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Just As Long As We're Together (2001)

Just as Long as We're Together (2001)
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Rating
4.04 of 5 Votes: 5
ISBN
0330398040 (ISBN13: 9780330398046)
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English
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publisher
macmillan children's books
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Just As Long As We're Together (2001)
Just As Long As We're Together (2001)

About book: Goodreads doesn't have the book cover in hardcover that I'm reading. They only had it as Audio CD. Grrr.I haven't read a Judy Blume book in 30+ years, and that was the risky Wifey (at the time) that I hid because I was still living at home with my parents. Not that my mother would had probably known what it was about anyway, because she wasn't a reader at the time. Anyho, I"m in a book club, and the book for this month was this one. Being 49 years old today, and it being written in 1987, this story would had made me too old to read this young adult fiction book as a preteen, let alone know about it. I used to love Judy Blume's books, Are You There God? It's Me Margaret, Blubber, Deenie, Then Again Maybe I Won't, Starring Sally J. Freeman As Herself, It's Not The End of the World... Gosh, they were all so good, and rehashing these old titles brings back so many memories. Judy Blume was always a favourite author of mine. She knew exactly how preteens felt and what they were going through, as though she wasn't an adult herself and was one of us. Reading this book, it took me right back to admiring the author, and how she just gets it right. I didn't know how I would feel reading a book written for preteen girls, especially since my kids are long from being even that age themselves. So, wasn't I surprised as I was reading along that I was really liking it. Though I feel it could really be updated as kids today wouldn't know some things mentioned in the story. One such "outdated" was: We certainly don't celebrate our daughter's getting their period the same way like we used too, Stephanie's mother, "It's very special when it happens to your own daughter. I'm so proud of you, Steph!" I certainly didn't have the same reaction when my daughter got her period for the first time in telling her I was "so proud of her". What's there to be proud of? It's a fact of life and every female is going to get it, eventually.Another outdated material was when Stephanie pulled out Rachel's book, "Life With Father" and exclaimed "It was (a) funny" book. I had no idea myself and something I had to google. Could it be because I am Canadian and grew up in Canada that it wasn't big over there? I"m not sure. So the google information told me it was a 1947 comedy drama, which must had gone to print. I can't even imagine girls in 1987 knew it, let alone a girl in 2015. I used to play lots of card games when I was younger, but the card game Spit was not one. This was something else I wasn't familiar with and investigated on google. But let's get back to the positives, because Judy Blume is bang on with relating to the character, and telling it just right to the young reader on such issues as one might be going through as she's reading it. Like preteen girls feeling like little girls one minute, and then feeling they should be young woman the next, or maybe the preteen reader is having the same troubling family situations like parents separating, which could lead to her parents divorcing. Or when girls have been best friends forever, but now are showing different interests and are branching out into other friendships, and not sure their friendship will still be the same or drift apart. And of course, let's us not forget the discovery of liking boys, and all the confusion that brings on. It makes me sad that my daughter never got into Judy Blume. I know if she did, I would had certainly reread all them again. Maybe one day I will.

I could barely stomach this particular novel. It wasn’t disgusting, if that’s what you’re thinking. I was nauseated. Instead, I was overcome by a sudden case of ADD during chapter one. It lasted through the entire 296 pages. I had to literally force myself to keep reading. My mind wandered to hundreds of different things, some as mundane as my leg itching. Every few chapters, I had to walk around just to help concentrate. Why did I even need to concentrate, though? NOTHING HAPPENED. The book was a waste of time; too much time, since it took me a few hours. I could have read it faster if I could focus better. I understand people now when they tell me they hate reading. If this was assigned to me at an early age, I would hate reading too. So, the book is called JUST AS LONG AS WE’RE TOGETHER. I had hoped for some potential. The reviews on the back cover raved about it, and if nothing else, I looked forward to WTF moments and dated references. The book was written in 1987, the year before I was born. The most dated thing was that the main character, Stephanie, had a poster of young Richard Gere on her ceiling (maybe so she could masturbate before bed. Yes, that was hinted at). There are three main characters. I will call them Girl A, B, and C because they are EXACTLY ALIKE. Judy Blume, once again, missed great opportunities to embellish her characters: Girl A has to deal with her parents’ separation, Girl B is embarrassed by her high intelligence, Girl C is adopted. Great areas for development, right? Well, too bad. They are glossed over, leaving the characters empty and alike. Within the first chapter, I hated them. In the entire book, I couldn’t find a single character I didn’t loathe. Yes, loathe. The emotion was that strong. I’m not too sure what the book is about, because there are all these little areas, but Judy Blume brushes right past them. Events either happen within a few sentences or we are told about them happening in the past. As soon as we start to get involved in something, everything changes, and we have to get involved in something else, only to have that ripped away too. Talk about frustrating. Those girls are friends, then they aren’t, and go through some stuff, the end. Honestly, I skimmed from page 255 onward because I couldn’t take the drivel anymore. I DIDN’T CARE. I just wanted them to hide within the beaten up pages of the used paperback and stay there so I wouldn’t have to suffer through them any longer.I must say a few things about WTF moments. Sadly, this book didn’t have any. If it had, I might have been partly entertained. The closest it came to WTF was discussing sex, but even then, it wasn’t WTF enough. Like, having a seventh grader say if a guy has hairy legs, it means he’s sexually experienced, really doesn’t have any “wow” factor to it. Sex was discussed way too much for a book geared at eight to twelve year olds. Eight year olds should still be dressing American Girl dolls, not wondering which of their friends have had sex. I’m not in denial – I know sex does happen to children sometimes. It is one thing to deter and give facts to children about sexual intercourse. It is another thing to just keep discussing sex so that it sounds exciting and taboo. A great example of the latter is this book. I guess I’m done with this review. It pains me to recap even that much.
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Reviews
Jaime Nicole
I Loved this book it was the best. Judy bloom is my all time favorite author. There were three main characters Stephanie, Rachel, and Alison. They all met before school started and they became bestfriends. They didnt know if they could all be friends at once but they talked and realized that they could. Stephanie's father was away for work and for thanksgiving. On Thanksgiving day Stephanie realized that her father and mother were sperating for a while. Stephanie's father thought her mother told her but she didn't so Stephanie found out and got really upset. She didn't go out of the house for a couple of days and she didnt talk to neither one of her parents for a couple of days. Her brother Bruce and her went to Califrnia with their dad. There was a girl there that Stephanie did not like so he was telling her things and later on she got in trouble for it. Alison got the flu and she wasnt in school for a whole week. She was sick as a dog and was pale white.Stephanie and Rachel stopped talking for about 7 days and then one day they talked to each other and became friends. They were bestfriends and they stoped talking from something silly.
Penelope Anne Cole
Judy Blume gives us yet another peek into life as a preteen girl. Her stories take us back to our own stumbling early adolescent years. How did we ever survive it all? Judy Blume shows us how others can, have, and do.The first story is "Just as Long as We’re Together," about two long time best friends, Stephanie and Rachel, who befriend the new girl in their neighborhood and school, Alison. How will the dynamics play out if “two’s company and three’s a crowd?” Can you have more than one best friend in seventh grade?There are other threads besides friendship running through this story, which is told from Stephanie’s ever optimistic point of view. There are family secrets and changes, ‘tween worries, problems in school, relationship changes, body issues, and emerging attraction in “boy-girl” relations. Stephanie faces a genuine crisis in her home life that she doesn’t see until it slaps her in the face. The other girls aren’t portrayed as fully, but they have problems of their own, which makes for an engrossing read. It’s funny, poignant, dramatic, and thoroughly entertaining. Another must read by Judy Blume.
Diana Welsch
When I was in 5th grade, the deal was if you got 100% on the spelling test on Monday, you didn't have to take it on Friday. I was great at spelling. So every Friday, I would go into the little room with the bookshelf and beanbag chair during the spelling test and read, read, read. I read this entire book in those 20-minute increments. When I was done, a male friend of mine in the class found out and put it on the markerboard tray during recess and drew arrows point to it and things like "DIANA READ THIS!!!!!" "GROSS!!" "EWWWWWWWW!" He got in trouble. But I wasn't embarrassed to have read it. I really enjoyed it. What 5th grade girl isn't constantly thinking about friends, boys, and her period? I was. We all were. And Judy Blume delivers. Rereading it as an adult, I'm surprised at how much of this book I completely internalized. The boy with the chartreuse dragon jacket, the girl eating bananas to gain weight, the guy with the translucent eyelashes whose mom was the doctor, getting your first period at the school dance...it's all from the same book! THIS ONE. Whenever I hear the word "chartreuse," I think "dragon jacket" to this day. I also think "Crazy Eddie's" whenever I see an inexpensive telephone. This book has wormed its way permanantly into my subconscious, much like the TV show Dr. Katz.One thing that I didn't remember was the whole plot with Stephanie's parents getting separated, which was very important. I know she was portrayed as being very immature about her parents' separation, but I found myself cheering her on for giving her parents a hard time. You can't expect your 12-year old to be like, "Mom, Dad, I fully support you doing whatever you feel like. I'm fine with us not being a family because you got bored with it."Judy Blume is awesome. I think I'll read Here's to You, Rachel Robinson just to see what happens to these young ladies next.
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