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Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret (1970)

door Judy Blume

LedenBesprekingenPopulariteitGemiddelde beoordelingAanhalingen
6,4992151,141 (3.84)127
Faced with the difficulties of growing up and choosing a religion, a twelve-year-old girl talks over her problems with her own private God.
  1. 00
    Eleven door Lauren Myracle (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: With humor and insight, both of these girl-pleasing novels highlight concerns with family, friends and school. Margaret also looks at physical development, as well as religion.
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One of the defining books of a generation, this book centers on teen Margaret Simon and how she copes with a big move to a new place, new friends, changing from child to teen, and dreams beyond.

The story is a classic one; Margaret and her friends talk about things thought typical of teen girls: boys, periods, crushes. It is all very PG but at the time, I can remember parents were a little put off by the subject matter; namely the candid discussions of religion and menstruation. We follow Margaret as she navigates things like moving and religion with her friends. The story builds and grows right along with Margaret as she discovers things about herself, her family, and her friends. One of the hallmarks is Margarets' relationship to religion.

The characters are typical teen girl stereotypes but each serves a purpose in the story and guides Margaret - and by extension the reader - along the journey to being a teen. Margaret is completing a class project centered on finding a[n] (organized) religion to follow but ends up becoming disillusioned after an argument between her family when her maternal grandparents visit. The biggest thing each character is dealing with is menstruation and waiting for their periods to arrive. The girls go through the embarrassment of buying a sanitary belt and napkins and practicing putting them on and even exercises to increase their busts.

The writing is very simple, this is after all about a pre-teen in the sixth grade and is intended for audiences of the same grade level. Many adult readers may find this nostalgic but newer readers may be put off by the apparent blandness of it. The way Blume handles the situations in the book - some based on her own experience - come across as it may have to a young reader 'back in the day' which is candid with emotional range befitting the age range.

I'd recommend this book for age-appropriate readers in the same grade. While accessible to all genders of readers, readers who identify as male may not enjoy it as much. A sequel, "Then Again, Maybe I Won't" is written from a male perspective at a similar age.

*All thoughts and opinions are my own.* ( )
1 stem The_Literary_Jedi | Jun 11, 2021 |
I must have read this book when I was younger, but I honestly have no memory of its plotline, so I figured I would do a re-read before the much-anticipated film adaptation comes out. Ironically, I can see why I had no memory of the book, because it honestly wasn’t all that appealing even as an adult. Young Margaret moves from New York to the suburbs with her family, and in the course of getting to know her new classmates she decides to investigate her faith. Now, Margaret has always talked to God, but she didn’t really understand the differences between Judaism and Christianity since her parents had both renounced their differing faiths due to conflict with their parents. Maybe because I was raised in the Anglican church, attended Catholic school for 3 years, and had friends who practiced a multitude of faiths when I was young, the point of this novel escapes me as I have no understanding of Margaret’s internal struggle. Who cares which religion you are, as long as you have the support of your friends and family, can be respectful of differences, and are able to find community and completeness from some aspects of your life? Maybe the film will get into the story a bit more than the book did, because I felt like the book’s major weakness was that it felt rather surface level. We barely get into the family conflict, Margaret’s visits to different churches and temples are brief, and the focus seems to be more about adjusting to her new suburbs life than anything else, so it wasn’t very clear if the major theme was supposed to be about religion or about growing up in general. ( )
  JaimieRiella | Feb 25, 2021 |
I loved this book just as much as I did the first time I read it. Margaret is such a good sweet character. Her journey through being a girl is so relatable. ( )
  Emmybird01 | Jan 22, 2021 |
I read this as a preteen/teen and loved it then. I think I then ripped through all the Judy Blume books in my library. A really sweet coming of age story, but rereading as an adult made me see the abrupt ending and unresolved issues at the end. Still worth a perusal. ( )
  pmichaud | Dec 21, 2020 |
We must, we must. . . . ( )
  Chica3000 | Dec 11, 2020 |
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Are you there God? It's me Margaret.
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Are you there God, it's me Margaret. Life is getting worse every day. I'm going to be the only one who doesn't get it. I know it God. Just like I'm the only one without a religion. Why can't you help me?
"Oh, you're still flat," Nancy laughed.
"Not exactly," I said, pretending to be very cool. "I'm small-boned is all."
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Faced with the difficulties of growing up and choosing a religion, a twelve-year-old girl talks over her problems with her own private God.

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