My Favorite Books During High School

I’ve been out of high school for ten years now. I know, I’m getting old, please send help! But I was looking at my bookshelves the other night and got rather sentimental looking at some of the books that meant so very much to me when I was younger. I am so much of a different reader (and different person, thank the Lord) than I used to be, but so many of these books are still some of my all-time favorites. I also believe these ten books shaped me as a person and ultimately lead to me becoming the person that I am today.

The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides
I still consider this one of my favorite books of all time. This was the book that made me first realize how much I loved lyrical writing. The descriptions in this book are so haunting and are still able to evoke so much emotion from me to this day. This will always be one of the most beautiful books I’ll ever read, and it’s easily my most read book behind all the Harry Potter books.

Tithe (Modern Faerie Tales #1) by Holly Black
You all might have read the story about how this book (and a Borders Outlet employee) changed my reading life in my review for The Cruel Prince, but this is the book I am most thankful I read while I was in high school. And this was the book that made me fall in love with all things Fae. Nothing but love and respect for my Fae Queen President, Holly Black.

Mary, Mary (Alex Cross #11) by James Patterson
For a very long time in my life, I would have said that the Alex Cross series was my favorite series behind only Harry Potter. Like, I was obsessed. I know I picked Mary, Mary, but it was only because Kiss the Girls (book two and my true favorite) is still in my old bedroom back in Michigan at my parent’s house. My grandma is the reason I’m the reader I am today, and she still only really reads mystery books, so I guess that just rubbed off a bit on me when I was younger, because I could not get enough of James Patterson’s stories. And I am not sure I’ve touched a James Patterson book in the last decade now.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
I feel like this is the book that every high schooler reads and loves, and my edgy self was no different. I remember being so damn blown away by the poem and seeing it was written on a paper bag. Like, freshman Melanie was shook. But I still love this book, and I’ll still defend this book, because it honestly changed my life and truly made me feel not so alone.

Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton
This will probably forever be my favorite classic. And this is still one of the most atmospheric books I’ve ever read. I weep when I think of how beautiful the passages and messages are in this book. And even though I discovered this my sophomore year of high school, I ended up writing a college thesis about Ethan Frome that was longer than the damn book, because it impacted me so profoundly. This book will always be a part of who I am, and I’ll cherish my many copies forever.

A Walk to Remember by Nicholas Sparks
Okay, so the summer going into junior year I was working at this local ice cream shop that was only open during the summer time, and I made the mistake of brining this book to work so I could finish it on my lunch break. You all, I was weeping in the back of this local mom and pop ice cream shop that people from my church owned. And it’s always a memory I will remember. I loved Nicholas Sparks when I was in middle and high school (I’m telling you guys, I was emo), but this one was probably my favorite of his. This was also probably the first book I read that dealt with a teen having cancer, and maybe that impacted me to be passionate about the things I am now, because I’ll always love this book. Hell, I’ll always love the movie, too! Mandy Moore is such a babe!

Darkfever (Fever #1) by Karen Marie Moning
I hate using the term “book boyfriend”, I truly do, but Jericho Barrons was my OG book boyfriend. Without question, he was the first character in literature that made me feel some type of way. I was a senior when I first stepped into this angsty fae filled Ireland, and I’m still reading KMM’s books a decade later. I have no shame. The nostalgia of this series is something I don’t even have words for, but I love thinking back to reading them. And I totally remember finishing this in my parent’s basement while running on their treadmill. Then I immediately got off and was so sad to find out no others were released yet.

A Feast for Crows (A Song of Ice and Fire #4) by George R.R. Martin
People think that ASOIAF is only popular now because of the show, but I promise you there was a huge midnight release party at Flint’s Borders back while I was in high school. Was it Harry Potter level? No. But it was still a big turnout. Maybe it was because I played a lot of D&D and MTG (not to make a gross stereotype that only *nerds* like ASOIAF), but me and so many of my friends loved this series and we were so excited to get our hands on a new book. Little did we know…

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Harry Potter #6) by J.K. Rowling
Again, friends, I’m old. I grew up reading Harry Potter, and Harry wasn’t that much older than me when I first read about him. And we even actually became the same age upon a release (because the movies made the last few come out two years apart)! I truly believe no other book series will ever mean more to me than Harry Potter, and I feel bad putting it on every list, but it is truly deserving of every list because of the impact it has made on me not only as a reader, but as a human being. Also, the sheer amount of times I reread this series in high school is a number I don’t even want to know.

The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
Okay, I wanted to save this one for last, because I might get some shit for it. But hello, my name is Melanie, and you know what I will always love? The Catcher in the Rye. Out of all the classics we read my freshman year, I didn’t connect with any of the characters the way I did with Holden Caulfield. Is he a self-centered, pretentious, privileged, little shit? Yeah, he is. But guess what? So was I (#roasted). This book just spoke to my heart and soul and I’ll always love it, and I’ll always see myself in Holden, struggling in that in-between of being a teenager becoming an adult.

Okay, I hope you all enjoyed! I know, I know, I’m an old lady! But I just felt really compelled to write this post up for some reason. Maybe I’ll do a reread of each of these and see how I feel now in 2018? I mean, I legit already want to reread Tithe, so I think it might be a cool idea to do some of the others that I haven’t touched in a while, too! But I hope you all have an amazing day, and thanks for coming down memory lane with me! Happy reading, lovelies!

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54 thoughts on “My Favorite Books During High School

  1. I still love Perks, and the movie was so perfect, cast, soundtrack, ugh, everything. I’ve only read Eugenides’sssss Middlesex, and I agree his writing is so lyrical, I need to read more from him 🙂

    I really hope you do some reread posts! I did a post recently about my faves from when I was younger, and yeah, some I haven’t reread in years so I’m a bit worried I won’t like them as much??

    I’ve always meant to get into Holly Black, I vaguely remember reading one of hers years ago but I guess it just got lost in my memory banks. And your thoughts in the Catcher paragraph made me lol. I haven’t read it yet but again, one I’ve always meant to, especially because it’s so polarizing. I’m glad you love it!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I still love Perks so much, too. Always and forever! Ahhh! Middlesex is one I loved in high school too. Detroit set books are my weakness, on top of his writing? Lord, help me! So much perfection!

      You have to give Holly Black a new try, boo! And then we can gush forever together about it! ❤

      And I'm so scared to go back and reread some of these again! But I want to so badly!

      Happy reading, love! 💗xx

      Liked by 1 person

  2. A Feast for Crows … it was an ok book just not as exciting as the others. To be fair, that’s mainly because that and the one after it (Dance of Dragons?) Happened at the same time so the characters were split between the two. Sadly, Feast for Crows got the less adventurous ones 😦

    Ps

    I’m 30 in September if that makes you feel any younger!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh my gosh, love! And boys just get better looking with age… it’s not fair! Hahaha! But yeah, Feast for Crows SO is the worst in the series… lmao! Easily, babe! I hope you’ve been well! I miss you! 💗xx

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Better with age … you say the kindest things! I’ve seen your Instagram pics recently. Looking as beautiful as ever 😊 I’m doing good, thanks. Hope you’re lovely self is doing well.

        It really was. Just hoping George doesn’t make us wait 9 years then release something just as bad x

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  3. *grabs cane and waggles finger* If you are getting old… then what am I? Haha!

    Catcher in the Rye was one of my favorite books when I was in high school, and I re-read in a couple of years ago and absolutely hated it. 😦 It was definitely a book I needed then, but I sadly outgrew it.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hahaha! We are only as old as we feel, Kaleena love! Oh wait… I’m feeling kind of old too… hahahaha! And that’s totally the reason I’m so scared to reread The Catcher in the Rye! Haha! They all can’t be Jane Eyre, I suppose! Hehe. 💗xx

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  4. This was such a great list and made me sentimental for all the books I read when I was younger! I’ve been out of high school for 15 years now. Where did the time go?! I’m sad to say I didn’t read much during my high school days (except books for school and Harry Potter, of course!) Thank you for sharing, Melanie! Xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Girl, you leave me feeling some type of way each and every time. You seriously look 21! Praise bless! GIRL – WAIT FOR THAT SKIN CARE HAUL BEFORE AUGUST and me just gushing about how much i love you! 💗xx

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Great list! My reading journey began in high School starting with paranormal romance genre. I used to devour a lot of vampire, fae, mermaids, and demons novels. Tithe is the first fae series I’ve read and it became my favorite series. Because it’s a very long time ago, I forgot what it’s all about but I do remember that I absolutely loved it. No one can write a fae novel better than Holly Black.

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    1. Raven, we could have been best friends… and you would have started me out on PNR way sooner, babe! Haha! And no one can write a fae novel like Holly Black! Preach, babe! 💗xx

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  6. Loved this stroll down memory lane! Had a couple of YASSSS moments haha! I was also obsessed with the Alex Cross series & girl nobody could tell me anything cause as soon as one was released I was at Barnes picking up my copy 😂 I didn’t get to Mary Mary though. Perks was sooooo relatable, I even took my bff to watch it in the theatre after he read the book haha! Again, I love G’MA & the fact that she played such a big role in you being a bookworm ☺️💕 Catcher & The Rye was a epic fail for me cause I had a awe full 8th grade English teacher that made us write the passages over and over again…ruined it for me 😩😂 funny thing, I never knew Nicholas Sparks I was watching and loving all his movies with no clue they were based in his books 🙈😂 YOU ARE THE REASON I’ll be reading Tithe 🖤 this was such a fun post to read 💕

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Omg… best comment ever! Grammy is going to be loving all the love you’ve been giving her lately! Hahaha! And oh my gosh, seriously book twins. But Alex Cross WAS LIFE! And oh my gosh, I honestly loved Nicholas Sparks movies too, and then I realized he wrote books first… hahaha! Like, that copy in the stack? Totes the movie cover! HAHA! We would have been high school besties, without a doubt! 💖xx

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  7. From the title i thought these will be books they made you read in highschool… and for a sec i was like, huhh great school!
    Haha… would be nice.
    Virgin Suicides was great! Have you read his other books? Are they like this? Based on their i thought they might not be.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hehehehe! I wish! Would have made high school a lot better! But I have also read Middlesex by him and it’s very different, but the lyrical and lush writing is still there. 💗

      I hope you’re having an amazing weekend and having happy reading, Norrie love! 💛✨

      Like

    1. This makes me so happy, Cailin! Maybe I will end up rereading it! And yeah, Perks is just a once in a lifetime book. I’m so curious about the new book the author is going to come out with… this year, I think? 💖xx

      Liked by 1 person

  8. This is such a good post, I love it!
    I read The Perks of Being a Wallflower in 2016 after I watched the movie and I adored it!! Charlie is my precious little human and I will forever love him.
    I feel old, too. lol. You are not alone. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I think we all loved The Perks of Being a Wallflower in high school haha. I haven’t read it since then, but I love the movie. Plus, it was one of the first books I read in English and I felt so accomplished understanding almost everything!

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  10. same same same on the catcher in the rye!! i looooved that book. i used to get so mad when people would complain about how whiney Holden was – like, we were teenagers. we were all whiney af. this is suuuuch a fun post to read (as usual) ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hehe, thank you, Emma love! Yeah, like, I am so deathly scared to reread it, but it was my jam back in the day! Especially like… 99% of YA protags are whiny as all hell, like… leave Holden alone. K thanks bye!

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  11. I remember the days when teachers assigned us books for us to read. I used dread during those days. I got most of the information off from Wikipedia or sparknotes in case we had a quiz the next day. Lol. There were some books I am glad that were forced to read. I still remember them. The morals behind those stories were amazing. Books like Thousand splendid suns, to kill a mockingbird, Peak, house of a scorpion are ones worth to remember.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hahaha, yes! This entire comment is THE BIGGEST MOOD, Rosy! And I completely agree, love. The only stipulation is Jane Eyre, because I hated that in high school, and then really liked it when I read as an adult? So… I don’t know! But still! Hahaha! I hope whatever you’re reading now is five star worthy, love! Happy reading! 💗xx

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Hahaa the best books I read in high school weren’t for school. Teachers had us read the most boring stuff that was filled with all types of symbols or alliteration and crap. A favorite high school book: Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve been meaning to read Eleanor & Park forever, so I’m talking this comment as a sign to finally do so! Haha! So thank you! And I totally agree. Like, high school ruined any chance of me enjoying Great Gatsby, just because of the constantly “SYMBOLS, SYMBOLS, SYMBOLS!” Haha! 💗xx

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