Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The View from the Top” as Want to Read:
The View from the Top
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The View from the Top

3.07  ·  Rating Details ·  441 Ratings  ·  80 Reviews
Eighteen-year-old Anabelle?s last few months in her coastal hometown are bittersweet. Instead of the quiet precollege summer she expects, Anabelle makes some surprising discoveries about herself as she navigates romantic entanglements and changing friendships. Through shifting points of view in seven interconnected stories, we glimpse the limits of how well her friends rea
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published May 13th 2010 by Dutton Books for Young Readers (first published May 1st 2010)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The View from the Top, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The View from the Top

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Erica Leigh
Did you ever read a book and realize
that it didn't really have a plot?

That's how this one was.

It's a quick read, funny at times,
decently written, but I felt deeply
unsatisfied in the end.

You're given just a small glimpse into
each character and how they're connected
to Annabelle--who is kind of boring, selfish,
self-destructive, and a mystery to everyone
(but that doesn't stop any of them from wanting
to be with her).

Which I still don't get.

I mean, all she does is complain about her
love life/boyfrien
Jun 23, 2011 Gemma rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This is one of those realistic fiction 'watch how the people interact' books. Boring and yes, realistic. Sort of.

Several authors could have handled this well. John Green, Sarah Dessen, Beth Kephart... they could have pulled this off. They write with a definitive style (comic, clever and realistic, beautiful) and could have made The View From the Top excellent. Worth my time.

Unfortunatley, Hillary Frank did not execute it correctly. She mapped out a potentially good set up, complete with a good s
Laura (Booksforbreakfast)
This book was my reality check to never trust reviews! The word of mouth I was getting on this novel was pretty negative but once I picked up this book, I really enjoyed it!

I did think that Anabelle was a little pretentious and annoying, as well as very self pitying and depressing but there was still something I liked about her. Another thing that I wasn't too much a fan of, was how everything wanted to be with her or liked her - come on. Is she that amazing? I don't think so. I would've given t
K Hobbs
FAVORITE ONE READ THIS YEAR!! It really connects with teens and drama of my life. I love it.
Jun 15, 2010 CLM rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Annabelle, soon to be a freshman at Oberlin, spends the summer after high school wallowing in angst: should she break up with the boyfriend she once thought she would marry? should she pursue his best friend instead? should she be embarrassed by her affectionate father who never had the opportunity to attend college? should she visit a nude beach in an attempt to do something different?

I think I picked this up at the library because I liked the ferris wheel on the cover (Annabelle is afraid of h
Sarah Gerry
Jun 11, 2014 Sarah Gerry rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Personally I am not a huge fan of reading but this book honestly changed my views. As a sophomore in high school sitting down and reading is not my first choice. This book struck my attention immediately, it was humorous & relatable. I brought this book everywhere I went, it was my first productive distraction! I kept this book a lot longer then I should have from my high school library but as selfish as I was being I didn't mind

If someone were to ask me if I recommended this book to them I
Jul 21, 2010 Kasia rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: youngadult
Don't be fooled by the gorgeous cover on this one! This book was very unsubstantial and boring. It lacked plot and character development, so there was nothing to draw the reader in. I was surprised because I enjoyed the author's previous book, Better than Running at Night. The chapters alternate between the point of view of the 6 main characters, and I think the author should have focused on fewer characters so that they could be more developed. When I was 3/4 of the way through the book it felt ...more
May 15, 2010 Karen rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I loved the overall theme and simplistic poetic writing but the characters I just didn't find myself connecting to. Annabelle was the main character and almost all the other characters seemed to be in love with her which I didn't get at all because to be frank, I didn't see anything that was that special about her. Average looks, kind of a my life sucks personality, not that fun, and not that talented. I couldn't get how she could have a pretty girl, two popular guys, and another guy in love wit ...more
Jan 20, 2015 Jenn rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I don't even know what to say about this book. It was funny at times and heart wrenching at others but absolutely NOTHING happened. No plot. At all. And you don't really get to see how the others are dealing with their own issues, just how innocent Anabelle gets through her own shit. Idk what to think. 2.5 I rounded up 'cause I'm nice.
Jan 11, 2016 Sierra rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 20, 2017 Daniclark22 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
good book.. quick read, I actually wanted to keep reading! good high school story about the feelings you have the summer before college!
Lindsay Tramble
Jul 30, 2011 Lindsay Tramble rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I was so disappointed with this book I don't think I can explain it in the 19922 characters I have left to do so. I picked it up from the library last night in high hopes. The short blurb on the back made it seem like the novel was a sweet, nostalgic story about summer friendships and love in the small town of Normal, Maine. That's what I was expecting. Something charming and sweet and innocent. But that's exactly the opposite of what I received upon reading "The View from the Top".

First of all
Nov 28, 2016 Makayla rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I came across this book during a bargain deal over the holidays, and absolutely adorned the cover of the Ferris Wheel. The lights had caught my eye and sparked my interest, that's why this book is a prime example to simply not judge a book by its cover.

when I first opened the book up, I noticed a contents page that had a list of seven stories, and seven names; that led me to believe that this wasn't a book, but a compilation of them. I only realized that this wasn't the case when I noticed the s
Sara Grochowski
Nov 15, 2009 Sara Grochowski rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
I knew had to read Hillary Frank's newest release when I asked one of the librarians at my local public library what she'd read recently and been impressed by and she named THE VIEW FROM THE TOP. Coupled with the fact that some of my recent favorites have been books that I had never heard of before, just randomly selecting them from the shelf, I knew that I had to give THE VIEW FROM THE TOP a shot.

I've been reading many wonderful contemporary YA novels lately and I always think that the next one
Levi C.
Nov 06, 2015 Levi C. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“Love is when the other person's happiness is more important than your own.” H. Jackson Brown, Jr. Usually when you read a book, you have a set idea of what you think might happen, and what the main idea of the book is about. The View From the Top, by Hillary Frank, is not one of those books. With the wide variety of things that take place, you never know when it’s going to end until it does. But, even then, you’re still so caught up in the book that you just keep imagining how things would hav ...more

I picked this up expecting a fun, summery, sweet read. I love books that have multiple characters connected with one person. However, I DO NOT like it when they are connected so boringly.

We have Anabelle as our protagonist, a 17-year-old girl who is going to college in the fall. She's the only person in her entire friend group who is leaving town and she has a summer to sort out her relationships. The book is narrated from six different people
This is what I would like to call a subtle read. This book is a book that I think would be best read in the bathtub with the lights off and the pages illuminated by candles. There really is no plot, just the characters being how they are as they go through there last few days of summer. It was sometimes hard to pick up the individual character mini-plots but when you get them, the rest of the book starts to make sense. While reading this book I didn't expect everyone to be related to each other ...more
Nov 30, 2010 Erin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This a a short book about 5 kids on the verge of adult hood in the small town of Normal, Maine. For most of them they are graduating and their lives will forever change after this summer. There are 4 friends and one other girl that seems to find her way into the story sparatically.

This story mainly seems to follow Annabel. Everyone else is much more of a supporting character. Annabel is leaving for college after the summer and she is struggling to keep her love for her boyfriend, Matt and also t
Dec 13, 2010 Jude rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

I've had many favorite books through time, and after a while, I pick them up again and they are no longer my favorites. The View From The Top has been on my Favorite Book List for a while and for some reason I felt like picking it up again in this past Read-a-Thon and I discovered that I loved it just as much as I did the first time I read it <3

The View From The Top is told by 6 different points of view, all teenagers with different perspectives on an e
Apr 02, 2011 Aryelle rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2011
I picked up this book because it has a gorgeous cover. I thought that maybe it would be a really cute short read, because of how small the book itself actually is. I also saw that not many people have read it before and I thought that I might as well take a stab at it.

This was a cute little book. It really doesn't have any deep or meaningful message and it is just about a girl and her friends and how they spend the summer together. I found the plot rather choppy and the story jumped from one po
Christiana Williams
I am tempted to actually give this book 4 stars, but I won't let myself purely because I have given some of my favorite books in existence a 4 out 5 so I have to dock this one a star. View from the Top reminded me that books don't have to be dystopian or supernatural to be good- there are interesting things to found in books about real life and regular people in the real world.

It was a quick read and a short book, but I loved that each chapter was like a vignette in a different character's life
Judy (Geeky Reading)
Apr 03, 2014 Judy (Geeky Reading) rated it did not like it
Shelves: own

"'That they can stay together. That they can be high school sweethearts and stay together. I just thought, if you’re devoted enough, if you never stop showing each other that you’re totally, completely in love, you can get through anything.’” (Hardback, pg. 121)

I’m honestly just disappointed in this book.

I thought it sounded really good, and I love multiple point of view stories, and the cover is really pretty. I felt like this was going to be a good book. And then it really wasn’t.

It star
Jul 24, 2011 D. rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I thought that this book was a jewel. The characters are all engaging; each in its own way. I found the frame narrative-esque format of the novel to be wonderful. I love how each character speaks of his or her own impressions of the town and the people in it. The relationships between the characters are very interesting and they seem like they could truely happen. I thought that Annabelle's role in the novel was interesting; I felt like I could see parts of myself and my friends in her and her f ...more
Princess Bookie
Nov 15, 2009 Princess Bookie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read2010
My Thoughts: Wow! I did not expect this book to be sooo good and to enjoy it as much as I did. I loved the alternating chapters as well. I liked knowing what each character thought. We meet Annabelle who connects all the other characters in this book. She is dating Matt, but she has feelings for Jonah but Tobin has feelings for her. Than there's Mary Tyler who has secrets all of her own and the same with Lexi. This book was really good. Who does she end up with? Matt? Tobin? Jonah? Or someone el ...more
Monica Fumarolo
I hate giving books a less than glowing review, but there really wasn't much of anything that spun my wheels with this novel (which pains me because after reading the jacket summary, I really wanted to like it!). The story centers around Annabelle and gives very quick snapshots of her final summer at home in Normal, Maine before leaving for college. While I liked what Frank was trying to do and showing how strangers can actually be so closely linked and their lives interconnected, it just felt l ...more
Trisha W.
Nov 03, 2009 Trisha W. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: my-books, read2009
I really liked this book. This was my second book that was written by chapters, and each chapter was a different person. It really made me stay interested in the book, being able to read what each person was feeling at the same moment something happens, instead of just one side of the story.
The book starts off with Anabelle. I really liked Anabelle's character in this book. She has some issues with her boyfriend, as in liking her boyfriend's best friend, but Anabelle is not the only one with com
I have been wanting to read Hillary Frank's The View from the Top for what seems like forever, and I was really let down.

The View from the Top takes on the huge task of linking an entire cast of individual characters (in a six degrees of separation way). It's a move that Frank executes. Each character has his/her own story to tell--some stories were amazing, while other characters' stories fell flat. In the end though each character has a connection to the other characters.

While I liked this boo
Sep 25, 2016 Sarah rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is about Annabelle in the summer between her senior year of high school and her freshman year of college. She is a very smart girl and everyone seems to be attracted to her. The book focuses on her and her boyfriend Matt, his best friend Jonah, Matt's sister Lexie and a Tourist from New York Mary-Tyler.
In my opinion The View from the Top was an okay book. It lacks plot and has a very vague theme. The book can be very choppy and jumps to different parts of the story in weird ways. Alt
Jul 08, 2010 Dodie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Being a teen is rarely easy, but being known as the "nice girl" doesn't seem to help Annabelle. Best friend Lexi wants Annabelle to stretch, and Lexi's brother Matt, Annabelle's first and only boyfriend, wants her to never change. Talk about confused ... Matt's best friend Jonah has been flirting with Annabelle, just about the only girl in school he hasn't 'scored' with, and Lexi is suspected of being a lesbian.

Frank tells her story in alternating chapters told by these characters and others - s
Aug 22, 2010 Kat rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: borrowed, glbt, ya, 2010
I really liked the format of this story - separate POVs that built upon the previous, told a bit like short stories but each dependent on each other.

I didn't really like the main female character all that much, because the author really made it seem like she needed a boy to make her happy which irritated me. She really only seemed to like boys because they liked her to begin with, not because of their own merits (though those came later) which was also irritating.

That being said, I'd recommend
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Friend Is Not a Verb
  • Tagged
  • Kiss It
  • Denim Diaries 1: 16 Going on 21
  • Somebody Everybody Listens To
  • The Last Good Place of Lily Odilon
  • Wish
  • Love, Cajun Style
  • The Latent Powers of Dylan Fontaine
  • Don't Stop Now
  • The Sky Always Hears Me: And the Hills Don't Mind
  • The Half-Life of Planets
  • Invisible Girl
  • All About Vee (Fat Girls in LA, #1)
  • Character, Driven
  • Keep Sweet
  • Brown Skin Blue
  • What They Found: Love on 145th Street
Hillary Frank is a freelance writer based in Philadelphia. She is the author and illustrator of the novels Better Than Running at Night (Houghton Mifflin 2002), I Can't Tell You (Houghton Mifflin 2004), and The View From the Top (Penguin 2010). Better Than Running at Night was named a Top Ten First Youth Novel by Booklist and a Best Book for Young Adults by the American Library Association.

More about Hillary Frank...

Share This Book

“Maybe it's not a choice between the two of them. Maybe there's a third choice. Or a fourth or a fifth. Or maybe it's not about having a guy right now. Maybe it's just about having friends.” 0 likes
More quotes…