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3.31  ·  Rating Details  ·  7,381 Ratings  ·  812 Reviews
Philadelphia high school who doesn't care about the prom. It's pretty much the only good thing that happens there, and everyone plans to make the most of it-especially Ash's best friend, Natalia, who's the head of the committee and has prom stars in her eyes. Then the faculty advisor is busted for taking the prom money and Ash finds herself roped into putting together a ga ...more
ebook, 224 pages
Published February 2nd 2006 by Puffin (first published March 3rd 2005)
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Dreamingintherain No, you might be able to download an excerpt though. Try checking if your library has it

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Jan 18, 2009 Becca rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
About 1/5th of the way into this book, I realized that this book was what an upper middle-class, suburban girl would write if she was writing about "normal", lower middle class kids.

Anderson starts referring to the number of kids that are crack-whores, in jail, etc. but none of the characters in the book get into any kind of "serious" trouble. This is simply not the truth for large groups of lower middle class kids. Many lower middle class kids have friends who get into serious trouble. Ashley h
I've mentioned this before but Halse Anderson's Speak is one of my all time favorite books, YA or otherwise. I recently discovered that she's written a handful of other books, so I've been chugging through them. So far none has been anywhere near as well written as Speak, but Twisted and Catalyst were competent and better than most of that YA drivel that is out there.

Prom, however, is a complete turd. Total dud. Halse Anderson generally gives her characters a fantastic voice. Her narrators sound
*** Read for the first time on October 10th 2009: ***
Sad, funny, very realistic (no high-school fairytale) and quotable:
Underprivileged high-school senior Ashley Hannigan tries hard not to drop out of school during the last months. She has more detentions lined-up than days left to sit them off, works her butt off at a pizza parlor in a Romping Rat costume, lives with three siblings and another in the making in a house that is constantly under repair, because her dad has more enthusiasm than ti
black lamb
May 17, 2013 black lamb rated it did not like it
Shelves: reviewed, kids
So I haven't quite finished this book but I'll get there today, and I decided to just write my review now since I have a pretty good grasp on this book - over halfway through and the plot hasn't changed much from what was presented in the beginning, so I can pretty much guess how it's going to end. If anything does change my mind about it later, I'll update this review. Finished. That said...

Anderson's niche is young adult novels about suburban, middle-class white girls with dysfunctional famili
Jan 15, 2009 Susie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
My first modern YA book that I've read for my class this semester. First of all, I forgot how awesomely easy it is to read at a lower reading level, these books are going to go fast!

I thought this book would be kind of cheesy, girly story about prom that would have existed in my day, a Sweet Valley High-like story, but I was pleasantly surprised. The story is about a girl who lives a low income life in Philly and ends up getting involved with prom after a teacher steals all the prom funds. I re
Mar 30, 2016 Bert rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
So the front cover has that 'last thing she ever wanted' tagline and the word prom written in red with a knife or something, so i guess i was expecting a teen-slasher-type affair here, maybe. So i kept expecting people to get stabbed, and then about 100 pages in still no one was dead not even the senile russian grandma and i was like huh, maybe this is just a whole book about some girl helping to plan a prom and possibly i'm cool with that. I thought TJ was going to be the obvious suspect as the ...more
Nov 20, 2008 Taylor rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: book-club
This book "prom" is about a tradgedy that happend at school (more like a crime), and prom might be called off. Everyone now has to save the prom on time, and forget all about there lives.
its a good book, It had me sucked in on some parts, and bored on others, but in all it had a lot of action and things to look foward to reading. The characters are interesting and the drama is fantastic. i enjoyed reading this book, its given me so many laughs.
i really hope you read this book, you will enjoy i
Amy Snyder
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Maya M.
Nov 24, 2012 Maya M. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The book Prom by Laurie Halse Anderson is a young adult, realistic fiction story about an eighteen-year-old girl named Ashley Hannigan (Ash, for short) who goes to Philadelphia high school and DOES NOT have any interest for the school prom. On the other hand, her best friend Natalia (Nat, for short) is the head of the prom committee and has been waiting for prom ever since she started high school, she has “prom stars in her eyes.” When the prom committee found out that the school faculty advisor ...more
Apr 09, 2008 Breona rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: girls of all ages
This book was very interesting to me it started off with this girl named natalie who was in highschool and she was dating this guy who had droped out of highschool. Her best friend
was the head of like every committee in school and she was just
the girl that rarely like school.

Then she was havien problems at school so she gto in detention for being late for the fifth or sixth time that semester and
her friend needed help planniong the prom so she asked the principle to let her do that instead of d
Apr 22, 2009 Nicola rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, teen
Laurie Halse Anderson has long provided voice to the kind of teens that are overlooked by other authors – the lonely introvert in Speak, the college-obsessed Type A personality in Catalyst – and, in Prom, she turns her attention to the ‘normal’ kid. Ashley isn’t going to college; her ambitions don’t stretch further than having enough money to buy a car. She has plenty of friends, but she’s not the popular girl. She has a boyfriend, but it’s not exactly true love.

Unfortunately, there’s little plo
Oct 20, 2015 Heather rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I liked this book a lot to be honest and found myself wanting to pick it up. I can understand why it has some bad reviews as it doesn't really have much of a plot but for me it was just super fun to read. I loved the main characters and found myself laughing out loud quite a few times. Not bad for blindly picking this up at the library!
Morgan F
The narrator of this novel, Ashley, is a self-proclaimed "normal" high school senior who has no desire to go to her prom. However, she gets roped into making the prom happen when her best friend and prom enthusiast, Nat, needs her help when a teacher steals the funding. Ashley is an average kid with average problems, but her wit and insight, along with an eccentric cast, really make this book shine. Don't be fooled by the girly title and cover, this is a book you don't want to miss. I've read it ...more
Asghar Abbas
Nov 28, 2015 Asghar Abbas rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fun read, very different from Speak.
Michelle Arrow
Jan 05, 2013 Michelle Arrow rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: chick-lit
I really enjoyed this book because who doesn't like to read books about prom? It was romantic, at times, (if you read it, you'll know what I mean), and was really Girly and fun. I don't know if the movie Prom is based on this book because I haven't watched it in a long time, but I hope it is! A great quick read for any teenage girl wishing for their prom to come quicker. ;)
Nov 24, 2011 Brian rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ashley Hannigan, a normal high school senior living just outside of Philadelphia, is not excited about the prom. Don't tell that to her mom, her aunts, or her next-door neighbor and best friend Nat, though -- they could not be more excited if they tried. Nat's on the prom committee, and everything is going well. That is, until Miss Crane, the prom committee chairperson, is busted for taking all the prom money. Just like that, it's all gone. No hotel, no food, no DJ, no security -- no prom. But N ...more
Penn 6
Ashley Marie Hannigan is the main character in this prom night fairytale that takes place at Philadelphia High School. Ashley isn’t the go-all-out-on-prom type, however, her best friend Natalia is. Natalia is the head of the prom committee and Aisha, Junie, Monica, Lauren, and Dishelle are members who all consider this as the biggest night of their teenage lives. Everyone’s chatting about it, everyone’s looking forward to it, but not for long. So, what happens that just about ruined everything—t ...more
Jose Venegas
Young adult fans are not be messed with. We know that we want clever-antagonist, protagonist, plot and drama.
Laurie Halse Anderson delivers all that good stuff in "Prom", which opens in students being excited about prom. Later students are finding out that prom has been cancelled. One student heard that the reason prom has been cancelled because, the new math teacher had stole all the money earned for prom. Nat whop is the in charge of the prom committee is shocked and upset. Now Ashley, Nat's
Anderson is one of our very favorite authors, and her sheer talent as a writer is what makes this book more than another fluffy, pink contribution to the uninspired drivel hawked to teenage girls. To be sure, _Prom_ is a lighter read than most of Anderson's other offerings; we love the idea of teenage girls finding her through this more accessible title and then moving on to some of her more challenging books (_Speak_, the _Seeds of America_ series, etc.). The narrator's voice is frank and real, ...more
Jan 24, 2010 Emily rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ashley and Natalia are best friends. However, Ashley hates the prom and wouldn't be caught dead attending, while Natalia is queen of the prom committee. However, things change fast when the math teacher steals the prom fund, and Ashley is roped into organizing the alternate prom with no money to her name.

I like the way Anderson writes in teenager-speak, from the first-person perspective of Ashley, a senior dating a former high school drop-out and falling into detentions without trying. I also e
Truthfully, I can't think of much to say about this book, so here are a few dot-points instead:

I liked:
• the characters. Ashley made a very interesting protagonist, if a little unpredictable.
• the storyline. I have yet heard of a book also revolving around a prom.
• the witty satire. Laurie Halse Anderson has an excellent sense of humour, and never fails to make me laugh.
• the lack of exaggerated romance. It was refreshing to learn about Ashley and TJ's (troubled) relationship. It's hard to come
Jan 04, 2010 Atrebs rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Who couldn't love a book that references a Butterscotch Krimpet and the King of Prussia mall? I enjoyed reading this book and its silliness. Thought I was skeptical about an 18 year old girl dating a 19 year old drop-out, wife-beater-tee in-a-hoodie-type at the beginning and her seeming acceptance of being 'normal' and less successful in school, I was pleased to see the outcome of the story remain a bit more redeeming than one would expect based on the first chapters. Also, what I love is that d ...more
Emily Rhoads
Mar 19, 2012 Emily Rhoads rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So, I went into this book with my only Laurie Halse Anderson experience being Speak. Don't get me wrong, Speak is one of my all time favorites. I have read it probably ten times. But, I was settling into my bath and expecting to be traumatized and triggered. I was happy to find I was wrong! This was completely different from Speak. This book was so good I had to refill the tub - twice - with hot water just to finish reading it all in one sitting. It was so light and sweet, and Ashley was a chara ...more
Jim Lang
Apr 19, 2014 Jim Lang rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I'm a real fan of Laurie Halse Anderson. She creates characters that are real and writes books that matter. That's why Prom was disappointing, because despite Anderson's exceptional writing talent, the characters never seemed real, and the situation -- a Philadelphia teen's struggle to pull off the perfect prom while somehow learning more about herself -- seemed forced and contrived. I just never really cared about Ashley Hannigan, her family, her best friend, or the crazy grandmother who lived ...more
Nov 04, 2014 Kevin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
High school story about low income kids losing their prom and banding together to make it happen. It wasn’t as spot on as other books of Anderson’s I’ve read, though it could have been all the New Jersey accents in the audio book that were annoying me.
Katrina Gudgeon
Dec 17, 2015 Katrina Gudgeon rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebooks
This was an okay story. I had a bit of a deja vu moment while reading this book. When I was in high school, I somehow got stuck helping the prom committee with my friends, and then I was forced to go to prom, and I actually I more fun than I thought I was going to. This is exactly what Ashley just went through, so I know this book was actually kind of realistic. However, all the other characters fell flat for me and I really had no interest in what was going on. I really only kept reading it to ...more
Apr 01, 2016 Kim rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars. A fun read about being a senior in high school and belonging to crazy but loving families. I liked it!
Camaria Madison
I think this book is GREAT!
May 24, 2016 Jeremae rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Okay, so maybe 1 star is an overreaction. But I just can't let myself give it any more stars. 'Prom' was just painful to read. From the first few chapters, I hated the tone and the voice of Ash, the main character. She was the embodiment of everything I hated about being a teenager. Angsty, over/underprivileged, whiny, loser boyfriend, and most of all, not even trying. I hated that she is categorically 'white' but talks like a 'black' kid from the Bronx. It was so bad that I really wanted to sto ...more
Julie Suzanne
Oct 17, 2015 Julie Suzanne rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: No one.
Shelves: hs-library
An available audiobook in the library, and that's the only reason I "read" this book. I quit at the halfway point because WHO CARES what happens to the protagonist? She's supposedly a poor girl in an inner-city high school who has more detentions owed than one could possibly serve, yet we have no idea for what. She skips class, sleeps off hangovers on weekday mornings with her parents' encouragement, and never once gets in trouble for any of that, yet these old detentions keep haunting her but s ...more
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