Finding Our Way: The Teen Girls' Survival Guide

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9780060951146: Finding Our Way: The Teen Girls' Survival Guide

A unique, illustrated guide that helps teen girls discover who they are, what they want in life, and how they can get it in today's complex world.

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Gr. 8^-12. Written by a freelance journalist and the executive editor of Essence magazine, both African Americans, this candid book is one of the best resources for young women to come out in a long time. The tone is light but not flip, and most of the important subjects are here--body image, puberty, sexual development, birth control, relationships with friends and family, nutrition. So is information on trendy topics, such as tattoos and plastic surgery, and discussion of issues of rising concern among teens, such as personal safety. Judiciously used comments from teens personalize the reading, and there's an obvious attempt to encompass multicultural difference. The chapter on body image, for example, notes differences in the "ideal" body type as accepted by African Americans and by whites. The authors manage to be upfront about their opinions: the stance on abortion is pro-choice, and the chapter on birth control, which is both specific and very up-to-date, includes a critical assessment of the Norplant that notes its sometimes enforced use among women "who are poor and/or black." Lack of specific documentation is problematic at times, and some of the suggested readings are woefully out of date (however, some are quite new), but such problems are more than balanced by the quality and quantity of information included and the extensive listings of support groups and organizations that accompany each chapter. Put this on the shelf right next to The Teenage Body Book (1992). Stephanie Zvirin

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