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I CAN’T KEEP MY OWN SECRETS by Rachel Fershleiser

I CAN’T KEEP MY OWN SECRETS

Six-Word Memoirs by Teens Famous & Obscure

By Rachel Fershleiser (Editor) , Larry Smith (Editor)

Age Range: 14 & up

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-06-172684-2
Publisher: HarperTeen

SMITH, an “online magazine obsessed with personal storytelling,” invited almost 800 teens, famous and not, to take a page from Hemingway and submit their own six-word memoirs. These memoirs, printed on the page asymmetrically, are mostly from girls and reveal a wide range of experiences and emotions. Some are funny (“Aspiration: Colonize Mars. You’re not invited”), others are poignant (“Laughed at abuser’s funeral. Felt guilty”) and some are provocative (“I live bigger than your labels”). All leave readers wondering about the circumstances in the writers’ lives that led them to write those six (in places, seven) particular words and what it says about the lives they plan to lead in the future. PostSecret readers will love this book, which is one to pass around and (unfortunately for libraries) mark up. Some drawings accompany the memoirs. A novelty, yes, but one worth having in the era of Twitter. (Nonfiction. YA)