“Party School” offers some enjoyment, but little substance

While John Hart’s debut novel may have some heart. It is clearly lacking when it comes to a deeper meaning.
The cover of Party School features a nude representation of the main character running across a football field.
The cover of “Party School” features a nude representation of the main character running across a football field.
Photo by Emily Ziajor



With college in mind, ever wonder what it would be like to attend a party school? In John Hart’s book “Party School”, Dylan Mills goes from a preppy high school, that he barely gets by in, to a ‘party school’ that supposedly has the best weed

While Dylan may have attended a prestigious high school, he was anything but prestigious. Dylan was a notorious underachiever all throughout his high school career. Life was not all depressing though, as Dylan excelled outside of school, even being a fifth string hockey goalie. He also managed to date Rosemary Silversmith, the most popular and beautiful girl in school. 

Rosemary was everything to Dylan. His parents loved her, he loved her, and everyone else loved her. Wherever and whatever Rosemary did, Dylan always seemed to be close by, with one notable exception, partying: a passion Rosemary held dearly. 

Despite her love of the frivolous, after high school, Rosemary will not be going to a party school; instead, she decides to go to the ever more prestigious “It School”. Dylan, who was rejected from the school, then realizes that his only option for college is not only a party school, but the most notorious party school, which is – ironically – called “Party School”. Rosemary understands their differences, declares she wants to head to college as a new person, and after the fact, drops Dylan like a hot potato. 

Fast forward to the present, when freshman year begins. Dylan adjusts to his stoner friends, and Rosemary finds a new – while hastily succeeded – replacement f0r Dylan. Freshman year changes Dylan, with some of his previous pretensions letting up: he learns to party, go streaking, and even to befriend some of the stoners he previously cared little for. 

While the book may have little substance in terms of text, its practical use is unparalleled in its ability to please aesthetically. (Photo by Emily Ziajor)

When a cheating scandal involving Rosemary’s family arises, Rosemary leaves her new man and decides she wants Dylan back. Actually, she needs Dylan back; but is it too late?

“Party School” is great as a quick read to bide the time between other novels, and only should be read if one truly has nothing else to read. 

The writing, as a whole, is not as detailed or refined as any work of a veteran author, and there are many times when the story jumps to the next part without any explanation as to what occurred in the “lost time” between important story beats.

Often, the story line progresses at a sluggish pace, while simultaneously including scenes that pass by so fast, one could miss them if they blinked. As a quick read, it will definitely get the job done, but if one is looking for something with more sustenance or any sort of deeper meaning, “Party School” will fall short.

It was hard to tell whether or not “Party School” is meant to be a romance novel or not. There are portions that have a heavy emphasis on romance, while other parts made the book seem more like a typical coming of age novel. Comparing the book to any good romance novel would be a disgrace, as it is closer in theme to a trashy romance novel than anything of literary merit.

When looking for a quick read to get one through a plane ride, take a chance and pick up “Party School.” Do so knowing the book has some shortcomings, however, such as a lack of refinement, a pace that makes the book hard to keep up with, and a confusing genre. Nonetheless, the plot had a couple fun turns and jokes which are sure to make one smile!

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  • Mr. AielloFeb 9, 2024 at 10:46 am

    Sounds satirical to me. Hopefully better than all the trash that Colleen Hoover is putting out there.