There are so many reasons to love this book. It’s so real and so amazing in the way that it was written – it was instantly popular when published by Hinton (AS A TEENAGER – OMG) and is still popular and relevant to teenage life today. I read somewhere once that this is considered the first of our modern YA novels… sort of a blueprint by which all others are written. I believe it. In an interview she gave, Hinton basically said she was bored by the books she had to read as a teenager and decided to write something she’d actually want to read. You gotta love that fierce teenage determination.
In The Outsiders, you follow the stories of teens in rival gangs – the Greasers and the Socials. While we don’t have gangs and cliques with the same names in today’s teenage society, we do have plenty of rivalry and hatred between groups of people that make this classic story one for today’s teens as well. If you’ve read the book, you know how powerful the story is. If you haven’t, you should.
For some reason, I never had to read this as a student. I really wish I had. As an adult I can appreciate it as I look back on my teen years and identify areas of my life that related to this, but it would have been a great one to make some connections to while I was dealing with high school.