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We Are Absolutely Not Okay: Fourteen Stories by Teenagers Who Are Picking Up the Pieces [Kindle Edition]

Students Scriber Lake High School , Ingrid Ricks , Marjie Bowker
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $9.95
Kindle Price: $2.99
You Save: $6.96 (70%)

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Paperback $7.91  
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Book Description

Imagine being asked to pull a gun on a stranger. Or having a gun shoved in your face by the man you call stepdad.

Envision feeling so depressed you cut yourself repeatedly or down a bottle of pills to make the pain go away. Consider what it takes to tell your parents that you are transgender, or what it feels like to have the dad you love addicted to meth.

We Are Absolutely Not Okay is a collection of true stories written by fourteen teenagers who have experienced life at its darkest but have made it through and are now picking up the pieces. By writing and sharing their stories, they are coping with their past and seizing their future. They are also reaching out to other teenagers—to let them know that they are not alone and that even if their life now is Absolutely Not Okay, they have the power within themselves to make it better.

Product Details

  • File Size: 302 KB
  • Print Length: 80 pages
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00850JP08
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #635,909 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars honest and brave May 25, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
I was so moved by this collection of stories written by students at a high school near Seattle. The stories themselves are powerful, but what is even more powerful is the courage it took to tell them and the motivation it took for the students to put together this collection (with the help of a teacher and local author) and share it with the world. With so many ridiculous representations of teenagers on television, etc, it is so important that real kids are represented as well and this is a glimpse into the lives of a few of them.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stunning honesty & truth June 1, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This book was recommended to me by a friend who knows me well. I love stories of people who are becoming self-aware, learning about themselves and the world. This book has a number of stories written by teenagers that are so stunningly honest in dealing with issues that sheltered me never had to worry about. My heart was ripped open by these kids, who are brave enough to tell their stories with unabashed passion and conviction in this book. The short story format makes it an "easy" read, if reading what it's like to have faced incredible challenges can be called easy. I especially loved the hope in the students' profiles after their stories. It's apparent that this book has/will continue to change their lives. Highly recommended reading for anyone who knows teens, works with them, or ever was one...everyone. It could change yours, too.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read October 15, 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
One of my grand daughters is one of the 14 students in this book. I am very proud of her. One day at a time and an attitude of it's better to be a mile walking out of hell rather than a million miles going toward hell is what she is learning.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely Becoming Okay May 27, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
Gritty and heartbreakingly honest, We Are Absolutely Not Okay is a look into the lives of fourteen teenagers who have faced daunting challenges. Although at times emotionally difficult to read, one is encouraged that these kids, by facing their struggles and moving forward, are now on their way to being okay. What courage it must have taken to write these stories! These kids are to be applauded.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Gritty and Honest November 11, 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
We Are Absolutely Not Okay: Fourteen Stories By Teenagers Who Are Picking Up the Pieces
Marjie Bowker and Ingrid Ricks (Editors)
Scriber Lake High School (2012), Paperback, 80 pages


Fourteen strong stories baring hearts, souls and feelings. Tough stuff for anyone, especially a teenager, to write. The product of a writing program in an alternative High School, this is a collection transformative moments in the lives of teens who were, not so long ago, considered 'at-risk' or worse. The contributors to this collection are not only telling their own stories, but are being an example for other kids in crisis. They are not just surviving, but thriving.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A riveting read June 28, 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
What if you were forced to point a gun at a stranger as part of a gang venture? What if you saw your 'tweaker' dad on an eight-ball meth high, or had to deal with sexual abuse - and somehow find a way to survive? These are stories from "We Are Absolutely Not Okay" - and they are not fiction. They are part of 14 riveting true-life narratives by students of a Seattle-area alternative high school.

And you won't come away from reading this book unmoved. This is not a throw-away novel. You will keep these real kids in your thoughts, hoping their tomorrows are better. That they end up absolutely okay forever.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very powerful!!!! June 11, 2012
This is a very heavy, deep and powerful piece of literature. Even though I've never met these 14 kids, I feel I can relate to who they are, where they've been and where they are headed. They have come out of such dark places where all seems lost, but they have found some light to make things work out and be better. As a former student of Scriber Lake, I'm honored and proud to say that this is where I am from and happy that such an amazing project has been put together.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring must read -if your care about todays youth! January 13, 2014
By Chloe
Format:Kindle Edition
My friend passed "We Are Absolutely Not Okay: Fourteen Stories by Teenagers Who Are Picking Up the Pieces" to me because I have grandchildren who are tweens, and she felt this was an imperative read. Oh, my. What an intense reading experience.
Fourteen teens got together to complete a necessary (and possibly healing) task in which each tells their unique stories about being lost in life. This is heavy. This is Sad, This is heart wrenching, but it is a novel everyone should read. Not Okay isn't perfect by literary standards, the stories aren't all nicely woven, but knowing this is straight from the heart, makes it even more moving for readers. I felt I got to know each kid as their story unfolded, and the empathy was overwhelming, although some stories seemed to duplicate another.

Hopefully this will land into the hands of more and more teachers (I've gifted two copies), and hopefully this helps them better understand what might be taking place in the minds of the young kids under their tutelage. True insight into why some fail classes. What some kids go through is simply unbearable, and these stories made me admire such courage, and had me cheering for all to overcome. Through their words, readers see the innocence of youthful minds who had to grow up fast, yet remain naïve.
I do wish the authors who put these tales together would have put more effort into improving the overall flow, but again, perhaps they wanted the slightly sloppy exposition to mirror the untidy lives of these kids.

I hope readers absorb these true stories, look deep within and try to find some way to help (community volunteer centers are a good start), but most importantly, if even one of these stories helps keep another child from slipping off track and winding up in a place as bad or worse than their abusive home life, that makes this read even more worthwhile.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Published 8 months ago by peteferren
5.0 out of 5 stars Powerful true stories
This is an amazing collection of true stories written by brave teens. It's so difficult to be a teenager in today's world and this book is inspirational for people of all ages.
Published 12 months ago by Deadguy
3.0 out of 5 stars I wanted to love it
It's good for what it is, I think. And I'm glad I bought it if the money goes to help the kids who bared their hearts in writing their stories. Read more
Published 20 months ago by Katherine M. Dewees
4.0 out of 5 stars Tough to read, but meaningful
Breaks my heart, but is well told and unique. Each kid has something important to say. I respect the project .There is no B.S., no facade that everything is okay (hence the title).
Published 23 months ago by Mallory Loomis
5.0 out of 5 stars A must read for teachers!
Have you ever wanted to see inside a teenagers life and figure out just why they won't behave or are failing your class? Read more
Published 23 months ago by Jen
5.0 out of 5 stars True Courage
The students who wrote these stories are inspiring. Their courage is to be admired all the more because it will never truly be measured. Against great odds they have triumphed. Read more
Published 23 months ago by Skpy
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow
Powerful, moving and gripping stories. The trials that these young men and women have gone through and overcome are heartbreaking yet celebratory of the strength of the human... Read more
Published on March 22, 2013 by Koda
4.0 out of 5 stars Powerful stories by real teens
Scribner Lake High School is an alternative high school, a voluntary placement for students who have, for whatever reason, been through trauma, violence, abuse, crime or other... Read more
Published on March 5, 2013 by Mary Lavers (in Canada)
2.0 out of 5 stars Style of writing lacks
I understand all of these young people have had or still has problems. I just felt like I was reading the same story over and over.
Published on March 4, 2013 by Mary B. Clarke
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspirational, Powerful, Quick, Fast, Easy, Well Written
A friend of mine told me about this book so I purchased the kindle, and from the first page to last I couldn't put it down. Read more
Published on February 21, 2013 by Gift Card
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More About the Author

These true story collections were written by students at Scriber Lake, an alternative high school located just north of Seattle, Washington. Through their personal narratives, they are taking readers into their lives as they struggle with homelessness, abandonment, death, addiction, abuse, incarceration and gender identity. By revisiting their pasts and sharing their stories, these high school students are taking charge of their futures in positive ways. They are also reaching out to others to remind them that they aren't alone and that life gets better.

These books are the result of a student writing/publishing program facilitated by, a nationally recognized organization that transforms the lives of teens through personal storytelling.

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