School Is Back In Session

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by The Broke and The Bookish. Every week they post a new topic/top ten list and invite everyone to share their own answers. I'm so obsessed with lists - so it makes perfect sense that I'd love this feature!

Even though you'd think this book would be perfect for me, I actually just wasn't reading it this week. So, I decided to make my own list keeping the assigned topic in mind but giving it my own twist.

Top Five Required Reading Books I Never Had To Read

1. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald - I have since read this book, but I always remember hearing people talk about being required to read this book in high school. I'm really not sure how I managed to avoid reading this American classic.

2. Of Mice and Men / The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck - I feel like most people had to read at least one Steinbeck novel. Not me! I have, however, added a copy of Of Mice and Men to my shelves so one day I'll fix this hole in my literary education.

3. Animal Farm / 1984 by George Orwell - Again, I somehow never had to read anything by Orwell. I think it was on a list one year where you got to choose what you wanted from that list, and I was seriously not interested in talking animals or controlling governments. But that's just a guess.

4. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger - This is one of those required reading books that I have no desire to read. I feel like my reading experience might be similar to when I had to read The Lord of the Flies, which was one of the only required books that I absolutely hated with a passion. 

5. A Separate Peace by John Knowles - I actually choose this from a required reading list one year and later changed my mind. I have no idea what I ended up reading, but I've always meant to actually give this one a chance.

Top Five Required Reading Books I'm Glad I Had To Read

1. Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy - I might never have picked this book up without my AP English class during my senior year, and that makes me sad to think about because I absolutely adored this book. Even though, yes, there were some boring parts.

2. A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens - So, so, so good. Thank goodness this was required and sparked so much class discussion! I've been meaning to reread this one.

3. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith - I loved this one so much I think I picked to read it twice. I'm not sure how it happened - or even if it was allowed - but I'm not one bit sorry. That book was so incredible!

4. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee - Do I even need to explain?

5. The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne - I feel like this is a book I might not appreciate as much upon rereading, but my teacher absolutely helped me see the beauty in this classic. I remember reading whole pages just to soak it all in. It's a classic that so benefited from having a skilled teacher leading us through it.


  1. OMG To Kill A Mockingbird!! One off absolute favorites!! I have a goal in life to read Anna Karenina at some point...Meh to Mice and Men. I have a friend who loves it but it was emotionally way too much for me.

    1. Totally agree on To Kill a Mockingbird! GAH! That book <3

      Hope you like Anna Karenina! I loved it :) And haha love the meh to Mice & Men. We all have those classics that just don't cut it for us.

  2. I like your list. You simply must try Animal Farm. It's good. Short, simple, and I found it easy to relate to. It's animals but it's more about group dynamics.

    1. Yeah, my siblings who don't love to read said the same thing. And if they enjoyed? I definitely need to give it a try!


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