February School Library Journal says Rookie is "sassy, smart, and genuine"

“Rookie Yearbook Review” / Mission Viejo Library / Allison Tran / February 25, 2013

Gr 10 Up– An eclectic collection of personal essays, how-to articles, and interviews from the inaugural year of the feminist website Rookiemag.com have been compiled into a stunning handbook aimed at helping girls thrive in their teen years. Quirky mixed-media illustrations adorn the pages, giving the appearance of a handmade zine–the aesthetic is pure retro-chic. Photo essays in dreamy colors depict frolicking girls of all sizes and ethnicities, reinforcing the theme of being comfortable and confident in one’s own skin. Providing empathy and empowerment, standout articles include a moving essay on being a survivor of sexual abuse and handy tips on “How to Look Like You Weren’t Just Crying in Less Than Five Minutes.” Sassy, smart, and genuine, Rookie never talks down to its audience. Some gritty language and a frank article on the whys and hows of female masturbation may make this book most appropriate for older teens. The inclusion of ephemeral objects like stickers and punch-outs may be problematic from a library perspective, but the book’s strong visual appeal and worthwhile content outweigh the fact that bits of it may go missing after its first few checkouts. Irreverent, honest, and wholly affirming, this is a book that teen girls will cherish. –Allison Tran, Mission Viejo Library, CA

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