An aspiring drag queen grows to embrace his body and individuality in this winning contemporary YA novel. Waylon Brewster is fat and "the kind of gay that announces itself and asks for a wide berth." He is counting down the days until he can graduate, move to Austin with his twin sister, Clementine, and live his truth. When, as a "joke," Waylon is nominated for prom queen and Hannah, Clementine's Afro-Dominican girlfriend, is nominated for prom king, the two decide they'll run for the crown and win. Finally, Waylon steps into the spotlight.
Julie Murphy (Dumplin'; Puddin') populates Pumpkin with a captivating cast of supporting characters, including Clementine and Waylon's eccentric grandmother; the annoyingly handsome prom king nominee Tucker Watson; and Waylon's "self-proclaimed frenemy," Kyle Meeks. Waylon's relationships with these characters form the emotional core of Pumpkin; moments of humor and warmth work together with commentary on body positivity and gay rights. --Alanna Felton, freelance reviewer