Reviews

Pumpkin, by Julie Murphy

amydavid's review against another edition

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4.0

This was an easy YA-type read, and I appreciate the overall message of fat people being amazing that carries through the series, but…this is the third book in a row where the main character’s big “win” is ending up in a relationship. I’m conflicted because I understand the author wants positive representations of fat people as attractive and sexy, but it’s also okay to NOT be in a relationship, especially in high school.

lilia493's review

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emotional lighthearted medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

5.0

readingwithmuggy's review

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4.0

A very fun coming-of-age story. Gave me a little better glimpse into the lgbtq+ community. A story about being fully you rather than trying to fit into the box people put you in. Also, a powerful reminder that bullies never win. It was the perfect conclusion to the Dumplin’ series. I don’t know if she plans on writing more in this series but I wouldn’t mind a look into the lives of other people in Clover City.

richie_m's review

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funny hopeful lighthearted fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

3.0

sezziy's review

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4.0

This was corny, in the best possible way. A bit of cheesy, high school drama was just what I needed right now. I only meant to read a couple of chapters whilst eating lunch but I read it all in one sitting.

mugsandpugs's review against another edition

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4.0

I mean it when I say that Julie Murphy books are like a hug and a mug of tea to my fat, queer soul. They all seem to take place in this softer, sex-positive, less racist version of Texas where things just... Work out nicely, and fat gay kids get to be HAPPY for once, and they get to stay fat and there's no bullshit narrative about how they have to lose weight to be worthy of love/intimacy, or whatever. (God, I wish I lived in these books...) And this is coming from me; the cynical, black-hearted, romance-hating bitch who always filters the "fluff" tag out of every fanfic search. (Gimme the smut and angst.) THIS is what I consider a guilty pleasure, something that might ruin my street cred, lol: [b:Pumpkin|55099955|Pumpkin (Dumplin', #3)|Julie Murphy|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1602546534l/55099955._SY75_.jpg|80641358] stars Waylan, a flamboyant teen trying out the drag queen scene for the first time in his young life. (And yes, it's respectful and there's plenty of emphasis on how queer people OF COLOR, particularly Black artists, originated the art form. Julie Murphy does her damn research, I promise; she's one of the good ones.) And while these books are fluffy and happy and the allies and families are well-meaning with hearts of gold, the issues they face are still real. Waylan's drag video is outed without his consent, and his feelings about it are treated seriously. And his issues with his appearance aren't downplayed — I found it almost painfully relatable. I too am made extremely uncomfortable at physical compliments. They might be meant with 100% sincerity, and still they feel patronizing to me. Julie Murphy GETS it, is what I'm saying. If you need this series the way I do, you know it. Yeah it's mostly fluff, but it has some depth, y'know.

gradie's review

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emotional inspiring medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

5.0

kasscanread's review

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4.0

Read for Read Harder 2021 prompt #7: Read a fat-positive romance

Julie Murphy's Pumpkin is an endearing story about an up-and-coming drag queen learning to accept his body and embrace his true self after being nominated for prom queen.

Initially, I was put off by the main character, Waylon. I can't quite put my finger on it, but an as-far-as-I-know straight woman writing a very stereotypically gay character was a little thorny, even as tongue-in-cheek as Waylon was about himself. A few other queer and minority characters felt tokenized or one-note, as well. But it didn't take long for Waylon to begin to feel like a real person, thanks to the great writing and amazing voice he brought to the narration. And there was enough diversity in the main cast that it wasn't as if Murphy only knew how to write one type of gay character.

Another small issue I had with the story was that everyone spouted their True Feelings in little speeches every ten pages or so, but then miscommunicated the rest of the time. It gave me whiplash.

I ended the book as a big fan of Waylon. He really was a special character and it was so fun to follow his journey. This book had me more excited to read than most others I've read in 2021. Dumplin' on my tbr is much more of a priority read now.

daryldixonsgirl1985's review

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emotional funny hopeful inspiring lighthearted reflective medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

5.0

sethxo's review against another edition

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funny hopeful inspiring lighthearted reflective fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

5.0