The No Book for Teenagers

Susan Louise Peterson
Vilnius Press (2013)
ISBN 9781940136073
Reviewed by Ben Weldon (age 16) for Reader Views (11/13)


“The No Book for Teenagers” by Susan Louise Peterson is a collection of elaborations of what might be behind a simple no answer that parents might give teens.  All of these elaborations are intended to help teenagers understand the reasoning behind their parent’s answer.   For example, if a teenager asks to go somewhere, the parent might say no.  The book explains the reasoning behind such a no answer.

At the top of each page was an explanation of what might be behind a simple no answer.  Following this there were five elaborations showing things a teen needs to think about after receiving a no.  For example, “No might mean it is not appropriate” is followed by “No, you can’t go without a shirt to a wedding, it’s a formal occasion.” Each elaboration was remarkably specific and wasn’t easy to apply to my life.  

This book might be useful to teens who don’t think ahead, are angry or bewildered with their parent’s answer, or don’t have very communicative parents.  This book also might help parents realize how to verbalize the intricacies of their no answers.  Each elaboration was more like a very obvious or bizarre answer rather than mentally-stimulating reading. 

I would recommend “The No Book for Teenagers” by Susan Louise Peterson to teenagers with parents who don’t always explain answers.  The book offers helpful explanations to help teens understand the reasoning of their parents. The book was very short and could be read within hours.

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