Romance novels with fat representation on the cover

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Two truths and a lie:

  • I am fat.
  • I love romance novels.
  • I have no trouble finding romance novels with covers that make me feel like an actress.

As I’m sure you’ve guessed, the last ingredient is lying. Or at least it was not true until recently! The first time I remember looking at the cover and thinking “This could be me!” I had to Spoiler alert by Olivia Dadd. I don’t think this was the first book cover I saw with a fat romance heroine, but it was One from the beginning. The bad news is that the book was released… less than two years ago. I’ve been reading romance since the early ’90s and obesity since mid-period, so I read romance for 30 years before seeing a fat woman on the cover of one of them and not being an actress for about 20 years. And I had to go even this year – This year 2022 – to see fat man on one. Two, actually: Picnic in the park Written by Rebekah Witherspoon and upcoming wrecked ship by Olivia Dadd.

Now, I’m not saying that books with fat people on the covers didn’t even exist until 2020. I’m sure there are, and there are some back-to-back titles on this list. However, I haven’t seen them, at least in part because the self-published authors and other independent authors are driving the task, and I tend to buy books that I know about…which is more likely when they are traditionally published. I’m not saying I shouldn’t have looked for more variety (and I mean variety in whatever way you might use it), but I A.m I say I don’t know where to look, or even that I wanted to look.

Credits are given to artists and designers (and their websites/Instagrams/etc) whenever you can find this information. Some of them could not be located. Publishers, I beg you to include it on the copyright page!

40-Love by Olivia Deed book cover

40 – Love by Olivia Dadd

Cover and illustration design by Lenny Kaufman

Yes, Virginia, fat people do exercise.

Posted by AH Cunningham book cover

on fire by AH Cunningham

cover art Nezarts
Cover design by Jack Harpoon

Neon pink and a girl in a bikini that’s bigger than a size 2? Yes, give me more like this please.

Block Shot Special Edition Cover

Block Shot (Special Edition) by Kennedy Ryan

No design information publicly available

Love the soft watercolors of the special editions of this romantic basketball series.

Cover of Fall Into You by Georgina Kirsten

fall in you by Georgina Kirsten

No design information publicly available

This photographer (whose name I couldn’t find!) captured this fall/autumn somehow so that I could taste pumpkin spice just by looking at it.

The Fastest Way to Fall by Dennis Williams book cover

The fastest way to fall by Dennis Williams

Cover illustration and design by Farjana Yasmine

The main character in this novel is a fitness app test for an article you’re writing, and this cover captures the vitality of fitness well. It also pulls off the red + green somehow without making it look like Christmas.

Cover from scratch by Katrina Jackson

from scratch by Katrina Jackson

No design information publicly available

…I’m sorry, I got distracted. But as for seriousness, everything about this is great.

Get a Life, Chloe Brown book cover

Get a life, Chloe Brown (The Brown Sisters) by Talia Hebert

Cover and illustration design by Ashley Caswell

This is just plain fun, although I wish people would take more covers. Paperback mass-market editions have photo covers!

If Dress Suits Carla Guzman's book cover

If the dress fits by Carla de Guzman

cover photo by Chi Yu Rodriguez for Tweet embed

The original cover of this novel had several comic dresses that I loved, but this dress features a beautiful smiling chubby face, which I love even more.

If the shoe fits on the cover of a Julie Murphy book

If the shoe fits you by Julie Murphy

Cover of The Love Con by Seresia Glass

love con by Seresia Glass

One week to claim all book cover

One week to claim everything by Adriana Herrera

No design information publicly available

Love this dress, and love the softness of the couple as opposed to the sharpness of the angles behind them. I especially love that this is a picture!

Princess Talia Hebert's Trap cover, showing a picture of a white man embracing a black woman from behind

princess trap by Talia Hebert

cap and jacket of art Erin O’Neill Jones

I love the royal purple background with the contrasting bright red dress, and most of all I love the dark-skinned heroine. Those thighs are the snare, am I right?

Savvy Sheldon feels good about hell with an ironed crownغطاء

Boy Sheldon feels good about hell by Taj McCoy

No design information publicly available

That’s literally all I want in a romance novel cover. The adorable baby, the sundress, the pink background, and the dog-walking hero who can’t tear his eyes off.

Sing Anyway by Anita Kelly book cover

sing anyway by Anita Kelly

No design information publicly available

This gives the karaoke “Summer Lovin”, and I’m here for it.

Spoiler alert from the cover of the Olivia Deed book

Spoiler alert (Series) by Olivia Deed

No design information publicly available

More big girls in episodes, please!

Sweet Turbulence by Rose Lerner book cover

sweet upset by Rose Lerner

cover by canaxa

The over-the-shoulder “come here” look is usually reserved for skinny guys; I love seeing it from a fat woman, especially one in a nice dress.

Picnic in the Park by Rebecca Witherspoon audiobook cover

Picnic in the park by Rebecca Witherspoon

No design information publicly available

The fact that they are both fat makes my heart happy. (I wonder if the full illustration includes their feet!)


Note: I found this list a bit lacking in gay romance. In fact, there are only two that I’m sure are gay on this list of 17 titles; In addition, the second Brown Sisters book contains a strange heroine. There is only one fat man. The third spoiler alert book also contains one. I’d like to see both of these stats improve! What I didn’t have trouble finding were the titles for the color authors. There is no doubt that black authors have led the way here.

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