October 10, 2009

"Dairy Queen" is Delicious

"Dairy Queen"
by Catherine Gilbert Murdock


Synopsis: When you don’t talk, there’s a lot of stuff that ends up not getting said.

Harsh words indeed, from Brian Nelson of all people. But, D. J. can’t help admitting, maybe he’s right.

When you don’t talk, there’s a lot of stuff that ends up not getting said.

Stuff like why her best friend, Amber, isn’t so friendly anymore. Or why her little brother, Curtis, never opens his mouth. Why her mom has two jobs and a big secret. Why her college-football-star brothers won’t even call home. Why her dad would go ballistic if she tried out for the high school football team herself. And why Brian is so, so out of her league.

When you don’t talk, there’s a lot of stuff that ends up not getting said.

Welcome to the summer that fifteen-year-old D. J. Schwenk of Red Bend, Wisconsin, learns to talk, and ends up having an awful lot of stuff to say.

I really loved this book! I randomly just grabbed the audio off the shelves at the library the other day and I could not stop listening to it. Not only was the story awesome, but also thought Natalie Moore did a beautiful job making D.J. come to life through her narration. I really felt a connection with D.J. as a character even though she is very different from me (I could definitely relate to the older brother football star thing though). Even though she works on a dairy farm in Wisconsin, her life is more complicated than anyone I know. Catherine Gilbert Murdock created a character that anyone can root for in "Dairy Queen". I also really enjoyed the characters Brian and Curtis. Curtis may say very littler, but I just like the interactions that he has with D.J. It is a very believable brother-sister relationship. Murdock's character Brian was also very interesting to me because he never quite did what I expected him to. He surprised me a lot of the times, which I found nice. Even though the book was quite charming, it definitely hit on some hard issues addressing homosexuality and less than perfect family life.

Whether you listen to it on audio, which I strongly recommend, or pick up a paper copy, I think almost anyone will enjoy this book. I think I would suggest it to people who enjoy Sarah Dessen's books. It seems to hit along those lines with the family issues, friends, romance, and what it means to find yourself. I will definitely be reading more of Murdock's books and hope to get my hands on both "The Off Season" and "Front and Center" soon!

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