4 Stars for Edge: Collected Stories by M.E. Kerr #YA #LGBT


Title: Edge: Collected Stories
Author Name & Publisher: M.E. Kerr (Open Road Media Teen & Tween)
Publication Date & Length: September 15, 2015 – 172 pgs


These 15 short stories by a writer the New York Times Book Review has called “one of the grand masters of young adult fiction” capture our fears, yearnings, loneliness, self-doubts, and universal need for love and acceptance

M. E. Kerr’s pioneering young adult literature has gained a devoted following for fearlessly breaking rules and confronting conformity. In Edge, her trademark gifts of pulling apart relationships, exposing real emotion, and conveying what it means to grow up are on full display. From handling a teenage girl’s coming out in “We Might as Well All Be Strangers” to asking philosophical questions about God, life, and death in “The Sweet Perfume of Goodbye” to parodying social norms in “Do You Want My Opinion?,” this is a funny, moving, and brave anthology about faith, friendship, family ties, prom night, an unusual act of heroism, and staying true to yourself.

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The author is totally new to me and it was not until I finished this collection of short stories that I realised that the person writing them was not a teenager. This author can portray with such potency and understanding  the inner workings of young peoples thoughts, and, with such accuracy and such perception I was sure the author was an extremely talented young person. I do not want my preconceptions to express any condescension, only utter respect for the author.
Such a wide range of emotions, feelings, ideals, fears and passions are characterized in this collection of emotive stories. I am sure young and old can identify with many of these stories.
I was also impressed with the detailed background information given at the end of the collection about the author and about other novels she has written.


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M. E. Kerr was born Marijane Meaker in Auburn, New York. Her interest in writing began with her father, who loved to read, and her mother, who loved to tell stories of neighborhood gossip. Unable to find an agent to represent her work, Meaker became her own agent, and wrote articles and books under a series of pseudonyms: Vin Packer, Ann Aldrich, Laura Winston, M. E. Kerr, and Mary James. As M. E. Kerr, Meaker has produced over twenty novels for young adults and won multiple awards, including the Margaret A. Edwards Award for her lifetime contribution to young adult literature.

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