After recently reading Dumplin‘ recently, I immediately put my name on the waitlist for Puddin’ at the library. The first book was great – it focused on self love and being true to yourself. Naturally, I couldn’t wait to read this follow up – set in the point of view of Willowdean’s friend Millie – a bad ass who was unapologetically herself. I’m happy to say that this book lived up to Dumplin’ and more.
Millie Michalchuk has gone to fat camp every year since she was a girl. Not this year. This year she has new plans to chase her secret dream—and to kiss her crush. 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 will surprise everyone (especially themselves) by realizing they might have more in common than they ever imagined.
I’ll admit, I decided to read this book after watching the recent Netflix adaptation (and thoroughly enjoying it). With how busy my life has gotten, I’m lucky to finish a book in a few days, however every now and again, a book comes around that I simply cannot put down. Dumplin‘ was that book for me – I read it all in one sitting. It’s an ode to teenage friendship, loving yourself for who you are, and embracing the amazing music of Dolly Parton.
Dubbed “Dumplin’” by her former beauty queen mom, Willowdean 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 girl does. Along the way, she’ll shock the hell out of Clover City—and maybe herself most of all.