Brock Cole

Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)

"Show a little maturity," he said, which I've doped out to mean: Pass all your courses, avoid detection in all crimes and misdemeanors, don't get pregnant.

Celine's father has left her with these instructions. She's not too worried about the last two, but she'll fail English unless she rewrites her Catcher in the Rye essay. And she keeps being interrupted, especially by Jake, the neighbor's boy, who's been dumped on her for the weekend.

An ALA Best Book for Young Adults
A School Library Journal Best Book of the Year
A Booklist Best Book of the '80s
A Publishers Weekly Best Children's Book of the Year


Read an Excerpt

ONE /That day I walk home from school carrying Test Patterns, the great painting of my junior year, which has hung for a week outside the principal's office and might have stayed there until the end of the term, but someone had written "sucks" after my name in the lower right-hand corner. I'm upset, but I won't paint it out the way Miss Denver wants me to. I don't know why. I have this idea that some restorer in the future might strip away the patch and see it. What difference would that make? I'm not sure. Perhaps I don't want this to be one of my secrets.I have to walk because the driver


Praise for Celine

"Vivid and intelligent."--Starred, School Library Journal

"Celine is one of the wittiest narrators to step out of the pages of young adult fiction...Her targets range from modern art to televangelism and her aim is true."--The Washington Post

"An original and disarming first-person narrative about a sixteen-year-old artist and her irresolute yearnings to find a center to her life...[A] mature, fully realized work, and one that sees an exciting author, with an authentic new voice, emerging as an important spokesman for contemporary young adults."--Starred, The Horn Book

"Start to finish, this book is a delight. It is funny, witty and poignant."--The New York Times Book Review

Reviews from Goodreads



  • Brock Cole

  • Brock Cole is the author and/or illustrator of many books, including picture books such as Buttons, a Boston Globe/Horn Book Honor Book, and novels such as The Goats, an ALA Notable Book. He lives in Buffalo, New York.
  • Brock Cole Copyright Tobiah Cole


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Brock Cole

American Library Association Best Books for Young Adults, School Library Journal Best Books of the Year, Booklist Best Books of the '80s, Horn Book Magazine Fanfare List, Publishers Weekly Best Books of the Year, Booklist Editors' Choice