My Little Red Book by Rachel Kauder Nalebuff

Spread the love


My Little Red BookStars: *****
Summary: My Little Red Book is an anthology of stories about first periods, collected from women of all ages from around the world. The accounts range from light-hearted (the editor got hers while water skiing in a yellow bathing suit) to heart-stopping (a first period discovered just as one girl was about to be strip-searched by the Nazis). The contributors include well-known women writers (Meg Cabot, Erica Jong, Gloria Steinem, Cecily von Ziegesar), alongside today’s teens. And while the authors differ in race, faith, or cultural background, their stories share a common bond: they are all accessible, deeply honest, and highly informative. Whatever a girl experiences or expects, she’ll find stories that speak to her thoughts and feelings.
Female readers… do you remember your first period? I think most of us do. I don’t remember it as well as some of the people in this book but I do remember the basics.

So why would you want to read about other’s experiences getting their first period? A couple of reasons:

  1. You are a preteen who hasn’t gotten a period yet and you are nervous and/or curious about what you might expect.
  2. You recently started your first period and feel the need to talk about it but have no one who will talk with you. Although the book won’t talk back, I know it felt like I had a good talk with some fellow girls/women when I was done.
  3. You’re a mom of of a preteen who will be getting a period soon and you would like to be able to talk with her about it but you’re not sure how to start. This book isn’t a how to talk guide but just hearing what some girls thought because their parents didn’t say anything should make you realize how important it is to say something, anything at all.
  4. You’re curious.
Personally I’m very interested in the subject of women’s health and although my kids are no where near getting their period, I will be keeping this book until then. Perhaps it will come in handy with my nieces before that.The book also has another purpose. Let me quote from the publishers:

Ultimately,it is more than a collection of stories. It is a call for a change in attitude, for a new way of seeing periods. In a time when the taboo around menstruation seems to be one of the few left standing, it makes a difficult subject easier to talk about, and helps girls feel proud instead of embarrassed or ashamed. By revealing what it feels like to undergo this experience first hand, and giving women the chance to explain their feelings in their own words, My Little Red Book aims to provide support, entertainment, and a starting point for discussion for mothers and daughters everywhere. It is a book every girl should have. Period.

 At the back of the book, the stories are all separated into “kinds” of stories such as: All Alone, Disposal Challenges, Early Starts, International Stories, Judy Blume, Misconceptions, Old Wives’ Tales and Vintage Stories. (The earliest story is from 1916.) The book also has a list of euphemisms (Aunt Flo, In My Moon, Riding the Red Wave etc…..) There’s a short list of other books, websites and videos you can check out for more info and a great reading group guide. This book probably isn’t the kind you’d think of at first for a group read but it would definitely provoke lots of discussion.

About Kathleen

I've been a nonfiction lover for as long as I can remember. I love children's nonfiction as well and love to share my knowledge and the books I gained them from, with the world. I wish more people would give nonfiction a chance.