Hello friends! I’ve got a really cute, nostalgic read for y’all—especially you millennial parents. I’m reviewing Why Won’t My Boobs Grow… and Other Annoyances by Rebecca Garner. Let’s dive into this delightful middle-grade read, shall we?
Rating: 5 Stars
I swear Connor looks over at me. My heart skips a beat again. I’m not quirky like Ruby, or confident like Cher-why would Connor like me anyways?
Emma Bishop is your typical 14-year-old girl. She’s got besties, a major crush, zits (don’t use the P-word), an annoying younger sister, an embarrassing mom, and no boobs. Luckily, her best friends Ruby and Cher are there to pull off fun sleepovers, try new makeup trends, deal with bullies, and survive embarrassing interactions with cute boys.
Things change for Emma when Connor finally notices her and wants to be her partner for a science project. As things get serious between Emma and Connor, Cher and Ruby don’t react in the way Emma expected or hoped. She never thought she would have to choose between her crush and her friends-all before puberty!
Why Won’t My Boobs Grow…and Other Annoyances is a contemporary young adult novel by Rebecca Garner that explores friendship, first love, and self-confidence. This book is a must read if you are wondering who you are (even before your boobs arrive) or if you’re a grown-up who loves the nostalgia of a coming-of-age story.
What I Enjoyed
Let’s start with the characters. I was immediately rooting for Emma but it’s easy to root for everyone—including the grown-ups. Garner creates the perfect environment for Emma’s successes (finally getting her period) and her failures (dealing with a massive zit on her face during a presentation). My favorite parts are anytime Emma interacts with her friends. Garner provides a very realistic view of early friendships; they’re messy but absolutely everything to pre-teen girls. We all want or have a friend like Ruby!
Then there’s the nostalgia. Kids might not get it but their educators and guardians will. It’s very easy for older readers to reminisce on their younger years—even with the added drama of “why isn’t my crush texting me??”
Finally, the writing style is smart and so true to the character. The story is written in journal form, and Emma’s voice is intelligent, funny, and adorable. Some entries sound like something I would’ve penned as a distraught, lovesick pre-teen. I imagine this writing style can inspire writers of all ages to write stories that matter to them.
My Final Thoughts
Garner blows us away by creating a story that might just unite parents with their sometimes-emotional daughters. She shows us that perhaps our parents really do know what we’re going through or that kids’ experiences are important. This book specifically champions pre-teen girls—in a world that tends to view their interests as “cringe.”
Hopefully, I shared enough to pique your curiosity. Want to get reading? If so, I highly recommend you look up Rebecca Garner on social media: