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Nonfiction in Brief

May 22, 1988|ALEX RAKSIN

I'LL BE HOME BEFORE MIDNIGHT AND I WON'T GET PREGNANT by Tony Wolf (Random House: $8.95)

"Kids today aren't like we were," says an alarmed parent caricatured in this cartoon-style text. "They're growing up without values." "That's a meaningless thing to say," responds a psychologist-fly who buzzes into the room. "If you were a kid today, you would probably try drugs." The author, a psychotherapist who treats teen-agers, offers tales of adolescent woes so true-to-life that they're bound to delight and inform as well as offend. His section on drugs, for instance, doesn't simply parrot the conventional wisdom that stern parental reprimands are the best strategy for discouraging use.

Also bound to stir controversy is Wolf's discussion of teen pregnancies, which suggests that having the baby may not always be the best solution. Wolf issues few moral messages, though; through most of the book, he simply captures emotions with laudable realism.

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