[Review] Pumpkinheads by Rainbow Rowell (Author), Faith Erin Hicks (Artist)

Deja and Josiah are seasonal best friends. Every year they meet up at DeKnock’s World Famous Pumpkin Patch & Autumn Jamboree. Throughout the last four years, they’ve bonded over succotash & their seasonal friendship.

But this year, their last: will Josie get to talk to hs crush, Marcy the Fudge Girl? Will Deja get to sample any of the fabulous snacks around the Pumpkin Patch? Or will bad timing, a snack thief, a runaway possibly murderous goat, and their own feelings make this a disappointing close to their time at DeKnock’s?


about the book - Copy



Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Goodreads | Indiebound

Published: 27 August 2019

Publisher: First Second

Genre(s): Graphic Novel/Young Adult

Deja and Josiah are seasonal best friends.

Every autumn, all through high school, they’ve worked together at the best pumpkin patch in the whole wide world. (Not many people know that the best pumpkin patch in the whole wide world is in Omaha, Nebraska, but it definitely is.) They say good-bye every Halloween, and they’re reunited every September 1.
But this Halloween is different—Josiah and Deja are finally seniors, and this is their last season at the pumpkin patch. Their last shift together. Their last good-bye.

Josiah’s ready to spend the whole night feeling melancholy about it. Deja isn’t ready to let him. She’s got a plan: What if—instead of moping and the usual slinging lima beans down at the Succotash Hut—they went out with a bang? They could see all the sights! Taste all the snacks! And Josiah could finally talk to that cute girl he’s been mooning over for three years . . .

What if their last shift was an adventure?

Beloved writer Rainbow Rowell and Eisner Award–winning artist Faith Erin Hicks have teamed up to create this tender and hilarious story about two irresistible teens discovering what it means to leave behind a place—and a person—with no regrets.



Representation: Queer Black Plus-size MC, diverse side & background characters


content warnings - Copy


Fatphobic comment by a side character


what i enjoyed


  • The setting! As someone who has literally grown up across from a farm (though not one quite as invested in the season as DeKnock’s), I really felt at home with this book. The attractions, the snacks, the decorations. ❤


  • The art style. Faith Erin Hicks brought a sense of whimsy to this story with not only her art style, but the colors that she chose to embody the wonderful things within.


  • Deja’s determination. Whether it was bolstering her friend Josie, her sense of justice against a thief, or sampling the best that DeKnock’s has to offer on what is possibly her last night there, Deja was my favorite (human) character.


  • Buck. A background character who is a temperamental ram.  You really feel a lot for him based on the actions he takes as Deja and Josie are walking around the pumpkin patch. He suffers no fools, especially in the closer. lol


  • Josie & Deja’s friendship, even with the quirk that I didn’t understand (covered in the next section), was one that was pretty strong. They bonded together, supported each other, even defended each other.



what i didn't enjoy - Copy


  • I didn’t quite understand why Josie and Deja were only seasonal friends. From everything we’re given of their friendship at DeKnock’s, it’s a strong friendship. So, why don’t they talk at all during the rest of the year? The most that Josie says is that he assumes Deja has winter-spring-summer friends. That felt weak to me, like maybe the author didn’t want to deal with it?




to sum it up - Copy
Pumpkinheads really embraces the feel of autumn, with all the activities within a sizeable pumpkin patch and the snacks that can accompany it. There’s adventure sprinkled in that adds to the feel good atmosphere. While I’m reading it around the time of year that it takes place in the book, I think picking up Pumpkinheads any time of year would be enough to conjure up the scent of pumpkin spice, sugary popcorn, & s’mores, bringing you back to one of the best times of year, with a comfortable story to boot.



All media belongs to the respective owners and is used here solely for the purpose of review and commentary.


8 thoughts on “[Review] Pumpkinheads by Rainbow Rowell (Author), Faith Erin Hicks (Artist)

  1. I really enjoyed it. I understood the seasonal friends thing–I had lots of “theatre friends” I never saw when we weren’t doing shows together, especially when we went to different schools and in the years before people were driving.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I read this and enjoyed it too. I share your confusion about “seasonal friends” because I agree that they are presented as being really close friends. I’m not sure this aspect was even needed when the book takes place in such a short time frame anyway.

    Liked by 1 person

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