Everything I Needed To Know About Being a Girl I Learned From Judy Blume

Everything I Needed to Know About Being a Girl I Learned from Judy Blume - Julie Kenner, Jennifer Coburn, Megan McCafferty, Lynda Curnyn, Jennifer O'Connell, Melissa Senate, Diana Peterfreund, Stephanie Lessing, Laura Ruby, Erica Orloff, Stacey Ballis, Kristin Harmel, Shanna Wendson, Elise Juska, Kyra Davis, Beth Kendrick, Berta Platas, Kayla Pe

What a trip down memory lane. As I read these short stories, it took me back to my teen years and what I recalled about Judy Blume’s novels. I remembered sneaking to read her paperback novels, as my mother thought Judy was inappropriate and too mature for my innocent, sinless eyes. It was on my way to-and-from school and under my covers at night with a flashlight that I read them all. Judy’s characters knew things that I craved to know, things my girlfriends were talking about and issues that I thought I needed to know about. I wanted this view of the world that she presented in her novels, this view that I saw only in her books. There were some novels that I thought Judy had written about me, the characters could have had my name stamped on them and other novels that I wanted to be a part. How could my mother dislike this woman, a woman who wrote such stories that I found inspiring and promising?

 

As I read this novel, these women had all felt exactly how I had felt years ago, they each had claimed at least one of Judy Blume’s novels as their own. They saw themselves in it or they wanted to be a part of it, I felt a connection with these women writers, we could be sisters. Whether it was Deenie or As Long As We’re Together, or any of the other novels she wrote for teens, they adored one of Judy’s novels as much as I did. I enjoyed reading their stories and how they connected with the novels. These books supported these writers, they found something within its pages and drew from it. It was a delight to find others who loved Judy as much as I did and to reminisce about these novels that meant a great deal to me as a teen. In my twenties, I came across Wifey at the Walmart store, as I began reading again and I smiled as I saw Judy’s name splashed across the top. I remember the excitement that overcame me and I thought, “she writes adult books?” Thinking to myself that I wouldn’t have to hide this copy from my mother, I bought it and I devoured it. It was Judy, and I thought of it as my nasty book for a while. Oh, if mother only knew.
Thanks to Murder By Death, a fellow blogger for bringing this novel to my attention.