Sometimes the best way to get through hard times is finding out you're not alone. The books in the Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul series have provided just that reassurance to millions of teens in the few years since the first was published. Much like the earlier volumes, the third in the series features stories, poems, and cartoons, most of which were written by teens themselves. Twenty teen reviewers read every submission, narrowing the selection down to 5,000 favorites. Editors Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen, and Kimberly Kirberger made the final cuts. The result? Packed with compassion, heartache, love, experience, and wisdom, Teen III (as the editors refer to it) is every bit as inspirational as the earlier editions.
Most of the stories are contributed by young, unpublished writers, and the quality of the writing is good, if a touch melodramatic at times. But then, adolescence is nothing if not melodramatic, and the audience undoubtedly will relate perfectly to the tales of betrayal, friendship, identity crisis, parental clashes, and painful crushes. The editors have organized this collection into nine categories: Relationships, Friendship, The Power of Love, Family, Lessons, Tough Stuff, Overcoming Obstacles, Self-Discovery, and Growing Up. A great source for laughs, advice, compassion, and the comfort of knowing that we're never as alone as we think. (Ages 13 and older) --Emilie Coulter [via]