In this heartfelt and hilarious new novel from Greg Howard, an enterprising boy starts his own junior talent agency and signs a thirteen-year-old aspiring drag queen as his first client.
Twelve-year-old Mikey Pruitt--president, founder, and CEO of Anything, Inc.--has always been an entrepreneur at heart. Inspired by his grandfather Pap Pruitt, who successfully ran all sorts of businesses from a car wash to a roadside peanut stand, Mikey is still looking for his million-dollar idea. Unfortunately, most of his ideas so far have failed. A baby tornado ran off with his general store, and the kids in his neighborhood never did come back for their second croquet lesson. But Mikey is determined to keep at it.
It isn't until kid drag queen Coco Caliente, Mistress of Madness and Mayhem (aka eighth grader Julian Vasquez) walks into his office (aka his family's storage/laundry room) looking for an agent that Mikey thinks he's finally found his million-dollar idea, and the Anything Talent and Pizzazz Agency is born!
Soon, Mikey has a whole roster of kid clients looking to hit it big or at least win the middle school talent show's hundred-dollar prize. As newly out Mikey prepares Julian for the gig of a lifetime, he realizes there's no rulebook for being gay--and if Julian can be openly gay at school, maybe Mikey can, too, and tell his crush, dreamy Colton Sanford, how he feels.
Full of laughs, sass, and hijinks, this hilarious, heartfelt story shows that with a little effort and a lot of love, anything is possible.
Born and raised in the South Carolina Lowcountry, Greg Howard's love of words and story blossomed at a young age. Originally set on becoming a famous songwriter and following that dream to the bright lights of Nashville, Tennessee, Greg spent years producing the music of others before eventually returning to his childhood passion of writing stories. Greg writes young adult and middle grade novels focusing on LGBTQ characters and issues. He has an unhealthy obsession with Reese's Peanut Butter Cups and currently resides in Nashville with his three rescued fur babies--Molly, Toby, and Riley.
Connect with Greg at www.greghowardbooks.com or on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter: @greghowardbooks
Praise for Middle School's A Drag, You Better Werk!:
“What a fun book!
I love the book's message of being yourself and accepting others. You better werk! I definitely recommend
this book to all kids and teens, but especially drag kids.” —Desmond Is Amazing
“This fun, funny, and heartfelt
novel will leave you feeling hopeful and triumphant!” —Donna Gephart, award-winning author of Lily and Dunkin
, In Your Shoes
, and The Paris Project
“A funny, fabulous, and ultimately life-affirming
story that will uplift
young readers from many different backgrounds. So, should you check this one out? Mikey says, yas queen!” —Booklist
. . . Shows that when people give proper due to each other, they learn and celebrate together, and maybe even heal.” —Lambda Literary
take on early adolescence and discovering who you are, with a warmth that’s sure to speak to young readers
and the adults in their lives.” —Chapter 16
“A heartwarming story
perfect for fans of Tim Federle’s Better Nate Than Ever
.” —School Library Journal
“Greg Howard tells a funny and relatable story about relationships, family and friendships in the strange world of adolescence…a brilliantly entertaining and heartwarming story
.” —PinkNews UKPraise for The Whispers:A 2022 Garden State Book Award Nominee
A 2020 Edgar Award Nominee
A 2020 Wisconsin State Just One More Page List Pick
“This taut, moving tale delves beyond loss into issues of sexuality, conformity and self-acceptance…a masterful exploration
into the power of storytelling but also its dangers, including self-denial and escapism.” —The New York Times Book Review
“With sensitivity and skill
, Howard handles themes of sexual identity, self-worth, loss and friendship.” —The Washington Post
"Howard’s personal story helps create a fictional narrative both realistic and relevant
, while also calling on the fantastical magic of the imagination…. A tale of family, friendship and loss, filled with magic and heart
." —Associated Press
"A dreamy novel
recalling Bridge to Terabithia." —Entertainment Weekly
"A heartbreaking, beguiling debut
… This poignant journey through the badlands of grief is crammed with tenderness, wit and warmth." —The Guardian
★ "This is a story of a boy coming to grips with heartbreak
and trying to understand why he is the way he is, who must learn to discern what is real, and who discovers redemption
." —School Library Connection
, starred review