Things I'll Never Say: Stories About Our Secret Selves
Things I'll Never Say: Stories About Our Secret Selves
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Annotation: A collection of stories by acclaimed young adult authors from a range of genres explores the provocative secrets people keep, from hidden identities to covert affairs, and features contributions by such writers as Louise Hawes, Chris Lynch and Ellen Wittlinger.
Catalog Number: #95975
Format: Publisher's Hardcover
No other formats available
Common Core/STEAM: Common Core Common Core
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Copyright Date: 2015
Edition Date: 2015
Pages: 306 pages
Availability: Available
ISBN: 0-7636-7307-2
ISBN 13: 978-0-7636-7307-9
Dewey: Fic
LCCN: 2014944916
Dimensions: 21 cm.
Language: English
ALA Booklist
This new collection of short stories about secrets is an ideal combination of form and subject. Edited by award-winning biographer Angel (Janis Joplin: Rise Up Singing, 2010), this brings together 15 acclaimed voices from across the YA publishing field, all of them offering distinct, powerful, and often unexpected stories of teens who discover unexpected truths, reveal hidden secrets, and keep other things safely hidden as they continue on their journeys. It's an impressively unusual spread of authors, including Ron Koertge, Chris Lynch, Katy Moran, and Cynthia Leitich Smith. Many of the stories speak to the contemporary lives of today's teens, while some, such as Zoë Marriott's lovely "Storm Clouds Fleeing from the Wind," evoke other times and places. The balance and diversity that Angel has achieved here is lovely, and teens who pick this up will likely find a bit of herself or himself at least a friend side these pages. A collection to share widely.
Horn Book
Contributors including Ellen Wittlinger, Kekla Magoon, and E. M. Kokie write "about the topic of our secret selves" revealing a range of interpretations of that theme. Some stories withhold their secrets until the end; others reveal early on what characters aren't telling the world. Varied approaches and genres offer plenty of surprises, and the collection can be read in its entirety without becoming repetitive.
School Library Journal
Gr 10 Up In this collection of dramatic short stories by various authors, all of the protagonists have secrets, though some are more intense and life-altering than others. Other than fulfilling this unifying theme, the entries are quite diverse. They span across several genres, including realistic, paranormal, and historical fiction. Regardless of the setting, these tales tackle often taboo subjects, such as inappropriate relations with teachers, gender issues, and mental disorders. Inclusion of drugs, alcohol, swearing, and liaisons between teens and more mature adults make this work appropriate for older readers. As with any short story collection, the quality of writing varies from one story to another. Some are well written like Chris Lynch's atmospheric and well-paced "Lucky Buoy," while others are poorly executed, like Ron Koertge's "Call Me!" with its feeling of not-quite-coherent randomness. Overall, this collection will resonate with many young adults who have their own secrets as well as readers who vicariously live through the risqué lifestyles of others. VERDICT A very discussible title for fans of Chris Lynch's and Ellen Hopkins's hard-hitting realistic fiction. Carol Hirsche, Provo City Library, UT
Voice of Youth Advocates
We all have secretssome secrets are too painful to tell. This collection of fifteen short stories by various young adult authors is about those secrets and about how the teen protagonists in each story come to terms with their secret and find, if not resolution, some measure of acceptance. Some of the secrets are indeed troubling; in one, a teen father must accept giving up his baby to adoption, and in another, a teen fears revealing a transgender identity. Some stories use different genres to illuminate a contemporary secret. In "Little Wolf and the Iron Pin," the author uses a fairy tale setting to give the "Bluebeard" story a feminist twist. Other stories address the pressures to conform. In "When We Were Wild," a teen's uneasy friendship with a classmate who is considered "weird" is tested when she is asked to take part in a hurtful prank.As is sometimes the case with short story collections, there are stories in this collection that really do not push the envelope and are rather ordinary. But others are inventive and memorable. Despite the dark nature of the collection's theme, there are occasional glints of humor and healing. If there is a common thread uniting the stories, it is that secrets locked inside are the ones that fester. Although this collection of short stories is not outstanding, it does offer enough variety and interest to appeal to teens who struggle with their own secrets. It that respect, it is a valuable addition to the genreJan Chapman.
Reading Level: 7.0
Interest Level: 9-12
Lexile: HL770L

Fifteen top young-adult authors let us in on provocative secrets in a fascinating collection that will have readers talking.

A baby no one knows about. A dangerous hidden identity. Off-limits hookups. A parent whose problems your friends won’t understand. Everyone keeps secrets—from themselves, from their families, from their friends—and secrets have a habit of shaping the lives around them. Acclaimed author Ann Angel brings together some of today’s most gifted YA authors to explore, in a variety of genres, the nature of secrets: Do they make you stronger or weaker? Do they alter your world when revealed? Do they divide your life into what you’ll tell and what you won’t? The one thing these diverse stories share is a glimpse into the secret self we all keep hidden.

With stories by:
Ann Angel
Kerry Cohen
Louise Hawes
Varian Johnson
erica l. kaufman
Ron Koertge
E. M. Kokie
Chris Lynch
Kekla Magoon
Zoë Marriott
Katy Moran
J. L. Powers
Mary Ann Rodman
Cynthia Leitich Smith
Ellen Wittlinger

The we-are-like-everybody-else game / Ellen Wittlinger
Cupid's Beaux / Cynthia Leitich Smith
Partial reinforcement / Kerry Cohen
When we were wild / Louise Hawes
For a moment, underground / Kekla Magoon
Storm clouds fleeing from the wind / Zoe Marriott
Choices / Mary Ann Rodman
/ E. M. Kokie
Call me! / Ron Koertge
A crossroads / J. L. Powers
Little wolf and the iron pin / Katy Moran
Three-four time / Erica L. Kaufman
We were together / Ann Angel
A thousand words / Varian Johnson.

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