Created by Laura Abbott

Dairy Queen by Catherine Gilbert Murdock

Murdock, Catherine Gilbert. The Dairy Queen. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishers, 2006. 288 pages. Tr. $16.00. ISBN 978-0-618-68307-9.

Annotation: Fifteen-year-old D. J Schwenk has a lot of responsibility running the family’s dairy farm and keeping up in school, but her life really gets busy when she is also asked to train a rival team’s handsome football quarterback.

Summary: D.J Schwenk has a lot of responsibility running the family dairy farm after her dad injures his hip. She probably should be spending more time keeping up in school since she is flunking English. But over the summer, a family friend asks D. J. to train a rival team’s football quarterback. Brian Nelson is spoiled, lazy, and handsome and she is definitely attracted to him. D. J. is naturally reticent and is skilled at ignoring major issues, but so many problems are coming to a head that she learns to speak up for herself and to address important issues.

Evaluation: This is a humorous sports novel with a touch of romance. The evolution of the character is D.J. is exciting to read. She goes from being what everyone wants to being herself. With self-deprecating humor, quiet D. J. struggles with expressing her feelings of frustration, anger, sadness, and love. Readers will empathize with the flawed but lovable D. J.. Recommended for ages 12 to 17.

Genre / Subject: Fiction, Realistic Fiction, Football, Sports, Farm Life, Family, Friendship, Romance, Identity, Aspirations

Awards: 2007 ALA Best Books for Young Adults