School reading assignments. Yes even lovers of books can’t stand the idea of forced reading. Teachers have been torturing us for years, making us read some of the worlds most know literature. Though some are just terrible and boring, there area few that were much better then the rest. In honor of finally finishing high school, today’s post is highlighting the best and talking about the worst. Since this is kind of a long subject in will be put into two different post.
The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton
The Outsiders was must first ever summer book assignment. As a girl going into 7th grade, I hated the idea of having to read this against my will. It took me until late June to pick it up and start reading it and I loved it! To this day I still pick it up and read it when I’m missing the characters.
This book is about a young boy named Ponyboy (yes that is his real name) who has lost his parents and is now under the car of his older brothers Darry and Sodapop (again that is his real name). They all live on the poor side of the tracks where they are known as Greasers, always getting into fights with the rich of the town(Socs). The Outsiders is a coming of age story and learning that your class doesn’t make you who you are.
The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E. Pearson
Another one of those summer reading assignments that I actually fell in love with. The book was actually a surprising great read. Sadly it’s been awhile since I’ve read the book and can’t remember my true reasons for loving it as much as I did back then, but I will hopefully be reading it again and finishing the trilogy.
The Adoration of Jenna Fox is is about a girl named Jenna who has just awaken from a year long coma. She doesn’t remember the accident or anything before it. As Jenna tries to live her life while going to school for damage teens, Jenna learns that it wasn’t a regular miracle that kept her alive.
A Separate Peace by John Knowles
A Separate Peace is an American classic, showing the perfect depiction of adolescence during a period of time when the country was in its second world war. This story is about two boys going to a boarding school in New England so they can finish school early and fight in the war. Gene is a lonely introvert while Phineas is a handsome, daredevil athlete. The two become friends, but Gene starts to feel a little jealous of his good friends. Which causes Gene to do something drastic.
Going into this book, I thought I was going to hate it. I hadn’t liked anything the teacher had made us read and wasn’t excited for her last form of punishment before my freshman year ended. I have to say it was another good coming of age story that even had a pretty enjoyable movie.
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Now most of you have already read this for school and if you haven’t, you probably will. It is one of those books that your English teacher say it is a must read and you can’t go on in your life without reading it. Though that is a bit of an overstatement, I can agree with them. The Great Gatsby is one of those books you can’t stop thinking about once you are done. You also can’t help but get absorbed in it and feel for each character ( and not always a nice feeling either). If there is one thing that the readers can agree on is Tim is terrible and Leonardo should have got an award for that performance.
The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
There is no real way to describe ones feelings for The Kite Runner. You just have to read it and see the story for yourself. This book again is a kind of a coming of age story taken place overseas. This book has some much darker themes then other books you will read on school and it’s probably on a good bit of banned book list due to the extreme and graphic nature, but it opens your eyes and lets you see just how messed up someones life can be. It’s a tear jerking experience that one should read at their own risk, but once you read it, you almost feel like a new person.
The Glass Castle by Jeannette walls
Surprisingly enough, this is the first biography I’ve had to read for school. Awhile back this wasn’t a book you could find in schools, but teacher decided a story like this need to be in the school system, and I understand it completely. This book is a young adult story about her crazy life with two out of their mind parents. Her, her parents, and her three siblings were always running away from the law because they couldn’t ever pay for their home. Well they could if her mother would sell her family’s land given to her but she wants to keep it in the family. Her mother has something wrong in her mind and her father is an angry drunk who wants to build his family a glass castle. I can say I never really sympathized with the mother ,but I could with the father. This book was beautifully well written and I hope with a movie on the way, that it will get much more popular.
In Cold Blood by Truman Capote
If there is one man that could put his heart into a book, it is Truman. You would never guess that the same man who wrote Breakfast at Tiffany’s would want to write a story like this. This book is a non fiction story about a family murder in the town of Holcomb. Now this book can have its slow parts but it feels like you are right there in the moment, talking to these people. When Truman started writing the book they hadn’t even caught the killers yet. He had written the story as it happened refused to finish it till the killers trials were down and the punishment cared out. He went to Holcomb with his close friend Harper Lee ( name sound familiar?) and interviewed everyone there to get the true story. If that doesn’t want to make you read the book then I don’t know what will. Sadly seeing this through from the beginning to the end effected Truman causing him to drink himself to dead. There is a great movie out there about it but it isn’t based on the book, it is about Truman writing the book.
That is all for the best books assignments I’ve had in school. Let me know what your favorite book were to read in school and look out for my post about the worst ones.