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What Are We Currently Reading?

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13 hours ago, GHScorpiosRule said:

We all had such a difficult time with that book and the teacher thought watching the movie would help. It didn’t.

Great book but relentlessly sad.  I had to read it one year in HS then the next year we did East of Eden, which was better for teenagers who grew up watching Dallas and Dynasty.  Soapy fun.

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TGOW wasn't required reading in HS when I was there (I can only remember reading Great Expectations in HS), I read it in my twenties, a much more appropriate age to fully appreciate it in my sake.  I loved it.  I next read East of Eden in my thirties, and was bowled over by the scope, the drama and the characters.  Cathy Ames is still one of my favorite literary villains of all time.  And FWIW, I've only reread Great Expectations recently during lockdown and liked it much more than my teenage self did.

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I for one loved The Grapes of Wrath in high school (1971), but hey to each her own.

I also love the movie version.

As to those annoying series that do not have self contained stories, I add the Jane Hawk series by Dean Koontz.  It's just gone on too long.  My husband and I have been listening to them in the car (in between other books).  (No reading or listening in the house, no listening adultery allowed.)  We just finally started the last one, and we are turned off.  He's run out of story.  We will probably finish it in sections and listen to other things in between. 

FWIW on The Grapes of Wrath, I grew up with Depression era parents, hearing their stories of deprivation.  So it felt close to home.  Younger people might not feel the same way.

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And FWIW, I've only reread Great Expectations recently during lockdown and liked it much more than my teenage self did.

Same. And what I didn't realize when I was a teen was that it's funny! Seriously.

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I remember being made to read "Les Miserables" in high school which I found incredibly painful. So much so that I am entirely uninterested in any iteration of it on stage or on film.

We also had to read TGOW, which was fortunately short. One year though I had a really wonderful English teacher who was friends with Ray Bradbury (I think this was 10th grade) so we read The Martian Chronicles and Something Wicked This Way Comes (I was already a huge scifi fan but this just cemented my love for Bradbury).

To get back on topic, I am currently reading the third book in Lillian Stewart Carl's mystery series featuring Jean Fairbairn and Alasdair Cameron (its called "The Burning Glass") - wonderful stuff all set in castles in Scotland :)

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23 hours ago, isalicat said:

I remember being made to read "Les Miserables" in high school which I found incredibly painful.

In my experience, anything that you were forced to read during school was painful, does not matter whether the books were actually good; the simple thing that it was in your curriculum and you had to write an essay about the book; maybe you were not in the mood; no teachers cared. But many years after, I took up books that I was forced to read in school at my own accord, and, what do you know, this time around, I actually liked them ;)

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1 hour ago, Rushmoras said:

In my experience, anything that you were forced to read during school was painful, does not matter whether the books were actually good; the simple thing that it was in your curriculum and you had to write an essay about the book; maybe you were not in the mood; no teachers cared. But many years after, I took up books that I was forced to read in school at my own accord, and, what do you know, this time around, I actually liked them ;)

This is so true. But what is the answer? Young people need to understand literature. I guess school isn't supposed to be fun but there has to be some way to teach this stuff in a way that makes it enjoyable. I had a teacher in my Shakespeare class who taught us the plays by assigning students to read the parts aloud. We didn't have to stand up or act them out, we just sat at our desks and read the parts. I think something like that would be worth trying.

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Just finished reading The Dead Guy Next Door by Lucy Score.  it is a romantic comedy mystery that feels like a cross between a Stephanie Plumb (but without the eternal romantic triangle) and a Charley Davidson (without the enigmatic love interest). 

The heroine, Riley, is a psychic and hero is a sexy PI.  Loads of laughs.  A good, rich and diverse supporting cast of characters who were all interesting in their own right.  Really was an enjoyable surprise as I had never read this author before.  It feels like the first book in a new series.  I hope so.

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2 hours ago, peacheslatour said:

This is so true. But what is the answer? Young people need to understand literature. I guess school isn't supposed to be fun but there has to be some way to teach this stuff in a way that makes it enjoyable.

In high school English we read Turn of the Screw and then the teacher broke us into two sides and we debated whether it was a ghost story or the governess was insane. To this day that is the only book I remember reading in school that left a positive impact on me. 

The only book that left a negative impact was My Antonia, which all I remember of was endless pages of descriptions of wheat and corn fields from, I think, a train window. I never finished that one and just took the F. 

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4 minutes ago, Mabinogia said:

In high school English we read Turn of the Screw and then the teacher broke us into two sides and we debated whether it was a ghost story or the governess was insane. To this day that is the only book I remember reading in school that left a positive impact on me. 

The only book that left a negative impact was My Antonia, which all I remember of was endless pages of descriptions of wheat and corn fields from, I think, a train window. I never finished that one and just took the F. 

Well, is is a true ghost story or was the governess nuts? I remember Henry James would never tell. I don't think there is an answer but I'm interested to hear what school kids would think.

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4 minutes ago, peacheslatour said:

Well, is is a true ghost story or was the governess nuts? I remember Henry James would never tell. I don't think there is an answer but I'm interested to hear what school kids would think.

It was over 30 years ago so I really don't remember if we did come up with a solution. I know I personally switch my opinion each time I read it. It is amazingly well done as far as keeping it ambiguous goes.

I think I'll reread it when I'm done with A Man by Hirano Keiichiro. Which I'm about half way through and very much enjoying. It is a mystery of sorts, but touches on a lot of things, primarily identity. It is very well translated (I'm sure it is well written but it is originally Japanese so I have no clue). 

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3 minutes ago, Mabinogia said:

It was over 30 years ago so I really don't remember if we did come up with a solution. I know I personally switch my opinion each time I read it. It is amazingly well done as far as keeping it ambiguous goes.

I think I'll reread it when I'm done with A Man by Hirano Keiichiro. Which I'm about half way through and very much enjoying. It is a mystery of sorts, but touches on a lot of things, primarily identity. It is very well translated (I'm sure it is well written but it is originally Japanese so I have no clue). 

I reread it about every five years and like you, I flip flop about what I think happened. It's a fascinating tale.

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21 minutes ago, peacheslatour said:

I reread it about every five years and like you, I flip flop about what I think happened. It's a fascinating tale.

I was asked in a job interview once, what one book I would bring with me. I picked Turn of the Screw. It might be short, but because it can be interpreted differently each time, it is infinitely rereadable. 

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I am currently reading Les Miserables (slowly, to savor it) and yeah, no way would I have liked it or appreciated it in high school.

I've been meaning to read it for years, what finally got me started was recently rereading Beverly Cleary's memoir of her school days, when she described her junior high teacher retelling the story word by word from memory to her class over the course of the school year, keeping a class of 12 or 13 year olds mesmerized.  

 

 

 

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12 hours ago, peacheslatour said:

This is so true. But what is the answer? Young people need to understand literature. I guess school isn't supposed to be fun but there has to be some way to teach this stuff in a way that makes it enjoyable.

FWIW, high school manages to make most subjects "not fun" so that's not exclusive to literature. I was usually OK with everything I had to read for English literature, but in my German literature class (when going to school in Germany), I particularly hated Goethe's Faust. I never understood what Faust's problem was and why poor Gretchen had to suffer because of him.

Edited by chocolatine
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When my son was in HS I used his English class reading list for things to read myself.  I'm sure I enjoyed the books more than the students did.  My Antonia was one of them. 😊

Edited by Haleth
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I finished The Vigilante Game by Meghan Scott Molin yesterday. It is the third in a trilogy of books. I liked it a lot, but was hoping that it would be a series rather than just a trilogy. However it seems she (or her publisher) decided it needed to wrap up. The ending felt a little rushed and there are still some unresolved explanations, but she does have a note at the end about wanting to do a prequel to explain those someday. 

Currently reading Forever in Cape May by Jennifer Probst which is coincidentally also the third book of a trilogy. It's a fluffy romance novel so shouldn't take too long.

After that, I really need to catch up on my First Reads books. Every month I dutifully choose and download my free book, and every month I fail to read it! 

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2 hours ago, Jenniferbug said:

After that, I really need to catch up on my First Reads books. Every month I dutifully choose and download my free book, and every month I fail to read it! 

Same here. The book I'm reading now, A Man, was my first read who knows how long ago, that I totally forgot about. 

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23 minutes ago, Mabinogia said:

Same here. The book I'm reading now, A Man, was my first read who knows how long ago, that I totally forgot about. 

I really need to work on that! I try to add them to my Goodreads list as soon as I download them so that they're on my radar. I prefer reading paper books, but the Kindle is useful to have. I just don't always think to see what I have downloaded to it when looking for something to read. 

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5 hours ago, Haleth said:

When my son was in HS I used his English class reading list for things to read myself. 

 

I started doing this a few years ago as well. In my case I heard my mom describing a book to my dad, asked her about it, and learned it was on the summer reading list for her students. So I went to the bookstore, pulled up a copy of the school's reading list, and gathered the books Mom recommended. For the first time in my life I willingly read from the summer reading list and I really enjoyed it. Every year since I've chosen a few new titles from the list.

For me it wasn't that I never enjoyed the assigned reading and can think of several that I enjoyed right away (To Kill A Mockingbird, So Far From The Bamboo Grove, Lysistrata, Dante's Inferno) but I tended to get stubborn when told that I HAD to read certain things. I learned to read in kindergarten and have loved it ever since so I was always reading something but I liked having the choice.

I think there are probably several methods to get students more on board with the assigned reading and one that I know works is reading aloud. It may not work as well with novels but it's excellent for plays and poems.

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I'm about 40 pages into Lover Unveiled by J.R. Ward, & I'm kind of wondering who actually wrote it. I realize that since this is the 19th book in The Black Dagger Brotherhood she may be running out of things to write, but something about this one just reads different to me, the style of writing seems off. I guess I'll just keep reading & see what I think.

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Last night I finished The Game of Kings by Dorothy Dunnett and I'm seriously considering rereading it before moving on to the second book (six book series). I can see where probably nine out of every ten people would drop the book within the first 60 pages or so, I nearly did, but I'm glad I stuck it out.  This is one of those books that will have a high reread value because, having reached the end and armed with what I now know, practically every scene will take on a completely different hue. 

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I just finished Lost and Wanted by Nell Freudenberger and I highly enjoyed it.  
 

Trigger warning: There is a death that is an important part of the story line; but, to me, it’s more about life than death.  Other books that are similar in this way (but quite different, otherwise) that I also enjoyed, are: Me, Earl, and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews and If I Stay/Where She Went by Gayle Forman.  
 

I also recently reading So Enchanting by Connie Brockway this was a historical romance that was written in such a way that it made me laugh several times (in a good way).  There are actually two romances in the story (older/younger, major/minor).  Two for one!  :)

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Reading Ariadne by Jennifer Saint, another great retelling of Greek mythology. Both Ariadne and Phaedra get their dues in this version.

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On 5/1/2021 at 3:08 PM, peacheslatour said:

This is so true. But what is the answer? Young people need to understand literature. I guess school isn't supposed to be fun but there has to be some way to teach this stuff in a way that makes it enjoyable. I had a teacher in my Shakespeare class who taught us the plays by assigning students to read the parts aloud. We didn't have to stand up or act them out, we just sat at our desks and read the parts. I think something like that would be worth trying.

My oldest will be a freshman in high school next fall, and I'm curious to see if they still teach "the classics" in high school.  So far in junior high I think the only book he's read that I would consider a classic is "To Kill a Mockingbird".  I kid you not, at the start of his 7th grade year, his teacher told his class that her passion was social justice, and that if it was not theirs and if they didn't want to read books with these themes, that they should ask to transfer out of her class and into the non-gifted, core curriculum.  Sure enough, every single book he had to read was SJW, and he hated it.

At the time, I told him to try and keep an open mind, but I kind of thought it was unfair that this teacher impressed her own views onto her young students.  Teachers are supposed to expose kids to a wide variety of topics and viewpoints.

Has that much changed in 30 years?  By the time I was in 8th grade I had definitely read many of what I would have considered classics that were directed at children - Tom Sawyer, Huckleberry Finn, Alice in Wonderland, Treasure Island, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Robinson Crusoe, The Swiss Family Robinson, The Wind in the Willows, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court, The Jungle Book, The Call of the Wild, etc.  I read all of these for fun, not because they were assigned in school.  I'm quite certain my kid hasn't read any of these.  And probably may not have even heard of.

Curious as to what the high school curriculum will look like in today's age.  I agree that some books are just never going to be fun or interesting because of the fact that it is "required" and you have to write an essay on.  I kind of feel sad for my kid that he's never read some of the classics that I read when I was a kid/teen, and probably never will.

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One thing that's definitely changed is that every book isn't written by a dead white male.

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On 5/2/2021 at 2:21 PM, scarynikki12 said:

 

 

I think there are probably several methods to get students more on board with the assigned reading and one that I know works is reading aloud. It may not work as well with novels but it's excellent for plays and poems.

I was remembering this the other day.  When I was in third grade, they used to bring in a reading lady once a month.  She would read part of a book to the class and then stop, so it would get us excited to get a copy and read the rest ourselves to find out what happened.

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On 4/29/2021 at 10:55 AM, MaggieG said:

 

Started on His & Hers by Alice Feeney

Please tell me what you think (use spoiler tags).  I was able to download it from the public library and read it in one day this weekend. 

Spoiler

I thought the ending was too convoluted/crazy.  It's like the whole plot was made up by working backwards.  All the people were unlikeable.  I'm not sure Anna was involved or not.  That was sort of left up in the air.  The sex and animal killing were rather depraved.  I'm glad I did not pay for it.

 

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5 hours ago, blackwing said:

every single book he had to read was SJW, and he hated it.

Pardon my ignorance, but what is SJW?

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5 hours ago, blackwing said:

Has that much changed in 30 years?  By the time I was in 8th grade I had definitely read many of what I would have considered classics that were directed at children - Tom Sawyer, Huckleberry Finn, Alice in Wonderland, Treasure Island, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Robinson Crusoe, The Swiss Family Robinson, The Wind in the Willows, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court, The Jungle Book, The Call of the Wild, etc.  I read all of these for fun, not because they were assigned in school.  I'm quite certain my kid hasn't read any of these.  And probably may not have even heard of.

I had read most of those by that age because my parents had bought this huge set of classic children's literature - I'd add in Heidi and Lorna Doone as two other titles that were on our shelf.  But not a single one of those books was ever assigned to me in school.  We got stuff like A Light in the Forest (yawn) and Lord of the Flies (double yawn).    

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18 hours ago, blackwing said:

My oldest will be a freshman in high school next fall, and I'm curious to see if they still teach "the classics" in high school.  So far in junior high I think the only book he's read that I would consider a classic is "To Kill a Mockingbird".  I kid you not, at the start of his 7th grade year, his teacher told his class that her passion was social justice, and that if it was not theirs and if they didn't want to read books with these themes, that they should ask to transfer out of her class and into the non-gifted, core curriculum.  Sure enough, every single book he had to read was SJW, and he hated it.

At the time, I told him to try and keep an open mind, but I kind of thought it was unfair that this teacher impressed her own views onto her young students.  Teachers are supposed to expose kids to a wide variety of topics and viewpoints.

Has that much changed in 30 years?  By the time I was in 8th grade I had definitely read many of what I would have considered classics that were directed at children - Tom Sawyer, Huckleberry Finn, Alice in Wonderland, Treasure Island, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Robinson Crusoe, The Swiss Family Robinson, The Wind in the Willows, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court, The Jungle Book, The Call of the Wild, etc.  I read all of these for fun, not because they were assigned in school.  I'm quite certain my kid hasn't read any of these.  And probably may not have even heard of.

Curious as to what the high school curriculum will look like in today's age.  I agree that some books are just never going to be fun or interesting because of the fact that it is "required" and you have to write an essay on.  I kind of feel sad for my kid that he's never read some of the classics that I read when I was a kid/teen, and probably never will.

Literature has always been a means to push for social justice.  Many classics have these themes and you can easily build a curriculum around it.  From Jonathan Swifts's A Modest Proposal to the majority of Charles Dickens's work to Charlotte Perkins Gillman's The Yellow Wallpaper to Tolstoy's Anna Karenina to Upton Sinclair's The Jungle to John Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath up to modern classics like Angie Thomas's The Hate U Give.  All of these books look at social issues and use different techniques to push the reader to examine the world around them.  Throw in some poetry, narrative non-fiction and short stories to round it out.  

I do realize some of these works are a bit much for a seventh grader, but the concept of SJW is not something new.

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13 hours ago, GussieK said:

Please tell me what you think (use spoiler tags).  I was able to download it from the public library and read it in one day this weekend. 

  Reveal spoiler

I thought the ending was too convoluted/crazy.  It's like the whole plot was made up by working backwards.  All the people were unlikeable.  I'm not sure Anna was involved or not.  That was sort of left up in the air.  The sex and animal killing were rather depraved.  I'm glad I did not pay for it.

 

Spoiler

I was confused as well. I couldn't figure out if Anna knew her mom was faking her dementia, I feel like she probably did but did she know her mom concocted the whole plan on killing Rachel, Zoe and Helen? And the fact that Anna and Catherine ended up working together was just a crazy coincidence? The whole thing was definitely convoluted.

 

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My high school kids seem to bounce between assigned reading and then free choice, though sometimes the free choice is based on a theme or is a choice from a list.  I have also noticed that they have a better selection of authors and genres than I had.  My sophomore year of high school I had to read Animal Farm, Fahrenheit 451, and 1984.   To this day I cannot stomach a dystopian fiction novel.  We ended that year with Red Badge of Courage.  Really uplifting class, as you can imagine from that lineup.

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33 minutes ago, Crs97 said:

My high school kids seem to bounce between assigned reading and then free choice, though sometimes the free choice is based on a theme or is a choice from a list.  I have also noticed that they have a better selection of authors and genres than I had.  My sophomore year of high school I had to read Animal Farm, Fahrenheit 451, and 1984.   To this day I cannot stomach a dystopian fiction novel.  We ended that year with Red Badge of Courage.  Really uplifting class, as you can imagine from that lineup.

I loved my AP English class and read my summer reading list with joy. I found only a few of the optional books as clunkers that I couldn't manage. (The Grapes of WrathMoby Dick, Heart of Darkness) My teacher was a grader for the AP exam, so she really made she we got in everything that could be tested. 

I particularly loved Catch-22 and Slaugherhouse-Five, both of which I think covered anti-war themes and war-related mental illness. They were just written by old white guys. That doesn't make them bad books.

At the same time, I truly wish my high school education had more diversity built into the AP English curriculum. I think the only Black authors were required to read were Ralph Ellison and Richard Wright. 

In college I was exposed to much more diversity in literature, and my education was better for it.

Just looking through those old novels that were on my AP lists, they were all had themes of social justice.

Edited by BlackberryJam
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17 minutes ago, BlackberryJam said:

At the same time, I truly wish my high school education had more diversity built into the AP English curriculum. I think the only Black authors were required to read were Ralph Ellison and Richard Wright. 

When I was in high school the only divergence from the white male author route we had was the occasional white woman author - and for that you had to be taking North American Literature so you'd be assigned Margaret Laurence, Margaret Atwood or Gabrielle Roy.  Off the top of my head I can't recall a single author of colour or female author that was assigned reading in any other English class.  Extra credit reading, yes, Jane Austen and the Brontes oh and George Eliot.  But it would be university for me before old (and mostly dead) white guys didn't make up the overwhelming majority of our assigned reading.

Edited by WinnieWinkle
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13 hours ago, WinnieWinkle said:

I had read most of those by that age because my parents had bought this huge set of classic children's literature - I'd add in Heidi and Lorna Doone as two other titles that were on our shelf.  But not a single one of those books was ever assigned to me in school.  We got stuff like A Light in the Forest (yawn) and Lord of the Flies (double yawn).    

I think I must have had a similar set.  I tried to get my kids interested in these classics but it's either some combo of 1) I recommended it so they do the opposite, or 2) in the electronic age, the iPad and its games is more interesting.

1 hour ago, Ohiopirate02 said:

Literature has always been a means to push for social justice.  Many classics have these themes and you can easily build a curriculum around it.  From Jonathan Swifts's A Modest Proposal to the majority of Charles Dickens's work to Charlotte Perkins Gillman's The Yellow Wallpaper to Tolstoy's Anna Karenina to Upton Sinclair's The Jungle to John Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath up to modern classics like Angie Thomas's The Hate U Give.  All of these books look at social issues and use different techniques to push the reader to examine the world around them.  Throw in some poetry, narrative non-fiction and short stories to round it out.  

I do realize some of these works are a bit much for a seventh grader, but the concept of SJW is not something new.

I don't disagree that there are social themes in many classics, but perhaps it was an issue with this particular teacher.  She told the class that she chose books based on her interests.  Instead of just exploring the themes of the book and the author's intent, it seems much of the class was spent on the teacher's own personal views and how these books supported her views.  A lot of class time was spent on the students being asked their own views on the particular subjects (racial injustice, illegal immigrants, transgender, the disparity between the rich and the poor, the police, etc) and my son told me that everyone in the class was afraid to espouse views that they knew were contrary to the teacher's obvious views because they thought that would affect their grades.

Perhaps I just live in a very liberal school district, I don't know.  Back in fall of 2016 my daughter told me that her teacher spent the entire social studies period one day telling her students all the reasons why Donald Trump was terrible and why Hillary Clinton was obviously better, and that anyone who cared about America would make sure they voted for Hillary.  She encouraged her students to go home and have this discussion with their parents.  I think it was supposed to be a lesson on civics and learning how to make arguments in support of your position.  But it was obvious what her position was and it was obvious what she was doing.  At least one parent must have complained, because the next day she was forced to apologise to the class and said that they misinterpreted her words.  Uh huh.

32 minutes ago, Crs97 said:

My high school kids seem to bounce between assigned reading and then free choice, though sometimes the free choice is based on a theme or is a choice from a list.  I have also noticed that they have a better selection of authors and genres than I had.  My sophomore year of high school I had to read Animal Farm, Fahrenheit 451, and 1984.   To this day I cannot stomach a dystopian fiction novel.  We ended that year with Red Badge of Courage.  Really uplifting class, as you can imagine from that lineup.

Hah.  I had to read those dystopian books in freshman year (along with the requisite "Lord of the Flies" of course) and I remember just thinking they were weird.  Luckily, I avoided "The Red Badge of Courage".  It was on the required reading list for sophomores but my teacher told us it was one of the most dreadfully boring books he had ever read and that he refused to teach it.  We spent two days watching the movie instead.

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1 hour ago, BlackberryJam said:

Moby Dick

Oof. I read this in college. I'd read Billy Budd in high school so was familiar with Melville's style, but it was still one of the biggest slogs I've ever slogged. At the final, the prof asked us to rank our most liked and hated books if we had leftover time. We all cackled, and he said, "Oh, you can't put Moby Dick on the hate list, and we all whined like 6-year-olds. Hee.

1 hour ago, BlackberryJam said:

Just looking through those old novels that were on my AP lists, they were all had themes of social justice.

Most if not all  of the books I read in junior and high school had some sort of SJ theme. It might not have been as overt as the one in, say, To Kill a Mockingbird, but it was still there. Books can present a more organic way to discuss some of those issues.

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I'm reading Homer and Langley by E. L. Doctorow, about the Collyer brothers, probably the most famous hoarders of all time. So far it is being told by Homer, the blind brother and he is talking about the Spanish Flu pandemic that took both of his parents. The parallels to now are fascinating.

Edited to add the book is a fictionalized version of the story.

Edited by peacheslatour
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The Sun Also Rises
Gads...I already know the major themes.
And that Hemingway is lauded as a great writer.
But, geez, I am struggling to find any redeeming value in this novel. 
 

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9 minutes ago, grommit2 said:

The Sun Also Rises
Gads...I already know the major themes.
And that Hemingway is lauded as a great writer.
But, geez, I am struggling to find any redeeming value in this novel. 

I tried that one, and failed. I just couldn't. I think I'm not a Hemingway girl. 

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Speaking of assigned reading I do remember reading a couple of Hemingway short stories in high school and thinking they were very good - and made me understand why he considered one of the great ones,,,but man I could not get past the first couple of pages of any his novels that I attempted!

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I read TSAR in my school's equivalent of AP English. I think it was solely so our teacher could run the movie. He had a giant crush on Ava Gardner: "That's a woman!"

Not that I blame him, as she was ravishingly gorgeous.

Edited by dubbel zout · Reason: spacing that I can't fix
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48 minutes ago, WinnieWinkle said:

Speaking of assigned reading I do remember reading a couple of Hemingway short stories in high school and thinking they were very good - and made me understand why he considered one of the great ones,,,but man I could not get past the first couple of pages of any his novels that I attempted!

Nor could I. I couldn't really do Steinbeck either but I'm thinking about trying East Of Eden again. A lot of people really like it, I think I was just too young to appreciate it.

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We had to read Old Man and the Sea in high school, and I read The Sun Also Rises in college. I much preferred TSAR, but I've never read it or any other Hemingway since. 

I read Of Mice and Men in high school and I think that's it for Steinbeck. I've thought about trying East of Eden sometime, but haven't checked it out yet. 

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1 hour ago, grommit2 said:

The Sun Also Rises
Gads...I already know the major themes.
And that Hemingway is lauded as a great writer.
But, geez, I am struggling to find any redeeming value in this novel. 
 

Never read it but every time I see the title my mind goes straight to 10 Things I Hate About You:

Kat: Romantic? Hemingway? He was an abusive alcoholic misogynist who squandered half his life hanging around Picasso trying to nail his leftovers.

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This conversation about modern “classics” is reminding me that I should re-read Theodore Dreiser’s An American Tragedy. I didn’t read it in high school but picked it up as an adult. It starts slow but it’s worth sticking with. It really sat with me for quite a while, after I finished it. 

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4 minutes ago, scarynikki12 said:

Never read it but every time I see the title my mind goes straight to 10 Things I Hate About You:

Kat: Romantic? Hemingway? He was an abusive alcoholic misogynist who squandered half his life hanging around Picasso trying to nail his leftovers.

My love for that movie knows no bounds. 

William Faulkner was always my least favorite to read in both high school and college. 

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3 hours ago, WinnieWinkle said:

Speaking of assigned reading I do remember reading a couple of Hemingway short stories in high school and thinking they were very good 

Never a fan of his novels, although I recently read one of his short stories "A Clean, Well-Lighted Place".  I loved it.  Can't wait to reread it.

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We got to read Their Eyes Were Watching God instead of the Scarlet Letter. Did anyone else have to read The Fountainhead in high school?

3 hours ago, scarynikki12 said:

Never read it but every time I see the title my mind goes straight to 10 Things I Hate About You:

Kat: Romantic? Hemingway? He was an abusive alcoholic misogynist who squandered half his life hanging around Picasso trying to nail his leftovers.

This makes me think of Midnight in Paris.

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