Girlhood: Teens Around The World In Their Own Voices

What do the lives of teenage girls look like in Cambodia and Kenya, in Mongolia and the Midwest? What do they worry about and dream of? What happens on an ordinary day?

All around the world, girls are going to school, working, creating, living as sisters, daughters, friends. Yet we know so little about their daily lives. We hear about a few exceptional girls who make headlines, and we hear about headline-making struggles and catastrophes. But since the health, education, and success of girls so often determines the future of a community, why don’t we know more about what life is like for the ordinary girls, the ones living outside the headlines? From the Americas to Europe to Africa to Asia to the South Pacific, the thirty-one teens from twenty-nine countries in Girlhood Around the World share their own stories of growing up through diary entries and photographs. They invite us into their day-to-day lives, through their eyes and in their voices, in a full-color, exuberantly designed scrapbook-like volume.

Publisher: Algonquin Young Readers
Publish Date: February 09, 2021
Pages: 256

Thirty girls and twenty-seven countries, just to remind us all that every girl has big dreams.

What I enjoyed the most were the similarities in all of the stories. This is in part from the formulaic interviews they each answered, but also the general universality of being a teenage girl.

They all rely on their friends.

They love their families.

Their surroundings have inspired their dreams to be athletes, teachers, doctors, and mothers.

I think this is publishing at the right time. When so many of us are focused on what makes us different, here is a book that shows us how we all relate.

One of my favorite things about it was how it felt like a scrapbook, which you can see in the excerpts on our Patreon (or you can wait until tomorrow when we post them publicly). There are pictures, quotes, and diary entries from each of the thirty girls who were interviewed.

There are some entries and statistics which I wish had come with a content warning, but it is still information we need to hear.

What is shared in Girlhood, is directly from these teens with little to no moderation. It makes it feel honest and genuine.

My Rating:

Rating: 3 out of 5.

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Published by J. M. Tuckerman

J.M.Tuckerman is a neurodivergent writer with a big education. She holds an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults, an MA in Writing, and a BA in Writing Arts (specializing in Creative Writing, New Media Writing, and Publication; concentrating in New Media Production), which she somehow managed to earn despite her three very loud and large dogs. Jessica was lucky enough to intern at Quirk Books and Picador, USA while earning her master’s degrees. Her service dog, Ringo, is very proud of all that she has accomplished and hopes to be on a back cover of a published book with her very soon. An avid reader, writer, and lover of young adult and middle-grade literature, Jessica’s bookshelf is overflowing with hardbacks, paperbacks, and a million half-filled notebooks. She is a proud fur-mommy to two lab/st-bernard littermates, a retriever-mix service dog, and one orange little hobgoblin cat, all of whom have made very audible appearances on the Booked All Night podcast.

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