GrUpSixteen year old Dolly Parton loving Willowdean doesn t usually struggle with her identity and self confidence as a fat girl in a her small Texas town, where her mother leads the local pageant scene, until hot former jock Bo kisses her In this novel, Murphy takes her time letting Willowdean explore her feelings about a variety of situations relating to friendship, jealousy, sexual attraction, drag queens, her obese aunt s death, her relationship with her mother, and her own self worth Murphy celebrates small town Texas with her strong sense of community and culture, in part by creating very realistic and deep characters to populate Willowdean s world, having them frequent places like truckbeds and fast food joints, and giving them pure Texan dialogue Oh God, roll down the mother flippin windows Unlike the similarly smart, funny, and large heroines of Robin Brande s Fat Cat Knopf,or Suzanne Supplee s Artichoke s Heart Dutton,, Willowdean doesn t have to lose the weight to get the boy and her confidence, but instead remains a strong and realistic overweight girl to whom many readers will aspire I m not doing this to be some kind of Joan of Fat Girls, or whatever I m doing thisfor me VERDICT A joyous read that will be beloved by many teens who can relate to feeling uncertain in their own skinsRhona Campbell, Georgetown Day School, Washington, DCWills singular voice compels readers to think about all that goes into building and destroying self esteemSplendid Booklist starred review Im obsessed with this book Wickedly funny, heartbreakingly real, full of characters to love and cheer for DUMPLIN is such a star Katie Cotugno, author of How to Love andDays DUMPLIN should be required reading for anyone who has ever felt even slightly uncomfortable in his or her skin Julie Murphys star continues to shine with this groundbreaking, poignant story that will surely change lives John Corey Whaley, award winning author of Noggin and Where Things Come Back Murphysuccessfully makes every piece of the storycount, weaving them together to create a harmonious, humorous, and thought provoking whole Publishers Weekly starred review A richly enjoyable novela clever and funny book to please lovers of thoughtful romance and secret pageant fans Bulletin of the Center for Childrens Books Genuine, romantic, and with a dash of Texan charm, this is a novel that celebrates being who you are while also acknowledging that its incredibly difficult to do The Horn Book Portrays and challenges sterotypes about beauty pageants, size issues, and womens concernsPowerful Voice of Youth Advocates VOYA Praise for SIDE EFFECTS MAY VARY Honest and unflinching, this is a compelling story of one teens struggle with cancer, love, and living A worthwhile addition School Library Journal Praise for SIDE EFFECTS MAY VARY Readers will turn the last page wanting to know where the next chapter leads Kirkus Reviews Praise for SIDE EFFECTS MAY VARY Alice and Harveys relationship is raw, honest, moving, and unapologetic in its depiction of their individual, and collective, pain Booklist