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44 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book that is very accurat
When I first found out I had scoliosis one of the first things my mother did was give me a copy of this book. The book Deenie is about a thirteen year old girl who was thinking about becoming a model when she learns that she, beautiful Deenie has scoliosis. Judy Blume so accuratly described the feelings and emotions of Deenie that it felt as though she was writing...
Published on May 16, 2000 by bullpup_51

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60 of 63 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars one of Blume's better books
The relationships between Deenie and her mother, father, and sister are very well thought-out. I admit I was scandalized when I first read this book in seventh grade at the makeout scene between Deenie and Buddy, but it certainly didn't encourage me to go out and do that myself, and as for masturbation, Blume is VERY VAGUE and merely wishes to point out that this is...
Published on November 4, 2001 by Penny Thoughtful


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44 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book that is very accurat, May 16, 2000
By 
bullpup_51 (California ,United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Deenie (Mass Market Paperback)
When I first found out I had scoliosis one of the first things my mother did was give me a copy of this book. The book Deenie is about a thirteen year old girl who was thinking about becoming a model when she learns that she, beautiful Deenie has scoliosis. Judy Blume so accuratly described the feelings and emotions of Deenie that it felt as though she was writing about me. Untill I had read this book I felt as if I was the only one going through this even though doctors had told me there were other girls my age with scoliosis. This was such an excellent book that the only time I could put it down was to wipe the tears from my eyes. This is the perfect book for any girl especially one who has scoliosis.
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60 of 63 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars one of Blume's better books, November 4, 2001
This review is from: Deenie (Mass Market Paperback)
The relationships between Deenie and her mother, father, and sister are very well thought-out. I admit I was scandalized when I first read this book in seventh grade at the makeout scene between Deenie and Buddy, but it certainly didn't encourage me to go out and do that myself, and as for masturbation, Blume is VERY VAGUE and merely wishes to point out that this is normal, which it is, as any two-year-old could tell you if two-year-olds could talk well enough. People who want this book banned on a couple of minor details are missing the whole point of the book, which is about a teenager who is trying to do the right thing amidst a whole lot of physical and emotional barriers. A good read.
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46 of 49 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wish There Was More, May 15, 2005
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This review is from: Deenie (Mass Market Paperback)
"Deenie" piqued my curosity since it appears regularly on the ALA "Frequently Challenged" list, and even in my home county library there is a note in the catalog saying, "No copies available in any library." I was able to buy the book easily enough, however, and after reading it, I find the challenges groundless and saddening. There is nothing to fear in "Deenie." If I had a daughter, I would have no trouble letting her read it, and as it is, I wouldn't stop my son either.

That being said, "Deenie" is no "Face on the Milk Carton." The characters are painted believeablty with a surprising economy, but just as they become really engaging, the book ends. I would like it better if we were able to follow Deenie through all four years of her treatment and observe more of her character development, see how the relationship between Deenie and her sister develops, and see if her mother is able to "grow up" a little more.

For perhaps the most interesting irony of the story is that Deenie's confinement in the Milwaukee brace really sets her free. Free from her selfish and domineering mother, free from the enculturated stereotypes that keep Deenie from talking to (or even looking at) any people with visible health issues, and free from virtually all of her social inhibitions. In many ways, her diagnosis is the best thing that could have happened. It becomes the catalyst for her development as an independent young woman, and not just the daughter of her parents.

There is also a lot of material in this little book for further discussion and study. Blume manages to cover the details of scoliosis without becoming too stiff, and provides resources for more current information. The relationships between Deenie and her two friends is subtly nuanced; an amazing achievement, considering how few sentences are devoted to them. Blume has an eye for detail, and is able to get the most out of the short scenes. Finally, Deenie's father provides a sterling example of good parenting, once he rises to the occasion, illustrating admirably when to yield and when to stand firm.

While "Deenie" is not as impressive an achievement as "The Face on the Milk Carton" or "The Pigman," it is certainly a worthwhile read. There is no reason that it should be suppressed: I plan to write a letter to my community library, and I would encourage otheres to stand up against such cowardly censorship in their communities as well.

P.S. I contacted my local librarian, who assured me that the catalog listing was misleading. In fact, there were at least four copies in circulation, although the one at my local branch seemed to have disappeared. Certainly, this is good news, but I was really touched by how enthusiastic she was about my concern. I was rather afraid of being treated like a crackpot. I think I'll sign up for some volunteer work the next time I've over there...
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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book is a great book!!!!!!!, May 13, 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Deenie (Mass Market Paperback)
This book was about a girl who's a teenager and has a wonderful life until one day at school she goes to school like normal, and she's at PE. Her PE. teacher asked her to bend over to see her back and she thinks something is wrong with her back. The next time she goes to the docter and finds out that she has a back problem with her spine. It wasn't staight, and at the end she ends up having to wear a brace and she doesn't like that idea. So her freinds cheer her up about it and everything, and she feels so sad and doesn't want a brace at all. She goes home to find her mom and dad fighting about her brace and that makes her feel even more upset. When she gets the brace everyone tries to make her feel good.......but, you will have to read it all!!! Its like a diary of a girl, and it's a really sad and true story!!!!!
I recommend this book to everyone who loves to read diarys about people's life and everything they have to go through. I enjoy all of Judy Blume's books, and this one is especially good.
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20 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Deenie is just like me, October 9, 2001
By 
Jessica (Omaha, NE USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Deenie (Mass Market Paperback)
I read Deenie a few months ago because my mom told me I should. She thought I could relate to Deenie because I have scoliosis as well and some say I could be a model. People tell me I'm beautiful and tall (I don't always agree). However when I got scoliosis in 7th grade and had to wear a brace, most everything in my life was changed and my dreams were put on hold. Even though it's not a barrier to my friendships, my goals, or my schoolwork, I still feel very different from everyone else. I don't consider myself to be disabled at all. I can do anything. I may have a brace but I also have a life, friends, a family, and my goals. Deenie feels this way also. I would recommend this book to anyone who has trouble accepting themselves or who just would like to read a good book.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Growing up isn't easy..., June 15, 2004
This review is from: Deenie (Mass Market Paperback)
...and for 13 year-old Deenie Fenner, it seems as if life couldn't get any worse. When she sees the brace for the first time, her brain churns with thoughts. "I won't wear it. Never!" she says to herself adamantly. Deenie can't imagine wearing the brace, let alone living normally in it. Even more distraught over the situation is Mrs. Fenner, Deenie's mother, who had high hopes for her daughter's career as a model.
For as long as Deenie can remember, she has been the beauty of the family. Her mother considers Deenie's good looks to be a precious gift that will help her to get far in life. Helen, Deenie's older sister, is known as being the smartest of the two. I get the impression Mrs. Fenner is a bit shallow. She pays less attention to Helen than she does Deenie, all because Deenie is endowed in the looks department. Mrs. Fenner drags her daughter to countless modeling agencies, searching for work. She lives vicariously through her daughter. "You're going to work somewhere where they pay you, not where you pay them," she says.
Mrs. Fenner is really no help with Deenie's scoliosis, a.k.a. curvature of the spine. Fortunately, Deenie has two wonderful friends. At first, when Deenie finds out about her back problems, she's sure doctors will need to operate. When she gives her friends the news, they go out to the nearest department store and buy her a cute pink nightgown to wear at the hospital.
Deenie's scoliosis doesn't require surgery - just a brace for four years or more. Deenie sees she'll have to change the way she eats. She cannot lean over to eat soup or take a bite out of a sandwich, as she soon finds out. She can't wear the same clothes - she needs to move up a size so they fit over her brace. "Damn you crooked spine!" she shrieks before whacking off her beautiful hair with a pair of scissors.
As I'm sure you can imagine, Mrs. Fenner is not pleased.
Still, those who truly care for Deenie for more than just selfish reasons do stick by her. Her best friends stay by her side and don't act any differently towards her. Buddy Brader, an eighth grader, still doesn't hide his interest in Deenie, despite the brace and wacky new hairdo.
Blume has written yet another realistic novel with likeable, believable characters that many readers can relate to. Nothing in Blume's books ever seem contrived or fake. Things happen as they would in honest-to-God true life and the endings are never sugar-coated, sappy, or overly happy - just straight up real. And that, I do believe, is why America's youth has enjoyed her writing for decades.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Deenie - a book all teenagers should read, April 9, 2000
This review is from: Deenie (Hardcover)
I first read "Deenie" when I was 12 years old. I am now 24 and still feel that "Deenie" was one of the books I read which had a major impact on the way I am now. True, I have not had Scoliosis, but a minority of young girls have and Judy Blume has provided a sensitive insight into the issues and decisions faced, identifying the inevitable problems which come with Scoliosis, whether you like them or not.
"Deenie" equips us to recognise the fact that not all children grow up the same way - be it through Deenie coping with Scoliosis or Deenie's own feelings towards a now-handicapped girl taking the "special bus" to the "special class" at school...
There have been many readers who feel that "Deenie" contains sexual innuendo/descriptions of a graphic nature, but I think that graphic is a strong word to use in this case. Of course masterbation is sensitive and personal, but at one time or another every person has done it - there should be no reason to cloak an issue which has been dealt with both adultly and factually in this book. Many young adults still worry themselves silly over old wives tales and "Deenie" explains that masterbation forms part of a rite of passage when you grow up.
If parents feel strongly that they need to censor their children's reading, then read the book before them and make your own decision..
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not for an 8 yo, more likely mature 12 and up, December 16, 2012
This review is from: Deenie (Paperback)
I was diagnosed with scoliosis in 1981. I'd already read Deenie beforehand and was terrified I'd be in the Milwaukee brace described in Ms. Blume's book, but luckily, I went into a Boston Jacket instead, 23 hours a day.

If anyone thinks that kids in this age range aren't thinking about sex you're way out of sync with kids today. This book gives you the opportunity to have a discussion about masturbation as a healthy and safe alternative to them experimenting with sex and teaching them to be aware of and in charge of their own bodies.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Therapy to my teen soul!, December 30, 1999
This review is from: Deenie (Mass Market Paperback)
I first read this book when I was 12 years old. It was the first time that I felt anyone in the world understood how I felt as a young teen with Scoliosis. Even though Deenie is a girl, her emotions and experiances mirrored mine as I dealt with wearing the cumbersome Milwaukee brace for 23 hours a day.
Thank you Judy!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Deenie, February 26, 2004
By 
Ellie (Detroit, MI) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Deenie (Mass Market Paperback)
Laure Leaf, 1991, 144pp., $5.50
ISBN 0440932599
Deenie
Judy Blume
"No! I am never wearing that.....EVER!" Imagine having the perfect life, being a beautiful girl who wanted to soar high in life, who had wonderful friends, a boy she secretly loved and the boy loved her back too, and a loving family.
Until the one day. The one day when you go to the doctor's office and he says, "You have scoliosis, a serious back problem. You will have to wear a brace for a couple of years."
The brace was hideous with medal bars and everything Deenie imagined to be the worst that could happen to her. All of Deenie's dreams are crushed. Her mother's expectations for Deenie to have a fulfilling modeling career have come to a close. Deenie's friends start acting odd around her trying to not make her feel bad about the brace. The conversations with her friends only made her feel worse. Because of the brace, her family was falling apart, and the negativity toward her outside appearance was making her inner beauty turn ugly.
Through this experience Deenie embarks on a new journey in life. I would recommend this book to teenage girls who like Judy Blume and her stories. I truly enjoyed following Deenie through the highs and lows during her life and I hope you do too.
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Deenie
Deenie by Judy Blume (Paperback - April 13, 2010)
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