by Yehudi Mercado

On Sale: 06/22/2021


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by Yehudi Mercado

illustrated by Yehudi Mercado

On Sale: 06/22/2021


About the Book

In this full-color middle grade graphic memoir for fans of Raina Telgemeier and Jerry Craft, Yehudi Mercado draws inspiration from his childhood struggle with his weight while finding friendship with his imaginary mascot, Chunky, as he navigates growing up in a working class Mexican-Jewish family.

Hudi needs to lose weight, according to his doctors. Concerned about the serious medical issue Hudi had when he was younger, his parents push him to try out for sports. Hudi would rather do anything else, but then he meets Chunky, his imaginary friend and mascot. Together, they decide to give baseball a shot. 

As the only Mexican and Jewish kid in his neighborhood, Hudi has found the cheerleader he never had. Baseball doesn’t go well (unless getting hit by the ball counts), but the two friends have a great time drawing and making jokes. While Hudi’s parents keep trying to find the right sport for Hudi, Chunky encourages him to pursue his true love—comedy.

But when Hudi’s dad loses his job, it gets harder for Hudi to chart his own course, even with Chunky’s guidance. Can Chunky help Hudi stay true to himself or will this friendship strike out?

* A TLA Maverick Graphic Novel of the Year * Banks Street Best Children's Books of the Year * ALSC Graphic Novel Pick of the Year * 2022-2023 Virginia Reads Middle Grade Book Winner *

Critical Praise

"In “Chunky,” the writer-artist-animator and former Disney art director Yehudi Mercado turns to graphic memoir, and writes in a funny and endearing way about being a fat kid in Texas. The story is brought to life with illustrations that are vivid and often poignant." — New York Times Book Review

"Relatable insights into the life of a child who is eager to fit in but also coming into his sense of self, sometimes with the help of adults and sometimes in spite of them. A compelling coming-of-age memoir." — School Library Journal (starred review)

"Hudi’s a master at deflecting his shaky self-esteem with zingy one-liners. The digital artwork and sports scenarios play for laughs. Mercado notes in closing remarks, “Being ‘Chunky’ isn’t about being fat. Being Chunky is about feeling like you don’t fit in.” And that’s a theme plenty of middle graders can relate to." — Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

"As good-natured a romp as its highly appealing main character. The art evokes a light tone with simple, effective characteristics. A swift, funny tale." — Booklist

"Young read­ers, whether or not they have faced a bru­tal sports match or inse­cu­ri­ties about their appear­ance, will relate to Hudi and Chunky’s quest to thrive." — Jewish Book Council


Product Details

  • ISBN: 9780062972781
  • ISBN 10: 0062972782
  • Imprint: Katherine Tegen Books
  • On Sale: 06/22/2021
  • Pages: 208
  • List Price:19.99 CAD
  • Ages: 8 to 12
  • BISAC1 : JUVENILE FICTION / Family / General (see also headings under Social Themes)
  • BISAC2 : JUVENILE FICTION / Social Themes / Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance
  • BISAC3 : JUVENILE FICTION / Comics & Graphic Novels / Humorous

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