Summer 2020 Suggested Reading from the English Department

We want you to read and enjoy it; use the following as suggestions:

English I and English I Pre-AP: both work with the coming of age stories throughout the school year.
We are suggesting that you read at least one coming of age story that appeals to you. There are many
stories out there that follow this genre. A couple of examples are:

  • The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho;
  • Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse; and
  • The Invincible Summer of Juniper Jones by Daven McQueen.

All of these are easily accessible, but The Alchemist is especially approachable. If you have read these, or
simply want different choices, we suggest that you follow this link:

English II and English II Pre-AP: the emphasis for the English II classes is historical fiction, with a focus
on World Literature. A couple of examples are:

  • The Book Thief by Markus Zuzak;
  • Fallen Angels by Walter Dean Myers;
  • The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini; and
  • Like Water for Chocolate by Laura Esquivel.

The following list from Goodreads may help you if you are looking for further reading or other choices:

It is also suggested that you read a non-fiction biography of either your favorite celebrity or musician.

English III, English III AP, and OnRamps English III: the primary focus of English III regardless of levels is
non-fiction. We suggest that you become very familiar with the world around you by reading current
events and editorials. There are many places you can go for this. You can look at The Austin American
Statesman, The Chronicle, The Atlantic, The New York Times, and The Washington Post. Reading the
news venues are excellent places to start. Find opinion/viewpoint pieces that interest you. We also
suggest that you read:

  • Frederick Douglass: Life of a Slave by Frederick Douglas;
  • Columbine by Dave Cullen; or
  • The Hot Zone (about the ebolavirus) by Richard Preston.

You may also want to look at some American Literature; use the following link for that:

English IV and English IV AP: English IV will encompass many different genres of fiction. Some deal with
women’s fiction, domestic fiction, fiction dealing with social concerns, political fiction, and even gothic
fiction. Some of the titles you may want to read are:

  • Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan;
  • Native Son by Richard Wright;
  • The Jungle by Upton Sinclair; or
  • The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson.

If you go to look at any of the list genres, you will find many pieces of interest. Another place to look is at the following link: This list is especially geared toward AP, but there are many titles and many approachable books on this list.