Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Straight Chatting from the Library - SECRETS: Diary of a Gutsy teen by Dr. Barbara Becker Holstein

 Barbara will be awarding a $20 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour, and a $20 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn host.


The Girl from The Truth, Diary of a Gutsy Tween and Secrets, Diary of a Gutsy Teen speaks out on how much her Diary means to her and her favorite series of books.

Girl: What I really like about keeping my diary is that I get to tell the complete truth to someone! I don't have to hide any of my feelings or thoughts or the truth about something that happened to me. Dear Diary is to me like a real person who never yells at me, never tells me to go home, never drops me for someone else and never disagrees. Dear Diary is patient with me and always ready to listen, which is not the way it is in my house. My mom is very busy and not a good listener sometimes and my dad works so many hours, sometimes I almost forget he lives with us. My brother is a pest and the new baby is a cry baby. So that only leaves Dear Diary. When I need her she is there. I pour my heart out and tell her so much that no one else knows about me. She knows all my promises to myself when I grow up and how much I hate when my parents fight. Even though I'm getting older now and I'm out of the house a lot I still feel terrible that my parents don't get along that well. I wish they would get along better. I loved reading the Little House on the Prairie series of books, because Laura's parents loved each other so much and Laura felt so good being their kid. There was such a feeling of love all around, even though life was so hard sometimes. My parents have a pretty easy life, really, but still they find things to be disappointed or angry at in each other. I love both of them a lot. But I'm either not going to get married or I'm going to make sure we get along just great. Right now I don't really date yet. I am in love with someone, I can't tell who. Only Dear Diary knows. But since he is the second person I've been in love with, I can't be sure I will marry him. I'm beginning to see that my mom is right. Most people don't marry the first person they are in love with. I have to go now. I don't know when I will see you again, but I do know that tonight when I need Dear Diary she will be there for me!


Following in the footsteps of The Truth, Secrets: Diary of a Gutsy Teen begins as the thirteen- year-old protagonist makes a move with her family to a new town. She has grown up a lot over the past year—and has made a list of everything that’s important to her now that she doesn’t want to forget when she gets older. But now, as she enters her early teen years, she begins to write down the secrets she wants to keep—and the ones she has no one to tell about. From new school experiences to a new baby in the family to a new crush, this new teen finally feels empowered on making her own decisions with confidence and keeping those secrets she holds dearest for herself.

In a positive and supportive diary-entry format, Dr. Barbara Becker Holstein encourages tween and early teen girls to carry the most precious parts of themselves into adulthood. A great book for mothers and daughters to read together, Secrets is aimed to improve communication, understanding, and self-esteem for young girls as they enter the rocky road of teenager-dom.


Date: July 7
Dear Diary:

I feel so lonely. I can’t believe my parents made us move. Don’t they understand how awful it is for me? I don’t have anyone to share secrets with. I talk to Angela on the phone, but it isn’t the same. Sometimes when I’m on the phone with her I get the feeling that she is on her computer at the same time or maybe just thinking about other stuff. I don’t feel that closeness with her anymore. I want to feel it, but I don’t know how. I’m afraid to ask her if she is playing a game on the computer or chatting on Facebook at the same time as she’s on the phone with me.

The only good thing that happened is I asked Angela if she wants to send selfies back and forth to each other. My phone is old and I don’t have FaceTime, but I can still take pictures and send them to her. She loved the idea, so I spent hours yesterday sending her pictures of me in different rooms in my house and in the backyard, too. It was a lot of fun. I dressed up as if I was putting on a play and each room was a new scene. I wore a velvet scarf and one of my mom’s fancy hats and put on an old long petticoat I used to dress up in as a kid and then I went outside and stood on the swing that is hanging from a tree. It was hard to keep the swing still enough to get a good Selfie, but finally I did, and I sent it to Angela.

She sent back a selfie of herself dressed up like a Flapper girl from the 1920s, posing with a long stick as if it was a cigarette in a holder.

We laughed and laughed on the phone, and it was the best I have felt since we moved. The best part was that if felt like we were together again even though we are apart!


I have been a positive psychologist in private practice for the past thirty years. In the course of working with my clients, I originated the idea of THE ENCHANTED SELF(R), a positive psychology therapy where I teach people how to recognize and utilize their strengths, talents, skills and even lost potential. I have developed a number of methods, including using our memories to rediscover what is right about ourselves and our lives, rather than what went wrong, helping people to overcome adversity, experience positive emotions and live the good life!

Since developing this concept, I've been able to use many tools to bring the Enchanted Self to everyone, particularly women and girls. I've written many books, starting with THE ENCHANTED SELF, A Positive Therapy, and then Recipes for Enchantment, The Secret Ingredient is YOU! My books for girls are very popular, as they are great fictional reads and also help deal with many of the questions that trouble kids as they move into the tween and teen years. The Truth, Diary of a Gutsy Tween and Secrets, Diary of a Gutsy Teen are the first two books in this series.

I really love to teach and educate about happiness and how to benefit from positive psychology in ways that let us lead lives of meaning and happiness. You can find me all over the place on the web.

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  1. I can't help smiling when I read the excerpt. I remember those days.

  2. I love the diary entry style, so much fun to read

  3. I enjoyed the interview with the "Girl". I'm also glad that she had a happier diary entry today. Thank you!

  4. Great excerpt sounds really interesting, entering under the name of Virginia