, but also speaks to all readers in SOME way. My Eyes Are Up Here demonstrates our obsession with our grapple with our own bodies. It is a smart and honest look at the various ways we hide behind the cloak of self-consciousness. Author Laura Zimmermann gives us an empowering look at strong friendships.
My Eyes Are Up Here has a witty, unabashedly honest voice, addressing the age-old issue of not fitting in. Employing a vibrant, often comedic first-person perspective, Zimmerman movingly depicts Greer’s low points, like not being able to find a dress that fits for winter formal, and her highs, exemplified when she’s playing volleyball. Each chapter is hilarious and interesting and overall, the book is something that every girl can relate to!
So this was our review of My Eyes Are Up Here! The book is so hilarious, entertaining, heartwarming at points, and cute, especially with the very relatable language and style of writing, that we couldn’t help but rate it 4.5 stars out of 5! We hope you liked it and we would definitely recommend this book to you. Do let us know that you liked it by pressing the like button below and leaving a comment! For more such Love Doses, subscribe to http://www.lovesmitten.com!