Tired of being overweight, Serpentine tries to commit suicide. Serpentine Williams is tired of the yo-yo diets and endless quest to lose weight and keep it off. Her mama is on her back always making smart remarks in reference to her daughter's size. Serpentine tries to commit suicide to end the pain and ends up on the psyche ward where she works with Dr. Greeley to. get to the meat of her issues so she can begin to find herself.
When she is released her family tip toes around her which pisses her off. Everyone that is except her mother who continues to call her “Teenie” a poor play on words Serpentine hated.
As she continues outpatient therapy three times a week Serpentine learns that her suicide attempt wasn't just about the extra weight which she know is not good for her health. It's about not being able to find and keep a good man. It's about not feeling beautiful and loving self from the inside. Enough men approach they just aren't keepers. Serpentine admits that loneliness and living up to others standards are what pushed her to take pills that were supposed to have ended it all.
The saving family grace for Serpentine is her Aunt Regina. The choir director who brings home awards. Serpentine had stopped attending church and her aunt was not happy. The two share a close relationship and Serpentine is able to talk to her Aunt about anything without judgment being passed.
When she returns to church following her hospital release Regina tells her they need to talk. When Regina starts dating Pee Jay a man twenty years her junior and they share public displays of affection, it's Serpentine who is the judgmental one. Her Aunt knows who she is and what she likes.
Terry has run his news room with precision a good guy who dies from a heart attack, too soon. He is replaced by a slick talking numbers man who plans to implement new policy, effective immediately. The new boss tells Serpentine that the promotion she was going after isn't going to happen. He explains in a mean arrogant voice, that she doesn't fit the image viewers want to see. When she runs into a male viewer he seconds the new chiefs feelings. She's beautiful but too big.
When Carlin a former boyfriend who slept with Serpentine and then cheated on her resurfaces out of the blue she falls for the okee doke hoping he's changed. He loves Serpentine but loves the arm candy of his latest size six ex better.
Serpentine hosts a holiday special for PBS and does great, (maybe they will reconsider her for the anchor spot) she pens an article on Weight Loss, which receives great reviews. However, dealing with Carlin is proving to be a challenge. Her self-esteem wasn't up as high as it needed to be or she would have seen the potential in herself to demand respect.
When her sister LaJune delivers a baby girl, Serpentine is witness to the miracle of life. Something shifts inside her. She wants to be around for this little girl. She wants her to know her Auntie Serpentine. All her counseling sessions had brought her to the point where she could see beauty and hope instead of despair and blackness.
The family theatrics continue when Pee Jay attends a family dinner at Serpentine's moms. Nolita had not met Pee Jay yet. When Nolita hears him refer to Regina as Big Mama things turn up quickly. Pee Jay is honest is about his feelings for Regina and has turned his life around since being released from prison. Regina sees the good in him. He studies his bible, sings in the choir and adores Regina. Her family can take a flying leap if they don't like him. She's grown and wasn't asking for permission anyway.
Serpentine decides to live her life too. She loses weight and is down to a size twenty. A sixteen can't be too far off. She's does yoga and counts calories. Serpentine attends her class reunion and is feeling confident after changing her mind and deciding to go. Carlin shows up and Serpentine gets him back by having sex with him. Before the dance ends he wants to make things official she declines. It was just sex. No need to get all involved, she wanted him to experience the same kind of hurt he'd caused her. She also wanted to feel good..
Aunt Regina continued to preach that Serpentine needed to find out who she is and own her power. As Serpentine attends her final session with Dr. Greeley she is on a good path. She is able to sing her solo for Regina the next day as a testimony to positive change and self-acceptance.
Best part of story, including ending:
I liked the story once Serpentine figured out she was beautiful.
Best scene in story:
My favorite scene was when Serpentine received acknowledgement for her journalism skills.
Opinion about the main character:
I disliked that Serpentine had to be pushed down to stand up for herself.