Summer Reading for Rising Sophomores (Honors)

    COMMUNITY BOOK. You must read the following community book. The community book is one which is read by every member of the class. Parents are also invited to read the community book. During the first week of school, your English teachers will review, conduct, or oversee projects, presentations, and group seminars -- all in an effort to generate a sharing of ideas as a community.



    Mark Haddon

    The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. Christopher John Francis Boone knows all the countries of the world and their capitals and every prime number up to 7,057. He relates well to animals but has no understanding of human emotions. He cannot stand to be touched. And he detests the color yellow. A murder mystery of sorts, a young boy’s quest to investigate the suspicious death of a neighborhood dog makes for one of the most captivating, unusual, and widely heralded novels in recent years.



    INDEPENDENT CHOICE: Read one book from one of the lists of literary prize-winners. Be sure to choose a book which you have not already read for another school assignment.



    ENGLISH DEPARTMENT CHOICE: You must also read one book from the following list.



    Charlotte Brontë

    Jane Eyre. An orphan girl grows up in Victorian-era England and eventually becomes a governess in a mysterious mansion on the wind-swept moors. Classic romance tale.

    Charles Dickens

    A Tale of Two Cities “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times...” So begins one of the world’s most exciting and romantic stories about the French Revolution. Besides the two cities -- Paris and London -- there are two families, two villains, and two men who look alike, who both fall in love with the same woman. Good triumphs in the end, but just barely.

    Daphne DuMaurier

    Rebecca. Mystery / romance about a young woman who marries a wealthy man, but she is troubled by a sense of his mansion’s being haunted by memories of his previous wife.

    Barbara Kingsolver

    Pigs in Heaven. A sequel to The Bean Trees, the story of Taylor Greer and her adopted daughter, “Turtle,” continues. The novel opens with Turtle witnessing a dramatic accident that eventually results in her appearing on the Oprah show. Kingsolver explores what really makes a family.

    Jerome Lawrence and Robert Lee

    Inherit the Wind. An intense drama about one of the most controversial trials of our century. Two of the greatest American lawyers of the time battle about a teacher’s right to teach, freedom of speech, and the great questions of evolution.

    Ferrol Sams

    The Whisper of the River.In this sequel to Run with the Horsemen, Porter Osborne continues his humorous escapades in a small southern college. His faith and heritage are challenged by the new people he meets as he decides about his future.

    George Saunders

    The Brief and Frightening Reign of Phil. An allegory of our times, this is the story of Inner Horner, a nation so small it can only accommodate one citizen at a time. The other six must wait their turns in the Short-Term Residency Zone of the surrounding country of Outer Horner.

    Nevil Shute

    On the Beach. Compassionate yet chilling story of a small town in Australia awaiting a wave of nuclear radiation in the aftermath of an atomic war. The characters spend their last days in their own unique ways.

    Oscar Wilde

    The Importance of Being Earnest. A play which is a hilarious attack on Victorian manners, romance, and mistaken identities.

    P.G. Wodehouse

    Right Ho, Jeeves! A house party in the country, mixed-up romances, plans that backfire, and a wise butler who knows all the answers--these ingredients come together to create Wodehouse’s comic style. The life and loves of the English aristocracy are satirized in this novel.