TOP 5 FRIDAY: Boarding Schools

Posted by Kesia on Friday July 10th, 2015

To an eternal day-school girl, boarding schools are glamorous, thrilling and scary – the friendships! The adventures! The midnight feasts! I was jealous and awed by my boarding contemporaries, their grown-up independent polish and knack for excitement. But it’s not all jolly hockey-sticks, of course (and, if I’m honest, I wouldn’t exchange home comforts for dorm and prep in a million years) …

1. Culver Creek Preparatory High School in Looking for Alaska by John Green

‘I go to seek a Great Perhaps’ quotes Miles (dubbed ‘Pudge’ in the grand tradition of boarding-school nicknames). Instead, he finds excitement, love, friendship … and tragedy (this is a John Green novel, after all). It’s proper heart-wringing, soul-baring stuff.

2. Knight’s Haddon School in The Glass Bird Girl by Esme Kerr

Knight’s Haddon is the ultimate romantic boarding school. Set in sweeping parkland and turreted within an inch of its life, it’s a bonafide castle, complete with gothic windows, ivy and – of course – mysterious secrets …

3. Umfraville Hall in Killer Game by Kirsty McKay

Umfraville Hall, Skola Island, Arse-End-Of-Nowhere, Wales. McKay’s isolated boarding school is shiveringly remote – and the existence of an Assassin’s Guild among the boarders isn’t exactly encouraging …

4. Hogwarts in the Harry Potter series by J. K. Rowling

It’s a magical boarding school – and besides, we don’t do Top Fives without mentioning Harry Potter. Period.

5. Malory Towers in the series by Enid Blyton

As a child, I DEVOURED Blyton’s stories, especially the saga following Darrell’s journey from first form to upper sixth. Comparatively quaint, Malory Towers is somehow a tremendously exciting school, crammed full of pranks and scrapes. A true classic.

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