FICTION

Middle School’s a Drag, You Better Werk!

Putnam. Feb. 2020. 304p. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780525517528.
COPY ISBN
Gr 4-6–Inspired by his grandfather’s many successful business ventures, Mikey has started Anything, Inc., a company that allows him to follow his dreams. His business takes off when he becomes a talent agent for several of his classmates, including Julian, a boy who performs drag as Coco Caliente, Mistress of Madness and Mayhem. Mikey schemes to assist Coco and his other clients in entering the school’s talent show in the hopes of sharing a piece of the 100 dollar prize. Along the way, Mikey must navigate school bullies and disapproving parents to learn what it really means to be yourself. With an easy, conversational writing style filled with the mishaps and shenanigans of middle school, this story will be accessible to a wide range of readers. Coco’s performance at the talent show is a fairly significant plot point; however, the focus is on Mikey and his desire to please his grandfather while also learning how to be himself at school. Readers will identify with Mikey as he deals with his annoying little sister, navigates the school cafeteria, and learns to feel compassion for his bullies. This is a heartwarming story perfect for fans of Tim Federle’s Better Nate Than Ever and Jordan Sonnenblick’s Drums, Girls, and Dangerous Pie.
VERDICT While the topic of drag performance has been covered in young adult books, fewer novels have discussed kids who perform drag and in a way that is accessible to a younger audience. A solid purchase for most public and school libraries.

Be the first reader to comment.

Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.


RELATED 

Get connected. Join our global community of more than 200,000 librarians and educators.

Get access to 6000+ annual reviews of books, databases, and more

As low as $12/month