Books Recommended By Ms. Appel

While I have many more books I would like to recommend to parents, these are the “classics” most commonly recommended to students in “rigorous” middle and high schools. I am working on compiling a much more diverse list that captures the range, color, texture and depth of the real “American Voice” where all our cultural origins are expressed, honored and celebrated! More to come…

Challenge 3


Animal Farm by George Orwell

Ask Me No Questions Marina Budhos

The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman

1984 George Orwell

The Martian Chronicles Ray Bradbury

The Life of Pi Yann Martel

The Call of the Wild Jack London

Dracula  Bram Stoker

Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Barbara Kingsolver

Cartoon Guide to the Environment Larry Gonick & Alice Outwater [graphic format]

Charles Darwin On the Origin of the Species  Michael Keller[graphic format]

High Tide in Tucson Barbara Kingsolver

Things Fall Apart Chinua Achebe

Pride and Prejudice Jane Austen

Jane Eyre Charlotte Bronte

Wuthering Heights Emily Bronte

The Last of the Mohicans James Fenimore Cooper

The Red Badge of Courage Stephen Crane

Robinson Crusoe Daniel Defoe

The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Selected Essays Ralph Waldo Emerson

The Odyssey Homer

Selected Tales Edgar Allan Poe

Treasure Island Robert Louis Stevenson

Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglas Frederick Douglas

The Wright Brothers Russell Freedman


Challenge 2


Peter Pan  J.M. Barrie

The Red Pony  John Steinbeck

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn  Betty Smith

Twenty-Thousand Leagues Under the Sea  Jules Verne

Born Confused  Tanuja Desai Hidier

The Chocolate War  Robert Cormier

Cube 15  Nancy Osa

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time  Mark Haddon

Dandelion Wine  Ray Bradbury

Fever 1793  Laurie Halse Anderson

The Highest Tide  Jim Lynch

Jasmin’s Notebook  Nikki Grimes

Looking for Alaska  John Gree

Return to Sender Julia Alvarez

The Secret Life of Bees  Sue Monk Kidd

A Separate Peace  John Knowles

A Summer Life  Gary Soto

Artemis Fowl  Eoin Colfer

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland  Lewis Carroll

Dealing with Dragons (series)  Patricia Wrede

Ella Enchanted Gail Carson Levine

Eragon (series)  Christopher Paolini

Fragile Things: Short Fictions and Wonders  Neil Gaiman

Haroun and the Sea of Stories  Salman Rushdie

Artemis Fowl (series)  Eoin Colfer

The Merlin Effect (series)  T. A. Brown

A Wizard of Earthsea (series)  Ursula K. Le Guin

Romiette and Julio  Sharon Draper

The Maze Runner  James Dashner

Mythology  Edith Hamilton

The Book Thief  Marcus Zusak

Chains  Laurie Halse Anderson

Leonardo’s Shadow: Or, My Astonishing Life as Leonardo da Vinci’s Servant  Christopher Grey

Number the Stars Lois Lowry

The Circuit  Fransisco Jimenez

The Diary of a Young Girl  Anne Frank

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (series)  Maya Angelou

The Chosen Chaim Potok

Within Reach: My Everest Story Mark Pfetzer and Jack Galvin

Woman Warrior  Maxine Hong Kingston

And Then There Were None Agatha Christie

The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes  Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

A Mango-Shaped Space Wendy Mass

Meet the Austins (series)  Madeleine L’Engle

The Outsiders  S. E. Hinton

Stargirl Jerry Spinelli

Elsewhere by Gabrielle Zevin

Ender’s Game Orson Scott Card

Fahrenheit 451 Ray Bradbury

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (series) Douglas Adams

The Report Card Andrew Clements

Small Steps Louis Sachar

The Fault In Our Stars John Green

The Golden Compass Philip Pullman

The Ancient One (series) T. A. Barron

Chew on This Charles Wilson

Clan Apis Jay Hosler (graphic format)

The Evolution of Calpurnia Jacqueline Kelly

Omnivore’s Dilemma Michael Pollan

Scat Carl Hiaasen



Challenge 1


Autobiography of a Part-Time Indian Sherman Alexie

Bud, Not Buddy  Christopher Paul Curtis

Chasing Redbird  Sharon Creech

Criss Cross  Lynne Rae Perkins

Hatchet (series) by Gary Paulsen

The Lightening Thief by Rick Riordan

The Lion, the witch , and the Wardrobe (series) by C. S. Lewis

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle

Hunger Games (series) Suzanne Collins

The Last Book in the Universe Rodman Philbrick

The Watsons Go to Birmingham – 1963 Christopher Paul Curtis

The Smile Donna Jo Napoli

Hoot Carl Hiaasen

Iqbal Fransesco D’Adamo

Gathering Blue Lois Lowry

Hungry Planet: What the Word Eats Peter Menzel (photo journal)

My Side of the Mountain Jean Craighead George