Kate McKinnon Announces New Novel That Will Inspire Young Readers

The actress who played Weird Barbie is breaking into novel writing with her debut book for middle-grade readers! Read on for more details.

Book Culture Book News Recommendations Young Adult Young Readers
Kate McKinnon stares blankly ahead while wearing overalls and her hair in a bun. The cover of her book is placed in the right bottom corner of her photo.

SNL alum Kate McKinnon has announced her debut middle-grade novel to be released later this year. The book, entitled The Millicent Quibb School of Etiquette for Young Ladies of Mad Science has been the brain-child of McKinnon for years and will feature artwork including character drawings and diagrams that she drafted herself, which were then completed by illustrator Alfredo Caceres. 

A Child at Heart

This is not McKinnon’s first venture into children’s entertainment, having voiced Mrs. Frizzle in The Magic School Bus Rides Again and Lulu the Guinea Pig in DC League of Super-Pets.

Weird Barbie is standing in an all pink house with a pink frilly dress on and a Birkenstock in one hand. She has crazy blonde hair and paint splatter on her dress. Her face is drawn on in marker.
IMAGE VIA WARNER BROS PICTURES

The Millicent Quibb School of Etiquette for Young Ladies of Mad Science is to be published by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, part of Hachette Book Group, and will be the first of a series of YA books to be written by the Barbie star.

 The description of the novel states:

Gertrude, Eugenia, and Dee-Dee Porch do not belong. They don’t belong in the snooty town of Antiquarium, where all girls must go to etiquette school and all dogs must be Bichon Frises. They don’t belong with their adoptive family: their uptight Aunt Desdemona, their materialistic Uncle Ansel, and their seven snide cousins, who are all named Lavinia. And they certainly don’t belong at Mrs. Wintermacher’s etiquette school — they’re far more interested in machines and slugs than posture and little forks. After Mrs. Wintermacher expels them for insubordination, the girls expect to be sent away for good…until they receive a mysterious invitation to a new school.

Suddenly, the girls find themselves under the tutelage of the infamous Millicent Quibb — a mad scientist with worms in her hair and oysters in her bathtub. At 231 Mysterium Way, the pizza is fatal, the bus is powered by gerbils, and the dean of students is a hermit crab. Dangerous? Yes! More fun than they’ve ever had? Absolutely! But when the sisters are asked to save their town from an evil cabal of nefarious mad scientists, they must learn to embrace what has always made them stand out and determine what side they’re on — before it’s too late!

via Amazon
Book cover with The Millicent Quibb School of Etiquette For Young Ladies of Mad Science Written beside cartoon drawings of a monster eating a shake and four girls standing on top of the monster in lab coats.
IMAGE VIA AMAZON

A Long Time in the Making

According to McKinnon, she began working on the characters and stories to be explored in the book for years prior to her SNL departure in 2022. The actress said in an interview that,

I wanted to write the kind of book that I would have loved reading when I was younger, when I was eating honeysuckle on the playground and collecting bugs and falling in love with the natural world — I hope young people read about the adventures of the Porch Sisters and are inspired to get out there and have their own adventures. I started playing with the idea of these characters and this world over a decade ago and am so thrilled to finally bring them to an audience, especially with a team as wonderful as the one at LBYR.

Kate McKinnon, IndieWire

The Millicent Quibb School of Etiquette for Young Ladies of Mad Science will be released on October 1, 2024, and is available now to pre-order. 


Are you interested in reading more articles like this? Check out this article on actors turned novelists!

Find more books for middle-grade readers at our Bookstr Bookshop!

FEATURED IMAGE VIA BOOKSTR / LIONSGATE / BOOKSHOP