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9th grader co-op lit book title suggestions

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Our co-op will have a lit/book club class for 9th graders that will meet 16 times (twice a month) next school year. There will be about 10 to 12 students.

We would like to have a mix of British and American literature. They students will read the books at home and discuss in the classes. There will be little homework and no writing attached to this. It is like a book club. We would like the books to be enjoyable and not a heavy chore to read because we would like this to be more for fun and interaction among peers than for academics. Basically we would like them to look forward to the classes instead of dreading it and have a fond memory of it. (I wonder if this is too much to ask. :-) ) Shakepeare is OK, but not a hard one.

Can you recommend a list of titles for me please? Lori D and other lit experts?


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Ooo! Ooo! I vote for titles that will spark a lot of fun discussion, since this is more book club than formal Literature study. :)



SHORT STORIES (read 1 -- or 2 stories! -- for a class)

The Monkey's Paw (Jacobs)

Rikki Tikki Tavi (Kipling)

The Golden Key; or; The Light Princess (MacDonald)

The Open Window (Saki)

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (Thurber)

Story Without an End (Twain)

The Red-Headed League (Doyle)

A Scandal in Bohemia (Doyle)

The Lady or the Tiger (Stocken) -- the famous first "you decide" story ending

The Most Dangerous Game (Connell)

Lamb to the Slaughter (Dahl)

There Will Come Soft Rains (Bradbury)

A Sound of Thunder (Bradbury)

The Tell-Tale Heart (Poe)

The Ransom of Red Chief (Henry)

The Open Window (Saki)

Wooster and Jeeves (PG Wodehouse)

Flowers for Algernon (Keyes)

Bride Comes to Yellow Sky (Crane)

Lamb to the Slaughter (Dahl)

The Happy Prince (Wilde)

The Necklace (de Maupassant)



SHORT BOOKS (read in 2-3 weeks):


speculative fiction

- The Giver (Lowry)

- Tuck Everlasting (Babbitt)

- A Wrinkle in Time (L'Engle)

- The Invisible Man (Wells)

- Out of the Silent Planet (Lewis)

- The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (Stevenson)

- A Wizard of Earthsea (Le Guin) -- 1st book in Earthsea trilogy; can stand alone

- The Tombs of Atuan (Le Guin) -- 2nd book in Earthsea trilogy; can stand alone

- Watership Down (Adams) -- NO female characters, so that's problematic, but some great discussion on different types of gov't that the rabbit characters encounter in their quest for a new homeland

- The Rumpelstiltskin Problem (Velde) -- okay, it's just adequate in the writing BUT, my Lit. students really had a good time discussing these 6 short stories, all from different points of view on the story of Rumpelstiltskin



- Murder on the Orient Express -- or -- And Then There Were None (Christie)

- first 4 stories in The Innocence of Father Brown (they are connected by an "arc"): The Blue Cross; The Secret Garden; The Queer Feet; The Flying Stars



- The Day They Came to Arrest the Book -- GREAT for discussing racism, censorship, etc

- The King's Fifth (O'Dell)

- I Am David (Holm)

- My Family and Other Animals (Durrell)



- Farmer Giles of Ham (Tolkien) -- humorous "mock epic"

- The Pushcart War (Merrill)


traditional classics

- Animal Farm (Orwell)

- The Old Man and the Sea (Hemingway)

- The Pearl (Steinbeck)

- Call of the Wild (London)

- A Christmas Carol (Dickens)

- A Separate Peace (Knowles)

- The Sword in the Stone (White) -- first of the 4 books that make up The Once and Future King



LONGER BOOKS (take 4-5 weeks):

- Ender's Game (Card)

- The Hobbit (Tolkien)

- Something Wicked This Way Comes (Bradbury)

Edited by Lori D.
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