Saturday, April 28, 2012

Chapter Books A to Z: J is for Judy Blume

I don't think I would have made it through my childhood without Judy Blume. We all started with her shorter books, Freckle Juice and The One in the Middle is the Green Kangaroo. These were about finding a way to love yourself for who you are.

Then we graduated to the longer and thicker chapter books, such as the series about Fudge, and all of the girls who weren't comfortable in their own skin. How many of us were able to relate on some level to Blubber; Are You There, God? It's Me, Margaret; Starring Sally J. Freedman As Herself; Deenie; Just As Long As We Are Together?

And how many of us snickered when we read Forever and learned about Ralph?

Judy Blume had an amazing knack to channel her younger self and to make all of us reading her books feel like we had a real friend going through the same problems at the same time. I can't tell you how many times I read and reread those books. I wore them out. I read them by the pool and hiding in my room or in the book corner at school. I passed them back and forth with my friends, convinced we would all stay best friends forever. I learned and I grew and felt a little bit more normal in an abnormal time of life.

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