BookView Review: On Becoming Me: Memoir of an 80’s Teenager by Kirsten Hegberg Pursell

BookView Review rated it:

Rating: 5 out of 5.

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Publication Date: October 12, 2021

Publisher: Independently Published

List Price: $19.99 Hardcover

ISBN-13: 9781737770503

Genre: Memoir

Language: English

Page Count: 150 pages

Pursell beautifully chronicles her experiences as an adolescent in 1980s in her debut memoir. With unabashed honesty and tenderness, she portrays the intricacies of being a teenager, delving into her adolescent fears, uncertainties, self-doubts, hopes, and desires. Readers will relate to Pursell’s fear of being “not beautiful and attractive” enough, her struggles with her weight, acne, and fitting in, her acute fascination with the opposite sex, and will admire her willingness to get over a heartache quickly. Pursell’s voice is the right mix of teenage rebellion and naivety, alternating between calmness, fear, anxiety, rage, and contemplativeness, as she sifts through her teenage years and conveys her complicated emotions. The chapters alternate between Pursell’s first-person account, extracts from her diary entries, and the poetry that she wrote as an adolescent. Almost all the sections of the book are random yet strangely fascinating as she moves breathlessly from one adolescent experience to the next. Pursell’s writing style is clear and unembellished, and the diary format gives her story an arresting intimacy and immediacy, serving as a window into her turbulent adolescent years as she grapples with issues of identity and self-doubt. Candid and engrossing, the book makes for a nostalgic read.


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