Stephanie Kuehnert and Suzy Exposito with Allison Augustyn — 'Pieces of a Girl'

A raw and bold YA memoir about abuse and addiction, and the power of expression and community that helped author Stephanie Kuehnert survive and thrive.


Third Place Books is thrilled to welcome Stephanie Kuehnert to our Seward Park store! Kuehnert will be discussing her new young adult memoir, Pieces of a Girl, a bold and bare memoir about a life shaped by music and writing that's unflinching and devastatingly honest. She will be joined in conversation by Suzy Exposito, whose art is featured in the book, and writer and musician Allison Augustyn. This event is free and open to the public.

Please note: Martha Brockenbrough, previously scheduled to moderate this event, is no longer able to attend. 

For important updates, registration is highly recommended in advance. This event will include a public signing and time for audience Q&A. Sustain our author series by purchasing a copy of the featured book!

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About Pieces of a Girl. . .

Years before she would become a published author . . . years before she would find a voice and a home in the Riot Grrrl movement and emerging zine community, Stephanie Kuehnert struggled to find her place. Told in varied narrative styles, including journal entries, original illustration, and pages torn from her actual teenage diaries and zines, this is the story of Stephanie Kuehnert's life as a struggling outsider who survived substance and relationship abuse to become a strong and powerful young woman after years trapped in a cycle that sometimes seemed to have no escape. From the author of Ballads of Suburbia and former Rookie contributor Stephanie Kuehnert, this bold and bare memoir about a life shaped by music and writing is unflinching and devastatingly honest.


Praise for Pieces of a Girl. . .

“[S]trong, captivating voice…. a memoir with sharp teeth and a soft underbelly, the product mirroring the author’s catharsis in creating art.”
—Publishers Weekly

"A raw, deep dive into one young woman’s struggle for wholeness."

Stephanie Kuehnert got her start writing bad poetry about unrequited love and razor blades in eighth grade. In high school, she discovered punk rock and produced several D.I.Y. feminist zines. She received her MFA in creative writing from Columbia College Chicago. Her first YA novel, I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone, was published by MTV Books in July 2008, and her second, Ballads of Suburbia, was published in July 2009. In addition to writing novels, she is a teacher and was a staff writer for ROOKIE, the acclaimed online magazine for teenage girls. Stephanie lives in Seattle with her husband and two cats.

Suzy Exposito is a Cuban-Belizean writer and artist based in Los Angeles. She is currently a culture columnist at the L.A. Times, where she was first hired as a music reporter in the fall of 2020. She was previously the founding editor of Latin music for legendary rock magazine Rolling Stone, and became the first Latina to write a cover story for the publication, which examined the rise of Puerto Rican superstar Bad Bunny. She was also a long-time zinester and cartoonist for teen magazine Rookie Mag. You can read her work in Vogue, Pitchfork and Revolver.

Allison Augustyn is a writer and musician, and helps make arts and news nonprofits grow. She was a music columnist at the Chicago Sun-Times, covering indie labels like Drag City and Thrill Jockey, and bands who still played in tiny clubs, abandoned factories, and home garages. Highlights include driving to Madison, WI to review a band no one knew called The Kills, and unintentionally insulting Jeff Tweedy at a house party while complimenting Jim O'Rourke from Sonic Youth.

Want a signed edition of the featured book, but can't make it to the event? Order through our website or over the phone, and write your request for a signature or personalization in the comments field at checkout. Please call the hosting store if you're placing your order within 24 hours of the event.

Third Place Books Events Code of Conduct: Third Place Books is committed to ensuring the safety and well-being of event attendees and guest authors, during both online and in-store events. By registering for this event, you are agreeing to refrain from engaging in inappropriate behavior and harassment of any kind throughout the course of this event (i.e. racial slurs, profanity, hate speech, spam comments, etc.). Please note that any participants who engage in inappropriate behavior or harassment of any kind will be immediately ejected from the event.

For media inquiries, access inquiries, or questions about our Covid-19 policies, please email or call our Lake Forest Park store at (206) 366-3311.