Seeking YA novel: girl finds mom’s teenage pregnancy diary
December 11, 2016 4:32 PM   Subscribe

I am looking for a young adult novel I read several times around 1991-1995. The main character finds a diary her mother had kept when she got pregnant in high school. Main character learns her mother had given up the baby for adoption. More details inside....

Additional details I remember:

• I’m almost certain I read this around 1991-1995 and think it was published around that time.
• Main character (Julie?) is a teenage girl. I think she was being raised by a single mother.
• Julie is dating a boy (her first serious relationship) and thinking of having sex with him.
• Julie finds her mom’s diary and learns her mom had a baby (boy, I think) as a teenager and gave it up for adoption. Her mother had been in love with the father.
• In the diary, the mom’s mother was measuring her to make a dress or skirt and realized the mother was pregnant. She stopped while measuring, put her hand on the mom’s stomach, said something in Italian (?), then accused the mom of being pregnant.
• The mother had the baby (was probably sent away to do so) and never allowed to talk about it again.
• During a fight with her mom, Julie lets it slip to her mother that she knows about the baby. The mom asks how Julie knows, Julie confesses about the diary, and the mom asks for it. They have a heart-to-heart talk after the mom has re-read her own diary.
• Julie’s grandmother comes to visit. While there, Julie wants to go out for a while to see the guy she’s dating. Grandmother tries to tell Julie to stay in and visit with her.
• Julie winds up blowing up and saying something about how just because her mother had gotten pregnant doesn’t mean she will, too. After the shock wears off, the grandmother admits that she loved the baby and always thought of it. I think her husband (Julie’s grandfather) had ordered the grandmother to never talk about the baby.
• I think the cover of the book may have had a girl and guy standing on a ski slope, staring in to each other’s eyes and smiling / laughing. I am not as certain about that, though.
posted by socksandsushi to Writing & Language (3 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Is it Sweet 16 and Never by Jeanne Betancourt? Some of the details and the cover seem right.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 5:15 PM on December 11, 2016

Looks like ArbitraryAndCapricious has it. The book page on Amazon has a review from the School Library Journal that contains more about the plot, including: "Also, through reading her mother's diary, Julie discovers that her mother had been pregnant as a teenager."
posted by rangefinder 1.4 at 7:32 PM on December 11, 2016

That's definitely it! Thank you so much!
posted by socksandsushi at 3:20 PM on December 12, 2016

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