If I thought I loved Dumplin’ and meeting Willowdean in book one, I didn’t know what love was until I read Puddin’. Oh. My. God. How I love Millicient Michalchuk and didn’t even know it. She is the fat girl hero I needed and didn’t even know it. That’s right I said fat. Millie gives a whole speech on how fat is just a word. It’s not a feeling, it’s a word. She is fat and she knows it and she’s okay with her body and she knows other people call her fat. At 16. Oh if I had that kind of confidence at 16. Hell if I had that kind of confidence at 39…
Puddin’ picks up soon after Dumplin’ ended. Millie is still dealing with the aftermath of her decisions in book one and we are reintroduced to the ultimate mean girl Callie Reyes. Except Callie sort of grew on me over the course of the story. Reading her transformation and her struggles, she’s 16. Do you remember 16? I try not to. Angry at everyone and everything, acting out and confused, she’s having an identity crisis. And it comes out in not so good ways. She won’t replace Millie in my heart as my hero/favorite YA book chacater (for the time being) but she wormed her way into my heart as the book progressed.
Puddin’ is being advertised as the companion to Dumplin’. I think it’s best read AFTER Dumplin’ since that’s where the characters are introduced and development begins. I finished this book this morning and I already want more. I had the pleasure of meeting Julie Murphy in March before I even read her books. And now I’ve read three and need to meet her again to thank her for these characters and stories. Don’t miss this series my friends.
(Also Dumplin’ is in production right now for theatre release. Dolly Parton does the music. Dolly Parton is a big deal in book one).
Five out of five stars