We've decided to do something a little different in my school this year: The English teachers each chose a book for the kids to read, so we have a fairly short list. The students can read any of them (at least two) and then the third week of school in September, we have a Summer Reading Week where the kids meet with the teacher who's "in charge" of their book and we have groups and discuss it and all that fun stuff. It's all-inclusive, so we could have seniors discussing with freshmen, which is a nice twist. We make them accountable but don't do some old-style book report or a test or something. We're trying desperately to get kids reading again, so the list has fiction, non-fiction, young adult, fantasy, autobiography, and one book-made-movie (for the media teacher). Thus, I'll give you all the list because I know I haven't read some of these and I always love to get titles from informed readers. I plan to read them all, if I can. I'll make comments on the ones I know about.
The Perks of Being a Wallflower -- Stephen Chbosky
- I have heard nothing but good things about this one. Kids who don't like to read enjoy it.
The Road -- Cormac McCarthy
- Also wrote No Country For Old Men, heard lots of praise from colleagues
Into Thin Air – Jon Krakauer
- True story of the Mt. Everest disaster
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time—Mark Haddon
- This one's mine; I loved it. It's told from the POV of an autistic boy and has points of hilarity and pathos.
The Kite Runner -- Khaled Hosseini
- Another great one; very powerful; I think most of you have probably heard of this!
The Lovely Bones – Alice Sebold
- Much more a young adult book, told from the POV of a dead girl who watches over her family from heaven and sees what happens after her murder
King Dork -- Frank Portman
- I am very excited to read this one. It helps if you've read Catcher in the Rye. The narrator is a typical teenage boy dealing with high school hell as well as the death of his father. He finds out about his dad through dad's book collection, unearthing a lot he didn't know.
The Path to Purpose: Helping Our Children Find Their Calling in Life -- William Damon
The Audacity of Hope – Barack Obama
Black and White (Speak) -- Paul Volponi
Winesburg, Ohio -- Sherwood Anderson
The Princess Bride – William Goldman
- Yes, what the movie comes from, and the book is much better!
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian – Sherman Alexie
The Eyes of the Dragon – Stephen King
- Fantasy: A kingdom of old, an evil wizard, a conspiracy against the king...fun stuff.
So I'll be looking at some of those this summer. For those of you who actually have time to read, I think this makes for a pretty full list. Enjoy!