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The Girls' Q&A Book on Friendship: 50 Ways to Fix a Friendship Without the DRAMA (The Girls' Q&A Books) (Volume 1) Paperback – October 1, 2014
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About the Author
ANNIE FOX is an internationally respected parenting expert and trusted online advisor to girls of all ages. She teaches girls to effectively manage their emotions so they can think more clearly and act with more compassion and respect. Her award-winning work includes the groundbreaking Middle School Confidential™ book and app series for tweens and “Teaching Kids to Be Good People: Progressive Parenting for the 21st Century.” She’s also the host of the popular weekly podcast, Family Confidential: Secrets of Successful Parenting. Since 1997, when she launched groundbreaking teen website The InSite.org, Annie has been answering teen and parenting questions from around the world. She is a sought-after speaker who takes equal delight connecting with students, educators, and parents. Annie may be reached through her website, AnnieFox.com
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When I opened this book and started reading through the questions, I was transported back to my own “tween” years nearly as powerfully as if I’d time traveled there. Things I had forgotten years ago came immediately to mind as I read the questions- as did the feeling that I was the only one who didn’t understand what was going on in these situations. I remember thinking that there was a code that everyone understood but me, and thinking that the very questions posed in this book were “dumb.” I never asked most of them, even though my mom or any other trusted adult could probably have given me perfectly satisfactory, common sense answers. I think there is huge value in letting kids know that their experience is universal. It’s one thing to think you’re the only one who doesn’t know how to respond when a friend is kind to you when you’re alone, but bullies you when you are around other friends. It’s quite another to know that this is something that happens to everyone eventually. Just removing the “why ME?” aspect of the question is a powerful coping tool. I can remember personally experiencing nearly all of the scenarios in the book.
Between the advice and the pictures, this book has managed, in just 133 well organized pages, to remind the reader that while our individual experiences may differ, there are common threads that pull us all together. Annie Fox and Erica De Chavez set out to collaborate on a book about friendships, but what they’ve created is a book about community, and how we all exist and are important within it.
“Annie Fox’s new book is a gift to girls everywhere with self-esteem-saving advice for elementary and middle school and beyond. The table of contents—the 50—reads like a transcript of hallway whispers and recess rants between young girls… or silent whimpers in their wilted or raging hearts. Annie Fox understands that minutia can build mountainous problems in a girl’s world. Every young reader will find herself vividly reflected in the friendship dilemmas here.
“Annie Fox uses tween-friendly lingo and phrasing, like a Benevolent Cool Wise One. Brevity is this heart of this book’s power and promise. Single-page chapters with telling titles and comedic illustrations make it easy to finger advice about the mayhem of the moment. Erica De Chavez’ drawings pull the reader into raw girl emotion with pathos and humor. All the timeless lessons are here, in accessible vignettes with the power to lift girls up—when they’re most at risk for being dragged down to the lowest common denominator.
“Annie Fox’s strong, warm voice teaches the artistry of healthy friendship: the balance of direct communication, assertiveness, compassion and self-reflection. Each Q&A highlights constructive solutions that feature being kind, real, assertive, socially brave, and self-examining. She calls upon girls to ‘speak up against meanness whenever you feel or see it’ and express ‘the truth instead of pretending to be okay.’ Fox trumpets in no uncertain terms that meanness is never an acceptable option. And that sometimes, the best choice may be to ‘take a vacation from this friendship.’
“The Girls’ Q&A Book on Friendship offers sample phrases to build social courage, stand up for others, and open sticky dialogue when it feels ‘awkward.’ Each Q&A ends with a coping tool to apply or perspective to adopt, sometimes warning that each “may not be easy” to implement. Along the way, each Q&A teaches the deepest principles of social ethics, taking on race, culture and even disability with un-preachy, earthy human truth.
“I would have clutched this book tight from 4th grade on, reading deep into the night for girl-courage the next day. The Girls’ Q&A Book on Friendship is more than a jewel. It could earn Annie Fox the Nobel Peace Prize for tempering Girl Warfare, teaching boundaried self-respect and courageous kindness when girls are building their social and inner selves.”
—Beth Onufrak, Ph.D., Clinical Child Psychologist, DrBethKids.com