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Suggestions for Teen Summer Reading

 
 
Linkat
 
Reply Thu 8 Aug, 2019 10:18 am
My daughter has to read one more book or a second one if she wants to start the school year off with an A.

She does not like to read in general but she likes mysteries and as far as classics she did like Fahrenheit 451.

These are some of the books/authors she can read not a complete list but you can get the idea ( I did not list all - but if you know of some classics that might fit in please provide) - so what ones do you think such a teen would like. I am thinking some with action - and those that the writing is not difficult to follow (like some of the older English, Shakespeare) - most of these I haven't read so I am not familiar - I did read James Fenimore Cooper and loved it - but I honestly do not remember how difficult it was (as in the writing style). So I thought I would reach out and see your thoughts - maybe narrow it down - have her go to the book store and read some pages to determine if it interests her

Faulkner, William. The Sound and the Fury
Greene, Graham. The Power and the Glory
Hardy, Thomas. Tess of the D’Urbervilles
Wharton, Edith. Ethan Frome
Tolkien, J.R.R. The Hobbit and others
Cather, Willa. Oh! Pioneers
Wright, Richard. Native Son
Cooper, James Fenimore
MacDonald, George - has anyone read him - I see he writes fantasy books
Thoene, Bodie

she is going to a Christian academy thus the Christian authors - I thought some of them might more recent so it might appeal to her more than the older books, but I am not familiar with them so I am unsure if they would appeal to a teen.
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Type: Question • Score: 6 • Views: 296 • Replies: 26
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engineer
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Aug, 2019 11:11 am
@Linkat,
Are you looking for "literature" or just a good young adult read? My teenage daughter is reading this series. If you want to go the literature route, something by Toni Morrison (given her recent passing) might be an interesting read. (Some pre-screening required, Morrison write on adult topics.)
Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Aug, 2019 11:44 am
@engineer,
This is for required summer reading so there is a list - a large list - you can pick off the list but it would need to meet certain criteria - I posted some of the examples so it would need to fall within similar type books.

I don't think what you provided would meet what they are looking for
engineer
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Aug, 2019 11:48 am
@Linkat,
Probably not then although Toni Morrison won a Pulitzer for Beloved. To fall back to an old standard, To Kill a Mockingbird is probably your best bet. Huck Finn is always a good American literary standby and age appropriate, but An American Yankee in King Author's Court is another Mark Twain winner. The Hobbit is pretty good if she wants to go fantasy, but Dune by Frank Herbert is just as good from a literary point of view IMO and is one of the best selling Sci Fi novels of all time.
Sturgis
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Aug, 2019 12:47 pm
Edith Wharton is for the most part an excellent writer and story giver. I've never gone wrong with her works. Ethan Frome is good and a fairly short book so that might appeal to your daughter if she'd rather be doing other things as vacation time winds down.

Other summer reads which I'd suggest, are, How Green Was My Valley by Richard Llewellyn. Coal mining in Wales. There's even a movie of it, which, would give her a general idea of it.

My old standby and personal favorite is, The Heart Is A Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers. A good tale of what life was like for many people in the far south back in the early 20th century.

Additionally, take a look at the late English writer, Samuel Butler.
His Erewhon borders into fantasy. There's also Erewhon Revisited which wasn't bad.

Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Aug, 2019 01:17 pm
@engineer,
engineer wrote:

Probably not then although Toni Morrison won a Pulitzer for Beloved. To fall back to an old standard, To Kill a Mockingbird is probably your best bet. Huck Finn is always a good American literary standby and age appropriate, but An American Yankee in King Author's Court is another Mark Twain winner. The Hobbit is pretty good if she wants to go fantasy, but Dune by Frank Herbert is just as good from a literary point of view IMO and is one of the best selling Sci Fi novels of all time.


Ha ha - she was also required to read 2 out 3 particular books. And then one more from a large list (of which I provided some).

I suggested Huck Finn as that was one of the three. She did not like it. She is currently reading the Great Gatsby. I figured those two would appeal to her more than Of Mice and Men (which I loved).

Now I am trying to help her so at least she reads something she may like. Not sure if she would like fantasy either - I was thinking the Hobbit - I think she might have already read To Kill a Mocking Bird not sure though.
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Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Aug, 2019 01:24 pm
@Sturgis,
Sturgis wrote:

Edith Wharton is for the most part an excellent writer and story giver. I've never gone wrong with her works. Ethan Frome is good and a fairly short book so that might appeal to your daughter if she'd rather be doing other things as vacation time winds down.


This is the school requirement - if she wants AP English (which she almost said no to just because she didn't want to read an extra book) - 2 out of 3 books mentioned earlier (which she should have done this weekend) and then one more from a long list and then 10 pages of her thoughts on the book. My take the teacher is just going to glance through to make sure they actually did read the book - I can't imagine the teacher is going to read all of that.

The thing is to get an A - you need to read 1000 pages total and from there it goes down hill. Huck Finn was about 250 pages, Great Gatsby is 180 - she is required to read one more book. But it is unlikely that will get her to 1000. I told her this is a freebie - to start with a test grade of A. Why wouldn't you do it? So I guess depending on her third book the short Ethan Frome might get her there.

To me if she finds a book she likes she will read it quick. She has before - but she does have a very limited appeal to her reading.
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Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Aug, 2019 01:26 pm
@engineer,
Oh and I read Beloved - that was an excellent book - Saw Toni Morrison also at a Women's Leadership conference - she was a guest speaker along with Oprah.
0 Replies
 
InfraBlue
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Aug, 2019 01:36 pm
The Outsiders by S. E. Hinton

Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus by Mary Shelley
tsarstepan
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Aug, 2019 02:08 pm
@Linkat,
I'm not a fan of Graham Greene's The Power and the Glory and the definitely unlikable, unsympathetic Whiskey Priest. It's readable... and pretty short.
But The Quiet American is a great mystery and the book helped me during a very difficult time after my friend passed away in 2009.

As for the other writers? I've only read Haiku: This Other World by Richard Wright (my personal favorite book of poetry). Not sure if that can qualify as a readable book here.
Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Aug, 2019 03:16 pm
@InfraBlue,
InfraBlue wrote:

The Outsiders by S. E. Hinton

Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus by Mary Shelley


Ah - read the Outsiders last year - great book she did like that one.

Hmm Mary Shelley was not on the list - we could always ask - they did say similar reading level/books.
Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Aug, 2019 03:17 pm
@tsarstepan,
tsarstepan wrote:

I'm not a fan of Graham Greene's The Power and the Glory and the definitely unlikable, unsympathetic Whiskey Priest. It's readable... and pretty short.
But The Quiet American is a great mystery and the book helped me during a very difficult time after my friend passed away in 2009.

As for the other writers? I've only read Haiku: This Other World by Richard Wright (my personal favorite book of poetry). Not sure if that can qualify as a readable book here.

They did list poetry - but my daughter wouldn't like. The Quiet American - let me look at that one.
0 Replies
 
InfraBlue
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Aug, 2019 03:29 pm
@Linkat,
I tried reading Frankenstein in grade school, but couldn't get around Shelley's early 19th Century wordiness. I picked it up again in High School and was able to read it then. It's a great novel.
Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Aug, 2019 03:35 pm
@InfraBlue,
I had things like that where I didn't like the books in middle school - the Scarlet Letter was one - then I had to read it in High School and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

It is working around the writing style - I think my daughter has a hard time around that.
0 Replies
 
jespah
 
  2  
Reply Thu 8 Aug, 2019 04:41 pm
Something that's classic and odd (so could be of interest) is Franz Kafka's The Metamorphosis. It's also not too long, and the language isn't too arcane.

Plus, why wouldn't she want to read about a poor hapless guy who turns into a giant bug?
roger
 
  1  
Reply Thu 8 Aug, 2019 04:52 pm
@jespah,
Especially as everyone pretty much accepts it as a reasonably ordinary occurrence. Not a good thing, of course, but fairly ordinary.
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Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 Aug, 2019 07:07 am
Thanks all for your ideas - you can keep them coming as she will be reading for the next few weeks.
0 Replies
 
izzythepush
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 Aug, 2019 09:43 am
@Linkat,
Linkat wrote:

MacDonald, George - has anyone read him - I see he writes fantasy books


George MacDonald Fraser wrote the Flashman books, based on the villain from Tom Brown's Schooldays. They are very good and historically accurate, but more of a boys read.

Frankenstein is a bit too complicated for a teen, it's quite short but the phrasing doesn't help.

If she just has to read one book by an author, Tolkein wrote quite a few shorter books. Farmer Giles of Ham is very short.

If we're talking classics I'd recommend Candide by Voltaire, still very funny.
0 Replies
 
Sturgis
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 Aug, 2019 02:34 pm
For a quick read, there'sThe Pearl by John Steinbeck.

E.M. Forster offers up good reading in A Room With A View

For some old time French life of the 1800s, Henri Murger write Bohemians of the Latin Quarter. An interesting read, not a typical style of novel and said to be an inspiration for Puccini and his opera La Boheme.
0 Replies
 
Linkat
 
  2  
Reply Mon 12 Aug, 2019 12:19 pm
just so you all know - after going over various books - she choose the Hobbit.
 

 
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