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Characters Coming of Age

  • Holy Childhood Library 150 W. Main Street Harbor Springs (map)

Presenters:  Brandon Hobson, Ray Robertson, Tess Sharpe
Moderator: Dianna Behl


There are distinct characteristics which define a novel as a coming of age story: an adolescent with a unique voice, formative events that shape who the character becomes, and emotional growth. Typically, we think of this type of novel coming to an end when the youth reaches adulthood, but adulthood can be a bit fuzzy. It is not necessarily defined by age, but rather by a level of maturity that is reached. It is interesting to consider the decisions a writer must make to determine when their characters have come of age. How does the world decide when a child has grown up? What knowledge must be gained, and what experiences lived? These authors target such an impressionable period in life, but one which we all know firsthand, making these stories somehow familiar to us all.