Top Ten Tuesday-Books That Take Place In Boarding School

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Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

This week’s topic was a freebie, so I decided to list my favorite boarding school books. I used to dream about going to boarding school when I was growing up, and I’ve always been drawn to books that feature it.

1. The Private series &  it’s spinoff, the Privilege series, by Kate Brian: I used to LOVE these books. I binge-read both series in a matter of weeks and could not get enough of Reed and the Billings Girls. They’re totally melodramatic and soap opera-y, which makes them so fun.

3. Anna and the French Kiss & Isla and the Happily Ever After, by Stephanie Perkins: Boarding school in Paris with hot guys WHAT COULD BE BETTER?

4. The Raven Cycle, by Maggie Stiefvater: These books are beautiful, the characters are perfection, and the romances are the best. The series isn’t strictly about boarding school, but the boys do attend one when they’re not out chasing magic.

5. An Ember in the Ashes, by Sabaa Tahir: I loved this fantasty/sci-fi/dystopian. The setting is inspired by Ancient Rome, and there are slaves, soldiers, masks, and Ladies. Getting. Shit. Done.

6. Extraordinary Means, by Robyn Schneider: I did not expect this contemporary featuring total-drug-resistant tuberculosis and a boarding school for terminally ill teens  to be as hopeful and delightful as it was. Highly recommend.

7. Openly Straight, by Bill Konigsberg: A novel about what happens when you transfer to an all-boys’ boarding school in New England, and decide to keep your sexuality a secret. Not because you’re scared or ashamed, not because you wish you were straight, but because you’re tired of your gayness defining you. This book is FANTASTIC and I love it.

8. Prep School Confidential, by Kara Taylor: A super fun read about a girl trying to solve the murder of her roommate, featuring some of my favorite books quotes ever such as, “Why can’t I stay away? I think it’s partly because he wears Burt’s Bees lip balm, and I’m a sucker for a guy with well-conditioned lips.” and “I never was good at staying away from boys who look really good in ties.” Same, Anne. Same.

9. The Naturals series, by Jennifer Lynn Barnes: If you enjoy the show Criminal Minds and Mind Hunter, you will like these books about teens drafted to join a special unit in the FBI and live together.

10. A Study in Charlotte, by Brittany Cavallaro: I’ve never been a huge Sherlock Holmes fan, but this gender-bending retelling was lovely. Charlotte Holmes and Jamie Watson in a boarding school setting, becoming friends and checkin’ out mysteries.

Honorable Mentions: The Year We Fell Apart, by Emily Martin and 99 Days, by Katie Cotugno. These two feature characters home from boarding school, but are equally amazing and I love them both.

What your top ten freebie this week? Did I miss any amazing boarding school reads I need to check out?


11 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday-Books That Take Place In Boarding School

  1. Patricia says:

    Oh man, I knew I loved you. This is an amazing list. You *NEED* to read Truly Devious by Maureen Johnson if you haven’t yet – another awesome boarding school book is The Secret Place by Tana French.


  2. Jessica says:

    The Girl with the Glass Bird: A Knight’s Haddon Boarding School Mystery by Esme Kerr and Class by Jane Beaton for a modern taken on British boarding schools; Mallory Towers being an actual classic choice. The Tower Room , Adele Geras. I think I missed a major life opportunity by not attending British boarding schools, so sad!

    Agree that Hogwarts is the premier establishment though 🙂


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