As my high school career nears its end (I’ll be graduating this June!) it’s starting to really hit me that I have less than two months of my senior year left before it’s over. I’ve read about the senior year experiences of many characters in books over the years, yet I don’t think I couldn’t have prepared myself for the ups and downs that I have experienced this year. It’s been both exciting and scary, filled with laughter and tears, but I think that’s generally how growing up tends to go. Since I seem to be thinking about my overall senior year experience so much lately, I thought I’d turn it into a fun Top Ten Tuesday topic. This week I’ll be listing my Top Ten Books with Characters Who are Entering, Living, or Remembering Their Senior Year of High School. What a mouthful!
So, no particular order, here are the books I have chosen:
1. Paper Towns by John Green.
I can never seem to make it through one of these lists without mentioning at least one John Green novel. They’re just so good and they apply to so many different topics! In this book, the majority of the characters are in their senior year of high school and my favorite part of the story happens when they’re supposed to be at their graduation. (Key words: supposed to be !!!) It’s fun and hilarious yet nostalgic and thought-provoking all at the same time, which I’m coming to find out is one of my favorite combinations when it comes to books.
2. The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
In this book, Charlie’s friends Sam and Patrick are in their senior year of high school. Despite the fact that he’s a freshman they waste no time befriending him and teaching him the ropes of growing up. It’s really neat to see the differences between the views of a freshman and those of seniors, and I think this novel captures them really well. Charlie experiences so much in this short book, and his senior friends are by his side every step of the way. If you;re looking for nostalgia, this will definitely bring back those memories!
3. The Disenchantments by Nina LaCour
Four friends in a band have recently graduated from high school, and it’s their last summer of freedom before going off to start their adult lives. Will their special bond grow stronger through playing music and traveling, or will these adventures cause them to grow apart? This is a fun, thought-provoking, and whimsical read about growing up, growing apart, but also growing together.
4. Where Things Come Back by John Corey Whaley
This story takes place during the summer before the main character’s senior year, so it has that feeling of being on the brink of something great. It’s certainly a summer that Cullen (the MC) will never forget, with its quirkiness and excitement and even a few frightening moments. I’ve read this book several times over the past few times, and it’s a really unique summer read.
5. The Moon and More by Sarah Dessen
It’s the summer before college, and Emaline is spending it in the lovely beach town of Colby. But she soon finds that these few precious months are not going to be the stress-free ones that she initially envisioned. Enter Luke, her boyfriend, and Theo, a new guy from New York who comes to work on a film project in Colby. Filled with boy troubles, before-college jitters, and a fantastic ending (such a surprise, but I loved it!), this book encompasses many of the ups and downs of that notorious summer.
6. The Beginning of Everything by Robyn Schneider
This book takes place during senior year, with its many trials, tribulations, and terrific experiences. It’s as much about friendship, change, and growing up as it is about romance, which I thought was really refreshing to read about in a contemporary YA novel. The unique perspective that senior year brings is also emphasized really well in this book: the knowledge that this is the last time you’ll see the majority of your classmates, and the liberation that comes with this realization.
7. The Tragedy Paper by Elizabeth LaBan
Senior year at a boarding school- what more could you want in a book? I LOVE boarding school books, and this one was made even better by its interesting premise. It’s a story within a story, and it’s really cool to see the history and present kind of mirror each other in an odd way. It didn’t completely blow me away, but it nevertheless left an impression on me!
8. Please Ignore Vera Dietz by A.S. King
Quirky and sorrowful, with a bit of the supernatural thrown in for good measure- sound interesting? The premise of this book is difficult to explain, in part because it’s just so strange. Vera is a senior in high school who is dealing with the loss of her best friend on top of all the other struggles of the time. But there’s an added layer of mystery, because she talks to Charlie. But he’s dead. I’m still not really entirely sure how that all worked, but it was interesting to read about nevertheless!
9. Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan
Oh, those wild teenage emotions! Those crazy nights of reckless abandon and unforgettable adventures! My senior year has been nothing like that of Nick and Norah’s, but honestly I’m pretty okay with that. Taking place over the course of a single insane night in New York City, this story is one that will make you constantly wonder: Where are these kids’ parents?
10. An Abundance of Katherines by John Green
I thought it would be great to begin and end with a wonderful John Green book, so here we go! This book takes place during Colin Singleton’s last summer before college, in which he has to emotionally recover from his most recent messy relationship with a Katherine. Hilarious, thought-provoking, and spontaneous, this story will make you view relationships in a completely different way.
What books about high school seniors do you enjoy the most? What do you think of the books on my list? Let me know in the comments section below!