The Faculty Lounge: A Novel (Hardcover)

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By the acclaimed author of Moxie, a funny, bighearted adult debut that is at once an ode to educators, a timely glimpse at today’s pressing school issues, and a tender character study, following a sprawling cast of teachers, administrators, and staff at a Texas high school

With its ensemble of warm and unforgettable characters, The Faculty Lounge shows readers a different side of school life. It all starts when an elderly substitute teacher at Baldwin High School is found dead in the faculty lounge. After a bit of a stir, life quickly returns to normal—it’s not like it’s the worst (or even most interesting) thing that has happened within the building’s walls. But when, a week later, the spontaneous scattering of his ashes on the school grounds catches the attention of some busybody parents, it sets in motion a year that can only be described as wild, bizarre, tragic, mundane, beautiful, and humorous all at once.

In the midst of the ensuing hysteria and threats of disciplinary action, the novel peeks into the lives of the implicated adults who, it turns out, actually have first names and continue to exist when the school day is done. We meet: a former punk band front man, now a middle-aged principal who must battle it out with the schoolboard to keep his job; a no-nonsense school nurse willing to break the rules, despite the close watch on their campus, when a student arrives at her office with a dilemma; and a disgruntled English instructor who finds himself embroiled in even more controversy when he misfires a snarky email. Oh, and there’s also a teacher make-out session in a supply closet during a lockdown.

As these people continue to manage the messiness of this school year, there is the looming threat of what will become of their beloved Baldwin High. Ultimately, at the heart of this unconventional workplace novel is a story of the power of human connection and of the joy of finding purpose in what it is we do every day.

About the Author

Jennifer Mathieu is the critically acclaimed author of seven novels for young adults including Moxie, which is now a major motion picture directed by Amy Poehler (Netflix). Her books have been translated into over twenty languages. A former journalist, Mathieu is a graduate of Northwestern and has been a teacher for nearly twenty years. She lives with her family in Houston.

Praise For…

Praise for The Faculty Lounge
This is a hell of a way to start the school year, announces a teacher in the opening pages of Jennifer Mathieu's delightful novel, a celebration of teachers who remain heroically human in nearly impossible times. Likewise, The Faculty Lounge is a hell of a way to announce a major new voice in adult fiction. I loved it.”—Steven Rowley, New York Times bestselling author of The Celebrants and The Guncle 

"The Faculty Lounge is painfully incisive and hilariously honest. Jennifer Mathieu takes readers behind the classroom doors, into the hearts and minds of a deeply relatable cast of public school educators who remain delightfully human and singularly courageous in the face of the superhuman expectations placed upon them. An exceptional read."—Elle Cosimano, New York Times bestselling author of Finlay Donovan Is Killing It

“Funny, moving, addictive, and oh so real, this book is an absolute love letter to teachers and the teaching profession. Mathieu has indeed given us complete access to the ever-mysterious faculty lounge—that curious place we as students stared at in wonderment of the secret lives of teachers. I adored this book!”—Jenny Torres Sanchez, author of We Are Not From Here
“Charming and insightful, The Faculty Lounge celebrates the dedicated, though imperfect, people who educate our children, while not shying away from the sometimes horrid and often hilarious aspects of life in an American public high school. This is a workplace comedy with heart.”—Camille Perri, author of The Assistants and When Katie Met Cassidy

"As important as teachers are, their lives have been largely absent from popular culture. The Faculty Lounge remedies this with a warm, profoundly moving, vividly drawn, and hilarious ode to educators. This book brims to bursting with dignity and love."—Jeff Zentner, award-winning author of The Serpent King and Colton Gentry's Third Act
Product Details
ISBN: 9780593475393
ISBN-10: 0593475399
Publisher: Dutton
Publication Date: July 23rd, 2024
Pages: 304
Language: English