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Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret Book Review

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If you grew up in the ’70s or ’80s I’d bet you read Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret?

I can also guarantee upon hearing the name of the book, it is completely necessary to say…

The mantra of 80’s tween girls everywhere …“I must, I must, I must increase my bust.

As well as know that you tried it yourself, you know, just in case it really works. Come on, you so know you did.

There are so many books for tween girls.

Some are great, some are awful.  This is our favorite.

The tween years are a tough age.  Not yet teens, no longer little, not so cute anymore either. They struggle to fit in.  Differences in development begin to really stand out. That’s why this book is our all-time favorite must-read for tween girls…

Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret book review. Coming of age classic on periods, boobs, and boys. #tweenbooks #teenbooks #pubertybooks all-time-favorite-must-read-for-tween-girls

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Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret by Judy Blume is a classic coming of age book written in 1970.

It’s written from a sixth grader’s point of view, so it doesn’t get overly mature, not by today’s standards anyway. It’s a great lead-in for open conversations. About boys, periods, sex, and boobs.

If you grew up and didn’t read Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret with your friends, run and get it to read with your daughter, niece, or another special girl in your life. You won’t regret it.

I recently re-read the book with my daughter since she just started her first period.

We read together each night, her with her book, me with mine. But I purposely interrupted her a few times to join in on what she was reading, so that she would feel comfortable to do the same as she went along.

So much giggling with this fun book. Me included.

You’ll laugh along together with Margaret and her friends while they meet in their secret club. Where they talk about boys, sex and wait in anxious anticipation to “get it” and tell their friends.

They endure the tween humiliation of bra shopping with their moms. We even go with Margaret to the store to buy pads so she can practice.

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The newest version has been updated to use adhesive pads. But the old version I read 35 years agoWTF by the way… explained in all its hilarity, Margaret practicing with “belted sanitary napkins”. At least I was spared having to actually use those.

Though my mother once sent me to buy like 10 boxes of pads to use up coupons that were ready to expire. We like these tween pads by the way.

She was working so I had to go buy them, pay for them, use coupons and walk home carrying them all. I was about 13.

Seriously I remember imagining every car going by knew what I was carrying. Nice one Mom. As if skinny AF, braces, and the department store perm wasn’t bad enough.

In the delight that is middle school friendships, Margaret learns a powerful lesson on gossip and empathy.  For friendship tips…we just found this fabulous book

The girls all develop at different rates like in real life and this resonates with the ones who are self-conscious for developing first and the ones who are still eagerly waiting.

It discusses other coming-of-age topics like when Margaret is trying to decide which faith is right for her.

Prompted by a school assignment she begins exploring Christianity and Judaism. Her parents have an interfaith marriage and raised her without practicing either religion, choosing to let her explore each one and decide for herself.

This is a significant part of the book since she frequently talks with God about her day along with her worries about growing up.

My daughter was hesitant to read it at first since mom recommendations are the definition of lame to middle schoolers everywhere.

But she really enjoyed it. She described it as “Awesome, funny, and interesting.”

Mom win.  I’ll take ’em when I can.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret appropriate age?

Only you can decide if you think a book is appropriate for your child. I would make sure she has basic knowledge of puberty and periods. I would also discuss the book with her afterward to see if she has questions.

Noted topics: Menstruation; breast development; politics; religion; bullying; body image

Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret summary

Some other reviews of the book, such as Common Sense Media, make the book sound inappropriate, however within the context of the novel, to me is normal 6th-grade stuff. But decide for yourself.

Has Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret been updated?

Yes, there have been updates since 1970. For example, in the ’70s feminine hygiene pads were still used with waist belts and straps rather than adhesives to fix to underwear.

Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret movie

The movie is scheduled to come out on September 16, 2022

What grade is Margaret in Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret

Margaret is in the 6th grade. She’s 11 years old.

Books like Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret

Judy Blume has written several other novels you may like including:

  • Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing
  • Freckle Juice
  • Blubber
  • Tiger Eyes

Other books you may enjoy:

  • Number the Stars – by Lois Lowry
  • The Diary of a Young Girl – by Anne Frank

Or read: 46 Outstanding 5th Grade Level Books That Are Lit (all genres)

How about you?  Do you remember reading Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret? Do you think it’s inappropriate? Let’s hear it in the comments. 

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Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret book review. Coming of age classic on periods, boobs, and boys. #tweenbooks #teenbooks #pubertybooks #books for tween girls

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Melanie Studer

Friday 15th of June 2018

OMG! Totally remember reading that book with my sister when we were 12 and 13. No daughters here, but will remember to pass this on. Will pin for our middle school board:)

Laurie O'Rourke

Saturday 16th of June 2018

Hey Mel, Such a fun memory. Even without daughters so many girls everywhere to inspire and support. Loving your blog and your newsletters, by the way, you're inspiring this girl. Thanks for the share and for stopping by. :)

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[…]  All Time Favorite Must Read Book for Tween Girls […]

Abbi | Successful Freelance Mom

Monday 14th of August 2017

The tween years are definitely a challenge... particularly for moms. ? My girls are now 16 and 18, and while the teen years have their own special challenges, I am frankly glad to be past the tween years. But yes, AYTG is an AWESOME book, and both my girls read and loved it. :-)

Laurie O'Rourke

Monday 14th of August 2017

Hey Abbi, With 1 girl and two boys, 1 older than her, 1 younger, all sooo different, I am sure we are in for a ride. Thanks so much for popping over. Even though I'm a blogger and not a freelance writer, I'm really enjoying your blog. Love your about me page, it gave me goosebumps, and how your posts include your family. It makes it seem so real and doable rather than either too technical or all rah rah make millions your first year.

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[…]  This coming of age book is a must read.  You can read our review HERE. […]

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