• Jenn Kalchik

Book Review: Pumpkinheads


Pumpkinheads was the first graphic novel I ever read. I was familiar with Rainbow Rowell's writing from a previous book I read: Fangirl. I was a big fan of Fangirl and I have other books from Rowell in my TBR (to-be-read) pile. With Rowell's stellar writing and [Erin Faith Hick's gorgeous illustrations, Pumpkinheads is the perfect fall read.


Pumpkinheads takes place during one of my favorite seasons: fall. Fall was one of my favorite seasons growing up because it meant that apples were being harvested. My dad is a 4th generation farmer, and apples are one of the crops that he grows. Pumpkinheads also takes place on a farm, but they specialize in what's called agritourism, which means planning activities or attractions that bring people to a farm or ranch.


The story focuses on two high school seniors who are working their final shift at a pumpkin farm: Deja and Josiah (Josie). They've been working together at the farm for three years, and on their final day, they decide to explore the pumpkin patch and find the "Fudge Girl" so Josie can ask her out on a date. As they go through the farm to find her, they visit the different attractions and meet up with their coworkers. Deja and Josie make an adorable pair of friends that both compliment each other and challenge each other to be their very best.


I wanted to include it in my PopSugar Reading Challenge, where I read 50 books for the calendar year based on the prompts I'm given. You can use this book for the following prompts:


- a book that won an award in 2019 (the prompt I chose)

(Goodreads Best Books of 2019 - Graphic Novel & Comics) - a book with a map - a book with at least four stars on Goodreads - a book published the month of your birthday (August)

This is the perfect book for autumn. There's an added element of suspense as the book progresses and it gets closer to closing time at the pumpkin patch while Josie and Deja are still trying to find "Fudge Girl." My only gripe was that Josie's character wasn't portrayed as two-dimensional as Deja's character. While Deja wasn't the main focus of the story, her personality didn't take over the story. I also appreciated how Rowell and Hicks wrote Deja as a bi-sexual African American teenager; it was nice to see that kind of representation. If you're looking for a fall-themed book that you can read in one sitting, I recommend reading "Pumpkinheads."

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