Saturday, December 1, 2012

Dear Teen Me, edited by E. Kristen Anderson and Miranda Kenneally

What would you say if you were to write a letter to your teenage self?  Would you try to prevent bad decisions?  Would you try to give comfort and encouragement?  Would you warn yourself?  This books contains letters from over 70 contemporary authors to their teenage selves, delving into heavy topics like abuse, sexuality, self harm, eating disorders, and bullying.

Wow.  When the very first letter made me weepy, I knew I had stumbled onto a truly special book.  Many of these authors write young adult works, so there were quite a few of them I was unfamiliar with.  Yet their stories were so, well, familiar.  There is something in this book to which every reader will relate.  Many of these authors struggled with really painful situations, and were able to channel that pain into a creative outlet.  As a result, this book is incredibly inspiring.

Books like this spread the message to our youth that life can be so much better, and you can be so much more, than your youth would seem to indicate.  Yet, as an adult, I found the book incredibly comforting, and uplifting.  It made me feel as if I, too, can achieve my dreams.  While the topics discussed are pretty heavy, the book is incredibly appropriate for teen readers, since the letters all discuss things dealt with during teenage years.  This would be a great book for a parent and teen to read together, to open up some lines of communication.

I received a review copy courtesy of the Amazon Vine program in exchange for an honest review.




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