The Teenage Years (La edad de la Punzada)

The story of the worst student in school history.

The Teenage Years follows Xavier during his adolescence. It starts when, at the age of 13, he is waiting for the school report and has failed all the subjects. Xavier has officially become the worst student in the school ever. He has to hide that information from his parents because, since he is about to turn 14, his parents had promised him to give him a motorbike as present. Despite trying to pay attention in class, Xavier is not able to concentrate. Moreover, Xavier gets along with the worst kids in school. But still Xavier is given the motorbike and at home his parents do not see how bad his friends are for him. In fact, they believe that he is the bad influence on them, when out of his window he throughs a Molotov cocktails and shoots with a rifle at his friends.

Miraculously, Xavier finishes secondary school, but such low grades force him to change school. He will leave behind an only boys religious school to enter a less restrictive mixed school.

In the pre-university courses, Xavier gets a car. However, his academic efficiency is still very low. He can´t manage to keep a girlfriend, and stares lasciviously at the house service and provokes situations in which they see him semi-naked or having a look at pornographic magazines.

Due to the envy of some colleagues and a huge misunderstanding, his father is imprisoned for an act of corruption he did not commit. During his weekly prison visits Xavier starts to experience new feelings; he will realize the importance of a three-way hug, or the arduous survival of his father in prison.

Xavier has a car accident and is taken to a penitentiary center for minors for one day. He then discovers a new world. Xavier is the only one in his group of friends who has been imprisoned, and making fun of everything and everybody is his only way to escape the anguish he feels for his father’s imprisonment.

His father is taken to a much more restrictive prison in which interns are tortured. Xavier’s family have to sell their home and belongings to save his father. This is the moment when Xavier hits rock bottoms and understands the necessity of having responsibilities. Now, all his family has to start over.


RELEVANT DATA: The Teenage Years is Xavier Velasco’s autobiography, through which he pays homage to his parents and those years in which he was a “pampered child”, a problematic liar, and un-adapted thief. All in all, a rich kid with behavioral problems and no restrictions. The author also presents the protagonist as a dreamer, a distracted, easily loving, shy, and innocent boy whose life is marked by his father’s imprisonment at a very tender age.

Xavier Velasco is a well-established Mexican journalist and writer who has been awarded with the Premio Alfaguara de Novela. After receiving this award, he became one of the main Latin-American bestselling authors. One of his novels has already been adapted to TV in Amazon.


What the critics have said:

The Teenage Years is an excellent novel. One of those that bring you back in time and make you live the present at the same time”. Goodreads


AUDIOVISUAL POTENTIAL: TV Series, Miniseries, Film, TV Movie.


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