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Then Again, Maybe I Won't by Judy Blume
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Then Again, Maybe I Won't (1971)

by Judy Blume

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This chapter book from Judy Blume is about a young adolescent boy who moves away from his hometown when his father receives a new job. The story goes through his journey into adolescence and the emotions he experiences. The mature themes in this book would lead it to be appropriate for adolescent children, mainly boys as they will have an easier time relating to the main character Tony. The book is a wonderful story for adolescent boys who feel that they are going through puberty alone and no one understands what they are going through.
  SKugle | Oct 24, 2013 |
A traditional Judy Blume coming of age story. It features a like-able young boy, Tony, and the hardships of growing up. Tony just wants life back the way it used to be, which is something I think almost all of us can relate to. I have read many Judy Blume novels and they are all well written. Then Again, Maybe I Won't is no exception to her high standards. ( )
  chlokie | Feb 5, 2011 |
This is a novel about a boy coming of age. Tony Miglione is learning how to deal with the changes that boys go through with new sexual interests.

I remember the thrill of reading this book as a young girl. It was like a secret window into the inner life of mysterious boys. I still feel that it gives me some insight into what goes on in the minds of adolescent boys.
  bcowie | Dec 7, 2010 |
(I now maintain a blog just for my kid-lit reviews. Find it at http://kidlit4adults.blogspot.com .)

A friend has convinced me to try my hand this year for the first time at writing children's literature; but I don't actually know anything about children's literature, so am starting the process among other ways by first re-reading a selection of books I myself enjoyed as a kid, to see if I can figure out as an adult why I liked them so much. And being a child of the '70s, of course my favorite author during my own youth was Judy Blume; and 1971's Then Again, Maybe I Won't was my second-favorite of all her books back then, known among my childhood friends as the male equivalent of Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret (my number-one favorite Blume title), in that it was the book that middle-school girls read to get an idea of what was going through the minds of middle-school boys, while Margaret served the exact opposite function. And indeed, reading through it this week for the first time as an adult, I was surprised to see how the vast majority of the book actually deals with the class struggles that come from a poorer Italian family in urban New Jersey who suddenly become an upper-middle-class family in suburban Long Island, due to a McGuffin-like invention by the family's patriarch; because as many of you can guess, about the only thing I remembered anymore about the book, 30 years after I first read it, is its frank portrayal of pubescent sexuality, which as an adult I now realize is a subject that confines itself to literally only four or five pages of this entire manuscript. And this was the power of Blume's work in the '70s, I suppose, that it tackled head-on the kinds of messy yet very real issues that confront most 10- to 13-year-olds, in a candid way that kids ate up back then but that made her controversial among adults; it's a tradition that I realize now as an adult started with JD Salinger's Catcher in the Rye, and that paved the way for such contemporary YA masters as John Green and Sarah Dessen.

In fact, one of the biggest things I take away from this book as an adult is just how much I craved flawed characters as a kid, heroes who made plenty of mistakes and sometimes had less-than-stellar personalities, such a change from the perfect little sweethearts that dominated children's literature before the countercultural '60s; and I suppose this is why I was drawn so much to character-based dramas in general during those years, although it should be noted that I was as much a fan of various action-oriented books in those same years, such as the Narnia series and the Encyclopedia Brown mysteries (several of which I'll also be re-reading for eventual critical inspection here). What I learned as a writer by re-reading this is that kids can often forget nearly everything about a book and still count it as a favorite, as long as it offers up a few genuinely unique, laser-precise insights into tricky areas of the child psyche; unfortunately from a professional standpoint, I'm told that such books are incredibly difficult to get sold, and require coming across a dedicated editor with a mindset towards winning awards, and who doesn't mind taking on the occasional censorship battle. (There's a reason, after all, that something like 80 percent of the submission guidelines I've now read from various publishers explicitly state, "We do not accept manuscripts that deal with puberty or sexuality.") Although they're the kinds of books that stick in readers' heads for decades, I'm coming to realize that one simply cannot try to base a career on such titles (unless you're Judy Blume, and I am certainly not Judy Blume), although definitely one can always be concentrating on adding unique insights about childhood to virtually any kid-lit story they're writing. ( )
  jasonpettus | Feb 4, 2010 |
This book is about a thirteen-year-old boy who has had a recent interest in sex as puberty sets in. His friend who has recently started shop-lifting has been making Tony upset and causing him to constantly be thinking about everything in different ways than his peers.
  Molly2Faith | Jan 24, 2010 |
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Who says March is supposed to come in like a lion and go out like a lamb?
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0440486599, Paperback)


(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:43:56 -0400)

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Unable to accept or explain his family's newly acquired wealth, his growing interest in sex, and a friend's shoplifting habit, a thirteen-year-old finds the pains in his stomach getting worse and worse.

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