At the end of every high school year there was one thing I looked forward to. No, not summer – actually, yes, I did look forward to summer but speaking of things school related, I looked forward to getting the book list for the following year. I couldn’t wait to get started on my English texts. Yes, book nerd at age thirteen.
I’m stretching the scope of this week’s Top Ten Tuesday (hosted by The Broke and the Bookish). The topic is ‘Top Ten Books That You Wish Were Taught In Schools’ – my topic is Top Eleven Books That I Was Taught in School. Actually, ‘top’ suggests best… This is a list of books that were the most memorable for all sorts of reasons. So here it is, Top Eleven Most Memorable Books That I Was Taught in School.
1. A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle- didn’t like this book but it was read in my first year of high school so my enthusiasm knew no bounds.
2. Seven Little Australians by Ethel Turner – I had read this book well before high school. Possible I was a bit of a smart-arse about it.
3. A Kestrel for a Knave by Barry Hines – notably, the word ‘shit’ is used in this text. That’s a big deal when you’re 14 and taking it in turns to read aloud in class. My friend Carter got to read the page with ‘shit’. Memorable.
4. Playing Beatie Bow by Ruth Park – an exceptional story. I’m counting down the days until I can share it with my kids.
5. Across the Barricades by Joan Lingard – star-crossed lovers when you’re 15? Nothing better.
6. My Brother Jack by George Johnston – an Australian classic and a story I still love.
7. Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant by Anne Tyler – afraid I can pinpoint my loathing of Anne Tyler on this book. I really just wanted to tell all the characters to pull themselves together and get on with it.
8. The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton – goes without saying – awesome. And then we got to watch the movie in class… #huzzah
9. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee – how can this book not leave an impression? Love it. Still.
10. Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare – we studied Shakespeare every year but this play was my favourite.
“Be not afraid of greatness. Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and others have greatness thrust upon them.”
11. Amy’s Children by Olga Masters – the last text I did at high school and perhaps my favourite. I knew every inch of this simple, wonderful book.