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Mansfield High School (Grades 9-12)
250 East Street, Mansfield, MA 02048
Phone:  (508) 261-7540  Fax:  (508) 339-0259
 
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Mansfield Summer Reading List, 2014


All students at Mansfield High School are encouraged to read one or more books for their enjoyment and for their continued skill development during summer vacation. The following links will give you the information for suggested titles that are related thematically to the different courses’ units. They vary in levels of difficulty. These books should be available at most bookstores and at the Mansfield Public Library.

 

Note: Check for availability of books on "tablets". (iPad, Nook, Kindle, etc.)

 


 

10th grade Honors summer reading assignment 

for U.S. I History.

(Link)

 

 

 

 

 

updated 06/12/14

    

MHS English Department Summer Reading List

 

Grade 09

Grade 10

Grade 11

(New w/extra credit)

Grade 12

Extra Credit Grade 12

 

 

MHS English Department 2014 Summer Reading List

for Students Entering Grade 9

Students entering Grade 9 College Prep A/B are REQUIRED to read ONE of the novels from the list below.

Students entering Grade 9 Honors are REQUIRED to read TWO of the novels from the list.

NOTE: AT LEAST ONE of the student’s selections MUST be one of the novels marked with an asterisk (*).

ALL STUDENTS ENTERING GRADE 9 ENGLISH NEXT YEAR will be required to complete an assessment on the summer reading within the first two weeks of school; therefore, it is highly recommended that students keep a reading journal to take notes on plot/plot development, characters/character development, and themes/theme development as they read. NOTE: Students who prepare handwritten notes will be able to use them as a reference during the assessment(s); typed notes will not be allowed.

 

Grade 9

 

 

Author

Title

Synopsis

Betty Smith

*A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

*“…a poignant and deeply understanding story of childhood and family relationships. The Nolans lived in the Williamsburg slums of Brooklyn from 1902 until 1919...Their daughter Francie and their son Neely knew more than their fair share of the privations and sufferings that are the lot of a great city's poor. Primarily this is Francie's book.  from New York Times

Maya Angelou

*I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

* “…this memoir traces Maya Angelou's childhood in a small, rural community during the 1930s. Filled with images and recollections that point to the dignity and courage of black men and women, Angelou paints a sometimes disquieting, but always affecting picture of the people—and the times—that touched her life. Amazon.com Review

Richard Adams

*Watership Down

*First published in 1972, Richard Adam's extraordinary bestseller Watership Down takes us to a world we have never truly seen: to the remarkable life that teems in the fields, forests, and riverbanks, far beyond our cities and towns. It is a powerful saga of courage, leadership, and survival; and epic tale of a hardy band of Berkshire rabbits forced to flee the destruction of their fragile community and their trials and triumphs in the face of extraordinary adversity as they pursue a glorious dream called "home." distributed by Syndetic Solutions, Inc.

Walter Dean Myers

Sunrise over Fallujah

In this new novel, Walter Dean Myers looks at a contemporary war with the same power and searing insight he brought to the Vietnam war of his classic, Fallen Angels.  Barnes and Noble.com Synopsis

Sue Monk Kidd

The Secret Life of Bees

Fourteen-year-old Lily Owen, who is neglected and isolated on her father’s North Carolina peach farm, becomes a runaway who finds the true meaning of family in the home of three black sisters who raise bees. The story is set in the early 1960s against the background of racial violence and unrest. Amazon.com Review

Jamie Ford

Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet

Fifth-grade scholarship students and best friends Henry and Keiko are the only Asians in their Seattle elementary school in 1942. Henry is Chinese, Keiko is Japanese, and Pearl Harbor has made all Asians-even those who are American born-targets for abuse. Because Henry's nationalistic father has a deep-seated hatred for Japan, Henry keeps his friendship with and eventual love for Keiko a secret. When Keiko's family is sent to an internment camp in Idaho, Henry vows to wait for her. Library Journal Synopsis

Jay Asher

13 Reasons Why

Clay Jensen returns home from school to find a strange package with his name on it lying on his porch. Inside he discovers several cassette tapes recorded by Hannah Baker - his classmate and crush - who committed suicide two weeks earlier. Hannah's voice tells him that there are thirteen reasons why she decided to end her life. Clay is one of them. If he listens, he'll find out why. Clay spends the night crisscrossing his town with Hannah as his guide. He becomes a firsthand witness to Hannah's pain, and learns the truth about himself-a truth he never wanted to face. Barnes and Noble Synopsis

Gordon Korman

Son of the Mob

Vince Luca is just like any other high school guy.  There is just one thing that really sets him apart from other kids.  His father happens to be the head of a powerful crime organization.  Amazon.com Review

Chris Deuker

Painting the Black

After a disastrous fall from a tree, senior Ryan Ward wrote off baseball. But he is swept back into the game when cocky, charismatic Josh Daniels--a star quarterback with the perfect spiral pass as well as a pitcher with a mean slider--moves into the neighborhood. Josh is adept at placing his pitches on the line between fair and foul ("painting the black"), and in his sweep to sports fame, he lives his life much the same way. Ryan, whose spot on the team hinges on his ability to catch Josh's pitches, soon learns that more than a team slot is at stake. Book List Review

Grade 09 printable PDF copy

 

MHS English Department 2014 Summer Reading List

for Students Entering Grade 10

Students entering Grade 10 College Prep A/B are REQUIRED to read ONE of the books from the list below.

Students entering Grade 10 Honors are REQUIRED to read TWO of the books from the list.

NOTE: AT LEAST ONE of the selections MUST be from the novels marked with an asterisk (*).

ALL STUDENTS ENTERING GRADE 10 ENGLISH NEXT YEAR will be required to complete an assessment on the summer reading within the first two weeks of school; therefore, it is highly recommended that students keep a reading journal to take notes on plot/plot development, characters/character development, and themes/theme development as they read. NOTE: Students who prepare handwritten notes will be able to use them as a reference during the assessment(s); typed notes will not be allowed.

 

Grade 10

 

 

Author

Title

Synopsis

*Khaled Hosseini

*The Kite Runner

*This painful, moving, remarkable debut novel depicts the childhood, adolescence, and adulthood of a deeply flawed protagonist. Growing up in Kabul, Afghanistan, Amir feels unloved by his widowed father, who seems to care more for Hassan, the son of their Hazara servant, Ali. Amir and Hassan are close but not quite friends. On what should have been the best day of his young life, when he wins a kite-flying contest and finally some respect from his father, Amir betrays Hassan and becomes haunted by guilt. Amir comes to California when the Soviets invade his country but returns years later to rescue Hassan's orphaned son from the Taliban and redeem himself. Library Journal Review

*Charlotte Bronte

*Jane Eyre

*As an orphan, Jane’s childhood is not an easy one, but her independence and strength of character sustain her through the miseries inflicted by cruel relatives and a brutal education system. Taking a job as a governess in a house containing dangerous secrets and a passionate man she finds increasingly attractive, Jane is ultimately forced to call on her resources in order to hold fast to her beliefs. Amazon.com Synopsis

Robert Sharenow

The Berlin Boxing Club

Berlin in the 1930s, during the rise of Nazism, is the dramatic setting for this novel told through the immediate first-person narrative of teenage Karl. Growing up in a secular middle-class home, he has always ignored his Jewish identity until he is expelled from school, the Hitler Youth harass him, and his father arranges for Karl to have lessons with the famous boxer Max Schmeling. After Max defeats Joe Louis, the Nazis trumpet his victory as Aryan superiority, but then Joe Louis wins the following match. At home, the situation becomes more desperate: Karl's little sister is beaten by Hitler Youth, his mother sinks into depression, and his uncle dies in Dachau. Karl is also a cartoonist, and his occasional sketches express the racist idiocy and the anguish he experiences. Booklist Review

Garth Stein

The Art of Racing in the Rain

Enzo narrates his life story, beginning with his impending death. Enzo's not afraid of dying, as he's seen a television documentary on the Mongolian belief that a good dog will reincarnate as a man. Yes, Enzo is a dog. And he belongs to Denny: husband, father, customer service technician. Denny's dream is to be a professional race-car driver, and Enzo recounts the triumphs and tragedies--medical, financial, and legal--they share in this quest, the dangers of the racetrack being the least of their obstacles. Enzo ultimately teaches Denny and the reader that persistence and joie de vivre will see them through to the checkered flag. Library Journal Review

Travis Roy

Eleven Seconds: A Story of Tragedy, Courage, and Triumph

Within the 11 seconds that inspired this memoir, Travis Roy realized his dream, then smashed into his nightmare. On an October night in 1995, Roy, a talented young hockey player, skated onto the ice for his varsity debut with Boston University. Eleven fateful seconds later, he was paralyzed from the neck down. Aided by the sure touch of Sports Illustrated hockey writer E.M. Swift, Roy's moving account of his accident and his rehabilitation. . . Eleven Seconds is filled with grit, hope, humor, and a thoughtful young man's introspection on the meaning of sports and the adjustments that follow when the ability to play them is taken away. Amazon.com Review

Eric Blehm

Fearless: The Undaunted Courage and Ultimate Sacrifice of Navy Seal Team Six Operator Adam Brown

An absorbing chronicle of heroism and humanity, Fearless presents an indelible portrait of a highly trained warrior who would enter a village with weapons in hand to hunt terrorists, only to come back the next day with an armload of shoes and meals for local children. It is a deeply personal, revealing glimpse inside the SEAL Team SIX brotherhood that also shows how these elite operators live out the rest of their lives, away from danger, as husbands, fathers, and friends. Barnes and Noble

Mark Haddon

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time

Christopher Boone is the autistic 15-year-old narrator of this novel.  When the neighbor’s poodle is killed and Christopher is falsely accused of the crime, he decides that he will take a page from Sherlock Holmes and track down the killer. As the mystery leads him to the secrets of his parents’ broken marriage and then into an odyssey to find his place in the world, he must fall back on deductive logic to navigate the emotional complexities of a social world that remains a closed book to him. Publishers Weekly Synopsis

Malala Yousafzai

I am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and was Shot by the Taliban

When the Taliban took control of the Swat Valley in Pakistan, one girl spoke out. Malala Yousafzai refused to be silenced and fought for her right to an education. On Tuesday, October 9, 2012, when she was fifteen, she almost paid the ultimate price. She was shot in the head at point-blank range while riding the bus home from school, and few expected her to survive. Instead, Malala's miraculous recovery has taken her on an extraordinary journey from a remote valley in northern Pakistan to the halls of the United Nations in New York. At sixteen, she has become a global symbol of peaceful protest and the youngest nominee ever for the Nobel Peace Prize.  Barnes and Noble.com Synopsis

 

Ray Bradbury

Fahrenheit 451

In Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury's classic, frightening vision of the future, firemen don't put out fires--they start them in order to burn books. Bradbury's vividly painted society holds up the appearance of happiness as the highest goal--a place where trivial information is good, and knowledge and ideas are bad. Guy Montag meets a young girl who makes him question his profession and the values of the society in which he lives. Amazon.com Synopsis

Sherman Alexie

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian

Sherman Alexie tells the story of Junior, a budding cartoonist growing up on the Spokane Indian Reservation. Determined to take his future into his own hands, Junior leaves his troubled school on the rez to attend an all-white farm town high school where the only other Indian is the school mascot. Amazon. Com Synopsis

 Grade 10 printable PDF copy

MHS English Department 2014 Summer Reading List

For Students Entering Grade 11

 

Students entering Grade 11 College Prep or Honors are encouraged to read one or more novels for their enjoyment and for their continued skill development during the summer vacation.  The novels suggested in the list below are related thematically to several of the unit topics that students will explore in these courses.

 

If a student wishes to receive extra credit for reading one of the selections, he/she must: (1) read a novel from the suggested titles below, (2) complete a reading journal (see guidelines*), and (3)submit the journal to his/her English teacher during the first week that the class meets (teacher will announce due date).

*The reading journal guidelines can be found at the end of the list and on the MHS website under Summer Reading.

 

Students entering 11 AP are REQUIRED to read the AP Selection** and may choose one of the selections from the list of suggested novels for extra credit by completing and submitting a reading journal (see guidelines*).

NOTE: AP students are encouraged to keep their own reading journal/notes on the AP selection to help them review for their assessment.

 

 

**AP Selection: A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail, Bill Bryson

 

Grade 11

 

 

Author

Title

Synopsis

Ernest J. Gaines

A Lesson Before Dying

The novel is set in a small Cajun community in the late 1940s.  Jefferson, a young black man, is an unwitting party to a liquor store shoot out in which three men are killed; the only survivor, he is convicted of murder and sentenced to death.  Grant Wiggins, who left his hometown for the university, has returned to the plantation school to teach.  As he struggles with his decision whether to stay or escape to another state, his aunt and Jefferson's godmother persuade him to visit Jefferson in his cell and impart his learning and his pride to Jefferson before his death.  In the end, the two men forge a bond as they both come to understand the simple heroism of resisting—and defying—the expected. Amazon.com Synopsis

Alice Sebold

The Lovely Bones

"My name was Salmon, like the fish; first name, Susie. I was fourteen when I was murdered on December 6, 1973." So begins the story of Susie Salmon, who is adjusting to her new home in heaven, a place that is not at all what she expected, even as she is watching life on earth continue without her - her friends trading rumors about her disappearance, her killer trying to cover his tracks, her grief-stricken family unraveling. Amazon.com Synopsis

Kathryn Stockett

The Help

Twenty-two-year-old Skeeter has just returned home after graduating from Ole Miss. It is 1962, and her mother will not be happy till Skeeter has a ring on her finger. Skeeter would normally find solace with her beloved maid Constantine, but Constantine has disappeared, Kathryn Stockett creates three extraordinary women whose determination forever changes a town and the way women—mothers, daughters, caregivers, friends—view one another. The Help is a timeless and universal story about the lines we abide by, and the ones we don’t. Amazon.com Review

Erik Larson

Devil in the White City

Larson intertwines the true tale of the 1893 World's Fair and the cunning serial killer who used the fair to lure his victims to their death. Combining meticulous research with nail-biting storytelling, Erik Larson has crafted a narrative with all the wonder of newly discovered history and the thrills of the best fiction. Amazon.com SynopsisShow More

Show Less

 

Doris Kearns Goodwin

Wait Until Next Year: Summer Afternoons with My Father and Baseball

In this memoir, Pulitzer Price-winning historian Doris Kearns Goodwin recounts some wonderful stories about both her family and an era when baseball truly was the national pastime that brought whole communities together. A great deal of the narrative centers around the sport, but between games and seasons, Goodwin also relates the impact of pivotal historical events. Goodwin gives readers reason to consider what each of us has retained of our childhood passions. From Library Journal

Kathleen Grissom

The Kitchen House: A Novel

In this gripping New York Times bestseller, Kathleen Grissom brings to life a thriving plantation in Virginia in the decades before the Civil War, where a dark secret threatens to expose the best and worst in everyone tied to the estate. Orphaned during her passage from Ireland, young, white Lavinia arrives on the steps of the kitchen house and is placed, as an indentured servant, under the care of Belle, the master’s illegitimate slave daughter. Lavinia learns to cook, clean, and serve food, while guided by the quiet strength and love of her new family. In time, Lavinia is accepted into the world of the big house, caring for the master’s opium-addicted wife and befriending his dangerous yet protective son. She attempts to straddle the worlds of the kitchen and big house, but her skin color will forever set her apart from Belle and the other slaves. Amazon. Com Review


Extra Credit Reading Journal for Grades 11

In order to receive extra credit for completing your summer reading, you must answer all of the following prompts carefully and thoroughly. Be sure to include relevant textual evidence to support your ideas. Also, don’t forget to identify the novel’s title and author’s name!

Due:  First Week of English Class (Teacher will announce due date)

Length:  Approximately 3 pages, neatly handwritten

 

(a)   Write a one-page reaction statement to the novel you read.  Be specific in your thoughts about the points that you liked or didn’t like about the novel, ideas that intrigued you, etc.  Be sure to include specific textual references (include page numbers) to support your reaction/thoughts.

 

(b)  Cite a memorable passage of no more than thirty words or three sentences from the book (include page number(s)). Explain why you have chosen this passage from the book.

 

(c)   Describe your first impression of one character or event that you find interesting.  Give at least three examples of specific textual evidence(include page numbers) that support or generate this impression.

 

(d)  ** Identify what causes a significant change in one character and describe the results of that change.  This change may be the consequence of a choice, a conflict of some kind that has to be resolved, a display of some outstanding trait like courage, or even the result of an action/event that occurs during the story. Whenever possible, include specific textual references (include page numbers) to support your conclusions, especially those that help to illustrate or provide evidence of the character’s change.

 Grade 11 printable PDF copy

 

 

MHS English Department 2014 Summer Reading List

for Students Entering Grade 12

 

Students entering Grade 12 College Prep or Honors are encouraged to read one or more novels for their enjoyment and for their continued skill development during the summer vacation.  The novels suggested in the list below are related thematically to several of the unit topics that students will explore in these courses.

 

If a student wishes to receive extra credit for reading one of the selections, he/she must: (1) read a novel from the suggested titles below, (2) complete a reading journal (see guidelines*),and(3) submit the journal to his/her English teacher during the first week that the class meets (teacher will announce due date).

*The reading journal guidelines can be found on the MHS website under Summer Reading.

 

Students entering 12 AP are REQUIRED to read the TWO AP Selections** and may choose one of the selections from the list of suggested novels for extra credit by completing and submitting a reading journal (see guidelines*). NOTE: AP students are encouraged to keep their own reading journal/notes on the AP selections to help them review for their assessments.

 

**AP Selections: (1) Wuthering Heights, Emily Brontë

(2) How to Read Literature Like a Professor, Thomas C. Foster (students are encouraged to purchase this book because it will be used throughout their AP course)

 

Grade 12

 

 

Author

Title

Synopsis

Jeannette Walls

The Glass Castle

Walls opens her memoir with a recollection of riding in a taxi and spotting her mother “rooting through a dumpster.”  Wall’s parents were a matched pair of eccentrics, and raising four children didn’t conventionalize either of them. Living with a mom who thought that “being homeless is an adventure,” the Walls children learned to support themselves in a variety of ways.  Publishers Weekly Synopsis

Marjane Satrapi

Persepolis (Part 1)

Persepolis is Marjane Satrapi's wise, funny, and heartbreaking memoir of growing up in Iran during the Islamic Revolution. In powerful black-and-white comic strip images, Satrapi tells the story of her life in Tehran from ages six to fourteen years that saw the overthrow of the Shah's regime, the triumph of the Islamic Revolution, and the devastating effects of war with Iraq. Amazon.com Synopsis

Ishmael Beah

A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier

This absorbing account by a young man who, as a boy of 12, gets swept up in Sierra Leone’s civil war, reveals the life and mind of a child abducted into the horrors of warfare. Told in a clear, assessable language, this memoir is a gripping firsthand account of war and the ongoing plight of child soldiers in conflicts worldwide. Publishers Weekly Synopsis

Sylvia Plath

The Bell Jar

Esther Greenwood is brilliant, beautiful, enormously talented, and successful, but slowly going under—maybe for the last time. In her acclaimed and enduring masterwork, Sylvia Plath brilliantly draws the reader into Esther's breakdown with such intensity that her insanity becomes palpably real, even rational—as accessible an experience as going to the movies. A deep penetration into the darkest and most harrowing corners of the human psyche, The Bell Jar is an extraordinary accomplishment and a haunting American classic. Amazon.com SynopsisShow More

Show Less

 

Sebastian Junger

War

Junger turns his brilliant and empathetic eye to the reality of combat--the fear, the honor, and the trust among men in an extreme situation whose survival depends on their absolute commitment to one another. His on-the-ground account follows a single platoon through a 15-month tour of duty in the most dangerous outpost in Afghanistan's Korengal Valley. Through the experiences of these young men at war, he shows what it means to fight, to serve, and to face down mortal danger on a daily basis. Amazon.com Synopsis

Laura Hillenbrand

Unbroken

The author of Seabiscuit now brings us a biography of World War II prisoner of war survivor Louis Zamperini (b. 1917). A track athlete at the 1936 Munich Olympics, Zamperini became a B-24 crewman in the U.S. Army Air Force. When his plane went down in the Pacific in 1943, he spent 47 days in a life raft, then was picked up by a Japanese ship and survived starvation and torture in labor camps. Eventually repatriated, he had a spiritual rebirth and returned to Japan to promote forgiveness and healing. Library Journal Review

Dick Lehr and Gerald O’Neill

Black Mass: The Unholy Alliance between the FBI and the Irish Mob

John Connoly and James "Whitey" Bulger grew up together on the streets of South Boston. Decades later, in the mid 1970's, they would meet again. By then, Connoly was a major figure in the FBI's Boston office and Whitey had become godfather of the Irish Mob. What happened next -- a dirty deal to bringing down the Italian mob in exchange for protection for Bulger -- would spiral out of control, leading to murders, drug dealing, racketeering indictments, and, ultimately, the biggest informant scandal in the history of the FBI. BarnesandNoble.com Synopsis

Vanessa Diffenbaugh

The Language of Flowers

In Victorian times, the language of flowers was used to convey romantic expressions.  But for Victoria Jones, it’s been more useful in communicating mistrust and solitude.  After a childhood spent in the foster-care system, she is unable to get close to anybody, and her only connection to the world is through flowers and their meanings. Now 18, Victoria realizes she has a gift for helping others through the flowers she chooses for them.  But an unexpected encounter with a mysterious stranger has her questioning what has been missing in her life.

Sue Monk Kidd

Invention of Wings

In the early 1830s, Sarah Grimké and her younger sister, Angelina, were the most infamous women in America. They had rebelled so vocally against their family, society, and their religion that they were reviled, pursued, and exiled from their home city of Charleston, South Carolina, under threat of death. Their crime was speaking out in favor of liberty and equality and for African American slaves and women, arguments too radically humanist even for the abolitionists of their time. Their lectures drew crowds of thousands, even (shockingly, then) men, and their most popular pamphlet directly inspired Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom's Cabin--published 15 years later. These women took many of the first brutal backlashes against feminists and abolitionists, but even their names are barely known now. Sue Monk Kidd became fascinated by these sisters, and the question of what compelled them to risk certain fury and say with the full force of their convictions what others had not (or could not).Amazon.com Review

Cheryl Strayed

Wild

At twenty-two, Cheryl Strayed thought she had lost everything. In the wake of her mother’s death, her family scattered and her own marriage was soon destroyed. Four years later, with nothing more to lose, she made the most impulsive decision of her life. With no experience or training, driven only by blind will, she would hike more than a thousand miles of the Pacific Crest Trail from the Mojave Desert through California and Oregon to Washington State—and she would do it alone. Told with suspense and style, sparkling with warmth and humor, Wild powerfully captures the terrors and pleasures of one young woman forging ahead against all odds on a journey that maddened, strengthened, and ultimately healed her.Amazon.com Review

Grade 12 printable PDF copy

 

 

Extra Credit Reading Journal for Grade 12

Answer the following questions carefully and thoroughly.  Please use relevant textual evidence to support your ideas. Be sure to identify the book’s title and author’s name.

 

Due:  first week of English class

Length:  approximately 3 pages, handwritten neatly

 

(a)    Write a one-page reaction statement to the book that you read.  Be specific in your thoughts about points that you liked or didn’t like about the book, ideas that intrigued you, etc.  Be sure to include specific textual references. Include page numbers.

 

(b)    Cite a memorable passage of no more than thirty words or three sentences from the book.  Include page number(s). Explain why you have chosen this passage from the book.

 

(c)    Describe your first impression of one character or event that you find interesting.  Give at least three examples of textual evidence that supports or generates this impression. Be sure to include the page numbers.

 

(d)   **Identify what causes a significant change in one character, and describe the results of that change.  This change may be the consequence of a choice, a conflict of some kind that has to be resolved, a display of some outstanding trait like courage, or even the result of an action or event that occurs during the story.

PDF printable copy