Me and the Pumpkin Queen
Children’s Fiction (ages:8-12/grades:3-7)
ISBN -10: 0-06-114022-8
Greenwillow Books An Imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers
To honor her Mom, eleven year old Mildred is determined to win the Circleville, Ohio, Pumpkin Show and fulfill a dream left undone by her mother’s untimely death. However, with each passing season something goes inherently wrong and her dreams are dashed again and again. Aunt Arlene is more than a bit concerned about Mildred’s apparent obsession with pumpkins and tries, in her overtly pushy way, to persuade her niece to pursue more feminine interests, such as make up and fancy clothing. Thankfully, Mildred’s dad doesn’t agree with Auntie Arlene and continues to support his daughter and her individual dreams. Knowing and understanding his only daughter in ways that only a father can, he is able to challenge Mildred to take her future into her own hands and follow her heart with unbridled passion. Thus allowing herself to grow into the incredible young woman her mother always knew she would one day become.Kennedy’s attention to detail proves this to be a well researched novel that introduces readers to the relatively unknown competitions that require much more than good seeds and luck to produce a thousand pound champion. Well crafted and heartwarming, the characters could easily be members of your own family or next door neighbors. The narrative reads like a family tale told over a huge dinner, with lots of laughs, a few tears and the busy body aunt that always means well but just can’t quite find the right way to express herself without appearing… well, pushy. This is a coming of age tale that will be enjoyed by all, despite their age. A magical journey that is more about Mildred’s inner growth than that of her pumpkins. Chosen as a Junior Library Guild Selection, Marlane Kennedy’s solo debut, Me and the Pumpkin Queen is a first place read.
3Rs-Real Reader Reviews©
*Marlane Kennedy’s solo debut, “Me & the Pumpkin Queen” was a sweet read - that addresses
emotional issues (i.e. loss of a parent, being an individual, pursuing your dream despite setbacks, etc) in age appropriate ways. Great to share as a bed time story or as a gift for the mid-level reader!