Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 6 images

The Skinny: How to Fit into Your Little Black Dress Forever Hardcover – December 26, 2006

See all 2 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
"Please retry"
$7.75 $0.01

Best Books of the Year
See the Best Books of 2014
Looking for something great to read? Browse our editors' picks for 2014's Best Books of the Year in fiction, nonfiction, mysteries, children's books, and much more.

Best Books of the Month
Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Meredith Books (December 26, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0696232421
  • ISBN-13: 978-0696232428
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 1.1 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #211,626 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The brilliance of this fun-to-read munching manifesto is its ability to adapt itself to the vagaries of real-world eating; the writer-editor authors understand the temptations of workaday life and lazy weekends and provide practical tips that allow even dieting dropouts a bit of the leeway they crave. Underscoring the importance of portion size, the duo explains how to avoid recreational eating. In light-hearted prose aimed at women, the authors suggest eating "like a food writer"-sampling favorite foods and discarding the rest. Convinced that the lion's share of overeating stems from boredom, they explain how "breaking a food rut at home" can jump-start dieting results. "The Skinny on Drinks" may be the most valuable chapter, as it reminds readers just how many pounds those Cosmos and Frappuccinos can pack on. Packed with little black dress-friendly recipes that are simple to whip up, this upbeat guide is fun enough to bring any veteran calorie counter back from the dieting doldrums.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Melissa and Robin are food lovers whose unique perspectives and hilarious insights make The Skinny relevant to any woman who's ever wanted to look and feel fabulous without denying herself the pleasures of food. Brooklyn resident Melissa Clark adores her out-on-the-town life in New York City, including cocktails and late-night dinners, and still fits sleekly into her favorite little (size 2!) black dress. She's spent her entire professional life associated with food. After working as a cook and professional caterer, she earned an M.F.A. in writing from Columbia University and launched a career in food writing. Her writing appears in The New York Times, Food & Wine, Travel & Leisure, Town & Country, Real Simple, and more. She has also collaborated on 17 cookbooks, one of which received both a James Beard award and the Julia Child Cookbook award in 2000. Robin Aronson likes to write about what she knows. This high-energy mother of twins loves good food, yet has lost her baby weight and still looks great in her little black dress. Before and during her own pregnancy she wrote The Whole Pregnancy Handbook: A doctor's guide to the wise use of conventional and alternative medicine before, during and after pregnancy, with Joel M. Evans, M.D. (Gotham: 2005). She's been editor in chief of the web site for Parents magazine, associate publisher of Tikkun magazine, and managing editor of a website devoted to food and dining. She lives in New York City with her husband and (adorable) twins.

More About the Author

Melissa Clark writes about cuisine and other products of appetite. After brief forays working as a cook in a restaurant kitchen, and as a caterer out of her fifth floor walk-up, Clark decided upon a more sedentary path. She earned an M.F.A. in writing from Columbia University, and began a freelance food writing career. Currently, she is a food columnist for the New York Times, and has written for Bon Appetit, Food & Wine, Every Day with Rachel Ray, and Martha Stewart, amongst others.

Her acclaimed cookbook,In the Kitchen with A Good Appetite, came out in the fall of 2010 with essays and recipes based on her popular New York Times Dining section column, A Good Appetite.

Clark's most recent book, Cook This Now, a personal collection of seasonally driven, inventive comfort food, came out in October 2011, published by Hyperion.
All told, Clark has written 32 other cookbooks, many of them in collaboration with some of New York's most celebrated chefs including Daniel Boulud (Braise), David Bouley (East of Paris), Claudia Fleming (The Last Course), and Bruce and Eric Bromberg (The Blue Ribbon). A book of dessert recipes, The Perfect Finish, written with White House pastry chef Bill Yosses, came out in June 2010. Her collaboration with chef Peter Berley, The Modern Vegetarian Kitchen, received both a James Beard award and Julia Child Cookbook award in 2000.

Clark was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, where she now lives with her husband, Daniel Gercke, their preschool daughter Dahlia, and their formerly cosseted cat.

Customer Reviews

The book is fun and easy to read.
Laura Gosselin
Most of the diet books that I have tried demand a fanatical adherence and promise magical results.
R. Clark
Why deprive yourself of all the things you love, when you can just eat less in quantity.
Amy C. Zampella

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

52 of 52 people found the following review helpful By Theresa Reed on March 7, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
"The Skinny" by Melissa Clark and Robin Aronson isn't just a diet book - it is a lifestyle book. Filled with humor, personal anecdotes and recipes, this book is fun and practical at the same time. You're not going to find a lot of facts, numbers, calculations, calorie counting or any mumbo jumbo such as carbs and food combining.

First, the authors encourage the readers to figure out what their 'happy skinny' size is (for Melissa it's a 2, Robin an 8). Then, they have a set of 'rules': eat what you want (and banish the guilt); Don't eat what you don't want; Build a skinny meal around the thing you want (add veggies, fruit, protein and a complex carb); Eat when you're hungry; Eat like a food writer (eat a bit then throw the rest away - which is rather indulgent and wasteful in my opinion); Control your portions; Enjoy your meal; Exercise some; etc. There is info on eating for every situation including dining out. The recipes are marvelous and everyone will find something here to satisfy them.

I've always hated diets as I like having a little sweet every days - and that is a no-no in almost every book you'll read. All in all, it is a nice little book with tips that will help you to stay on track without starving yourself or subsisting on carrot sticks.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
51 of 53 people found the following review helpful By Tina R on February 22, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I was thinking this morning as I drove to work about what it was, exactly, about this book that has me so lit up about losing weight. I figured out that what it is, is, that the authors have every excuse in the world to weigh 900 pounds..Melissa Clark eats in every high end restaurant in New York about 5 nights a week, and she is a size 2. So, of course, I paid close attention. And, there it is...a strategy for every situation, every excuse that I ever thought of, used, and abused. It is the strategy, really, that I was missing. A diet, after all, is nothing more than some version of eat less, exercise more...we all know that already. It's how to deal, that we really get from this book. And, the spirit of the writing is so infectious, I just found it altered how I thought about the whole enterprise of losing weight. Now it is just a fun game. Plus, there are lots of great recipes, many of which I have already tried, and really enjoyed. I love to cook, love to eat, and finally have a book that is teaching me how to have it all. In five weeks, I have lost 6 pounds, effortlessly. I expect the next 20 pounds to come off just as easily.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Mazzie on January 22, 2007
Format: Hardcover
The last thing in the world I ever feel like reading is a diet book but I picked the Skinny up at my hairdresser's and I couldn't put it down. Even my lovely but slightly paunchy boyfriend picked up the copy I bought and read a good portion of it in just one sitting. The magic of this book is its wonderful, funny, but quite persuasive writing. It puts out a collection of ideas, some of which may be obvious to you (like portion control), that really sinks in more than, at least for me, other health and dietary advice ever has. I think this is because the book avoids faddish nutritional advice and emphasizes finding real pleasure not in over-consumption but in the joyful appreciation of the food that we love, while learning to really listen to and take care of our bodies in a sane and balanced way. As a New Yorker without a clue how to feed myself or stock my fridge, I found the section on how to stock my fridge and recipes for how to feed myself (for breakfast, lunch, dinner AND snacktime!!) extremely useful. There are no illusions spun here, just great advice based on common sense, good health science, and a real love for food. And it's a fun read!!!
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By D. Martin on August 6, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I will preface this by saying, I don't read. I listen to all my books on CD, so the fact that I read this one in two days (avid reader should finish in a few hours) is saying a lot. It is written in such a way that I couldn't put it down. Their ideas are simple and easy to apply. I made the smoothie they suggested...yum! I especially liked the quick take-a- away lists at the end of each chapter. I highly recommend this book. I came upon it by accident. I was looking to buy Skinny [...] but as I read the reviews I started looking for other books and I came across The Skinny. The cover design sold me first and then the great reviews. This is also my first review I have written on this site. I believe in this book so much I had to share.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Liz on January 5, 2007
Format: Hardcover
One of the women in my group of girlfriends gave us all a copy of this book for christmas this year. It's so great! It's a really fun read, filled with personal anecdotes and reader-friendly tips about monitoring your eating habits without actually going on a diet. And i love the recipes. They're all super simple dishes that i can knock out in 15 minutes and put in a to-go container for lunch. Losing weight wasn't actually my new year's resolution, but this book might just make it happen anyway...the funniest thing about it though, is that i keep catching my boyfriend reading it, and when we go out to dinner, he'll quote some of the writers' tips about eating, So i guess it's not just for the ladies :) Buy this book!
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
23 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Casey Ellis on December 26, 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Who'd ever guess you could LOVE a diet book? Well, if you love to eat but also want to wear small-sized clothes, you'll adore this book. No faux foods, unsustainable deprivations or elimination of entire categories of food here, just well-thought-out approaches to handling a variety of eating situations.

The ideas the authors present are psychologically sound; the writing is stylish and wry; and the recipes are knockouts.

I have two homes and have purchased a copy of "The Sknny" for each. Now I'm going to order copies for my most fanatic food and fashion loving friends.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Most Recent Customer Reviews