PROM, by Laurie Halse Anderson
Interest Level: Upper Grades
Ashley Hannigan is a “normal” teenager. In her eyes, this means she isn’t at the top of her class, and she’s not at the bottom—but she gets in enough trouble to keep her off the “favorites” lists of the majority of her teachers. Her best friend Natalie, is head of the prom committee, which is something that Ashley honestly could not care less about. She thinks prom is a ridiculous excuse for unattractive, unlucky people to live in a fantasy land for one night, only to wake up the next day to their same, boring lives. Then something happens to change her mind—the prom committee faculty advisor steals all of the prom money and she finds herself in the middle of planning a low-budget prom with her best friend. The book follows Ashley’s transformation from a young girl with no realistic ambitions in life, other than moving into an apartment with her slacker boyfriend, to a purposeful young woman who decides to enroll in community college and forge a plan for the rest of her life.