Hi Virtually Readers! You may not have noticed, but I am in my last year of high school. It’s slightly exciting and mostly terrifying and sometimes I think that if anyone asks me what I’m planning to do after school again something terrible will happen to them. And just like when I was in 10th grade I liked reading books about 15 year olds, and I loved reading about 11th graders when I was in 11th grade, I now like to read books about characters who are trying to decide what’s going to happen with the rest of their life and what it means to grow up and all that. This isn’t the time or place discussion about whether people in their last year are overrepresented in books or not (though it might be another time) so instead here are 9 last-year-of-school reccs for your eager perusal. (probably)
1.Radio Silence by Alice Oseman
This is a truly excellent book about the anxiety of senior year and getting into university, but also about finding friends and a place to belong. I really related to Frances’s dual “school’ and ‘real’ identities.
- Squire by Tamora Pierce
I LOVE THIS BOOK SO MUCH. It’s about Kel, who’s finished her training at knight school and is now facing the Big Wide World as the second female knight. I really love the role that adult mentors play in her story (Raoul 4eva)
- What’s a Girl Gotta Do? By Holly Bourne
This is a story that matches the complexities of being in your senior year and figuring out who you want to be and who you want to be friends with, with being a Fierce Feminist, and I love it.
- The Intern by Gabrielle Tozer
I love how Josie does an internship and is forced to confront her biases and judgements and preconceived notions.
- Behind the Scenes by Dahlia Adler
Ally and Liam must negotiate family life with their own relationships and commitments. Add their ridiculously high expectations for themselves, and there’s a lot of confusion and also it’s a really fun book.
- Never Always Sometimes by Adi Alsaid
Dave and Julia are going to graduate soon, and they decide to suddenly confront all the clichés they’ve spent so long avoiding. I make fun of clichés a lot, so I found this story fascinating and also entertaining.
- I’ll Meet You There by Heather Demetrios
This heartcrushing story actually takes place after Skylar has graduated. She knows where she’s going, but for the meantime she’s still stuck in her little town, and is forced to understand how she fits into a place she’s never wanted to call home. I go to a quite small, close-knit school, so I really appreciated how Demetrios looks at Sky’s relationships.
- The Serpent King by Jeff Zentner
This book made me cry SO MUCH. It’s about three teenagers, each with their own problems, and how their relationships to each other change over their senior year, as they try to decide how to balance family and their own desires and their complicated history. I absolutely loved it.
- The Incredible Adventures of Cinnamon Girl by Melissa Keil
This story is also in a small town after the characters have graduated. It’s simultaneously a hilarious, tender story, and a nuanced examination of belonging.
What are some books that you’ve found really #relatable recently? And have you read any of these? Tell me in the comments!