He Gave Her Roses cover

Choose Your Own Sex Adventure

He Gave Her Roses
Grove
1990

Submitter: This book is a “choose-your-own-ending” type of book about dating, but with a heavy religious theme, full of fear, shame, and judgement; and putting all the responsibility on the girl. In my opinion, it has no place in a public library to begin with, but it’s been sitting on my library’s YA shelves since 1990, even though it had not been checked out in over six years, and only a few times total. The cover art is horrendous, the girl looks like either a mannequin or corpse, and the story is even worse.

Stacey has her first serious boyfriend and is faced with deciding to have sex. In some of the paths, she ends up pregnant, and may have an abortion, give up the baby, or keep it. She may or may not marry the father, may or may not finish school. The ending that caught my eye was the one where she went to college and started dating a nice Christian boy, but then he dumps her when he finds out she’s not a virgin. But she doesn’t blame him, she just wonders if she will ever find anyone to love her. You know, now that she’s damaged goods and all. Just gross!

Holly: That’s a new one: Choose your own sex adventure.

mothers boyfriend cover

My mom is dating a creep – Friday Fiction

My Mother’s Boyfriend and Me
Jacoby
1987

This title gave me the creeps. Evidently Laurie’s mom (widowed when Laurie was a baby) went off the rails and starting dating a very cool dude named “Blue” (cuz of his eyes!). Two week after meeting this dude, Mom invites Blue to move in. Laurie notices that the guy is creeping on her and tries to tell Mom, but she defends Blue. Seriously, the guy’s nickname is Blue and he wears a gold chain and his shirt partially unbuttoned-even in the 1980s that was a creepy kind of look.

bodyguard cover

Lady Bodyguard

The Reluctant Bodyguard
Michaels
1994

This time we have a bit of a switch: the bodyguard is a woman! Chad, a local TV personality has been getting some disturbing mail from a fan. His police buddy sets him up with a female bodyguard, Jenna. This book has it all: romance, suspense, and a guy working through some issues about needing to be protected by a woman. Not that bad. It’s dated, but I am partial to the suspense angle in romance.

The reason I posted this today is that this 1994 paperback was held together with tape and prayer. I blacked out the handwritten “barcode” number.

on our own cover

Friendships Tested: Old Friends, New Friends

Old Friends, New Friends
On our own #4
Quin-Harkins
1986

Jill and Toni are besties and are ready to start adulting for real. Both of them plan to attend State U. Then Toni doesn’t get to go to college because of family problems and Jill gets a chance to get into that super first tier school called Rosemont. Everyone is having a difficult time. Jill gets a horrible roommate and Toni tells off the icky roommate when she visits Jill. Friendship troubles just blossom. Happily enough, they get their issues sorted and come to a new understanding. Growing up is difficult.

Dinky Hocker Shoots Smack cover

Friday Fiction: Dinky Hocker Shoots Smack

Dinky Hocker Shoots Smack!
Kerr
1972

Submitter: This was . . . probably an OK book in 1972? And probably great in our context (small rural town in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula – about as far as it gets from Brooklyn.) I might take it home and read it. There’s a cat named Nader! The boy wants to be a librarian! It was adapted into an After-School Special! But it’s 2020. Our current YA patrons’ mothers are too young for this book. Also, it’s a mass market paperback in a library binding – the pages are brittle and falling out. It’s time to go.

Blood Brothers cover

Friday Fiction – Blood Brothers

Blood Brothers
Price
1976

Submitter: This cover is… wow. I’m currently weeding my public library’s adult fiction collection. This particular book last checked out just five years ago in 2015, surprisingly enough. This appears to be a first edition from 1976, and the address stamped in the front of the book is from three library locations ago! The description on the dust jacket begins: “The De Cocos of Co-op City are a family of hard hats who think with their hands and kill with their love.” Judging by the Goodreads reviews, this was a pretty popular book at the time and was made into a movie. Dwindling circulation, a seriously dated cover, and poor condition mean it’s time for this classic to go. One of my co-workers described the cover as “A depressed Freddie Mercury-Sylvester Stallone amalgam is comforted by a younger Paul Dooley as Judd Hirsch looks on.”

Holly: Spot on.

Liberated Lady

Friday Fiction: Liberated Lady meets Obnoxious Guy

Liberated Lady
Wentworth
1979

I am a fan of the romance genre. I read these in high school and off and on. I still like a well crafted romance with smart dialogue and interesting characters. This isn’t that book. Even my 1970s self probably would have dumped this title fast. Once again we have our favorite romance trope where obnoxious guy and nice girl fall in love.

The set up is that our heroine, Sara, is de-facto guardian of her step sister, Nicky. Nicky wants to get married to her boyfriend, Richard. Sara knows they are too young, and is trying to get these crazy kids to slow down. Wouldn’t you know it? Richard’s uncle is ultra obnoxious Alex Brandon. The dialogue is bullying and there is thinly veiled violence.