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23 October 2017


Arggh! I said I was going to stay out of the comment threads, but how could I NOT alert you to this new memoir by one of the Three Blessed Annes (Dillard, Lamott, and the often overlooked Fadiman):


Oh CR! You hated "Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret"?

When I was a tween I wanted EVERYTHING the older kids had, including braces and acne (what did I know?). I totally got Margaret. So what did you read at that age if not Judy Blume?

P.S. I love the fact that you appear to have been curmudgeonly with strong bookish opinions even as a child even. Adorable. :D

Oh, Hapax,
Please keep joining us in the comments. Mostly everyone's comments are what elevate this blog above the ho-hum.
And thanks for the Fadiman heads-up!!

Ruthiella dearest:
I have always been a curmudgeon, which is probably why I have never, ever wanted to be biologically older. I was glad to get my driver's license at 16 but other than that I had plenty of independence, so there was no thrill to getting older. When I got my period my mother's heartfelt sentiment was, "Oh, I'm so sorry." And this from a woman with six kids who was happy to have six kids. It has always struck me as the perfect response, because let's face it, almost all of the physical stuff that goes along with being a woman SUCKS.

I never really responded to Judy Blume, although I think she's a fine author and person (and she owns part of an indie bookstore, go Judy Blume!). I much preferred Beverly Cleary, and I used to plow through greek myths, castle books, and fantasy (David Eddings, Terry Brooks, etc.). Although in junior high I had a brief love affair with the Sweet Valley High series too. So I shouldn't be too hard on Judy.

Did you like "Forever" too? :) By the time I got to that I had already read racier things so even that let me down. Ha!

I know I read Forever (I remember the cover) but I probably just skimmed it for the sex bits. I didn't love it the way I loved Margaret.

I also loved Beverly Cleary books. I never read the ones about the mouse, but I did read the Ramona, Beatrice and Henry Huggins books. Any time I see a perfect ringlet, I want to pull it just like Ramona did *BOING*. I think I must have read Ramona the Pest a million times, because I remember so much about it.

Oh, Ramona! She was the BEST. And I *still* want to know how Mike Mulligan went to the bathroom.

Greek myths, yes. And those fabulous Time Life books about, well, EVERYTHING. I think my parents bought all the sets. Oh, and Henry Reed -- did any of you read his books, or am I hopelessly oooold?

I'll never forget Ramona squeezing out the entire tube of toothpaste into the bathroom sink. Now THAT is good writing. BOING! Awesome.

I did not read Henry Reed and now must look it up. Until I got into a decent school library I actually read a lot of conservative tracts because that's what was on our bookshelves. Most likely I should not have been reading Jeremiah Denton's "When Hell Was In Session" (about his experience as a POW in the Vietnam War) when I was 8 or 9, but, you know, you read what you can get.

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