The Serpent King

    • 4.5 • 48 Ratings
    • $8.99
    • $8.99

Publisher Description

Named to ten BEST OF THE YEAR lists and selected as a William C. Morris Award Winner,The Serpent King is the critically acclaimed, much-beloved story of three teens who find themselves--and each other--while on the cusp of graduating from high school with hopes of leaving their small-town behind. Perfect for fans of John Green's Turtles All the Way Down.

"Move over, John Green; Zentner is coming for you." —The New York Public Library

“Will fill the infinite space that was left in your chest after you finished The Perks of Being a Wallflower.” — 

Dill isn't the most popular kid at his rural Tennessee high school. After his father fell from grace in a public scandal that reverberated throughout their small town, Dill became a target. Fortunately, his two fellow misfits and best friends, Travis and Lydia, have his back. 

But as they begin their senior year, Dill feels the coils of his future tightening around him. His only escapes are music and his secret feelings for Lydia--neither of which he is brave enough to share. Graduation feels more like an ending to Dill than a beginning. But even before then, he must cope with another ending--one that will rock his life to the core.
Debut novelist Jeff Zentner provides an unblinking and at times comic view of the hard realities of growing up in the Bible belt, and an intimate look at the struggles to find one’s true self in the wreckage of the past.

“A story about friendship, family and forgiveness, it’s as funny and witty as it is utterly heartbreaking.” —

“A brutally honest portrayal of teen life . . . [and] a love letter to the South from a man who really understands it.” —

“I adored all three of these characters and the way they talked to and loved one another.”—New York Times

Young Adult
March 8
Random House Children's Books
Penguin Random House LLC

Customer Reviews

Mandapere0922 ,


The Serpent King is about three teenagers Lydia and Dill and Travis. They all three outcasts. Come from three different ways of living. But they remain friends. I could really relate to Dill and the things he went through with his mother and father. Travis my heart ache for him. I felt like i wanted be there for Travis. Lydia I understood her. I didn't think I would get into this book due to what it was about. But I enjoyed and couldn't put in down. It will be a book that I reread one day again.

BBearBeary ,

Absolutely Incredible.

I walked into this book cynical. I had been forced to read it for English and thought, “I hope this one’s at least decent.”

And it was more than decent. Zentner really captured the perfect small town feel I love in a book. Along with the “three best friends navigating the world together” dynamic I absolutely adore.

Besides basic elements like that, the premise of the story; Dillard’s family name being dirtied plenty of times in the past and present, Lydia battling between fame and her friends, and Travis’ difficulties expressing himself around his father, we’re all extremely interesting and well done.

You can tell these three people dearly love each other no matter the differences.

This book made me sob harder than it should’ve. It had me balled up on the end of my couch crying like a baby. It had me sitting on the edge of my seat, audibly gasping in public like a maniac, and scrambling to tell one of my closest friends all about it. I felt myself really relating to it in a way I haven’t seen in a book before.

The way it addressed the grief of losing a loved one, the fear of growing up and growing away, and especially suicide was extremely interesting. This book explains these topics in a new light I haven’t seen before, and one I can relate to.

This book was extremely well done and I recommend it to anyone looking for a good read that’ll keep you on the edge of your seat and reading until you can’t read anymore.

shaneaproductions ,

Serpent King a good way

Zentner marvelously captures the stinging angst of every teen blossoming between the weighty concrete sidewalk cracks of their own Forestville (one R).

More Books by Jeff Zentner


Customers Also Bought