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Thursday, March 10, 2016

I love this trope, sub-genre, setting: Boarding Schools!


I Love This Trope, Sub-Genre, Setting is a new feature on my blog in which I discuss a trope, sub-genre or setting that I love and tell you about books that are shining examples of said trope, sub-genre or setting.  Feel free to play along and please let me know about your favorite books in this realm and whether you like this trope, sub-genre and/or setting as much as I do!
Today I am spotlighting the setting of: Boarding Schools, which I would define as any book that largely takes place at a boarding school and, more often than not, in which the characters are full-time students at a boarding school!


Don't get me wrong, I loved my family and I liked high school but I also always had these dreams of going to boarding school (specifically, on the east coast).  I think it's because boarding school seems like more of a precursor to college than regular high school and something about that independence appealed to me.  This setting is almost always YA or bordering on NA and I love it because it can range from fantasy (Richelle Mead/Claudia Gray) to horror (Lois Duncan) to contemporary (Jillian Dodd/Curtis Sittenfeld) to mystery (Lisa & Laura Roecker) to science fiction (Kazuo Ishiguro), etc.  Sometimes, but not always, really intense friendships (The Raven Boys and Harry Potter) are involved because you have that microcosm of the boarding school -- going to school and living with the same group of people and spending all of your time together.

Have you ever read a book set at a boarding school?  Do you like this setting? Ask me any questions below or recommend to me your favorite boarding school books!

27 comments:

  1. I love the boarding school setting especially in YA horror, for some reason. Oh, and VA and Bloodlines! :) Down a Dark Hill sounds interesting - I hadn't heard about that one yet.

    Majanka @ I Heart Reading

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  2. I totally like the boarding school setting and always dreamed of going too. I am reading A Study in Charlotte right now and it takes place at a boarding school in CT!

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  3. Boarding schools are definitely one of my all-time favourite sub-genres. I was actually about to do a similar post to this so you took the words right out of my mouth! I don't know if I'd ever like to go to boarding school myself but the idea of it has always appealed to me.

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  4. I do agree with the friendships they are a lot stronger. It can help with the tone and the setting of the book too. Boarding schools can be pretentious or creepy or magical. i do like them too.

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  5. I've always thought going to a private school or boarding school would've been cool. However, I don't really ready many books in this genre. I have read Anna and the first book in Vampire Academy though!

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  6. I love boarding school books too, Eva, although I haven't read many!
    From your list, I've only read Anna, HP, Bloodlines and VA! I also really liked the first Hex Hall book's boarding school setting.
    I too wanted to go to boarding school when I was kid. It was so exotic-sounding!
    Love this, Eva!

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    1. I've wanted to read Hex Hall forever, thank you for reminding me!!

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  7. I love boarding schools too! They are such fantastic settings. There always seems to be a lot of drama no matter if it is contemporary, fantasy, or horror. Plus I agree, it leads to pretty intense friendships usually.
    Cassi @ My Thoughts Literally

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  8. I honestly can't remember reading books set in boarding schools or even prep schools at the moment, although I'm sure I have, but I can think of a few set in alternative schools that I loved. They veered more in the fantasy genre. I always wanted to be one of the boarding school/prep school students, myself, when I was young. There was something exciting and exotic about it.

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  9. YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Ok, sorry about all the excitement there. I really love books set in boarding schools! Especially if they are creepy, but it doesn't have to be for me to love it. I am headed now to check out some of these that I haven't read on goodreads. :)

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  10. Oh gosh, what a fun post. I love seeing Catcher in the Rye up there. I adore that book. Have you tried the series by Carol Goodman, Blythewood? It is another great boarding series with a historical setting.

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  11. I used to love books set at a boarding school as a kid an dteenager (Harry Potter, The Twins at St Clare's) but havent read any in last couple of years. But The Raven Boys is on my reading list for April so I am excited to get back to this sub genre :)

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  12. I like this setting too as it is a self-contained world apart from the world.

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  13. Oh wow, I haven't thought about Lois Duncan in ages. I used to inhale her books and Down a Dark Hall was a favorite. I think I may still have an old copy and if so I totally want to read it again. Thanks for reminding me of an old favorite! :)

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    1. That is awesome, I also have not read that one for SO long, since I was a kid but it stuck with me this whole time so that must mean something, right?!

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  14. I like boarding school books, too. Harry Potter, of course. I need to read The Raven Boys and Anna and the French Kiss. But boarding schools make great settings for books.

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  15. I never thought of it before, but I agree! I love boarding schools, too. Dead Poets Society, Looking for Alaska, I'd Tell You I Love You But Then I'd Have to Kill You are a few I would add.

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  16. I love this setting too! I haven't made a specific effort to read more books set in boarding schools, but the ones I've read I really enjoyed and I think the setting added to that a lot!

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

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  17. I've loved several of the books you have on your list, HP, of course, and The Raven Boys especially! I don't think I'd actually want to attend a boarding school because I'm too much of a homebody, lol, but Hogwarts would definitely be an exception! :D

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  18. Hahaha! I used to beg to go to boarding school growing up. But noooooo ... I couldn't even go to summer camp because my mom thought something would happen to me. *sigh*

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  19. I do like the setting of a boarding school especially if it looked like Harry Potter's! I'm sure real life would be entirely different, though. Lol! I read and loved Vampire Academy. I also read Ever Night. Loved the first few books but hated the ending. I read both series so long ago so who knows what I'd think now. The Raven Cycle series is a total favorite.

    I read The Headmaster by Tiffany Reisz set in a boarding school and really enjoyed it! It centered on the teachers, not the students. Creepy and hot!

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  20. Yes! I am so with you! I love reading about boarding schools! I like that the characters are so close that way! And it makes for some good storytelling! I loved Bloodlines, Anna, VA, and HP! Some other favorites are Hex Hall, The Sweetest Dark, and The Burning Sky!

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  21. Does it get any better than VA??? (no, it doesn't)
    I've read Evernight and Anna, Hex Hal is also good too. I'm a sucker for this setting but I feel like it's gotten so much flack lately for being cliche...like vampires. I kind of miss vampire books and boarding school books...

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    1. So do I! I want some of those vampire books back, where is the fantasy/boarding school YA?!

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  22. How cool we had the same topic. And no duplicates! I did leave off HP, though.

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