Publishers Weekly - Publishers WeeklyFour paperback titles kick off the Sunscreen series of self-help books aimed at teens. Just Us Girls by Moka, with Melissa Daly, illus. by Eric Heliot, divided into "phases" (sections) tackle subjects such as girls' changing bodies, self-awareness and relating to others-plus lighter fare such as "experimenting with makeup." Sex Explained by Magali Clausener-Petit, with Daly, illus. by Soledad, navigates the body's changes (for boys and girls) during puberty, as well as such topics as intercourse, contraception and sexual crimes (e.g., rape and incest), offering advice on how not to become a victim. My Parents Are Getting Divorced by Florence Cadier, with Daly, illus. by Claire Gandini, can help kids caught in the middle, providing reassurance and advice: "Just listening to their fighting is hard enough; you shouldn't have to referee." Finally, Feeling Freakish? by V ronique le Jeune and Philippe Eliakim, with Daly, illus. by Princess H, tackles self-esteem issues and ends with quotes from real kids. Cartoons mix a comic touch with compassion: a girl confesses to a boy, "I can't go out with you because my ears stick out... I'm sure you understand." Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
My Parents are Getting Divorced, Tooby Florence Cadier, Melissa Daly, Claire Gandini (Illustrator)
Children's LiteratureThis interesting, well-written book is designed to help teens understand the emotional and legal process of divorce. Divided into three phases, phase one deals with the knowledge that there are problems brewing between parents. Entitled "Dealing with Arguments and Other Problems" the text reassuringly discusses issues such as "how did it happen?"; "what part did I play in this?"; "playing judge" and so. Phase two, entitled "Divorce and Its Consequences" discusses issues of "who can I count on?"; "a new nest"; "living in two houses"; "pain and hurt" and so on. Phase three, "The Start of a New Life" includes "am I still part of the family?"; "new experiences, new ties"; "future family ties" and so on. Every issue imaginable is covered. The interesting layout, humorous, colored cartoon-like drawings and straightforward, well-researched text will appeal to older children and teens. It is like talking with your best friend, but this time your best friend really knows what he/she is talking about. The discussions take no sides and help the reader to understand everyone's viewpoint. It would not hurt divorcing parents to read it, too. A bibliography and index are included. 2004, Amulet Books, Ages 10 up.
Meredith Kiger, Ph.D.
VOYADivorce can leave a young person with a lot of questions, many of which a teen does not always know how to ask. Here are some of the answers. In this translation from the French, Cadier attempts to address the many emotional conflicts that a teen might feel when his or her parents are getting divorced, from custody to remarriage. The book, like others in this series, is broken into three sections, called phases. Within each phase, the author advises youth on how to react to situations, where to turn for help, and what choices are available, basically trying to make them realize that they are not alone. Cadier talks directly to the teen and often introduces anecdotes to make the situation seem more concrete. Even more personal accounts might have couched her advice and made it seem less like something the teen has heard already. Cadier provides a bibliography for more information, but it is limiting as it refers mainly to French titles and Web sites aimed at divorcing adults. Still the book is a good general source for teens who might have questions about what they are feeling and what the future may hold both emotionally and legally. Although teens are unlikely to pick it up for themselves, if handed to them they could find help through a difficult time. VOYA CODES: 3Q 2P M J (Readable without serious defects; For the YA with a special interest in the subject; Middle School, defined as grades 6 to 8; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9). 2004, Amulet Books/Harry N. Abrams, 112p.; Index. Illus. Biblio., Trade pb. Ages 11 to 15.
School Library Journal - School Library JournalGr 5-8-Through hip graphics, colors, and fonts, these books offer advice, but the quality varies from title to title. Divorced is a great, upbeat book, giving wise advice in a voice that speaks to kids. The table of contents is divided into three logical sections, which cover before, during, and after divorce. The illustrations are right on target, such as a dog and a cat fighting on the cover or a kid balancing on a tightrope between two houses. Unfortunately, all but one of the titles in the bibliography are in French. Girls covers such topics as the body, personality types, feelings, and relationships in short, graphically appealing chapters. However, the chapter on exercise talks about sampling the equipment in a health club without mentioning that children under a certain age may not be permitted to work out on machines. The biggest problem, though, is with the cartoon illustrations. In the section on kids not wanting to spend time with their parents, the illustration shows a girl asking to watch TV with her father. With the discussion of glasses, a girl is shown wearing them on her chest like a bra, nipples where eyes would be. Finally, the bibliography includes only one book, the old edition of the Boston Women's Health Collective's Our Bodies, Ourselves (S & S, 1985), making no mention of the many good books that cover similar ground for middle schoolers.-Laurie von Mehren, Cuyahoga County Public Library, Brecksville, OH Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
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