Study Break: 11 College Tales from Orientation to Graduation

Feiwel & Friends. Mar. 2023. 288p. ed. by Avachat, Aashna, ed. Tr $20.99. ISBN 9781250848055.
Gr 11 Up–This is an appealing short story collection for college-bound juniors and seniors looking for a taste of what the experience might be like. The authors are from Generation Z, just a few years removed; who better to telegraph the nuances of academic life and newfound independence? In tales that move from fall to spring semester in chronological months, each author pens a story of college life. While some are about partying and relationship drama, others are explorations of choosing a major and identifying a religious affiliation on campus regardless of what their mother thinks. With these four examples, the range is as wide as the authors had creativity to share. Mentioned in the opening, the collection was born from a need for more representative teen fiction set in college. It delivers. The stylistic format of semesters and months replicates the rollercoaster of college emotions: nervousness at freshman orientation to graduation elation. No single story stands out because they are all evenly matched in tone to the atmosphere of the anthology, a testament to each author’s individual strengths. The identity and experiences of both the authors and their characters are diverse.
VERDICT If the purpose was to provide more college-age voices in teen literature, consider it done. Readers will look forward to more works by these authors and new endeavors in this age and experience category. A worthy purchase.

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