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Restless Virgins: Love, Sex, and Survival at a New England Prep School Hardcover – August 28, 2007
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From Publishers Weekly
Jones and Miley are journalists and Milton Academy graduates who dig deep into the recent sex scandal at the prestigious Massachusetts prep school, focusing claustrophobically on seven classmates (four female, three male) over the course of their 2004–2005 senior year of high school. All seven are well liked, accomplished and pressured by their families. Eagerly subscribing to an intricate hierarchy of cliques among the Pryce Girls (named for a popular boarding dorm), the Day Student Girls and the most desirable boys, the seven are also stunningly sexual. At parties laced with alcohol and drugs, the girls engage in sexual play to gain popularity points and maybe a boyfriend. The authors catalogue a numbing litany of such hookups over the year, culminating in the revelation of a 15-year-old student's sexual encounter with five older boys in the locker room. The discovery led to the boys' expulsion and national publicity, but the real shame revealed in these puerile chronicles is the degree to which bored rich youth struggle to mimic the behavior of adults. (Sept.)
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In 2005, a student sex scandal marred the reputation of Milton Academy, an elite prep school located near Boston. Rather than focusing on the specifics of the incident, the authors, both Milton alums, try for a broader view of the school's sexual culture in this intimate account that follows a handful of seniors through their academic year. Bystanders to the scandal rather than participants, the profiled students face the ubiquitous concerns of privileged teens: college applications; the difficulties of balancing extracurricular activities, social life, and academics. What may seem startling, though, are the politics of the students' casual hook-ups and the language both sexes use to describe their attitudes and encounters. The unfocused narrative is weakened further by excessive detail that's often more mundane than revealing. Still, the authors, who base their telling on extensive personal interviews with their subjects, emerge with an honest portrait of contemporary teen sexual life that may prompt discussions across generational lines. For more insight into the sexual pressures affecting young adults, suggest Deborah Toman's Dilemmas of Desire (2002). Engberg, Gillian
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I wouldn't be so close minded about what girls (and boys) are doing nowadays. Maybe your kids are great, but I seriously doubt that none of their thoughts are about sex, boys and who they want to date. Growing up with girls and having my own has given me an inside view of what goes on in the teenage mind (whether I want to hear it or not!) The things I hear make me cringe to even think that my youngest daughter could consider sex by 10 or 11. Even girls growing up in a strict catholic school have these same urges and thoughts - it's human nature. We as parents shouldn't be naive about what happens now. Statistics show an awfully large incline in teen pregnancies, STDs and "hooking up" stories. I just hope others out there can keep and "open mind" about this and not look the other way, as to say, this couldn't happen to me.
I HAVE NOT read the book yet and can't say that I know a lot about it. I am here to purchase it today because I have heard nothing but rave reviews about it from other parents and news coverage. I am giving it a middle 3 stars without even reading it. Even if it doesn't completely pertain to me and my daughters' situations, it can help me to keep one eye open.
Whether this book is a good one or not, reading it, I am sure will at least help me to think objectively. My kids don't go to a boarding or Ivy League school - who cares?? Kids are the same everywhere.
Ultimately this book is one of the worst I've ever read, and finished.
It is not about much more than all the different sexual "hook ups" that occurred at this New England Prep School. Much of the description rests on the guycentric sexual practices in this high school, which apparently are widespread these days. It's a sad statement, sure, about the world teenagers live in, and although I bought it with the idea of sharing it with my 16 year old daughter, after reading it I'll send it off to Half Price Books or maybe throw it away. I don't want her to waste her time with it, as I did. All you really need to know is that oral sex is happening casually all across the country and that teenagers are basically going to be teenagers. Most will make it through adolescence alive and hopefully whole. Parents - we know what we need to do. Keep those communication lines open.
READ another book instead. NOT recommended.
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