Book Review: Forever by Judy Blume

Book Review: Forever by Judy Blume

Title: Forever…
Author: Judy Blume
Publisher: Pan Childrens
Paperback: 178
Source: Chicago Public Library
Summary: (taken from Goodreads)

Katherine and Michael meet at a New Year’s Eve party. They’re attracted to each other, they grow to love each other. And once they’ve decided their love is forever, they make love.

It’s the beginning of an intense and exclusive relationship, with a future all planned. Until Katherine’s parents insist that she and Michael put their love to the test with a summer apart…

Forever is written for an older age group than Judy Blume’s other novels for children. It caused a storm of controversy when it was first published because of its explicit sexual content.

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Overall Rating: 4 out of 5

I was interested in Forever by Judy Blume because of the controversy that surrounds it; I knew it was banned because of the sexual content and wondered just what sort of content elicited such a heated reaction from people. While sex is definitely talked about and not shied away from in this book, it is done tastefully and responsibly; although truly, I expected nothing less from Judy Blume.

This book centers on the idea of having a first love and what it’s like to be young and exploring a new relationship. I enjoyed that it doesn’t happen all at once; Blume takes her time in showing how the romance and love develops between Katherine and Michael. It’s also done in a healthy way, which was probably my favorite part about this novel, sadly. I feel like too often TV and books idealize unhealthy relationships, but this book very much shows a healthy relationship between two teenagers, and it’s still just as exciting and entertaining (more so, because I’m not grossed out by awful behavior).

Overall, I think this book is great for teens to introduce them to the world of relationships and give them idea of what it looks like and how to have difficult conversations with their parents or significant others. It’s a tad bit dated, but not so much that it’s unrecognizable. Besides that, it’s a super cute romance and it brought up all the feelings I had when I was with my “first love,” so it’s really just great overall. I definitely recommend this for anyone looking for a cute teen romance.

4 thoughts on “Book Review: Forever by Judy Blume

  1. I think you are right, the unhealthy relationships need to get air time, but not so that they are seen as the norm. Both sides need equal say. Healthy first loves will always get a thumbs up from me.

    1. Yes! That’s so true that we need to see both healthy and unhealthy relationships. I just can’t stand it when characters are clearly in an unhealthy relationship, and we’re supposed to be rooting for them to stay together.

    1. I just learned about it recently while searching for popular banned books. It was published in the mid-70’s, so definitely before YA was a popular thing — this was Blume trying to fill in that gap like the hero she is.

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