“Dear Teen Me: Authors write letters to their teen selves” Edited by E. Kristen Anderson & Miranda Kenneally

ARC (Advance Reading Copy). To be published October 30, 2012. Zest Books. 189 pp.

I love the premise of this anthology. Well known, and not so well known, Young Adult authors write letters (including some comic strips) to their teen selves with photographs from their younger days. In their writings they remember loves won and lost, bully troubles, weight struggles, suicidal thoughts, fears of coming out, physical, mental and emotional abuse, as well as other hurts and indignities suffered by their teen selves. Along with the bad comes the good, as they also offer advice to their teen selves on how to make things better now, and how to plan for their futures. They encourage their past selves by telling them how these experiences will help shape their futures, explain how the hurts will eventually go away, give credit to those who helped them along the road, etc., etc.

True, heartfelt words like those contained in “Dear Teen Me,” have far reaching consequences as teens of today who read it can easily relate to these teens from the past. When today’s teens read how their favorite author battled through their own insecurities and won, it will encourage them to see their life will get better too, in and beyond high school. The words in “Dear Teen Me” give them hope for their future. Hope is a powerful thing, which makes “Dear Teen Me” a must have, and a must read, for teens in high school and public libraries across the country (and the world.)

NEWS FLASH: ZestBooks is sponsoring a “Dear Teen Me Blog Tour” which will take place October 15-November 18. In that tour, bloggers from across the country will write their own insights into their teen years, which ZestBooks will share in a wider format. They may also include interviews with the editors in these posts. I will be participating in mid October with my own Dear Teen Me letter from my teen years, as well as with a “Dear Teen Me” book giveaway for a lucky reader.

So, be sure to stay tuned in for more details, and don’t forget to follow my blog so you can get posts instantly in your mailbox and not miss out on the fun. Look under “tags,” and type your email in the “Follow blog via email” section. It’s that easy. Once you do that, go to your calendar and circle October 30th as the day you go out and buy your copy of “Dear Teen Me” to read and share with a teen. Spread the love.


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