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Two or Three Things I Forgot to Tell You by [Oates, Joyce Carol]
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Two or Three Things I Forgot to Tell You Kindle Edition

3.4 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews

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Length: 293 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 8 Up-Katrina Olivia Traumer, known to everyone as Tink, entered the lives of the students at Quaker Heights Day School in their junior year, but by the next year she was gone, dead. Merissa, Hannah, Chloe, and Nadia do not understand why she took her own life. Each girl has a secret that she doesn't want to share: perfect Merissa cuts herself and "slut" Nadia is in love with one of their teachers. Was Tink really dying of leukemia, or was there some other horrifying event that caused her to end her life? Just like her friends, readers never learn her true secret. This is a hard story to read. The girls are not very likable, and they aren't very nice to one another. They live in an affluent New Jersey suburb of New York City and attend an exclusive private school. They are privileged but also extremely whiny. As the book opens, readers find out that Merissa has been accepted early decision to Brown University. This is a quite a coup, but she is miserable. There is some drinking and sexual content. Jay Asher's Thirteen Reasons Why (Penguin, 2007) or Patricia McCormick's Cut (Front Street, 2000) address the issues of suicide and cutting much more effectively.-Elizabeth Kahn, Patrick F. Taylor Science & Technology Academy, Jefferson, LAα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


An Amazon Best Book of the Month“The painful honesty of this book will crack open your heart. Joyce Carol Oates takes us from the howling pain of lonely adolescence to the comfort and healing brought about by a friendship strong enough to transcend death.” (Laurie Halse Anderson, author of Wintergirls and Speak)

“[A] riveting and poignant story of three teenage girls in crisis. [Oates] is a master at portraying the complex, emotional inner lives of these teens, and their contemporary adolescent voices and perceptions (and misperceptions) ring true. Intense, keenly insightful, nuanced and affecting.” (Kirkus Reviews (starred review))

“[An] excellent novel filled with haunting details.” (Publishers Weekly (starred review))

“A fast pastiche that is as much a triptych of pain as a reminder of resilience.” (ALA Booklist)

For Big Mouth & Ugly Girl:“Oates scores with a gripping story.” (Washington Post)

“A thought-provoking, character-driven drama.” (Booklist (starred review))

“Believable, full-blooded characters propel Oates’s first YA novel. The relationship . . . grows, credibly and compellingly, against a convincing high school backdrop.” (Publishers Weekly (starred review))

For Freaky Green Eyes:“Oates builds the mounting tension masterfully, crafting a fast-paced narrative that will haunt readers long after the final page.” (Publishers Weekly (starred review))

“A gripping, beautifully written, impecabbly paced psychological thriller.” (Kirkus Reviews)

For Sexy:“Palpable and compelling.” (The Horn Book)

“Touching and believable. An unusually sensitive and sympathetic assessment.” (Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books)

For After the Wreck, I Picked Myself Up, Spread My Wings, and Flew Away:“Oates gets the contemporary teen voice just right, and Jenna’s first-person narrative moves at breakneck speed.” (ALA Booklist)

“Engrossing. Readers will find solace in the book’s inspiring conclusion.” (Publishers Weekly (starred review))

Product Details

  • File Size: 761 KB
  • Print Length: 293 pages
  • Publisher: HarperTeen; Reprint edition (August 21, 2012)
  • Publication Date: August 21, 2012
  • Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007ED2UHC
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #706,748 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Kcorn TOP 500 REVIEWER on August 27, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I'm always on the lookout for the newest books by Joyce Carol Oates so I purchased Two or Three Things I Forgot to Tell You before I read any descriptions of it - including the fact that it was written for teens. I'm glad I missed that info because I couldn't stop reading this book even though my teen years are well behind me.

The book focuses on a group of adolescent women: Merissa, Hannah, Chloe, and Nadia, and their deceased friend Tink. Even though she is dead, it is Tink who is at the heart of this book, someone who is far from dead in the memories of the four women who knew her.

It is Tink and Merissa who are spotlighted in the first part of the novel. Merissa strives to do everything perfectly. She is associate yearbook editor, Drama Club president and has even gained early admission to Brown. She has been chosen to play the lead role of Elizabeth Bennet in a stage adaptation of Pride and Prejudice.

Things seem to be going so smoothly for her - a daughter who should make any parent proud. But Merissa's surface and outward appearance mask a darker side, one where she acts very differently. Her control is only an illusion and the cracks are definitely starting to appear.

As noted before, the other main figure in this book is Tink, almost palpably present to Merissa and her friends. Only Tink seems to know the secrets of each young woman. And Tink is not only remembered but seems to actually visit Merissa, Nadia, and the others. She haunts their dreams, seems to whisper in their ears.

They can't help but ask themselves what Tink would say and do when facing various challenges. And it is Tink who often seems to guide and encourage them as they navigate the very rough shoals of adolescence.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Joyce Carol Oates is one of the most prolific and amazing authors of our generation. My goal is to read everything she has ever written, even if some of it is a bit weird - but, wow, can this woman write.

I am glad that I did not know;however, in advance, that this novel ( very short, by the way), was meant for teen reading. Teen reading certainly has become more graphic since I was a child, so many years ago.

Oates captures the heart of what it felt like even when I was young and insecure. Do you remember being a high school senior? She has such a way with language and raw, true feelings. I am always left wanting more, and was so surprised when I reached the end of this book, as I wanted to hear more about the lives of the characters - both the young people, and in the case of Nadia, more of her wealthy, controlling, and brutishly insensitive father. He is not unlike parents that we all must know, but Oates has such a way of drawing us into her characters, and really making us feel the angst of his teenage daughter.

It doesn't matter how old we are, we can still remember the anxiety of being young and in high school. Nobody captured it better than Joyce Carol Oates.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this for a class in YA literature. I have read a lot of Joyce Carol Oates. I didn't like this book, perhaps it was the subject matter. I don't think it is an appropriate book for teens to read. Although this sort of thing happens, I think there are many other books which are more suited, more life affirming, for impressionable girls. Like if it ain't broke, don't fix it.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Two or Three Things I Forgot to Tell You by Joyce Carol Oates

In Two or Three Things I Forgot to Tell You, a somewhat unconventional Young Adult novel, Joyce Carol Oates explores the pressures and experiences of the senior year of high school for several friends. First, let me say that I am always amazed that Joyce Carol Oates manages to produce the volume of work that she does. I am in awe that one woman is so prolific and that so much of it is just so engaging and well written. But it strikes me in reading and thinking about Two or Three Things I Forgot to Tell You that Oates's genius lies not in her ability to churn out words (although as a writer, I certainly envy her that) but in her understanding not just of human nature but of what motivates humans, especially women in American culture. We see this in her more famous, more serious, more literary works like Blonde and We Were the Mulvaneys, but here to Oates displays an understanding and sensitivity to the feelings and neuroses and traumas that plague women and young women in our culture, such as self-mutilation, suicidal ideation, body image issues, and eating disorders.
In what is clearly a Young Adult novel, Oates presents the high-pressure prep school world of friends Merissa, Nadia, and their recently deceased friend Tink Traumer. This is a world that lacks the glamor we have come to expect from series like Gossip Girl and instead shows the shadow side of the world of moneyed teen overachievers. This Young Adult novel lacks the sort of clearly delineated plot that some readers might prefer, focusing instead on several character-driven trajectories. Oates structure the novel by breaking it into three separate parts, each with a distinct point of view of one of three central characters: Merissa, Tink, and Nadia.
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