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Rosann’s Reading Recs – Back to School

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Article by: @Rosann_1986 Art by: Jumbiart

Even when you’re out of school, the falling leaves and the cooler air make you think of heading back to the classroom. There are so many great high school and university Larry fics out there, these are just a smattering.

Note that some AO3 fics are available publicly on the server, while some require an Archive of Our Own account/membership to access. If you don’t currently have access, you’ll need to sit on a waitlist – typically for a week or two – to gain access. Get yourself on that list ASAP as some of these require that access to read.

The “Summary” is taken from the author’s own AO3 summary. “Why I Liked It” is my opinion (and only mine). “Content Warning” is a mixture of my own warning and sometimes pulled from the triggers the author has suggested. A note about the content warning in any fic–please read the author notes for trigger warnings. 

If you like this feature, want to chat, or give me suggestions for future themes or recommendations, please hit me up on Twitter. @Rosann_1986 (formally @FlyWishing).

These are NOT in ranked order. 

Summary: Louis’s 20-year high school reunion takes a turn when a celebrity classmate – who also happens to be Louis’s long unrequited crush – unexpectedly shows up.

A famous/not-famous AU inspired by Chris Evans.

Why I liked It: This is a short, one shot that has a longer sequel called Not That Gone, which is also lovely. I loved the premise of the High School reunion where your famous classmate attends the event. Very cute side of Shiall and Ziam in part 2. 

Content Warning: none that I can think of, but check author warnings.


  1. Swallow My Words by YesIsAWorld

Summary: Senior year is stressful. On top of balancing school work, family, and friends, Harry’s lacrosse team is vying to win the state championship, he’s not sure where he’s going to college yet, and he has a secret boyfriend that no one can know about.

Why I liked It:  This is a great, shorter fic. There are a couple of drabble sequels set in the same world that give a bit more character insight. I loved the dynamic of these characters–there’s no angst between them, just between them and the world. They love each other. 

Content Warning: homophobia (external and internalized).


  1. We are Only Just Beginning by afirethatcannotdie

Summary: In the dim light of a dorm kitchen, Harry Styles meets a boy who flips his life upside down. Three years later, he’s a senior in college, ready to take on the world with the love of his life by his side. And then Louis Tomlinson admits he doesn’t know what he wants to do after college after all, and Harry’s world flips again, this time not so pleasantly. He can’t imagine his life without Louis, but he’s starting to worry he might have to. A college AU featuring lots of domestic sappiness, waffles, tattoos, late nights and early mornings, and above all, Louis and Harry against the world.

Why I liked It: This is a series of one-shots strung together about two boys falling in love and trying to figure out how to be adults together. I love the domesticity of it!

Content Warning: none that I can think of, but check author warnings.


  1. Might Have Took the Long Way Home by LiveLaughLoveLarry

Summary: It’s been two years since Harry and Louis broke up. They were that couple in high school — you know the one; been together forever, hopelessly in love, all over each other, the whole nine yards. Even when Louis went off to university, they found a way to make the distance work. Until they broke up. Now Harry is back in town, and no matter how many times Louis tells himself they can’t be together, they keep falling right back into each other.

Why I liked It: It’s on the shorter side, but it’s super sweet. Angsty with a lovely ending.

Content Warning: none that I can think of, but check author warnings.


  1. Soft Hands, Fast Feet, Can’t Lose by dolce_piccante

Summary: American Uni AU. Harry Styles is a frat boy football star from the wealthy Styles Family athletic dynasty. A celebrity among football fans, he knows how to play, he knows how to party, and he knows how to fuck (all of which is well known among his legion of admirers). Louis Tomlinson is a student and an athlete, but his similarities to Harry end there. Intelligent, focused, independent, and completely uninterested in Harry’s charms, Louis is an anomaly in a world ruled by football. A bet about the pair, who might be more similar than they originally thought, brings them together. Shakespeare, ballet, Disney, football, library chats, running, accidental spooning, Daredevil and Domino’s Pizza all blend into one big friendship Frappucino, but who will win in the end?

Why I liked It: Well plotted and good character development. I’m not always a frat boy Harry fan, but I love him in this one. Also some of the hottest (and funniest) sex scenes I’ve ever read. 

Content Warning: TW for sexual abuse – read the author’s notes. Homophobia (external and internalized).


  1. voicemail sings me a wreck by falsegoodnight

Summary: Louis doesn’t have any proof, but he’s pretty damn sure that even when he’s dead and buried six feet deep, Harry Styles will still find a way to haunt him in his grave. – Or, Louis is the president of the biggest omega sorority on campus, Harry is the president of the biggest alpha fraternity on campus, and they do not get along.

Why I liked it: Super cute university story. A/B/O. Good smut. Enemies to lovers. What’s not to love?!

Content Warning: Read the author’s note. 


  1. For Reasons Wretched and Divine by indiaalphawhiskey

Summary: Ten years ago, Harry Styles was just a nerdy kid with one friend and a debilitating crush on the captain of his school’s football team. He thought the stars were smiling down on him the day he and Louis Tomlinson were paired for their end-of-term Literature project. But because Harry’s life is decidedly not a fairytale, the budding friendship quickly leads to the least happy ending of all time. Now, Harry Styles is a household name. Barely twenty-seven with two Grammy nominations to his name, the singer-songwriter is poised to take the music industry by storm with his highly anticipated third album. So, what happens when the best producer in the business is also the only person Harry’s vowed never to speak to again? This is a story about growing up, growing in love and having the faith to make it last.

Why I liked it: I think I’ve mentioned this one before in my column, but it’s so good. I especially love the first half with two boys discovering each other. Lovely Happily Ever After.

Content Warning: Angst


  1. Unbelievers by isthatyoularry

Summary: It’s Louis’ senior year, and he’s dead set on doing it right. However, along with his pair of cleats, a healthy dose of sarcasm and his ridiculous best friend, he’s also got a complicated family, a terrifyingly uncertain future, and a mortal enemy making his life just that much worse. Mortal enemies with benefits was not exactly the plan. Or: The one where Louis and Harry definitely aren’t friends, and football is everything.

Why I liked it: I know I’ve mentioned this one before, but it’s such a classic High School fic, I can’t not mention it in my back to school column. Unbelievers is such a well written, young adult fic, if you haven’t read it, go do it now. Good, complicated characters. 

Content Warning: Internal and external homophobia. Beware if you’re squeamish with smut, this one starts right in the middle of a sex scene, and it’s so good.


  1. All the Right Moves by cherrystreet

Summary: This is the third game in a row that Harry has been distracted by the noisy boy in the stands, five rows back. There’s really no reason that he should feel compelled to stare into the audience as frequently as he is, but he can’t help it. This boy is a nuisance. And he’s loud. Even from the basketball court with nine other players running by him, shoes squeaking on the shiny hardwood floor, and thousands of cheering college students, Harry can hear this boy nearly shrieking, his laugh more like a cackle than anything. It’s seriously obnoxious.

Why I liked it: Harry really works as a basketball player–I sort of loved this. And Lou as the supportive WAG after distracting H on the court was cute.

Content Warning: None that I can think of, but check author warnings.


  1. That Howling Infinite by sweetartine

Summary: When Louis struggles in the literature class he needs to pass to graduate, his professor assigns him a tutor. A cute tutor. A cute tutor with a boyfriend. It’s just as well. Louis isn’t looking for a boyfriend in his last semester of college. But trying not to fall for Harry Styles might be impossible. Or, the one where Louis and Harry fall in love while reading Moby Dick.

Why I Liked It: Really cute uni story. Bonding over Moby Dick. Harry is super sweet in this one. Love the slow build, authentic emotions. 

Content Warning: None



  1. Homecoming by Rosann1986

Summary: Seventeen-year-old Harry Styles loves hiding behind fashion forward clothes, but when a bully nominates him for High School Homecoming Queen to humiliate him for wearing a girl’s blouse, Harry takes matters into his own hands and decides to lean into the candidacy and run for real. He’s prepared to break a few gender norms, but he’s blindsided when his crush, Louis Tomlinson—Football Quarterback and candidate for Homecoming King—leans into breaking a few norms himself.

Or, the one where Harry Styles and Louis Tomlinson are in high school and run for Homecoming Queen and King.

Why I Liked It: This one is mine. Couldn’t not include my own back to school fic!

Content Warning:  homophobia (external and internalized).

Xoxo – Rosann.

Happy reading and thanks for checking out my recommendations. I’d love to hear from you and what you think of my suggestions! Let me know if you have any thoughts for future themes!

@Rosann_1986 on Twitter

@WishingICouldFly on Tumblr

Rosann1986 on AO3

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