Sunday, November 14, 2010

Review: Dairy Queen by Catherine Gilbert Murdock and CONTEST

Ohh, Dairy Queen is a delightful read. It's right up there with Notes from the Teenage Underground on my go-to list for VOICE.

Tiny synopsis: DJ Schwenk does what has to be done: her older brothers have left for college, her younger brother is busy with little league, her mom is juggling two jobs, and her dad is recovering from a hip replacement. 
Someone has to milk the cows twice a day, bring in the hay and clover, and try to keep the farm running. Even if nobody ever talks about, even if nobody ever asked her to. She has to do it, or they'll all be in a worse place than they're already in. 
A family friend asks her to train Brian, the snobby quarterback for the rival team to get him in shape for football season. So she adds one more job to her long to do list. Over the summer DJ decides, just for once, to do what she wants to do. The choices she makes impact not only DJ and her family, but her whole Wisconsin town.

The synopsis is difficult-- I have such a hard time explaining it without telling the whole plot. I'm probably ruining it already. This book really transports you into DJ's head-- the voice simply shimmers on the page. DJ is charming and loveable as she tries to make sense of the world around her and how she fits into it. It's also heartbreaking, as she negotiates romance, and her family's inability to talk about ANYTHING. Yes, it's a book about a Wisconsin tomboy farmgirl who loves football, but it's also so much more.

A quote I loved from the book:
"Then I started thinking that maybe everyone in the whole world was just like a cow, and we all go along doing what we're supposed to without complaining or even really noticing, until we die. Stocking groceries and selling cars and teaching school and cashing checks and raising kids, all these jobs that people just one day start doing without even really thinking about it, walking right into their milking stall the way that heifers do after they've had their first calf and start getting milked for the first time. Until we die. And maybe that's all there is to life."

What a lovely and beautiful book-- I highly recommend it.

Also-- just about 8 days left of my contest. Visit this page to enter for little lark stationary and buttons. Please enter and spread the word!!


  1. I met the author of the dairy queen. she was awesome.

  2. i can't write synopsis things either!
    i agree this is a lovely book. it was different and refreshing.

    loving your blogs new look by the way!


  3. How cool Erinn! You seem to meet a lot of famous people (and zombies, or aliens-- I can't remember which one).

    Thanks Nomes-- I keep playing around with new templates. They have one made of all flies, but it gives me a migraine. Hope you are well!!

  4. Ooh, a new book for me to consume. :) I'm especially interested because you gave kudos to the voice. Thanks for the recommendation!

  5. I read this over the summer. I really enjoyed it.

  6. Sounds like a cute book. Like the passage you chose. :)

    I have an award for you over on my blog!

  7. Hey i am suuper boy

  8. This sounds fantsatic! I'm a sucker (who isn't, I guess?) for books with a really strong voice. It's the one piece of praise that has be reaching for a book straight away. Thanks for the recommendation!

  9. Sure Pam, would love to know what you think when you read it.

    Hey Alicia- I know I got the rec off of RTW, so maybe it was from you?

    Thanks Angie!

    super boy? I am speechless

    Amie-- I know, it's not the only thing I love, but good voice is fantastic.


YAY for comments! Thanks for adding to the conversation.