Monday, September 14, 2015

Dumplin by Julie Murphy

ARC, 376 pages
Release Date: September 15, 2015
Published by: Balzer + Bray
Source: #RT2015
For fans of: Diversity, Contemporary, Romance, Girl Power, Realistic Fiction, YA

      Self-proclaimed fat girl Willowdean Dickson (dubbed “Dumplin’” by her former beauty queen mom) has always been at home in her own skin. Her thoughts on having the ultimate bikini body? Put a bikini on your body. With her all-American beauty best friend, Ellen, by her side, things have always worked . . . until Will takes a job at Harpy’s, the local fast-food joint. There she meets Private School Bo, a hot former jock. Will isn’t surprised to find herself attracted to Bo. But she is surprised when he seems to like her back.
     Instead of finding new heights of self-assurance in her relationship with Bo, Will starts to doubt herself. So she sets out to take back her confidence by doing the most horrifying thing she can imagine: entering the Miss Clover City beauty pageant—along with several other unlikely candidates—to show the world that she deserves to be up there as much as any twiggy girl does. Along the way, she’ll shock the hell out of Clover City—and maybe herself most of all.
     With starry Texas nights, red candy suckers, Dolly Parton songs, and a wildly unforgettable heroine— Dumplin’ is guaranteed to steal your heart.


     I knew this would end up on my Top 10 favorite reads of 2015 before I even read it. There wasn't really anything I had a problem with at all in this book. There was diversity, romance, friendships, fights, and Dolly Parton. So literally there was everything. I loved this so much. 
"But that's me. I'm fat. It's not a curse word. It's not an insult. At least it's not when I say it. So I always figure why not get it out the way?"
pg. 9
     Willlowdean is simply fine with the way she is. With her "normal" best friend by her side she has done everything she's ever wanted to do. Then comes her long time crush. He finally sees her the way she wants him too.... And it deems to be too much. So she turns to the most unlikely thing for her to do, enter the Miss Clover City beauty pageant. Surprisingly, she finds she has a lot of fun with everything. Including the mishaps along the way, 
"Maybe [...] you don't always have to win a pageant to wear a crown."
pg. 67
     I can't lie. The main reason I wanted to read this book so bad was the diversity featured in it. As  a diverse reader/blogger, I was really looking forward to this so bad. It got to the point where I put myself in a reading slump because I was trying to make myself wait and read this closer to the release date. But the temptation was too strong. Finally reading it was one of the best life decisions I had ever made. It features a YA character that is not average. She's a big girl and she doesn't spend her time trying to slim down. She's ok with the way she looks and doesn't care what anyone says. I loved that she exuded confidence. Murphy understood the importance of having a strong diverse character represented in this society. Thank you Murphy (and of course Willowdean) for being so brave and daring to be different. This book has not only made teens, but adults, (my mom read and adored this book as well...) feel secure in the body that they were given.
"Okay, so this is the worst day ever, right. But the good news is that since this is the worst day ever, tomorrow can only be better."
pg. 139
     The other thing I loved about this was the characters. Willowdean was hilarious and insecure and normal and real. Ellen was exactly the same for her character to be so different from her. And it made the book exactly what I was hoping it would be. It gave a real life view to every kind of person. It shows that the words rang true, " matter who you are, there will always be someone prettier or smarter or thinner." I just hate how sometimes she chose the wrong things to be confident about. But that  goes along with insecurities. It made her so human.
"All my favorite things start as bad ideas."
pg. 157
     The writing style was another thing that made me love this one. I almost went through an entire thing of sticky tabs! And it was so addicting. I found myself trying to read it at work, in the car, and at the movies before the lights went down. For it not to be an action or adventure book, it was definitely a page turner. I NEEDED to know what happened. I even gave up a shift at work so I could read it. I gave the excuse that I had worked five doubles in five days so I needed some off time. I didn't, I just needed to read that book. 
"It's just a word. Doesn't mean anything unless you let it."
pg. 343
     As you can see, I loved this book. I wasn't planning on writing this much in my review, but I had to get out everything I had been feeling. I know I will be recommending this for a long time to come. I would love to see this on a big screen because even those who don't read. needs this message of confidence and being beautiful no matter what you look like.
Overall, I give this

1 comment:

  1. YEAH! I absolutely adored this book. It's sweet and funny and serious. The characters are top notch and the writing is amazing. So glad you agree! Great review.
    Cassi @ My Thoughts Literally