What Do I Read Next?
Hinton's second book, That Was Then, This Is Now, was published in 1971 after she overcame a serious writing block. The story concerns two foster brothers moving in opposite directions: one becomes successful with school and girls while the other falls into drugs and crime.
Hinton's 1975 novel Rumble Fish continues to deal with youths and gangs. In this story, Rusty James struggles to earn a tough reputation.
The 1979 work Tex is Hinton's most seamless novel. The story is set in California, where a traveling father has left his two sons in each other's care. As with her other stories, this one is action-packed.
The classic Catcher in the Rye by J. D Salinger (1951) relates two days in the life of an idealistic boy after his expulsion from school. Holden Caufield's disillusionment with the world is more profound than Ponyboy's, but comparable.
A novel by Pulitzer-Prize winner Paul Zindel 1969's The Pigman is about two sophomores who are outsiders in their own community. John and Lorraine pass the time by pulling pranks. It is during one of these pranks that they meet the "pigman" and are led to betray the friendship they have created.
For a real change of pace, a story where the "outsider" takes her revenge is Stephen King's Carrie (1974). It is a brilliant book of horror set in the tense world of adolescent rivalry.