Sunday, December 13, 2015

"In my whole life nothing will ever mean more to me"

Judy Blume - Forever

I just finished reading Forever (1975) by New Jersey-born writer Judy Blume. The book came recommended to me via's algorithm and instantly grabbed my attention, so I didn't think twice about ordering it and eased through it this weekend. Since Forever deals with teenage sexuality, the book has apparently been subjected to great censorship and was actually banned from a lot of schools, with a bulk of the criticism coming from relgious groups and pro-abstinence groups. Forever even takes up the No. 8 slot on the American Library Association's 100 Most Frequently Challenged Books of 1990-2000. The Scary Stories series by Alvin Schwartz is No. 1, by the way.

The skinny

Katherine is a senior in high school. When she meets Michael at a New Year's party, she quickly finds herself strongly attracted to him. As they grow to love each other and their relationship unfolds, the issues of sex and physical intimacy, which they both understand to be both common and complicated, comes up, and once they have decided that their love is forever, Katherine and Michael make love. When Katherine's parents, who aren't all too crazy about their daughter's relationship, insist that she and Michael spend the summer before college apart, their love is put to the test and their planned future becomes a lot less certain.

First love is the sweetest

The review

I guess I'm not in Judy Blume's YA demographic, but I still very much liked her book. Bittersweet stories about first loves are right up my alley, and this timeless one by Blume is probably as relevant now as it was in the mid-70s. Sure, Forever is a PSA/eduction book first and foremost, but it's also sweet and heartbreaking, even if the characters fall a bit flat.

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