If the title has you wondering whether this is inspired by Sylvia Plath’s The Bell Jar, you’re on the right track. After Jam’s boyfriend dies, she goes to a therapeutic boarding school for emotionally fragile, highly intelligent teens in Vermont. A journal-writing assignment for her Special Topics in English class mysteriously transports her to cherished memories of Reeve. After each time, her journal is filled in her handwriting. She must make sense of what she experienced at Belzhar and what she’ll do when the semester ends and the journal must be turned in.
“Expect depth and razor sharp wit in this YA novel from the author of The Interestings.” – Entertainment Weekly
“A prep school tale with a supernatural-romance touch, from genius adult novelist Meg Wolitzer.” —Glamour
“Basically everything Meg Wolitzer writes is worth reading, usually over and over again, and her YA debut . . . is no exception.” —TeenVogue.com
If life were fair, Jam Gallahue would still be at home in New Jersey with her sweet British boyfriend, Reeve Maxfield. She’d be watching old comedy sketches with him. She’d be kissing him in the library stacks. She certainly wouldn’t be at The Wooden Barn, a therapeutic boarding school in rural Vermont, living with a weird roommate, and signed up for an exclusive, mysterious class called Special Topics in English.But life isn’t fair, and Reeve Maxfield is dead. Until a journal-writing assignment leads Jam to Belzhar, where the untainted past is restored, and Jam can feel Reeve’s arms around her once again. But there are hidden truths on Jam’s path to reclaim her loss.