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Our Stories, Our Voices: 21 YA Authors Get Real About Injustice, Empowerment, and Growing Up Female in America

4.10  ·  Rating details ·  269 ratings  ·  73 reviews
From Amy Reed, Ellen Hopkins, Amber Smith, Sandhya Menon, and more of your favorite YA authors comes an anthology of essays that explore the diverse experiences of injustice, empowerment, and growing up female in America.

This collection of twenty-one essays from major YA authors—including award-winning and bestselling writers—touches on a powerful range of topics related t
ebook, 320 pages
Published August 14th 2018 by Simon Pulse
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Stella No, Amy Reed says that she wishes she had found a trans author but she couldn't. There is still a lot of LGBTQIA+ representation.

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4.10  · 
Rating details
 ·  269 ratings  ·  73 reviews

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may ➹
Never dismiss your own perspectives. Never question the validity of life in the margins.

This anthology truly lives up to its name: It tells the important and diverse stories of women whose voices have been ignored and smothered but will not take silence anymore.

These stories as a whole all have an underlying message of feminism and female strength and power, and while some authors may share the same marginalization—no two stories or messages are the same and I LOVE that. Each author had somet
destiny ♡⚔♡ [howling libraries]
This anthology is a tough one for me to rate. If I were reviewing it based solely on the nature of the work—this book about intersectional feminism, equality and equity, and fighting back against a society that perpetuates things like treating women and nonbinary people as less than men (and women/nonbinary people from marginalized communities as lesser, still)—it would be a 5-star read, with no hesitation.

We are living in a cultural battleground where, for many of us, our very identities seem
Alice-Elizabeth (marriedtobooks)
Read as part of Riveted Lit's 25 Days of December promotion!

I've tried writing a review for this but honestly, I'm very moved by this collection of essays that my thoughts currently aren't processing straight. It was a powerful read and I applaud the authors featured for coming forward and sharing their stories. It's not easy to talk about experiences that haunt you still. I lost my best friend to cancer eight years ago and it's still quite raw for me. I feel inspired, encouraged and strongly ur
Danielle (Life of a Literary Nerd)
"Ours are the marginalized voices they refuse to listen to. This book, this act of resistance, says our stories matter. Our lives matter. Our voices will not be silenced."
This anthology review is going to be a little different than my other ones because it’s nonfiction stories, and it feel weird reviewing and rating each story individually when it’s someone’s personal experiences. I’ve been looking forward to this anthology since I read The Nowhere Girls by Amy Reed last year and I discovere
good intentions but mediocre executions.

review to come. (also, mediocre executions is a sick band name)
Paige (Illegal in 3 Countries)
See more of my reviews on The YA Kitten! My copy was an ARC I got from the publisher via Edelweiss.

It is a truth universally acknowledged that being a woman in the United States kinda sucks, especially if you’re a woman of color or queer or disabled or otherwise marginalized. It sucks to different degrees for different people; a cishet white woman and a queer black woman will face very different problems and bigotry in life. Amy Reed brings together a chorus of diverse voices in this anthology,
An outstanding collection of essays about feminism, about activism, and about growing up being female in the US. The voices here are authentic, showcasing not only feelings and experiences, but the ways in which these women have chosen activism that works for them. Standouts in this collection include Brandy Colbert's essay about learning the racist history that changed her home town from one with a larger black population to one where she was one of few black people in her school, Maurene Goo's ...more
Mrs. Europaea
Aug 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
Raw. Real. Revolutionary.

From the first time Mother who found her radical roots with the birth of her daughter, to the immigrant that claimed her independence that challenged her Indian roots, to the accidental activist that after learning what white privilege was, learned how to use it help the marginalized- the collection of women featured in this new release share their stories and ignite a fire to change the world.

The diverse voices in this collection are representative of what America is s
belle jane
Sep 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
really good!!! except for Ellen Hopkins' essay. I found that one bad and offensive honestly. but otherwise I really enjoyed it!!!!!
Geoff Girardin
Jan 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

An incredible collection of well-curated, powerful, and beautiful essays that hung with me after the book was closed. Each chapter was a new and eye-opening look into a life experience that I have not and cannot experience, and I am grateful for every one of them.
Vanessa (The Wolf and Books)
Thanks to Riveted I have access to this anthology for 24 hours.
Since I can't finish all of the short stories, I will tell you what I read and what I liked.
❤ = Really Liked. ❤❤ = Loved

"Finding my Feminism" by Amy Reed - ❤
"Fat and Loud" by Julie Murphy
"Unexpected Pursuits: Embracing my Indigeneity and Creativity" by Christine Day
"Chilled Monkey Brains" by Sona Charaipotra - ❤❤
"Myth Making" by Somaiya Daud - ❤
"Black Girl, Becoming" by Tracy Deonn Walker - ❤❤

But the older I got, the more the
Grace P. (gracefulreads)
Every essay in this anthology stood alone as an enthralling and thought-provoking personal essay. As a collection of twenty-one stories, there is a little bit of everything and for every reader. It is very telling that every author wanted their story heard, and OUR STORIES, OUR VOICES gives the microphone to everyone. There was not a single essay that was not captivating, and every piece takes on present-day America from a different angle.

A typical YA anthology is several short stories connecte
Liz Overberg
I don't want to give this anthology a rating, because how could I judge these women's truths?

Twenty-something women of various ages, races, and experiences write about their stories of being their own particular brand of female in America. Most, but not all, of the writers are published young adult authors. Each essay reads like a love letter to today's teen girls. There is anger, regret, pride, sass, and wisdom. Every teenage girl could find something here that speaks to her.
Aug 05, 2018 rated it liked it
Good essays but I don't think I would reread many of them. I think I liked the one by the previously unpublished writer the best. Many authors focusing on how it felt after Trump was elected got a little repetitive and I feel like makes it more dated. Unsure of how many teens would really be drawn to reading this, but I think it would be great reading for a high school class.
Sep 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This anthology is an inspiring and harrowing look into what it is like to grow up in the United States over the past few decades. It is so important to not dismiss feelings or opinions and this book provided me with many experiences that I have experienced but even more that I will never experience as a white female. I highly recommend this anthology.
Shauna Yusko
These are true stories framed as essays or letters to today’s teen girls from (mostly published) YA authors. A good collection. I think it’s weird to give it a rating since these are very personal stories.
Aug 03, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Apr 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
A powerfully moving, well written anthology that deals with difficult subjects and does not shy away from them.
Leila Jaafari
Sep 11, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Women talking about what it means to be a woman in America.
Alison Morquecho
Oct 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018
Man this book had me emotional in almost every story. I cried way too much. I enjoyed this book and all these authors And their stories. I’m sooo glad that I read it!
Jan 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018, 2018own, arc
While I didn't find all the stories to be perfect, this is such a cohesive collection and I cannot wait to introduce it to everyone.
Our experiences matter. Our voices matter. And the deafening silence that protects those who have violated us must be broken. (131)

This anthology is such an important gathering of voices and I'm so glad that it exists. It isn't perfect by any means, and some of the essays are better written than others. But this book is about empowering women to speak up about their own experiences, and no one's experience is inconsequential. What might not speak to one person might be crucial representation for
Aug 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5/5 stars My Immigrant American Dream by Sandha Menon 

I quite enjoyed this piece as I am also a first generation immigrant, I could resonate with the author. I completely agree with her quote "I'd been taught to always respect my elders, to never disagree, to accept what I was told. But adults, I was quickly learning, could be judgemental and cruel, prejudiced and bigtoed. Adults did not automatically get a pass anymore. I had the right to question them." as well as "There is no one way to be
Short stories about rape/sexual abuse, discrimination, and other injustices - especially/notably authors wanting to speak out since 45 took office. Very powerful stories, some more graphic than others. From a wide variety of voices with an apology from the editor that there was not a trans contributor. An important collection, but it is *so* hard to sell story collections to students. (does that diminish it's importance? Some stories more meaningful. At least one story was also included in the " ...more
Dec 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
I've read this book two weeks ago, so I don't really remember much about each individual story. But I did write down each of my ratings, so here you go:

Sandhya Menon: 3,75/5 stars
Anna-Marie McLemore: 4,5/5 stars
Amy Reed: 5/5 stars
Christine Day: 4,5/5 stars
Sona Charaipotra: 4,5/5 stars
Jaye Robin Brown: 4/5 stars
Brandy Colbert: 3/5 stars
Alexandra Duncan: 3,5/5 stars
Maurene Goo: 4,5/5 stars
Stephanie Kuehnert: 4,75/5 stars
Julie Murphy: 4,75/5 stars
Somaiya Daud: 3,75/5 stars
Nina LaCour: 4,5/5 stars
Fei Chan
Dec 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
3.75- While I did enjoy this collection as a whole, it started to feel very repetitive, especially by the end. I really loved the intent & message each and every author had to share (except Ellen Hopkins, her contribution to the anthology did not lime up with the purpose behind this collection), but many of the essays left me unsatisfied. However, there were some really well written ones--my favorites were the essays written by Maureen Goo, Amy Reed, Amber Smith, Sandhya Menon, Ilene Wong (I ...more
feux d'artifice
Dec 24, 2018 rated it liked it
Hmm like all essay collections some I really liked, some I'm lukewarm on, and a few are hard passes for me.

I did like that there were a few featured essays from submissions and not just already established YA authors. Out of the submissions I really liked Christine Day's essay, I liked the hopeful tone.

I also really liked Maureen Goo's entry (I related to her rage) as well as Stephanie Kuehnert and Martha Brockenbrough's essays on rape culture.

This collection is in written in defiance of the ora
Stories like these help us to know we're not alone in this great big world. These authors are brave and share worthwhile stories.
Dec 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
The essays in this book are heavy and absolutely 100% should be read.

I’ve been struggling to express my feelings about our current social and political climate, and this book really helped me in my search to find a way to share my thoughts and develop my voice.
Jan 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
The book of essays is an important addition.

The collection is full of essays, all written by females, on what it means to be "female" in modern American.

The diversity is strong and necessary. There are experiences we all share, no matter race, and there are other experiences we cannot imagine because of who we are not.

I learned quite a bit while reading these essays (such as the term Dotbuster), and the collection is a reminder that all stories deserve a voice, and we all deserve to live our liv
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Amy Reed was born and raised in and around Seattle, where she attended a total of eight schools by the time she was eighteen. Constant moving taught her to be restless and being an only child made her imagination do funny things. After a brief stint at Reed College (no relation), she moved to San Francisco and spent the next several years serving coffee and getting into trouble. She eventually gra ...more