Scarce first edition of Cleary's classic young adult novel, a light-hearted but sensitive treatment of teenage problems and teenage love.
Very good plus in near fine jacket.
"Now she was really grown up, mature, sophisticated, a young woman with a dinner date."
FIFTEEN was part of the new wave of YA romances that had begun in the 1940s with Maureen Daly's SEVENTEENTH SUMMER (1942) — a turning point in books marketed to teen audiences, when focus shifted from the "educational" historical settings popular in the prewar period to more contemporary settings. These books often took place in American high schools and use the trope of first love to tell coming-of-age stories. In FIFTEEN, a high school sophomore must navigate a crush on "an older man" (who is sixteen) while finding solutions to everyday problems, like a nightmare babysitting job.
Cleary soon distinguished herself in the genre through her realistic treatment of the problems of adolescence. The small details of FIFTEEN (not being the "cashmere-sweater type," being embarrassed by one's cat in front of guests) remain compelling to young readers some seven decades after its initial publication, as hemlines and soda fountains come and go but parents and cats still refuse to learn good manners.
New York: William Morrow and Company, 1956. 8'' X 5.25''. Original red cloth with black pictorial detail. In original unclipped ($2.75) pictorial dust jacket. Illustrated in black and white by Joe and Beth Krush. 254,  pages. Light soil to boards, offsetting to endpapers. Very slight chipping to jacket, spine lightly sunned.
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