From the home of Stylist


• Sharing with the class. Someone you went to school with had a copy of Forever, US writer Judy Blume’s story about teenage love and the feelings behind “going all the way.” That single copy got passed around, falling open at the sex scenes.

• She guided us through a pre-internet era: we were stuck when it came to sources of information about sex and what went where. Less seriously, we also lived in a lived in a world where Twinkies, Oreos and summer camp were glamorous oddities and we were hungry for information.

• But she did stuff the internet generally doesn’t: Forever is packed with feelings. Katherine and her boyfriend Michael take their decision to have sex very seriously and Katherine’s thought process (including a trip to find contraception) is accurately described.

• Ralph: Michael called his manhood Ralph, as in “Ralph, this is Katherine. She’s a very good friend of mine.” Fair play to Judy for finding a way of making everything seem safe and encouraging her characters to talk to one another. Still though: RALPH. He calls it Ralph!

Forever by Judy Blume (Macmillan, £5.99)


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