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(Private #1)

3.79  ·  Rating details ·  18,107 ratings  ·  1,041 reviews
Tradition, Honor, Excellence... and secrets so dark they’re almost invisible

Fifteen-year-old Reed Brennan wins a scholarship to Easton Academy—the golden ticket away from her pill-popping mother and run-of-the-mill suburban life. But when she arrives on the beautiful, tradition-steeped campus of Easton, everyone is just a bit more sophisticated, a bit more gorgeous, and a
Paperback, 227 pages
Published July 1st 2006 by Simon Schuster Books for Young Readers
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Fariha the billings have an elusive quality and as reed describes herself as being an outsider before she arrived at easton she would want to be part of a di…morethe billings have an elusive quality and as reed describes herself as being an outsider before she arrived at easton she would want to be part of a distinctive group of friends - and also probably the popularity you automatically receive by being a billings girl(less)

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Average rating 3.79  · 
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 ·  18,107 ratings  ·  1,041 reviews

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Cristina Monica
Nov 02, 2013 rated it really liked it
My first re-read of this book in 10 years. I knocked off a star because it was ten times more juvenile than I remembered - the boy drama, ugh! - but it was still intense and dangerous in a really entertaining way. I would not want to go to this boarding school but seeing everything unfold - good and bad - was fascinating. I'm hoping to re-read the whole series before the end of summer. Wish me luck.
Feb 14, 2009 rated it did not like it
Reading this book was mild torture.

The protagonist Reed Brennan is extremely flawed and one-dimensional. She truly has no redeeming qualities, interests or goals. Readers learn that she hates her home life and that she wants to become a Billings Girl, an elite group of 3rd and 4th year students who live in a special dorm. Her obsession with them is trite and poorly written. I kept waiting for her to grow a spine or to evolve even slightly. Apparently, this happens in book two, three, or four in
Oct 05, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition

NEVER EVER EVER EVER EVER EVER AGAIN!ABSOLUTELY AWFUL! I only read this book coz I lost a bet and I swear it was the worst punishment I've ever gotten.

This book made me want to claw my eyes out within the first three pages. All she cares about is what other people think of her and what she can do to fit in. Reed basically copies everything everyone does and spends her time reassuring herself that she belongs at Easton. She moans and moans about how she has to stay at Easton because she can't go
Nov 12, 2012 rated it did not like it

Never, EVER, EVER in my life have a read such a naive character! Reed Brennan, the main character (our point of view), is bitchy, annoying, shallow,and fu*king DESPERATE.

Why? Because throughout the book ALL Reed whined about was how she wanted to be one of those plastic barbie dolls.

Someone please blow my brains out.

227 pages, 227 PAGES. Can someone kindly explain to me how this story (or SERIES) got published?

There was no sign of g
Sarah Elizabeth
This was quite a slow contemporary story about a girl starting at a new private boarding school.

Reed was an okay character, but I didn’t really get where her obsession with the ‘Billings Girls’ came from! One minute she was just starting a new school, and the next she just couldn’t get over her infatuation with these mean girls.

The storyline in this was about Reed starting at a new school, and wanting to be in a clique of girls called the ‘Billings Girls’ who lived in a specific house on campus.
Chelsea (chelseadolling reads)
I'm in the process of rereading all my old favorite books from high school and I am so amused. This wasn't particularly great but this whole series is BOOK CRACK. It's appealing in the same way as the show PLL is. I just can't stop. If you want something super quick and scandalous, this is it.
OoOoOo…it’s starting to feel like high school again! I started reading this series when I was in high school, and my oh my was I HOOKED. I recently found this series again and figured I would relive the overly dramatic and pretentious characters that make up this wonderfully snooty tale. It’s the story we all know and love, a scholarship girl comes to a prestigious academy and chases after the rich and popular preps that inhabit it…and don’t forget the scandals!

Reed Brennan has just been accept
I had expected to love this because I usually love boarding-school genres. I loved Enid Blyton’s The Twins at St Clare's and First Term at Malory Towers series. I also managed to read up to 10 books of the Sweet Valley High series by Francine Pascal (stopping finally when it felt repetitive), marveling at how easy and relatable they were to read. But Private just didn’t make it. It was an easy read, but the story was just out of place, I’m not sure I’ll read the rest or give it another chance.

Elizabeth Wallace
Mar 11, 2009 rated it did not like it
I was mortified by Private. No, not because I looked deep into myself and saw some of the traits of the protagonist, because it was dumb. I'd heard many good things about the book until finally I cracked and got it from the library.
It was a total waste of time. Here's the plot (or my interpretation):
Poor Reed has a problem (okay, a few problems). She has a barely-mentioned druggie mom who absolutely traumatizes her, so she heads of to a private school. Sounds great, right? But she has no intere
This is by no means my kind of book. It's a blatant girly book, and it screams Gossip Girls. I got it as a present last year and just got around to picking it up- wanting a light read.

It basically features 16 year old Reed, who moves away from her dysfunctional family to a posh, private school on a partial scholarship. Naturally, she's willing to do anything to fit in there.

It really, really surprised me. I was absolutely sucked in from the beginning. I thought Reed was very likable (though she
Elizabeth Aguilar

Disclaimer: minor spoilers (only in relation to problematic content)

Reed Brennan is a suburban scholarship student beginning her Sophomore year at Easton Academy. She is excited for this fresh start away from her pill-addicted mother and complacent father. Unfortunately, she finds that it’ll take much more to belong at Easton Academy than just stepping onto its manicured lawns. 

Soon after starting, Reed finds herself attracted to the Billings girls
Page (One Book At A Time)
Oddly enough, I both loved and hated this book. There were quite a few things that I didn’t like. For example, throughout almost the whole story Noelle calls Reed “glass-licker”, and it rubbed me the wrong way. I also disliked how Reed would do anything they asked and barely bat an eye about it. But, the events were interesting and at times suspenseful. I think Reed wanted the perfect life, and felt like The Billings Girls had it. I think there’s a lot more to her character that hasn’t been reve ...more
Apr 20, 2009 rated it did not like it
Shelves: already-own-read
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Also find this review on - Don't Stop Readin'

Given the fact that I’m reviewing the first book in the series after finishing 12 of them, my opinions might be a bit biased changed now. But I’ll try to capture what I felt after reading it back then as much as I can.

So, in my opinion Private was awful. Stupid, immature, boring, repetitive and did I mention totally AWFUL?
Anyone with a healthy, well-functioning brain would read this book and discard the whole series right away but I had actually made
Ella Perkins
Dec 11, 2008 rated it it was amazing
This book is about a 15-year-old girl named Reed Brennan. She went to a high school in Croton, Pennsylvania. When she got a half scholarship to Easton Academy. There everyone is rich and comes from a big city, like New York. Also they all wear brand names. She has never seen any group of girls they are so rich. The group of girls is called the “Billing Girls”. She tries everything to get in the cool house with them. In order to get in you need great grades. That is her only issue. But also there ...more
May 31, 2010 rated it it was ok
Recommended to Bree by: friends
Private is your classic, trashy, YA gossip girl esc novel. The story centers around Reed, a teenage girl attending a renowned prep school on a scholarship, and her attempt to become accepted to the most popular clique on campus, called "The Billings Girls". My friends have all been obsessing over this series for awhile, and I finally decided to see what the fuss was about. Since my friends and I had planned on going to the beach together, I decided to read it yesterday while working on my tan. P ...more
Oct 21, 2012 rated it really liked it
a very fun read. light and quick, it's easy to slide right into Reed's life as she works her away around a new school - a new boarding school that is! - and around the ins and outs of friendship, love and trying to keep her grades up.

It's very light so it doens't go in to too much detail about boarding school life. This is Reed's sophmore year and the first time she's away from her parents 24/7. Not that her homelife is so great.

But, of course, there is the 'it' crowd of girls. There's the hot
Emerald Sue
Apr 16, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: young-adult
“Leanne, would you kindly remove your nose from my ass? It's starting to chafe.

Overall Thoughts
I didn't know a thing about this series going into it. My boyfriend (now husband) would always go to the library to pick up books for me and he stumbled across this series and brought me the first book, thinking I would enjoy it. Well he was right, I was instantly hooked and reserving the next book within 24 hours. This series is definitely not realistic and is pretty dramatic lol , but it's lots o
Jan 21, 2013 rated it really liked it

Private by Kate Brian
1. The book by Kate Brian is the first of a series and is essentially about finding yourself and who you are from your greed and the people surrounding you.

2. Because it is written in the point of view of the main character, Reed Brennan, it makes us feel sorry for her in any situations that she gets caught up in. For example, when she gets called down to the office because her grades are bad (and since she’s at the boarding school based on a scholarship), and Ms.
Oct 23, 2014 rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 30, 2010 added it
Dear Glass-Licker,
Oh Reed Brennan, what am I going to do with you? Why are you so delicate and oblivious? Still, I've got to give you props for sticking to your goal of fitting in at the ever-so prestigious Easton Academy. But what's with all the self-demeaning stunts you've pulled this semester? That is so not cool Reed. I know that you are ashamed of what you used to be (and pretty much still are), but that is no excuse. You have the potential of being much, much more.


So if all yo
Janie Johnson
Jun 04, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2015-challenge
I read this book to fulfill a challenge for a read-a-thon I am participating in. I was not too sure about it since it is a 'boarding school' plotline, but I was pleasantly surprised with the story and really liked it.

In this book you have Reed Brennan who finds her scholarship to Easton, a private school, as a means of running away from her normal everyday life, but what she finds here is far more than she bargained for. She struggles figuring out who she can trust and actually count on.

I actual
Sep 10, 2018 rated it liked it
This book is different. I love going into books blind because the synopsis has a tendency to spoil things and I hate when that happens. This book isn't bad and I am planning on reading more from the series because I can't quite figure out what this book is all about. I think it's a type of contemporary but it's kind of dark. It's not even that anything dark has happened (at least until the end) and even then you are left with just an unknown. The feel of the book is just odd.Not sure if it's odd ...more
Samantha (WLABB)
Aug 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: pre-2017, ya, audiobooks
I don't know why, but I love a boarding school setting, and this one came with lots of delicious drama. Reed was looking to escape her mother and her life at home, and did so by winning a scholarship to Easton Academy. As expected, she was constantly swimming upstream. She was looking for a way to fit in at the academy, and set her sights on becoming one of the Billings girls. This had all the things you expect from a crew of rich and privileged kids, and I am definitely looking forward to the n ...more
Jul 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
Re-reading this old series. Such high drama and intrigue!
Briar's Reviews
Nov 01, 2015 rated it really liked it
Private by Kate Brian is a dramatic, teenage angst drama perfect for the Young Adult audience.

This novel is a great turn in the Young Adult genre. Why? Because it's not supernatural. I love that this book is not part of the supernatural trend, and it is all about teenagers and their petty drama.

We follow 15 year old Reid Brennan in Easton Academy where she is a scholarship student among many rich kids. It is full of the typical teenage drama - popular cliches, boys, silly drama, high school angs
Tiny Pants
Aug 15, 2008 rated it liked it
I avoided this series for a long time, and upon actually reading it, I don't know why. I read the fifth book, loved it, and immediately went to the library to check out all the others. I would definitely recommend reading them in order -- the plot is continuous through the first four and then (I'm assuming as I haven't read yet) through the second four, and there's not a lot of rehash of "the story so far" so it will all make more sense to read in order.

While this is indeed yet another mean-girl
Jacquelyn Simon
Mar 03, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: boarding-schools
Hmm. Ok. So I went into this book (for a second time) remembering absolutely nothing about this book. Keep in mind, I’d only read this book a year previous, so I should’ve remembered it.
It was decent, but nothing to write home about. Although I am going to continue on with the series... I’m just hoping for some MAJOR character development from Reed.
As of now, her character is WAY too dependent on other people for her happiness. For me personally, that is a huge pet peeve. I’d like to think of
“I was a sorry excuse for a girl.”
― Kate Brian, Private

I loved the Private series. I read each and every one. This is the first one, the "starter" in the series. I loved being introduced to Reed and all her friends. It's a pretty cool YA series.

I did think this one was overly long. As much as I liked this series, I actually preferred the "Privilage" series for some reason.

I also think the last few books in this series became to bizarre and brought the series down a bit. I did not like the route
Ashley ❣️
Jul 31, 2019 rated it really liked it
I listened to this on audio and I felt like that was the way to go. I thought it was an interesting read. It was fun and enjoyable and a quick read. I felt like this was another book like the Pretty Little Liars series or something and it was fun to read and listen to this. I thought it kinda sucked cuz their were cliques lmao but yea what else can you expect.
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Kate Brian is the author of the SHADOWLANDS TRILOGY (SHADOWLANDS, HEREAFTER & ENDLESS), as well as the New York Times bestselling PRIVATE and PRIVILEGE series, and the wildly popular MEGAN MEADE'S GUIDE TO THE MCGOWAN BOYS. She also writes teen fiction under the name Kieran Scott. ...more

Other books in the series

Private (1 - 10 of 14 books)
  • Invitation Only (Private, #2)
  • Untouchable (Private, #3)
  • Confessions (Private, #4)
  • Inner Circle (Private, #5)
  • Legacy (Private, #6)
  • Ambition (Private, #7)
  • Revelation (Private, #8)
  • Paradise Lost (Private, #9)
  • Suspicion (Private, #10)
  • Scandal (Private, #11)

News & Interviews

  Justin A. Reynolds burst onto the YA scene last year with his debut book Opposite of Always, a heartfelt novel about love and friendship...
46 likes · 5 comments
“I half hoped Mr. Pearson would waLk out holding Thomas by the scruff of his neck, still wearing his boxers or pajama pants or whatever the hell a guy like him slept in. But seconds later, when Mr. Pearson emerged, he was red with rage and completely alone.
Thomas was gone.”
“Leanne, would you kindly remove your nose from my ass? It's starting to chafe." - Noelle” 11 likes
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