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Puddin' by Julie Murphy | Book Review

Thursday, 22 August 2019
Flatlay of Puddin' by Julie Murphy on blankets.

I bloody loved this book! Another book for my abnormally large five-star pile of 2019!

To be honest I haven't read the first book (Dumplin') which I know is a terrible thing but I have watched the movie, not that that makes it any better. However, as it's a companion novel and about different main characters I feel like it's not too bad, even if I hadn't watched the movie I feel like I wouldn't struggle as most of the backstory from the first book is explained. I cried and I laughed, and I thoroughly enjoyed myself.

Millie Michalchuk has gone to fat camp every year since she was a little girl. Not this year. This year she has new plans to chase her secret dream of being a newscaster—and to kiss the boy she’s crushing on. Callie Reyes is the pretty girl who is next in line for dance team captain and has the popular boyfriend. But when it comes to other girls, she’s more frenemy than friend. When circumstances bring the girls together over the course of a semester, they surprise everyone (especially themselves) by realizing that they might have more in common than they ever imagined. A story about unexpected friendship, romance, and Texas-size girl power, this is another winner from Julie Murphy.

It really is its own story and boy did I fall in love with the characters, they were just adorable. The two narrators, Millie and Callie, end up spending a lot of time together and a lot happens during the course of the book. Millie is the adorably cute 'goody two shoes-esque' character while Callie is the classic 'mean girl', what could go wrong? All in all quite a lot, both characters have a huge blow happen to their lives and dreams and need help and advice from the other to overcome them. I also loved that while they both had love interests and lovey-dovey moments, the story didn't revolve around the romance it revolved around the developing friendship, or lack thereof at times, between Callie and Millie.

There's a lot of diversity in this book, but not the sort that seems almost like ticking off boxes, it's realistic and believable. It reminded me of an Angie Thomas novel in the way it dealt with real social issues in a way that teen and young adults can understand and relate to. There's different sexualities, different ethnicities, and a lot of body acceptance floating around. But nothing that seems out of place or dumped in just for the ratings, it all deserved to be there.

I do want to go back and read Dumplin' now, even though I know what happens, just for Julie Murphy's writing. It's like a toasty warm hug and a cookie while sitting in your favourite spot in your favourite pyjamas - the perfect book for a rainy afternoon! Highly recommend reading both but especially Puddin'!


* Gifted, but all opinions are my own.
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