The Letterbook 1 – Amy's Secret, by Ellie Royce

Hey, Ames!
Haven’t really caught up with you since the holidays u r looking a bit down.
I was wondering if you wanna start a letterbook with me?
While I was on hols in Tassie, my cousin Hannah showed me this book. It was just a school exercise book okay, but it was all decorated and glittered up. Inside, she and her friend Olivia had taken turns writing letters to each other, but not just letters – there were photos, stuff cut out from magazines, tickets from movies they saw together, even choccie wrappers!

Hey, Jess, sounds like fun. Thanx
Got a book?
love Ames

Hey, Ames, r u okay? What’s up? I’ve got a book at home. I’ll give it 2 u tomorrow k? I still can’t believe we’re finally in HIGH SCHOOL!!!! Too bad we’ve only got this one class together, but I’ll give it to you at break or at lunch.
love Jess

Jess and Amy were friends at primary school. Not best friends, but friends. Now they’ve started Year Seven and are only in one class together. Jess wants to start a letterbook. The rules are simple really. Write whatever you want, about anything you want. What’s written in the letterbook is secret and can’t be shared with anyone else without permission. Even if that secret is huge. Jess and Amy forge a deep friendship as they adjust to the differences of being in secondary school and the changing nature of their individual lives.

Amy’s Secret visits two 13 year old girls as they enter secondary school. It uses the letterbook format, where the girls write in the book alternately, sharing their lives. The letterbook can be decorated and can include all sorts of things like tickets and decorations and notes written elsewhere and stuck in. Jess and Amy have quite different families and many of the early entries reflect this. Mostly the entries are conversational and include mannerisms of the age group and of the individual girls. Other entries report the action like a screenplay. The fonts are different for each girl, and the doodles and stickers reflect the mood of the entries. Thirteen year old girls are often seen as silly and shallow. Amy’s Secret is a realistic story and shows that beneath the surface, some girls are dealing with almost unimaginable challenges. Recommended for upper primary-early secondary age readers.

The Letterbook 1: Amy’s Secret, Ellie Royce
ABC Books 2008
ISBN: 9870733322020