Google+ YA Romantics: If You Like .. Books About Pranks and Hazing

Monday, April 2, 2012

If You Like .. Books About Pranks and Hazing



In honor of April Fool's Day, Reclusive Bilbiophile's "If You Like" theme for the week is: books about pranks and hazing.

I'm going to separate the two. To me, pranks are good-natured fun, while hazing falls more into the bullying end of the spectrum. Some of the books on my list sort of teeter on that line -- I'm eager to hear what you think!! At the end of the post is some more information on the dangers of hazing.

I think I've loved stories about pranks ever since I saw:


Parent Trap

Parent Trap

Here are a few of my favorite books that incorporate pranks:

I love this book so much! Frankie, a student at a snooty prep school, finds out that her boyfriend is a member of all-male secret society called the Loyal Order of the Basset Hounds. She's ticked off, and starts tricking the Bassets into planning and carrying out an elaborate series of pranks.  Highly recommended!

Looking for Alaska by John Green
Miles leaves Florida for boarding school (do I see a prank pattern here?) in Alabama and meets The Colonel (his roommate) and a wild, beautiful girl named Alaska. This is an amazing book about friendship and death and guilt -- but pranks also play a large role in it. 

Shut Out by Kody Keplinger
Lissa is a popular cheerleader dating a football player. When the boys at her school become completely distracted by a football vs. soccer rivalry, Lissa gets all the girlfriends together to stage a sex strike. Until the boys agree to get along with each other, the girls will refuse to .. well, you get the idea. Though this book's plot -- based on Lysistrata by Aristophenes -- sometimes creaks a bit under the effort of making the retelling work, I love the way this author is so open about the subject of sex -- namely the choices that young girls make about sex and how these affect their self-image and relationships.

Some books about bullying and hazing:

Some Girls Are by Courtney Summers
Regina is one of the popular girls at school -- until the boyfriend of Queen Bee Kara forces himself on Regina at a party. The rumor mill spins, and soon Kara is convinced that Regina tried to poach her guy. After that, Regina's life at school is a nightmare -- she's relentlessly bullied and hazed.  The only person at school who will talk to her is Michael, an outcast whom Regina helped ostracize in the past. A gripping and powerful book.

This book begins with a prank gone wrong -- Natalie and her boyfriend Mike decide to play a prank on the guy they worry will win Palmetto Prince instead of Mike. When things spiral out of control, this becomes a suspenseful tale of blackmail and buried secrets.  

Divergent by Veronica Roth
I'd argue that the Dauntless initiation is definitely a hazing of sorts. What do you think?

Have you read any of these? Do you have any prank or hazing books to add to my list??

While these books are fiction, hazing in real life is not okay. It's scary and dangerous. Click on this graphic to be taken to an article at educationnews.org about the dangers of hazing. Thanks to Allison Morris for contacting me about the article and the graphic!



22 comments:

  1. I LOVE The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau Banks and Looking for Alaska. I totally want to read Shut Out Now. I love pranks.

    You're right about Divergent and Some Girls Are and The Betrayal of Natalie Hargrove are now on my list to read. Thanks for posting about them. They sound fantastic.

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  2. I am totally with you on Divergent! I didn't think about it that way but now that you mention it, you're absolutely right.

    It's like a scary ass fraternity!

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    1. Ha ha -- that's a way to put it. Or boot camp.

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    2. YESSS!! Bootcamp! With a hot leader named Four? Sign me up!

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    3. LOL I'll pass on that even though he is pretty hot. Be sure to send me some pics and a vlog, though...

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  3. Yes, I do agree with you on Divergent! I didn't think about it until just now when you mentioned it.

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    1. I guess some initiations cross the line into hazing.

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  4. Divergent is one of my top 5 wished books for April.
    Did u get my tweet about the blog design person?
    Do u participate in #RAK every month? If not, would u like to join?!

    Okay, lots of questions for me today haha...
    Nice blockquotes :)

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    1. I'll look into it. I don't really want any more books, but you know I'm always looking to give them away....

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    2. Giving is the main reason of the program :)

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  5. I've heard really good things about Looking for Alaska. It sounds like something I would be into.

    I love and would recommend anything by Courtney Summers. I think she accurately depicts how nasty teenagers can be, or how hard that time can be in a young person's life.

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    1. Totally agree -- I think that Some Girls Are is one of the most powerful and realistic books about bullying I have ever read.

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  6. I really liked Looking for Alaska. Annnd...I think I might have The Betrayal of Natalie Hargrove on my bookshelf. That's really sad that I can't remember. That tells you I have too many books! LOL!

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    1. Looking for Alaska was such an amazing, heartbreaking book.
      Betrayal of NH isn't quite on the same level, but it is a fun read.

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    2. I'm sure I responded to this last night. Blogger is so weird lately -- it's making me nervous. *runs to back up blog*

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  7. Absolutely the Dauntless haze Tris and the newbies!(I could SO never be Dauntless...)

    I read and LOVED The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau Banks! That book, gah! Never heard of it or the author, happened upon it at my library, what a FIND! Now I'm wishing I had a copy of my own! Such an AMAZING book. I need to reread and review it....:)

    Love these posts Jen!

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    1. LOL -- as soon as they asked me to jump on a train, I'd be SO out of there. I'm a wimp!

      So happy to find other Frankie Landau Banks fans. She is one of the best YA heroines around!!!!

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  8. The Lying Game Series by Sara Shepard. Sutton and her friend's lying games are pranks.

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    1. OOOOH -- good one. That's absolutely the perfect book for this list!

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  9. I don't condone pranks or hazing in real life, so it does not sit well with me as a topic for viewing or reading. I tend to side with the unfortunate 'victim'. It's NOT funny.

    Here endeth the sermon. I really did go off.

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    1. I see your point -- I'm not much of a prank puller, though once I did put a plastic cockroach in my husband's shower. Like you, he was not amused.

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