Books by Kathleen Buckstaff

Get Savvy: Letters to a Teenage Girl about Sex and Love

release date: May 2017

Award-Winning Finalist, Best New Non-Fiction, International Book Awards 2017

On a winter night at a prestigious New England boarding school, two teenage girls compared secret love letters male teachers had written them. One girl kept a journal and recorded the events that followed. The other, years later, took her own life.

When her own daughter was 16, Kathleen Buckstaff, author and former Los Angeles Times columnist, developed severe stomach pain and within a few months lost thirty pounds. Doctors eventually determined she was suffering from PTSD. As she reviewed her old journals, Kathleen had to face painful truths. When she discovered the two teachers were still teaching, she felt obligated to do everything possible to protect current students.

Kathleen interviewed over 60 college students, recent graduates, healthcare professionals, self-defense instructors, and professors. In letters to a teenage girl, Kathleen revisits the events that changed her life and the lives of her closest friends, drawing from her interviews to describe what she wishes she had known about sex, predators, self-defense, and love.

Get Savvy also includes a journal section with reflection questions, in which Kathleen offers a practice of self-love, kindness, and respect, encouraging the reader to take time to get to know herself.

Get Savvy can be used as a reference book in Health and Sexuality education classes. It covers bullying, resisting peer pressure and how to create positive social alliances. Get Savvy also addresses what to say to someone who has been sexually assaulted or raped; how to identify an abusive relationship; what to say to someone who is depressed and may be suicidal; what to say to someone who may have an eating disorder. Get Savvy covers how to ask someone on a date; how to talk about sexual boundaries; what consent looks like; how to identify predatory behavior; verbal language around self-defense; how to intervene and help as a bystander; bystander training; and how to get help for oneself or a friend who is suffering from PTSD, mental illness, or sexual trauma. Get Savvy specifically deals with suicide prevention and lists warning signs and prevention strategies.

Get Savvy also includes mindfulness training, the cultivation of compassion and healthy boundaries, and encourages the exploration of one’s inner guide, gifts, and goals. Get Savvy teaches self-love, respect and resilience. It is a resource tool for teens, both male and female, parents, educators, healthcare providers and community leaders.

Go to Amazon to learn more or purchase.

Click here to watch a reading from Get Savvy.


The Tiffany Box, a memoir

release date: May 2013

USA Best Book Awards Finalist & International Best Book Awards Finalist

Through treasured e-mails, letters and diary entries, Kathleen Buckstaff recreates her life as a mother of young children. We follow her as she gets her first big break writing for the Los Angeles Times about her children, her husband and their dog, Rosie. Kathleen’s stories hit home with many readers and the Los Angeles Times offers her a sweet deal to pen more columns. Writing with a rare and honest voice, Kathleen shares moments such as trying on foam bellies in a maternity dressing room, her children tricking the tooth fairy and using chocolate to bribe her mother to babysit. Then, unexpectedly, her vibrant mother becomes ill, and Kathleen must learn how to be a mother to her own mom.

Kathleen shows the humor, hard work, insanity, love and joy that are involved in being a mother and a caretaker. This is a book full of wisdom and insight into how to live life well.

The Tiffany Box was originally a one-woman show.

Click here to watch a selection from the play.

Go to Amazon to learn more or purchase.

Mother Advice To Take With You To College:
Humor, Inspiration and Wisdom To Go

release date: March 2014

In Mother Advice To Take With You To College: Humor, Inspiration and Wisdom To Go, Kathleen Buckstaff, award-winning author, former Los Angeles Times humor columnist, and mother of three children, shares wise and humorous illustrations and stories that are full of truth and love.

With over 65 illustrations, Kathleen uses line drawings to talk to her son about hygiene, how to love someone, being loyal, overcoming adversity, drinking, the importance of exercise, good friends, the beauty of nature and many other essential life subjects.

Told in an open and loving voice, Mother Advice To Take With You To College is a book that will make you feel grateful Kathleen approaches topics many avoid. You will laugh out loud, cry and feel the power and wisdom of motherly love.

This is a book parents will want to read long before their children leave home. It is also a book every college bound child will want to memorize. A perfect gift for any parent or graduate. It also inspired the creation of her third book, Get Savvy: Letters to a Teenage Girl about Sex and Love.

Go to Amazon to learn more or purchase.