Restless Virgins: Love, Sex, and Survival at a New England Prep School

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9780061192050: Restless Virgins: Love, Sex, and Survival at a New England Prep School

An honest, intimate look at the lives of today's teens—told through the true experiences of friends at a New England prep school

Established in 1798, Milton Academy has a proud history of achievement. It has educated artists and CEOs; it has produced a long line of distinguished scholars and dignitaries; and it has shepherded students through the world of high-pressure academics for generations. Since its founding, the public face of Milton had always been one of integrity and pride . . . until a sex scandal rocked the campus and made headlines in the spring of 2005. The offense? Teenagers doing no more than what others had done before them—except this time they got caught.

Restless Virgins is the riveting real-life story of a group of seniors who were there as the "incident" (as it came to be called) unfolded: Whitney, the athletic and sensual beauty every girl wants to be; Annie, who craves acceptance but is torn between the desire for peer approval and musical success; Jillian, the smart one who is sick of high school drama and desperate to go to college; and Reed, a "hockey god" who has it all but whose charisma masks a secret insecurity.

From "friends with benefits" to STDs, today's teens face a wider array of social and sexual opportunities—and pressures—than ever before. Through its eye-opening yet sensitive depiction of a group of normal kids with normal struggles, Restless Virgins offers an important look at contemporary adolescence no teen, parent, or educator can afford to miss. And it is written by two recent Milton graduates who know this world—and these students—like no others.

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About the Author:

Abigail Jones graduated from Milton Academy and has degrees from Dartmouth College and the University of Edinburgh in Scotland. She has worked for the Atlantic and lives in Boston.



Marissa Miley is a graduate of Milton Academy and the University of Pennsylvania and has worked for Harvard University and the Atlantic. She lives in New York City.

From Booklist:

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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