Everywhere you look people are settling for less: Starbucks has mini-cupcakes, Burger King has mini-burgers, and Dairy Queen has mini-blizzards.

However, food isn’t the only place where we’re cutting back on size. The way we communicate is ‘shrinking’ as well. Gone are the pages of carefully written correspondence and love letters; today we send a quick text, post a tweet or update a Facebook status to communicate our feelings and actions. In a world of short cuts and instant gratification, it’s no wonder many women are also settling for ‘low-fat love.’

Acclaimed author, pop culture and women’s studies expert, Patricia Leavy, PhD, debuts her first work of fiction,”Low-Fat Love,” as part of the Social Fictions Series. The series emerged out of the arts-based research movement and includes books informed by social research but written in a literary form. The books are uniquely written to entertain in a ‘chick-lit’ style, but can also be used as supplemental reading in a variety of social science or women’s/gender studies courses as well as courses in popular culture, qualitative research or arts-based research.

With an unparalleled look into the lives of women as they battle for self-esteem, love and respect, “Low-Fat Love” addresses:


  • Low-fat love: settling in relationships because we don’t think we deserve more or we try to fool ourselves into thinking it is enough



  • Why we’re drawn to people who withhold their support:* the seeds of doubt they plant resulting in self-scrutiny and low self-esteem



  • The psychology of unhealthy relationships:* they bring out insecurities, making us suspicious of our partners and dissatisfied with ourselves



  • A woman’s sense of self: too many women rely on men to feel good about themselves when true self-esteem can only come from within *
  • Women’s pop culture is toxic:* media frequently pits women against each other instead of supporting each other, and fuels misconceptions about men and relationships


Low-Fat Love unfolds over three seasons as Prilly Greene and Janice Goldwyn, adversarial editors at a New York press, experience personal change relating to the men (and absence of women) in their lives. Ultimately, each woman is pushed to confront her own image of herself, exploring insecurities, stagnation in life, attraction to men who withhold their support and their reasons for having settled for low-fat love.

Patricia Leavy is an acclaimed pop-feminist author and expert commentator as well as a leading qualitative and arts-based researcher with a dozen books to her credit. After receiving several prestigious awards and fellowships, Dr. Leavy earned her PhD in Sociology at Boston College. She has since held a professorship in Sociology and served as Founding Director of the Gender Studies Program at Stonehill College in Easton, MA.