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Marvin HoffmanThis book will cause any parent of young daughters to lose sleep.
—Houston Chronicle, March 11, 2001
It's only the first week and already school sucks. I've got Ms. Graham again for English.
Today she said every class is going to start with fifteen minutes of journal writing, which is what we're doing now. This is supposed to train us to "reflect freely on our personal experiences." Oh yeah? It's to give her fifteen minutes with nothing to do.
Also, since our journals will be about personal feelings, she says she won't read them. "Your journal is just for you. So write, write, write. As with everything in this world, you'll get out of it what you put into it." According to her, this is a "Life Lesson." What it really is is an excuse for her to get out of marking.
A year of journals! Can I scream yet? It's so boring I keep forgetting to breathe. And each day when it's over she's going to collect them and lock them up in her filing cabinet, like we're a bunch of babies who'll lose them or something.
But okay. Journals beat having her teach. Last year, she either read aloud to us or we read aloud to her, then she'd stop and ask us stupid questions about what we'd just heard. This last part was hilarious, because nobody ever gave her an answer. We just stared up at her like we were dead and watched her eyes go funny. No kidding, her eyes were like gerbils. They darted around desperate for a hand to pop in the air till the silence got so bad she couldn't stand it anymore and blurted the answer herself.
Normal teachers would figure if students are passed out, maybe they should do something. LIKE, HELLO, MAYBE STOP ASKING DUMB QUESTIONS! But not Ms. Graham. She went from dumb to dumber. There'd be red patches on her neck and she'd be sweating and wiping the sweat from her hands to her dress. It was disgusting.
That's when she'd tell us to read the next chapter silently and answer the questions on handouts she'd pass around for homework. Which of course we never did. We pretended we hadn't heard her and the handouts didn't exist. At the end of class, we'd crumple them into balls and toss them in the general direction of the wastebasket. It's like, whole rain forests got clear-cut so Ms. Graham could stuff her filing cabinet with handouts that all ended up in the garbage.
Then, pretty soon, we pretended Ms. Graham didn't exist either. We'd come in, put our heads on our desks and go to sleep. Which was fine by her, I guess, because at least if we were sleeping we weren't throwing chalk. Or handouts.
It was sooo painful.
Near the end of the year, she went Missing in Action. They said she was away with chronic bronchitis, but we figured she was having a breakdown. Over the summer the story went around that she'd knocked over a shelf of light fixtures at Wal-Mart and ended up under a pile of lampshades babbling hysterically while trying to strangle herself with an electric cord till the ambulance came and hauled her off in a straitjacket.
Well, that's the rumor. And even if it isn't true, it should be, because obviously she's back for more and she's nutty as ever. Right now she's floating around with this vague look, smelling kind of stale in a pale gray billowy thing. She looks like a human dustball. Wait. She's just come to rest in front of the window. She's looking out. Maybe she's thinking of jumping.
It's kind of sad, really. I mean, if she wasn't a teacher, I'd feel sorry for her. Once upon a time she was somebody's baby, playing patty-cakes and having everybody kissing her and saying she was a cutie. Then she grew up. I picture her all alone in some tiny apartment, surrounded by cats and stacks of unmarked assignments, praying that tomorrow will be better. And it never is.
Poor Ms. Graham. It's not like she wants to be boring. That's why I almost feel guilty when we torture her. Who we should torture -- really, really torture, with hot coals and a pair of hedge clippers -- is Nicky Wicks. He has short greasy hair, cystic acne and a squishy tongue he likes to stick in girls' ears for a joke. He also has a dent in his forehead from where somebody hit him with a shovel when he was little. Too bad they didn't hit harder.
Nicky is the grossest pig in the school, and in this school there's a lot of competition. He only has one redeeming feature. If you want to lose weight, think about making out with him. You won't be able to eat for a week.
Anyway, Nicky "Pus-head" Wicks worked it so he sits one seat ahead of me in three separate classes. What's worse, he apparently thinks it is majorly funny to stick a couple of pencils up his nose and pretend to be a walrus.
The real reason he does this is to have an excuse to let his pencils fall on the floor so he can bend down to pick them up and look up my skirt while he's at it.
Today I got my revenge. I waited till lunch, when I knew he'd be in the cafeteria with lots of people all around. Then I marched up to his table and said in a big loud voice, "Hey, Pus-head, you look up my skirt one more time and I'll personally pop your zits with my nail file!"
There was this roar of laughter, hooting and footstomping. Nicky was so embarrassed, I thought his cysts would explode. As for me, I just snapped my fingers and diva-ed my way to the parking lot for a smoke.
That's where I met the vice-principal, Mr. Manley, out on a little narc duty. "I want to see you in my office, young lady."
Sorry, journal, according to Ms. Graham it's time for you to go into the filing cabinet. Tomorrow, I'll tell you what happened with the Nazi.
P.S. Dear Ms. Graham: You promised our journals were going to be private. So in case you're secretly reading this to get some cheap thrills, you are nothing but a crazy perverted liar, and it's not my fault if it sends you over the edge.
Posted May 17, 2014
This book is a fast read for us teens. It shows how a picture perfect relationship can easily turn into a bloody battle. Although this is a fictional novel, things like this happen in real life. And possibly lead to murder or suicide. The bottom line is this is a heartbreaking novel that can teach everyday teens a lesson or two.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted April 27, 2010
This book was an amazing read. I couldn't take my eyes away from it. The story tells of a typical and curious teenage girl, just looking for some attention. She doesn't get enough of it where she needs it, so she goes looking for it in a different place. She finally gets that attention she's wanted so badly, and she finally feels like she belongs-but is it worth it? Leslie's Journal is informative, thrilling, and riveting. It may be a very sensitive topic for some readers, but even so, it is definitely worth reading.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 3, 2008
I'm in the process of reading this book. It's quite enjoyable, but I'm disappointed by a lack of maturity in the characters. This is supposed to be high school, and it feels like middle school all over again for me. Hopefully it will get better!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 11, 2006
Leslie's Journal really spoke through to me. I just finished it and I thought to myself, Leslie is the voice of every girl. I admire how Leslie found the courage to confront Jason and not let his threats destroy her life. I also liked that Katie stood by her friend through everything and never betrayed a confidence. Leslie's Journal is one of the Best Books ever written. You must buy this Book!!!!!!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 14, 2006
I don't really remember all the details of this book since I read it quite a while ago, but I do remember that it is excellent and really interseting! I recommend this book to all.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted November 2, 2004
This is still one of my favorite books. It's one of those books that you hate to put down. I think that all teen girls should this just to be aware that stuff like this does happen. I hope this book gets turned into a movie.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted September 16, 2004
A capturing story;every girl should read it,to show them just how much a guy can be cappable of. If I was a teacher in a teen issues class, this would be on my reading list. I read it in 4 hours, and I couldn't put it down. Sriously, if you are looking for a great book, pick this one up. P.S. for all you girls out there who are going through what she did, you aren't alone, it's happened to me too, and someday things will be ok, my heart goes out to all of you!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted December 25, 2003
this book has got to be one of the best in the world. i would recomend it anyone and everyone. when you're reading this book you feel like you are leslie and you feel her pain and troubles. this book will capture you and it will stay with you forever. it is a must read.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted September 27, 2003
This book was great. Every second of the book was filled with interesting thigs there is not a dull moment from the first sentence of the book to the last. I read it in one sitting. An Amazing book ...................................................................... ............................................................ The book was about a angst-ridden teen who's parents are going through the process of a brake-up. She has one friend at school and her friend hangs out with a bunch of girls who she does not like. Anyways theres a new kid at school, Jason, and everyone likes him well he asked Leslie out and of course she said yes. Well one the first date he brings her to his basement and she gets drunk and passes out. The next thing she knows he is pushing her out of his house and she realizes he had sex with her passed out body. She starts to freak out because even though she comes off as a Bas-a$$ she has not done anything more than kiss. He starts to get abusive and giving her pills so she will not fight off when they have sex. She records all of what is happening to her and a substitute reads the jornal and her boy-friend finds out he gets even worst and she brakes up with him. He starts to leave her note in her locker and stalking her. He tells her he has a picture of her passed out naked at his house. She sneaks in his house and finds other girls pictures as well as her own. She contacts one of the girls from one of the pictures and she begs Leslie to burn her picture and not tell anyone. Leslie asks the girl about the other girl from the picture and she tells her she commited suicide because she could not take Jason anymore.....I can't tell you how it ends you will have to read it for your self.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 19, 2003
Posted June 19, 2003
I loved leslie's Jornal!! The thing that go me hooked was at the begining he anger I love that in a character. The book was very interesting and it made me read it in one sitting!! I would recommend this book to and young Adult reader. It was about a girl who gets caught up with this guy and he starts to get abusive. ALSO ENJOYED: Go Ask Alice, Among The Betrayed, Every Time A Rainbow Dies, The Cage, I Have Lived A Thousand Years, If I should Die Before I Wake, Speak, Born Blue, Gathering Blue, The Giver, The Torn Skirt, Breathing Underwater, and Darkness Before Dawn, Samck, and Black Eyed Suzie.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 25, 2003
Leslie's journal is a vent for her encounters with her peers, family, teachers, and her new love, Jason. Her journal, however, is read by a substitute teacher and her tribulations really begin. Will she, can she break away from Jason? Can she break out of the bad girl image with the help of her friend, Katie? Will Katie help Leslie in her most desperate hour? Read Leslie's Journal and seek out the answer to these questions. This is a compelling book which brings to life the struggles of an outcast with emotional problems. The book is frank and to the point with nothing left out. The language, though rough, makes the book believable and sheds some light on socialization at the high school level. I enjoyed the book.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 11, 2003
When I first read the title of this book i knew it would be interesting.once i picked up this book i could not put it down.i read this book over and over again.i eventually had to take it back to my school library though, but i now want to buy it.i would recommend this book to anyone.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted December 17, 2002
This book helped me realize that i dont have to put up with what i am when i read this book i saw my life and it scared me in a way but in a way it was cool i think every one should read this book.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted September 16, 2002
oh my god!This book talks about how leslie stands up for herself and writting it all down in her journal.This book also talks about real issues that are really happening today. the author made the story seem so real like a movie or t.v show.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted September 6, 2002
I rented this book from the library at my high school. I just picked it because we had a time limit and i needed a book to write a review on. However, the moment I opened the book, I knew I was going to love it. The way he captured the feelings of a teenaged girl was amazing, he made the book come alive with truth, and this is my favorite book!! I highly encourage you to read this!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 17, 2002
I thought this book was absolutley amazing. It's not very long, I had it done within a day. But the way he wrote the characters was amazing. It is definitly worth your time to read Leslie's Journal. It's the story of a girl named Leslie who has to write in a dumb English journal for her English class, and through that journal she writes down exactly everything that happens between her and her new boyfriend, Jason, who is secretly abusing her. A story of triumph and tragedy.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted April 23, 2002
This was one of the best books I've read so far! It about Leslie and how she meets this boy who 'sweeps her off her feet' and he stalks her and stuff. A very good book for teens and even pre-teens!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 8, 2002
This is a really good book for teenagers. It helps a teen when they fall in love with someone and it turns out, its to good to be true. This book will keep you on the edge of your seat.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.