Top Ten Tuesday is an original blog meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s topic is “Back To School Freebie — anything ‘back to school’ related like 10 favorite books I read in school, books I think should be required reading, etc…” I love the possibilities for this topic as I had some great experiences reading books in school. For this week’s theme, I’m listing books I think should be taught in schools because I believe they would make class a heck of a lot more interesting. Covers are linked to Goodreads.
1. Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling – Can you imagine reading the HP series in school? I don’t really have too many memories of books I read in elementary school, but I’m pretty sure I’d remember this series. And wouldn’t it just be amazing to introduce a whole new generation to the Wizarding World?
2. The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak – This was probably the first book that came to mind when thinking about this topic. It’s one of the few books that I regard has a modern classic. I have no doubt that this will be read it schools.
3. Percy Jackson and the Olympians by Rick Riordan – I have never been into Greek Mythology, but I’m pretty sure I would have paid more attention to it if we learned about it while reading these books.
4. Noughts & Crosses by Malorie Blackman – If you haven’t picked up this book that swaps histories between whites and blacks, do it. Racial prejudice is a hard thing to grasp when you haven’t experienced it, so I think this book would help open up a lot of eyes.
5. I Hunt Killer by Barry Lyga – If I was a teacher and assigned this delightful book about a boy struggling against the legacy of his serial killer father, I’m sure I’d get a lot of phone calls from parents. But can you imagine the class discussions!
6. Wolf By Wolf by Ryan Graudin – I actually had nine books on my list and couldn’t come up with a tenth one, but since this is my imaginary world where books I love get to be read in class, I’m adding this one. An alternate history where Hitler was successful ought to have a million possibilities for class assignments.
7. The Program by Suzanne Young – Looking back at the books I read in middle school and high school, I don’t think any ever tackled mental health. Perhaps Catcher in the Rye? I do know we never discussed Holden’s mental health while reading it. The Program puts a really disturbing spin on how depression is handled and I think would be a good starting point when talking about the mental health system in this country.
8. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins – War and its effect on children, a government’s abuse of power, post-traumatic stress disorder, there are so many things to be talked about when it comes to this series.
9. The Memory of Light by Francisco X. Stork – This is the only true contemporary book on my list this week. Like I mentioned before, mental health was not something we tackled in school but it’s so important to reach out and educate everyone.
10. Unwind by Neal Shusterman – The concept surrounding this book terrifies me. Sometimes terror translates to the most interesting discussions.
Have you read any of these? Which books do you think should be taught in school? Are there any books written in the last fifteen years that you consider modern classics? Let me know in the comments and be sure leave a link to your own TTT post, so I can visit.