AND NOW I LOVE THEM (I’m done yelling I promise)! Even though I love reading and literature, like everyone else I strongly dislike assigned reading. Reading and scrutinizing every detail of a book, with deadlines, homework, tests, AND projects is nobody’s idea of a good reading experience. On the other hand, If no one forced me to read these, I would still be reading YA exclusively. My English classes and teachers taught me the appreciation of the classics and why they’re so important. There were 4 that have stuck with me after high school.
*these are ordered in the order that I had read them*
*The word love is thrown about excessively*
The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
This is one of the first times I had ever read a book where I saw that the main character was dealing with a mental illness. It’s so subtle, because it’s set in the late 1940’s and the book was published in the early 1950’s. Mental illness was horribly misunderstood and it wasn’t a subject you directly addressed. The main character Holden is telling us the story of how he got put in a mental institution. He has had a tough time dealing with the death of his brother. He doesn’t fit in that well at school, his parents have shipped him from school to school and don’t really know how to help him, and Holden is also 17 so throw in all the usual teenage angst. One winter he just can’t take it and runs away from school . He spends a few days roaming around New York City and he kinda finds himself.
I love this book so much, it’s such a wild ride start to finish
A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini
Let me be 110% honest, this book has destroyed my tear ducts. The story of Miriam and Laila is beautiful, tragic, and eye opening. Their stories are set in the beginning of Afghanistan’s struggle that has spread to a lot the middle east and is still a big issue today. One of them has a happy ending the other doesn’t. You can’t help but cry for both women.
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë
Before this, the only other classic book that I read is Pride and Prejudice. I thank my teachers everyday for exposing me to other authors and writers. In this book you follow Jane Eyre, throughout her life. The main thing to know about this book, is that Jane isn’t always in the ideal situation. It doesn’t last forever , but just as the situation improves, she is somehow uprooted and ends up again in another crappy situation. It ends happily for her which is amazing! I think I love this book so much because A) my friend loved it, so peer pressure and B) It was my first experience reading a Gothic novel (Gothic romance technically) and I really enjoyed the gloomy atmosphere. Also, a bit of feminism before women even had the right to vote.
The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton
This is a bit of a cheat because this book was never assigned to be by a teacher. My friend had to read it for a class and he loved it, so I got is as a gift.
This book made me realize that it doesn’t really matter what era someone grew up in, teenagers still go through the same issues. Cliques are a part of life and it’s a struggle when people start to break off into them and you just don’t seem to fit in anywhere. It’s also short and awesome to take along for travel.
Ummm I don’t think this needs a summary. I just love books a lot. My question is what books were you assigned to read that you ended up loving (or at least appreciating)?