favorite coming-of-age books

October 30, 2014

Coming-of-age is more of a theme than a genre, I suppose, but I tend to really like books that can be categorized this way. Maybe it’s the nostalgia (I am very prone to it) or the fact that all humans share the adolescent experience so it usually resonates with me.

I think, also, that any good novel will have characters that change over time (usually when they encounter some sort of difficulty) and coming-of-age provides a perfect framework to make that happen.

I don’t know, do you think the term “coming of age” has any real meaning when it comes to books? Is it too broad?

Regardless, here are my favorite coming-of-age books at the moment:

favorite coming of age novels- kapachino

A Prayer For Owen Meany by John Irving – this is also still in my top five novels of all time.

A Tree Grows In Brooklyn by Betty Smith – slow, sweet, tender. Amazing characters.

The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides – flawless writing; completely drew me in to obsess about these strange but beautiful girls right along with the collective narrator.

favorite coming of age novels - kapachino

To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee – this is everyone’s favorite for a reason. Anytime I re-read it I’m blown away.

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer – just the sweetest and most heartbreaking story ever.

Joyland by Stephen King – along with the excellent character development you get an interesting setting, element of mystery, and a satisfying ending.

What are your favorites? Any I need to add to my list?

Posted in: books & reading, books & reading, favorite books

Comments on favorite coming-of-age books

  1. 1

    From Nora:

    I’ve never read a Stephen King novel before; well, I started one (Salem’s Lot) but couldn’t get into it/finish it. Agreed on To Kill a Mockingbird, Prayer for Owen Meany & A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. I haven’t read the others so will have to check them out at some point.

    I think coming of age could be its own genre as it most certainly is a theme!

  2. 2

    From Lisa of Lisa's Yarns:

    I need to read A Prayer for Owen Meany! A Tree Grows in Brooklyn is One of my all time favorites. Another book I’d add to this list which is something that was recently written is Tell All the Wolves I’m Home.

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