Pumpkin

In Pumpkin (2021), Julie Murphy has created another hero of Clover City, the West Texas town that is the location of Dumplin‘ and Puddin‘. Waylon Brewer is a high school senior, a fat, openly gay boy whose parents “hit the queer lottery” because his twin sister, Clementine, is a lesbian. Waylon is a ginger withContinue reading “Pumpkin”

The Reading List

The Reading List (2021) by Sara Nisha Adams was lovely and heartbreaking at the same time. Set in London in Wembley, it follows widower Mukesh as he begins to try new things after the death of his beloved Naina; and young adult Aliesha who has just started working at the library, but isn’t sure it’sContinue reading “The Reading List”

News of the World

I had no previous knowledge about and didn’t know what to expect of News of the World (2016) by Paulette Jiles. My first clue was the inside cover map of 1870’s Texas and jacket description of an elderly former military man, Captain Jefferson Kidd, being asked to escort a young girl from the Indian TerritoryContinue reading “News of the World”

Big Boned

Big Boned (2021) by Jo Watson was a random library pick based on its title, cover, and jacket copy, which begins “Can she be herself in a one-size-fits-all world?” I knew that I had to read this young adult romance, which promised to be fat positive. Lori is a high school senior, an artist whoContinue reading “Big Boned”

On the Come Up

The Hate U Give‘s author, Angie Thomas, has created an even more compelling protagonist, Bri, in On the Come Up (2019). Bri is a high schooler living with her mom and older brother, because her father, the locally-famous rapper Lawless, was killed by gang violence when she was little. She wants to rap, too, andContinue reading “On the Come Up”

The Unlikely Adventures of the Shergill Sisters

It took two tries for me to stick with The Unlikely Adventures of the Shergill Sisters (2019) by Balli Kaur Jaswal–I think I needed the audio version to fully get into it. although Jaswal’s third novel–2017’s Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows–was an instant favorite. Unlikely Adventures opens with an ill Punjabi-Sikh mother of adult daughters,Continue reading “The Unlikely Adventures of the Shergill Sisters”

Echo

Echo, a Newbery-winning middle grade novel by Pam Munoz Ryan (2015) tells the stories of three preteens–Friedrich in 1933 Germany; Mike in 1935 Pennsylvania; and Ivy, in 1942 Southern California–who are all connected by music and a harmonica that finds its way to each of them at just the right time. The stories are bracketedContinue reading “Echo”

Leah on the Offbeat

Leah on the Offbeat (2018) by Becky Albertalli (author of Simon vs. the Homo Sapien Agenda, turned into the movie Love, Simon) is so worthy of the 2018 Goodreads Choice Award that it won. It’s a young adult contemporary F/F romance, full of sarcasm, Harry Potter references, and more time with the characters of theContinue reading “Leah on the Offbeat”

The City We Became

The City We Became by 3-time Hugo Award-winning N.K. Jemisin (2020) is like nothing I’ve read before. A black, gay, young adult, homeless street artist, creates “breathing holes” with spray paint for the City to exhale. He meets Paolo, who keeps talking to him in what he thinks are metaphors, how he needs to “listen”Continue reading “The City We Became”