Karen Zager, Author, Alice Rubenstein, Joint Author . American Psychological Association Life Tools $12.95 (454p) ISBN 978-1-55798-892-8

Psychologists Zager and Rubenstein forged a literary partnership after participating in an APA task force on adolescent girls. They surveyed 1,100 parents, educators and teens, asking their concerns about adolescent girls. The result is a book that speaks to both teens and parents. Designed so that one cover opens to a section for parents and, flipped over, the other cover opens to a section for teens, the book treats the most common questions surrounding parenting and adolescent development. Each of the major sections begins with a letter written by a member of the target group (a parent or a teen), and each chapter ends with "hot tips." This approach makes for a comprehensive guide to building healthy parent-teen relations and handling the tough times that accompany adolescent years. Among the parenting topics: disciplining with dignity, managing rebellion and parenting through divorce. The teen topics include romantic relationships, low self-esteem and handling schoolwork. Zager and Rubenstein also provide guidelines for what behaviors should be expected when. With advice gathered from observation, the authors caution parents about the pitfalls of raising girls without solid paternal contact. They also admonish parents against laissez-faire parenting, reminding them that children need boundaries and even crave them. The teen advice on dealing with weight and body image, exploring sexuality and accepting or rejecting gender roles is especially strong. Zager and Rubenstein adroitly delve into the minds of parents and teens, and their book will surely inspire harmonious relationships within families. (May)

Reviewed on: 05/06/2002
Release date: 01/01/2002
Genre: Nonfiction
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