The Amazing Life of Birds (The Twenty-Day Puberty Journal of Duane Homer Leech) -- Gary Paulsen

Finally.  A puberty book that most parents (even many of the super-protective ones) will find acceptable.  I think: 

The Amazing Life of Birds : The Twenty-Day Puberty Journal of Duane Homer LeechLook, we've all seen those shows on the Discovery Channel where they show a baby being born.  There's a man in a hospital gown and a woman on a table and a lot of noise and sweat and there it is.

A baby.  Looking actually a lot like the little bird on my windowsill, all messy and ugly.


And if they'd done a video there would be my mother and my father smiling with love at me, all goobery and sloppy.

Defenseless, new in the world, not even a clue that someday puberty would come along and body-slam me.

It's short and light and hysterically funny and deals with zits:

Then I looked in the mirror over the sink and there was a zit in the middle of my forehead.  Not just a small one.  A giant.  It looked like something in there was trying to get out and when I pinched it...

Well, enough of that.  But now instead of a zit I have what the TV would call a "suppurating wound."  It isn't important to know what that means--just the sound of the words makes it work.

I have another zit on my chest which the shirt will cover but in the mirror my face looks like I tried to kiss a rotary mower.

Remember that episode of The Wonder Years where Fred Savage tried to hide his pimple with a Band-Aid?  By the end of this book, Duane Home Leech has more Band-Aid than face.

For real, though.  It's very wholesome and clean for a puberty book -- no wet dreams or masturbation or anything.  Any reference to girly parts?  Duane always says ELBOW, leaving the actual body part to the reader's imagination.

It's awesome.