Dumplin’

Julie Murphy. HarperCollins/Balzer + Bray, $17.99 (384p) ISBN 978-0-06-232718-5
About the only thing Clover City has going for it is its beauty pageant, the oldest in Texas. It’s run by Willowdean Dickson’s mother—a former winner—who has a hard time with the reality that Willowdean, a self-described “fat girl,” will never be a beauty queen. Willowdean is okay with her size, mostly, but with 10th grade ending and her best friend considering having sex with her boyfriend, Willowdean feels like she is being left on the wrong side of the experience divide. An unexpected kiss with Bo, her handsome fast-food restaurant coworker, is thrilling, but she’s also horrified at the idea of him touching her anywhere there is extra flesh. And that very reaction horrifies her, too; she thought she was at peace with herself. Murphy (Side Effects May Vary) successfully makes every piece of the story—Dolly Parton superfans, first love, best-friend problems, an unlikely group of pageant entrants, female solidarity, self-acceptance, and Willowdean’s complicated relationship with the mother who nicknamed her “Dumplin’ ”—count, weaving them together to create a harmonious, humorous, and thought-provoking whole. Ages 13–up. Agent: Molly Jaffa, Folio Literary Management. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 06/01/2015
Release date: 09/15/2015
Genre: Children's
Downloadable Audio - 978-0-06-242142-5
Compact Disc - 978-1-5046-4521-8
Prebound-Glued - 400 pages - 978-0-606-39647-9
Ebook - 400 pages - 978-0-06-232720-8
Compact Disc - 978-1-5046-4522-5
Pre-Recorded Audio Player - 978-1-4676-0823-7
Paperback - 400 pages - 978-0-06-232719-2
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