“A nicely balanced, believable and interesting view into adolescence, sex education and the power of faith.

A 14-year-old girl tries to follow her Catholic faith but wants to get her first kiss too. Gloria Jean likes Connor, but on her first date with him she has a bout of the Troubles, an ailment that requires embarrassing emergency trips to the bathroom at awkward times. Connor’s not the only boy around, though; she meets another boy, Ian, in her Confirmation classes. In fact, she learns more about the ethics of kissing from her Confirmation classes than from the sex-ed class she takes at school. She goes through a minor rebellion when she learns that her Troubles are caused by celiac disease, which means that she will no longer be able to take the host in Communion. Wondering why the church requires wheat to be used in the host, she investigates. Even as Gloria Jean breaks a few rules in her anger and frustration, she nevertheless comes across as a basically good and sincere girl. Leigh titles each chapter with an amusing “Commandment” for kissing and writes convincingly from inside the head of her main character, who comes across as a fully realized adolescent. She presents a credible portrait of teen friendships and their angst over romance.”


nothing like a catholic YA novel to make you feel romantic.

“Gloria Jean has a lot going on for a fourteen year old girl. She’s facing the normal adolescent stuff like being curious about boys and dating, and being exposed to Sex Ed which is super confusing. She’s also beginning Confirmation classes like many do her age and then on top of all of her growing pains she’s diagnosed celiac disease, which causes her to totally revamp her diet, making it impossible for her to take Communion at her Catholic Church. Gloria Jean also has to delay her search for the perfect first kiss, because with celiac disease you have to stay away from germs. Which leads us to the title of Britt Leigh’s debut novel, Ten Commandments for Kissing Gloria Jean, she’s already smarter than I was at her age, I didn’t even have one commandment. Ultimately this is a charming story of a girl who is trying to understand God, herself, and where everything else in her teenage world fits in.”

— Kickass Book Reviews

quite engaging and quite loveable

“The author does a great job capturing the mind of young teens with all the hopes, dreams, and confusion that accompanies them.  Both teens and adults alike will find this book a heartwarming, touching read.”

— Allie B., Raised to Read

a gem

“The author has created a truly memorable character in Gloria Jean, a middle school girl confronted with numerous challenges involving her health, family, friends, and the world of dating. The playful narration and dialogue is well crafted, and Ms. Leigh manages to create an engaging story with love and faith as central themes. Read this!”

— Michael Schaefer, high school teacher, VA