Books & Literature

The Dutch philosopher Erasmus said, “When I have a little money, I buy books; and if I have any left, I buy food and clothes.” Why do we value books and literature so highly? This thematic collection gathers books that offer unique insights into the power, energy, and appeal of, well, books!

Publication year 1840Genre Essay / Speech, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Beauty, Values/Ideas: ArtTags Romanticism / Romantic Period, British Literature

Publication year 1821Genre Poem, FictionThemes Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Identity: Language, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Beauty, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Lyric Poem, Mythology, Romanticism / Romantic Period, Grief / Death

The death of the young has been a thematic concern in literature since Antiquity. That untimely demise not only exposes human vulnerability but makes for melancholic contemplation over the waste of beauty, confidence, and youth’s energy. And when that person is an artist, still young and learning, the implications seem more tragic. Percy Bysshe Shelley’s “Adonais” (1821) is at one level a contemplation of the sudden death in 1821 of fellow poet John Keats. Keats... Read Adonais Summary


Publication year 1966Genre Essay / Speech, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: BeautyTags Arts / Culture

Publication year 2021Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Mystery / Crime Fiction, Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Magical Realism

Publication year 1961Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Emotions/Behavior: Revenge, Life/Time: Birth, Identity: Mental Health, Life/Time: Aging, Life/Time: The Past, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Midlife, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Marriage, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Values/Ideas: Fate, Values/Ideas: Equality, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Values/Ideas: Trust & Doubt, Society: Class, Society: Colonialism, Society: Community, Self Discovery, Values/Ideas: Literature, Society: EconomicsTags Historical Fiction, Auto/Biographical Fiction, Trauma / Abuse / Violence, Poverty, Finance / Money / Wealth, Depression / Suicide, Class, Colonialism / Postcolonialism, Indian Literature

A House for Mr. Biswas is a 1961 novel by V. S. Naipaul. The story takes a postcolonial perspective of the life of a Hindu Indian man in British-owned and occupied Trinidad. Now regarded as one of Naipaul's most significant novels, A House for Mr. Biswas has won numerous awards and has been adapted as a musical, a radio drama, and a television show. This guide is written using an eBook version of the 2001... Read A House for Mr. Biswas Summary


Publication year 2019Genre Play, FictionThemes Identity: Race, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Literature

Publication year 1964Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Relationships: FriendshipTags Travel Literature, American Literature

A Moveable Feast was written by Ernest Hemingway and published posthumously in 1964, three years after his death. The title, A Moveable Feast, is a play on the term used for holy days that do not consistently fall on the same date every year. The memoir’s structure mirrors this concept, featuring 20 separate yet related stories that make up Hemingway’s own collection of inconsistent holy days. The memoir blends fact with fiction as Hemingway recalls... Read A Moveable Feast Summary


Publication year 1668Genre Essay / Speech, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Society: War, Society: Nation, Values/Ideas: Order & Chaos

Publication year 1711Genre Poem, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Beauty, Life/Time: The Past, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Arts / Culture, Age of Enlightenment

Publication year 1993Genre Play, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Science & Technology, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Life/Time: The Past, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Historical Fiction, Play: Tragedy, Play: Comedy / Satire, Science / Nature, British Literature

Arcadia by Tom Stoppard was first performed on April 13, 1993, at the Royal National Theatre in London. In 2006, the Royal Institution of Great Britain named it one of the best science-related works ever written.The play has dual plot lines, one historical and one modern, which share the same physical setting. In the 19th century, the play follows the young Thomasina, a mathematical genius far ahead of her time, and her tutor, Septimus Hodge... Read Arcadia Summary


Publication year 2003Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Society: Class, Society: Community, Society: Globalization, Society: Economics, Society: Education, Society: Politics & Government, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Equality, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Power & GreedTags Politics / Government, Race / Racism, Social Justice, History: U.S., Sociology

Publication year 2021Genre Novel, FictionThemes Identity: Gender, Relationships: Mothers, Values/Ideas: Fame, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Fantasy, Mythology, Historical Fiction, Romance

Publication year 2022Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Natural World: Environment, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: MusicTags Fantasy, Romance, Fairy Tale / Folklore, Mystery / Crime Fiction

Publication year 1929Genre Essay / Speech, NonfictionThemes Identity: Femininity, Values/Ideas: Literature, Identity: SexualityTags Gender / Feminism, Philosophy

A Room of One’s Own by Virginia Woolf, first published in 1929, is a book-length essay that Woolf modeled after a series of her at the University of Cambridge. A Room of One’s Own is considered an exemplary piece of modernist criticism that questions traditional values. It examines the topic of “women and fiction”–women characters in fiction; the great women authors in English history who wrote fiction; and, more abstractly, “the fiction that is written... Read A Room of One's Own Summary


Publication year 1991Genre Essay / Speech, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: ArtTags Ancient Rome, Lyric Poem

Publication year 1968Genre Poem, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: ArtTags Arts / Culture, Ancient Greece

Publication year 2022Genre Novel, FictionThemes Identity: Sexuality, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Relationships: Friendship, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Music, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags LGBTQ, Romance, Historical Fiction, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman

Publication year 2014Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Forgiveness, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Relationships: Friendship, Self Discovery, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Fantasy, Magical Realism, Music, Relationships

Publication year 1927Genre Reference/Text Book, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: ConflictTags The Bloomsbury Group

Aspects of the Novel by E.M. Forster is considered a seminal work of literary criticism that demystifies the form of the novel as it was understood in the early 20th century. The book is adapted from a series of informal lectures Forster delivered in 1927 at Trinity College at the University of Cambridge. Forster was an accomplished novelist as well as a critic, known for the novels Howard’s End and Passage to India, among others... Read Aspects of the Novel Summary


Publication year 2023Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: courage, Identity: Femininity, Identity: Gender, Life/Time: The Past, Natural World: Environment, Society: War, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Fantasy, Romance, Gothic Literature, Mystery / Crime Fiction, Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction

Publication year 1956Genre Poem, FictionThemes Society: Nation, Identity: Sexuality, Society: Globalization, Society: Politics & Government, Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: NostalgiaTags Lyric Poem, Love / Sexuality, Arts / Culture, The Beat Generation, LGBTQ

“A Supermarket in California” is a prose poem by the American poet Allen Ginsberg. Written in 1955, it appears alongside Ginsberg’s most well-known work, “Howl,” in his book Howl and Other Poems. Published November 1, 1956 by Lawrence Ferlinghetti’s City Lights Books as part of their Pocket Poets Series, Howl and Other Poems was subject to an obscenity trial in 1957 due to its use of sexually explicit language. The trial eventually ruled in the... Read A Supermarket in California Summary


Publication year 1997Genre Essay Collection, NonfictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Apathy, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Self Discovery, Society: Community, Society: Education, Society: Nation, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Fate, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Values/Ideas: Truth & LiesTags Humor, Philosophy, Post Modernism, American Literature

A Supposedly Fun Thing I’ll Never Do Again is a 1997 essay collection by David Foster Wallace. The seven essays explore 1990s US social issues through subjects such as television, tennis, and (in the most famous essay) a Caribbean cruise. The essays have been referenced many times in popular culture, particularly the title essay, which recounts Wallace’s experiences on a cruise.This guide references the 1998 Abacus edition of the collection.SummaryIn the first essay, “Derivative Sport... Read A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again Summary


Publication year 2021Genre Essay Collection, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Identity: Language, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Beauty, Society: EducationTags Realistic Fiction, Arts / Culture, Education, Russian Literature

Publication year 2019Genre Novel, FictionThemes Society: War, Identity: Femininity, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Historical Fiction, Fantasy, Mythology, Gender / Feminism

Publication year 1939Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Society: Class, Values/Ideas: Fate, Life/Time: The Past, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Values/Ideas: Trust & Doubt, Emotions/Behavior: ConflictTags Irish Literature, Humor, Fantasy, Magical Realism, Fairy Tale / Folklore, Satire, Arts / Culture, Class, British Literature

Publication year 2022Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Values/Ideas: Equality, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Grandparents, Relationships: Friendship, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Relationships: Mothers, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Society: Community, Society: Education, Values/Ideas: Trust & DoubtTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Education

Publication year 1970Genre Poem, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Free verse, Lyric Poem, Gender / Feminism

Publication year 1925Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Self Discovery, Values/Ideas: ArtTags Philosophy, Irish Literature

Publication year 2014Genre Essay Collection, NonfictionThemes Identity: Race, Identity: Femininity, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: EqualityTags Gender / Feminism, Women's Studies (Nonfiction)

Bad Feminist is a collection of essays from writer, scholar, and social critic Roxane Gay. Published in 2014 by Harper Perennial, the New York Times best seller draws together an array of topics, from pop culture to literary discourse to political legislation to personal recollections, in an analysis of society, culture, and politics. Gay tackles modern patriarchy and racism in ways that emphasize the humanity of marginalized people and how those systems of oppression deny... Read Bad Feminist Summary


Publication year 2000Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Society: Politics & Government, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Safety & DangerTags Historical Fiction, Auto/Biographical Fiction, Chinese Literature

Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress (2000) is a short, semi-autobiographical novel by Dai Sijie. The narrative is set during the Chinese Cultural Revolution and follows two teenage boys who are sent to a remote mountain village for re-education. The boys become close with the local tailor’s daughter and uncover a hidden stash of forbidden Western literature. The books introduce them to ideas, emotions, and freedoms they have never known, and awaken in the Little... Read Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress Summary


Publication year 2017Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Relationships: Friendship, Society: Community, Relationships: Siblings, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Family, Society: Education, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Values/Ideas: Trust & Doubt, Society: Politics & Government, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: ConflictTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

Publication year 2015Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: Friendship, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Self Discovery, Natural World: Environment, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Society: Class, Society: Politics & Government, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Sports, Travel Literature, Action / Adventure, Bullying, Arts / Culture, Class, Race / Racism, Relationships, Poverty, Politics / Government, Science / Nature, Social Justice

Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life is a 2015 memoir by William Finnegan, a writer for The New Yorker and the author of several social journalism books such as A Complicated War: The Harrowing of Mozambique and Dateline Soweto: Travels with Black South African Reporters. In Barbarian Days, Finnegan reflects on his upbringing in California and Hawaii, as well as his coming of age in the late 1960s. He relays his experience of the surfing counterculture... Read Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life Summary


Publication year 2020Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Love, Values/Ideas: Literature, Relationships: FamilyTags Romance

Publication year 2021Genre Novel, FictionThemes Society: Class, Values/Ideas: Beauty, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Relationships: FriendshipTags Class, Love / Sexuality

Publication year 2018Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Relationships: Marriage, Relationships: Friendship, Relationships: Mothers, Self Discovery, Emotions/Behavior: Joy, Life/Time: MidlifeTags Historical Fiction, Romance, Auto/Biographical Fiction, British Literature

Publication year 1993Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Identity: Sexuality, Life/Time: The Past, Society: Politics & Government, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Latin American Literature, LGBTQ

The autobiography of Cuban novelist and poet Reinaldo Arenas, Before Night Falls, details his life as a gay man under Fidel Castro’s regime and the consequences of his dissidence. It was published posthumously in 1993. Immediately named one of the best books of the year by The New York Times, it has since been adapted into a movie and, later, an opera. Before Night Falls tells the story of Arenas’s life growing up in a... Read Before Night Falls Summary


Publication year 2013Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Forgiveness, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Regret, Identity: Mental Health, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Natural World: Environment, Natural World: Place, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Friendship, Self Discovery, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Music, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies

Publication year 2021Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Self DiscoveryTags Mystery / Crime Fiction, Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Trauma / Abuse / Violence

Publication year 1994Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: GriefTags Self Help, Humor

Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life by Anne Lamott was originally published in 1994. Many of Lamott’s books have been on the New York Times bestsellers list, which qualifies her to offer advice about how to write. She also taught at writing conferences and at UC Davis, received a Guggenheim Fellowship, and was inducted into the California Hall of Fame. Bird by Bird is a combination of memoir, self-help book, and writing... Read Bird By Bird Summary


Publication year 1980Genre Poem, FictionThemes Natural World: Food, Values/Ideas: Literature, Identity: LanguageTags Lyric Poem, Food

Publication year 2021Genre Novel, FictionThemes Identity: Race, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Relationships: Grandparents, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Values/Ideas: Music, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Trust & Doubt, Natural World: Appearance & RealityTags Romance, LGBTQ, African American Literature, New Adult, Love / Sexuality

Publication year 2018Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Joy, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Gratitude, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: The Past, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Natural World: Climate, Natural World: Environment, Natural World: Food, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Grandparents, Relationships: Mothers, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Safety & DangerTags Fantasy, Magical Realism, Children's Literature

Publication year 2022Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Self Discovery, Relationships: Siblings, Emotions/Behavior: GriefTags Romance

Publication year 1960Genre Short Story, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Values/Ideas: FameTags Magical Realism, Auto/Biographical Fiction, Latin American Literature

Publication year 2018Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Relationships: Siblings, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: Forgiveness, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Regret, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Values/Ideas: Order & Chaos, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Values/Ideas: Literature, Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: Marriage, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Relationships: Fathers, Life/Time: The PastTags Historical Fiction, Realistic Fiction, Grief / Death

Publication year 2002Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Identity: Race, Self Discovery, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: ArtTags Realistic Fiction, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, African American Literature

Bronx Masquerade is a young adult novel written by New York Times bestselling author Nikki Grimes. It was published in 2002. Bronx Masquerade chronicles an academic year in the lives of high school students in Mr. Ward’s English class. It includes the ways they relate to each other and their classwork, which prominently features Harlem Renaissance writers, as well as their hopes and dreams. The novel is written in both prose and poetry, with each... Read Bronx Masquerade Summary


Publication year 1959Genre Short Story, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Natural World: Nurture v. Nature, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Values/Ideas: Literature

Publication year 2017Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Natural World: Place, Values/Ideas: Truth & LiesTags Mystery / Crime Fiction, Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction

Camino Island, by John Grisham, is the first book in his new Camino series, published in 2017 by Anchor. The novel is a departure from the legal thrillers that Grisham is known for, and he did his first book tour in years in order to promote it. Grisham’s career began in 1989 with his debut novel, A Time to Kill, and since then, his novels have been translated into nearly 50 languages. He boasts 47... Read Camino Island Summary


Publication year 1995Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Joy, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Natural World: Animals, Relationships: Siblings, Values/Ideas: Literature

Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Order & ChaosTags Religion / Spirituality, Philosophy, Post Modernism

E. L. Doctorow’s 2000 novel City of God is a postmodern, metafictional novel of religious questioning that attempts to reconcile the history of the 20th century, particularly the Holocaust, with modern conceptions of morality and God. The novel is structured as a fragmented writer’s notebook written by a character loosely based on Doctorow himself. The plot, which concerns a stolen cross and an Episcopalian priest’s doubts about his faith, is rendered through the mediated lens... Read City of God Summary


Publication year 2020Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Gratitude, Emotions/Behavior: Joy, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Revenge, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Values/Ideas: Trust & Doubt, Values/Ideas: Science & Technology, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Relationships: Teams, Relationships: Family, Natural World: Climate, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Natural World: Environment, Self Discovery, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: Win & Lose, Relationships: Friendship, Natural World: Place, Values/Ideas: Order & ChaosTags Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Mystery / Crime Fiction, Action / Adventure, Children's Literature

Publication year 2021Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of Age, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Truth & LiesTags Historical Fiction

Publication year 1964Genre Short Story, FictionThemes Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Values/Ideas: Literature, Natural World: PlaceTags Spanish Literature, Fantasy

Publication year 1921Genre Novel, FictionThemes Identity: Sexuality, Identity: Mental Health, Relationships: Friendship, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Classic Fiction, Humor, Historical Fiction, Play: Comedy / Satire, British Literature

Publication year 2011Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Self Discovery, Society: War, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Values/Ideas: Trust & Doubt, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Values/Ideas: Science & TechnologyTags Science-Fiction / Dystopian Fiction, Romance, Fantasy, Action / Adventure, Arts / Culture, Love / Sexuality, Science / Nature, Social Justice

Publication year 1993Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Society: Colonialism, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Colonialism / Postcolonialism, History: World, Philosophy, Politics / Government, History: European, History: Middle Eastern, History: Asian

Culture and Imperialism is a nonfiction book published in 1993 by the Palestinian American author and academic Edward Said. Originating from a series of lectures that Said delivered in 1985 and 1986, Culture and Imperialism is an expansion of the ideas set out in his groundbreaking earlier work, Orientalism. Considered one of the founders of the field of post-colonial studies, Said looks at how the formerly colonized margins influence the metropolitan centers, and vice versa... Read Culture and Imperialism Summary


Publication year 1897Genre Play, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Love, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Beauty, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Society: War, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Classic Fiction, Play: Drama, Play: Comedy / Satire, Romance, Auto/Biographical Fiction, French Literature, Arts / Culture, Love / Sexuality, Grief / Death, Finance / Money / Wealth

Cyrano de Bergerac: An Heroic Comedy in Five Acts by Edmond Rostand was originally published in 1898. Rostand was a popular poet and playwright in France during his lifetime. Cyrano de Bergerac is a five-act verse drama—a tragic romance, set in France in the mid-1600s. It was far more popular than all of Rostand’s other works and has been performed and adapted countless times since its initial successful run.Cyrano de Bergerac explores themes of Unrequited... Read Cyrano de Bergerac Summary


Publication year 1989Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Beauty, Society: Education, Self Discovery, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Relationships: Fathers, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Relationships: Friendship, Emotions/Behavior: LoveTags Historical Fiction, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Drama / Tragedy

IntroductionN. H. Kleinbaum’s Dead Poets Society is a 1989 novel based on the motion picture written by Tom Schulman. The novel was released as a companion piece to the wildly popular film—also titled Dead Poets Society and released in 1989— which starred famous actors such as Robin Williams as Mr. Keating, and Ethan Hawke as Todd Anderson. The film scored high with critics, winning the Oscar in 1990 for Best Original Screenplay and receiving nominations... Read Dead Poets Society Summary


Publication year 2002Genre Poem, FictionThemes Identity: Language, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Lyric Poem, Humor, Romance, Arts / Culture, Class, American Literature, African American Literature

Harryette Mullen’s “Dim Lady” may remind some readers of 17th century English playwright and poet William Shakespeare’s well-known “Sonnet 130,” in which the speaker of the poem makes a mockery of his beloved’s physical appearance. During Shakespeare’s time, fashion encouraged poets to write flowery poetry that extolled the virtues and the beauty of their beloved. However, the speaker of this sonnet toys with poetic conventions of the time, describing the physical attributes of the speaker’s... Read Dim Lady Summary


Publication year 2020Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Mystery / Crime Fiction, Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Psychological Fiction

Publication year 2022Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Identity: Language, Identity: Sexuality, Life/Time: Coming of AgeTags Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Love / Sexuality

Publication year 1987Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of Age, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Emotions/Behavior: Revenge, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Gratitude, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Life/Time: The Past, Values/Ideas: Equality, Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Beauty, Values/Ideas: Trust & Doubt, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Values/Ideas: Win & Lose, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Relationships: Friendship, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Grandparents, Relationships: Mothers, Natural World: Nurture v. Nature, Natural World: Appearance & RealityTags Southern Literature, Auto/Biographical Fiction, Trauma / Abuse / Violence, Race / Racism

Ellen Foster is a work of adult fiction by US novelist Kaye Gibbons, first published by Algonquin Books in 1987. The novel was Gibbons’s debut, and it won the Sue Kaufman Prize for literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and a notable citation from the Ernest Hemingway Foundation. Critics praised the novel for its unsentimental outlook and the wry, distinct voice of its protagonist. Ellen, a young girl living in the American... Read Ellen Foster Summary


Publication year 1977Genre Poem, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Literature

Publication year 2001Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Identity: Language, Identity: RaceTags Humor, Race / Racism, Arts / Culture, African American Literature

Publication year 2013Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Values/Ideas: Literature, Life/Time: The PastTags Children's Literature, Action / Adventure

Publication year 2021Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Friendship, Society: War, Identity: Race, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Natural World: Food, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Historical Fiction, Romance, WWII / World War II

Publication year 2023Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Regret, Emotions/Behavior: Revenge, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Society: Class, Society: Community, Society: Education, Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Trust & Doubt, Values/Ideas: Truth & LiesTags Mystery / Crime Fiction, Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Humor

Publication year 1998Genre Reference/Text Book, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Society: Education, Identity: LanguageTags Education

Publication year 1953Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Classic Fiction, American Literature, Science-Fiction / Dystopian Fiction

The publication of American novelist Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 in 1953 helped to transition the science fiction genre from the niche arena of pulp magazines and comic books to mainstream fiction. The futuristic novel takes place in a culture that has banned books. Time and place (probably Midwestern America) are unidentified, but the country is on the brink of war with an unnamed foe. “The Hearth and the Salamander,” “The Sieve and the Sand,” and... Read Fahrenheit 451 Summary


Publication year 2013Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of Age, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Identity: Mental Health, Relationships: Family, Values/Ideas: Literature, Society: CommunityTags Realistic Fiction, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Relationships, Romance, New Adult

Fangirl is a 2013 contemporary young adult novel by Rainbow Rowell. Rowell is an award-winning author whose novels depict relatable struggles in the contemporary world. Her most acclaimed contemporary young adult novels, Fangirl and Eleanor & Park, and her most acclaimed adult novel, Landline, are all set in and around her hometown of Omaha, Nebraska. Fangirl follows 18-year-old Cath Avery as she navigates identity, family, and romantic struggles in her first year at college. Her... Read Fangirl Summary


Publication year 2015Genre Play, FictionThemes Identity: Race, Values/Ideas: Fate, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags American Civil War

Publication year 2022Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Life/Time: Aging, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: Beauty, Natural World: Animals, Natural World: Flora/plants, Natural World: Place, Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / PerseveranceTags Historical Fiction, Depression / Suicide, Health / Medicine, Love / Sexuality, Mental Illness, Parenting, Social Justice

Publication year 2015Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Relationships: Mothers, Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Relationships: Family, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Mystery / Crime Fiction

Publication year 2019Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Values/Ideas: Literature, Relationships: MarriageTags Historical Fiction, Auto/Biographical Fiction, Relationships

Publication year 2018Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Values/Ideas: Music, Natural World: Appearance & RealityTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature

Finding Langston, Lesa Cline-Ransome’s debut novel for middle-grade readers, is the story of an 11-year-old boy named Langston who loses his home but finds himself. The book received numerous accolades following its publication in 2018, including the Scott O’Dell Award for Historical Fiction. In 2020 Cline-Ransome published Leaving Lymon, a companion novel to Finding Langston that tells the story of Langston’s bully Lymon. This study guide refers to the 2018 Holiday House edition.Plot SummaryFinding Langston... Read Finding Langston Summary


Publication year 2007Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Society: Immigration, Natural World: Place, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Travel Literature

Publication year 1986Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Identity: FemininityTags Gender / Feminism, Historical Fiction

Foe is a 1986 novel by J. M. Coetzee. Foe is a parallel novel, reimagining the story of Daniel Defoe’s 1719 novel Robinson Crusoe from the perspective of a shipwrecked woman named Susan Barton, who then tries to convince a fictionalized version of Defoe to write her story. This guide refers to the 2015 Penguin edition. Content Warning: The source material uses outdated, offensive terms for Black people throughout, which is replicated in this guide... Read Foe Summary


Publication year 1996Genre Novel, FictionThemes Identity: Language, Society: Education, Society: Community, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: ConflictTags Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction, Humor, Modern Classic Fiction

Frindle is a 1996 middle grade novel by children’s author Andrew Clements and illustrated by Brian Selznick. The story follows a fifth-grade boy named Nick Allen who—both for fun and to exasperate his strict language arts teacher who has a special reverence for vocabulary—creates a new word for pen: “frindle.” Nick’s new word captures more attention than he expected, and soon the town and nation engage in a controversy surrounding how people ought to use... Read Frindle Summary


Publication year 2006Genre Graphic Memoir , NonfictionThemes Identity: Sexuality, Identity: Gender, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Identity: Femininity, Identity: MasculinityTags LGBTQ, Auto/Biographical Fiction, Relationships, Love / Sexuality, Parenting, Depression / Suicide, Mental Illness, Grief / Death, Gender / Feminism

Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic (2006) is a graphic novel memoir written and illustrated by underground cartoonist Alison Bechdel. The book centers on Bechdel’s relationship with her late father Bruce Allen Bechdel, who died in what she believes was a death by suicide. Fun Home is a non-linear narrative that rehashes events from Alison Bechdel’s youth and adolescence. Her memories are presented in the comic panels, overlayed with her prosaic, retrospective musings in text boxes... Read Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic Summary


Publication year 2001Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Natural World: Animals, Natural World: Environment, Natural World: FoodTags Action / Adventure

Guts: The True Stories Behind Hatchet and the Brian Books by Gary Paulsen is a 2001 nonfiction work covering the events that inspired the author to write Hatchet, a 1986 survival bildungsroman and Newbery Medal winner listed among the top 100 children’s books of all time by School Library Journal (“School Library Journal Top 100 Children’s Novels, 2012 Poll.” Library Thing). The award-winning novel follows Brian Robeson as he survives alone in the remote Canadian... Read Guts Summary


Publication year 2016Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Revenge, Identity: Mental Health, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Fantasy, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman

Publication year 2015Genre Play, FictionThemes Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Identity: Race, Society: Immigration, Society: Politics & Government, Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / PerseveranceTags Military / War, History: U.S.

Publication year 1990Genre Novel, FictionThemes Identity: Language, Values/Ideas: Literature, Society: Politics & Government, Natural World: Appearance & RealityTags Magical Realism, Fantasy, Allegory / Fable / Parable, History: Asian

Haroun and the Sea of Stories is a 1990 book for young adults, written by Salman Rushdie. Haroun is the follow-up to Rushdie’s novel The Satanic Verses, which was deemed blasphemous by the Ayatollah (a high-ranking Iranian clergyman) at the time, who pronounced a death sentence on the author. As a response to the ayatollah’s decree, Haroun explores themes of free speech, the need for storytelling, and the value of fiction.Plot SummaryThe novel begins with... Read Haroun and the Sea of Stories Summary


Publication year 2008Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Love, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Literature

Publication year 1881Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Gratitude, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Joy, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Friendship, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Grandparents, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Natural World: Environment, Natural World: Flora/plants, Natural World: Food, Natural World: AnimalsTags Classic Fiction, Children's Literature, Historical Fiction, Romanticism / Romantic Period

Swiss author Johanna Spyri originally published the middle-grade fiction novel Heidi in German in two volumes in 1880. The novel quickly became a beloved classic children’s book that has since been adapted into 25 film and television versions, including a 1968 made-for-TV movie and a very popular anime series in 1974. It has sold more than 50 million copies worldwide. Spyri was born in Hirzel, a Zurich village that shares a border with the German... Read Heidi Summary


Publication year 2021Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Identity: Race, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Society: Nation, Values/Ideas: Justice & InjusticeTags Race / Racism, Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Magical Realism

Publication year 1995Genre Essay Collection, NonfictionThemes Natural World: Environment, Relationships: Family, Society: Community, Natural World: Animals, Natural World: Flora/plants, Natural World: Place, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Creative Nonfiction, Science / Nature, Military / War, Parenting, War On Terrorism / Iraq War

High Tide in Tucson is a series of essays by heralded American novelist Barbara Kingsolver, collected and published in 1995. The essays are wide-ranging in subject matter, addressing topics from politics, to nature, to midcentury domestic life, but all reflect Kingsolver’s observations about herself and the people around her. Prior to her writing career, Kingsolver had a wide range of other professional experiences that influence essays in the book.Most of the essays in High Tide... Read High Tide in Tucson Summary


Publication year 2023Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Life/Time: The Past, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Grandparents, Relationships: Mothers, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Truth & LiesTags Historical Fiction, Mystery / Crime Fiction, Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Holidays & Occasions

Publication year 2000Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Identity: Femininity, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Natural World: Animals, Natural World: Flora/plants, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Friendship, Relationships: Marriage, Self Discovery, Society: Class, Society: Community, Society: Economics, Society: Education, Society: Nation, Society: Politics & Government, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Values/Ideas: Trust & Doubt, Values/Ideas: Truth & LiesTags Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Historical Fiction

Homeless Bird, a novel written by Gloria Whelan and published in 2000, was a New York Times Best Seller and winner of the National Book Award for Young People’s Literature. Marketed to middle grade readers, the novel has elements of historical fiction in its portrayal of cultural customs in India. Homeless Bird tells the story of Koly, a 13-year-old girl whose arranged marriage leads to her untimely widowhood. Through Koly’s coming-of-age journey from helplessness to... Read Homeless Bird Summary


Publication year 1994Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Society: Class, Identity: DisabilityTags Mystery / Crime Fiction, British Literature

Publication year 1926Genre Essay / Speech, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Self Discovery, Society: EducationTags Arts / Culture, Modernism

Publication year 2015Genre Short Story, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Life/Time: Coming of Age

Publication year 1940Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Society: Education, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / PerseveranceTags Self Help, Education, Philosophy

Publication year 2003Genre Reference/Text Book, NonfictionThemes Society: Education, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Trust & DoubtTags Education

Thomas C. Foster’s How to Read Literature Like a Professor: A Lively and Entertaining Guide to Reading Between the Lines is a nonfiction book that aims to teach readers how to improve their reading skills. Foster, a longtime university professor, focuses on techniques that enable readers to puzzle out some of the deeper meanings of a story that exist below the surface level of the plot. Harper published the book in 2003, and the 2014... Read How To Read Literature Like A Professor Summary


Publication year 2018Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Society: EducationTags Education, American Literature, Arts / Culture, Self Help, Inspirational

Publication year 1580Genre Poem, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Love, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Lyric Poem, Renaissance, Elizabethan Era

Along with his contemporary Philip Sidney, Edmund Spenser is one of the most important literary figures from the English Renaissance (c. 1550-1660), also known as the Early Modern Period. Spenser’s work was greatly influenced by his studies of Classical and Italian Renaissance poets, including Virgil, Ludovico Ariosto, and Torquato Tasso. His faith and study of Christianity also informed his work. With Sidney, who was also an influence, and his friend Gabriel Harvey, Spenser belonged to... Read Iambicum Trimetrum Summary


Publication year 2002Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: Forgiveness, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Apathy, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Regret, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Self Discovery, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Mothers, Values/Ideas: Beauty, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Mystery / Crime Fiction, New Adult

Originally published in 2002, Markus Zusak’s I Am the Messenger is a young adult realistic fiction novel. Ed Kennedy, the protagonist and narrator, is a 19-year-old cab driver whose average life takes an unexpected turn when he stops a bank robber. After this moment of heroism, he begins receiving mysterious playing cards with cryptic messages that lead him to people in need of his assistance. The novel is set in suburban Sydney and draws on... Read I Am The Messenger Summary


Publication year 1979Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Values/Ideas: Art, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: BeautyTags Magical Realism, Post Modernism, Italian Literature, Science / Nature, Arts / Culture, Politics / Government, Sociology

If on a winter’s night a traveler is a 1979 postmodernist novel by Italo Calvino. The dual narrative is composed of two parallel strands: numbered chapters in which the narrator directly describes to the audience the process of reading the book, and titled chapters constructed from hypothetical first chapters of various books that the audience is reading. The innovative novel has been praised by critics and hailed as highly influential.This guide uses the 1998 Vintage... Read If on a Winter's Night a Traveler Summary


Publication year 2017Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Love, Identity: Sexuality, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: Revenge, Life/Time: Coming of AgeTags Mystery / Crime Fiction, Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, LGBTQ

Publication year 1969Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Identity: Race, Values/Ideas: Literature, Life/Time: Coming of AgeTags African American Literature, Creative Nonfiction, Trauma / Abuse / Violence, Race / Racism

I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings is an autobiographical novel by Maya Angelou. Angelou discusses the struggles of growing up African American in the 1950s. The novel has themes of overcoming adversity and trauma, both used as a general metaphor for the struggle against racism. Angelou wrote the novel as a challenge to create literature out of an autobiography, and what emerged is a classic that is still revered today.The novel begins on a... Read I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings Summary


Publication year 2007Genre Poem, FictionThemes Identity: Race, Identity: Indigenous, Emotions/Behavior: Forgiveness, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Identity: Language, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Society: Colonialism, Values/Ideas: Win & Lose, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Lyric Poem, Education, Arts / Culture, Diversity, History: The Americas, Race / Racism, Trauma / Abuse / Violence, Colonialism / Postcolonialism

Publication year 2015Genre Play, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Identity: Language, Identity: Race, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Relationships: Teams, Society: Immigration, Society: War, Values/Ideas: Equality, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Play: Drama, Historical Fiction, LGBTQ, Jewish Literature, Gender / Feminism

Publication year 2013Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Society: Globalization, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Science & Technology, Natural World: Environment, Life/Time: The Future, Values/Ideas: Power & GreedTags Mystery / Crime Fiction, Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Arts / Culture, Science / Nature, History: European, Renaissance, Italian Literature

Inferno by Dan Brown is the fourth installment in Brown’s Robert Langdon series of mystery/thriller novels, following (in order) Angels & Demons, The Da Vinci Code, and The Lost Symbol, and preceding Origin. Each edition covers a self-contained story, so readers need not follow the series in order, and often includes themes centered on European and Christian history and cultural traditions. The title character, Robert Langdon, is the only recurring character. Inferno won the Goodreads... Read Inferno Summary


Publication year 2023Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Relationships: Family, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & BetrayalTags Fantasy, Magical Realism, Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, LGBTQ

Publication year 2017Genre Poem, FictionThemes Society: Nation, Values/Ideas: Win & Lose, Life/Time: The Future, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Literature, Society: Community, Society: Politics & Government, Society: Immigration, Identity: Race, Identity: Language, Natural World: Place, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: HopeTags Lyric Poem, Diversity, Social Justice, History: U.S., Black Lives Matter, Immigration / Refugee, American Literature

Publication year 1972Genre Novel, FictionThemes Society: Colonialism, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Fantasy, Magical Realism, Italian Literature, History: Asian, History: European

Invisible Cities by Italo Calvino (1923-1985) was originally published in 1972 in Italian and translated into English in 1974. Calvino’s ninth novel, it received a Nebula Novel Award nomination in 1975.According to New York Times reviewer Joseph McElroy, Calvino already had the reputation of being Italy’s “most original storyteller” for his use of fantastical and fabulist motifs to explore philosophical and scientific themes such as evolution (McElroy). Invisible Cities continues this trend by using the... Read Invisible Cities Summary


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Genre Essay / Speech, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: ArtTags Philosophy, Ancient Greece

Publication year 1914Genre Short Story, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Emotions/Behavior: Nostalgia, Society: Nation, Society: Politics & Government, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Politics / Government, Irish Literature, Modernism

Publication year 1978Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Apathy, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Revenge, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Relationships: Friendship, Society: Community, Society: Education, Relationships: Family, Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Values/Ideas: Fate, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Trust & Doubt, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Values/Ideas: Truth & LiesTags Mystery / Crime Fiction, Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Realistic Fiction, Drama / Tragedy, Trauma / Abuse / Violence

Publication year 2015Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: Family, Society: Politics & Government, Natural World: Place, Self Discovery, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Historical Fiction, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Western

Publication year 2008Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Forgiveness, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Regret, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Identity: Femininity, Identity: Masculinity, Identity: Sexuality, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Natural World: Animals, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Natural World: Place, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Marriage, Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: Siblings, Self Discovery, Society: Community, Society: War, Values/Ideas: Fate, Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Values/Ideas: Order & Chaos, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Values/Ideas: Trust & DoubtTags Historical Fiction, Fantasy, Mythology, Military / War

Publication year 1929Genre Collection of Letters, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: BeautyTags Inspirational, Arts / Culture, Education

Letters to a Young Poet is a collection of 10 letters written by the Austrian poet Rainer Maria Rilke to Franz Xaver Kappus, from February 1903 to December 1908. In an introduction to the book, Kappus describes how he came to begin his correspondence with Rilke. At the time, Kappus was a 19-year-old student at an Austrian military school. Though Kappus was set to become a military officer, he held aspirations of instead becoming a... Read Letters to a Young Poet Summary


Publication year 2017Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Identity: Gender, Identity: Mental Health, Life/Time: AgingTags Historical Fiction, Auto/Biographical Fiction

Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk is a 2017 picaresque novel by Kathleen Rooney. The narrative is loosely based on the life of the American writer Margaret Fishback, reputed to be the highest-paid advertising woman in the world in the 1930s, who published well-received poems and short stories from that time until the 1960s. The reflective novel unfolds in the span of a single night—New Year's Eve 1984—and follows 85-year-old Lillian Boxfish as she takes a... Read Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk Summary


Publication year 2002Genre Poem, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Love, Values/Ideas: Literature, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Natural World: Environment, Relationships: MarriageTags Free verse, Lyric Poem, Play: Comedy / Satire, American Literature, Love / Sexuality

Publication year 2003Genre Novel/Book in Verse, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Identity: Race, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Natural World: Animals, Relationships: Friendship, Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: Siblings, Self Discovery, Society: Class, Society: Community, Society: Education, Values/Ideas: Beauty, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Order & Chaos, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Values/Ideas: Trust & DoubtTags Realistic Fiction, African American Literature

Locomotion, Jacqueline Woodson’s 2003 novel in verse, follows the perspective of Lonnie Collins Motion, nicknamed Locomotion. After his parents die in a fire and his sister is adopted, Lonnie grieves and navigates life, first in a group home and then with Miss Edna, his foster mother. Through poetry, he slowly finds joy in life again, highlighting the themes of The Search for Identity and Belonging, The Healing Power of Writing, and The Enduring Support of... Read Locomotion Summary


Publication year 2013Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Identity: Femininity, Identity: Gender, Identity: Race, Identity: Sexuality, Life/Time: The Future, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Marriage, Relationships: Mothers, Society: Class, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: Beauty, Values/Ideas: Equality, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Historical Fiction, Romance, British Literature

Longbourn (2013) is a work of fiction by British author Jo Baker, who is the author of several other novels of historical fiction and literary suspense. Longbourn depicts what life is like for the servants of the Bennet family of Jane Austen’s classic novel Pride and Prejudice. While events in Austen’s book frame this novel, Longbourn follows the inner lives of housemaid Sarah, housekeeper Mrs. Hill, and James Smith, the mysterious footman who shows up... Read Longbourn Summary


Publication year 1933Genre Novel, FictionThemes Society: Colonialism, Identity: Race, Society: Politics & Government, Society: War, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Fantasy, Classic Fiction, Action / Adventure, Historical Fiction

Lost Horizon by James Hilton is a utopian novel that introduces the fictional setting of Shangri-La, which would feature in several later utopian works of fiction by other writers. Originally published in 1933, the book was adapted for the screen in 1937 and 1973, as well as for television in 1997. The novel won the Hawthornden Prize, a cash prize awarded for imaginative fiction, and it became an international bestseller under Pocket Books, sometimes credited... Read Lost Horizon Summary


Publication year 2001Genre Novel/Book in Verse, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Natural World: Animals, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Realistic Fiction, Drama / Tragedy, Animals

Love That Dog is a Newbery Award-winning middle grade book by Sharon Creech. Published in 2001, the book combines comedy and tragedy in detailing young Jack’s journey to loving poetry—a journey that takes form via free verse journal entries. Though Jack initially scoffs at the idea of writing poems, he later learns the value of his own voice. This guide refers to the 2002 Bloomsbury Children’s Books paperback edition.Plot SummaryJack, a student in Miss Stretchberry’s... Read Love That Dog Summary


Publication year 1682Genre Poem, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Satire, Arts / Culture, Restoration

During his lifetime, John Dryden (1631-1700) was an esteemed poet, literary critic, and playwright. His influence was so large that the literary period after the Restoration of Charles II is sometimes called the “Age of Dryden.” Dryden’s literary abilities were recognized by the Stuart Monarchy in 1668 when he was made England’s first Poet Laureate. In addition to his role as Poet Laureate, Dryden is best remembered for his refinement of English verse, his development of... Read Mac Flecknoe Summary


Publication year 2020Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of Age, Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: GriefTags Fantasy, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Arts / Culture, Grief / Death, Education, Relationships, American Literature

Publication year 1924Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Beauty, Society: War, Values/Ideas: Power & GreedTags Philosophy

Publication year 2010Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Fate, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Literature, Life/Time: The Future, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Self DiscoveryTags Science-Fiction / Dystopian Fiction, Romance, Arts / Culture

Matched is a science fiction novel for young adults by best-selling author Ally Condie. Published in 2010, it is the first novel in the Matched trilogy. It was followed by Crossed in 2011 and Reached in 2012. Matched was a critical and commercial success—as were the other two books in the trilogy. It was a New York Times bestseller and named one of the best children’s books of the year by Publisher’s Weekly. The Young... Read Matched Summary


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Publication year 1988Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / PerseveranceTags Fantasy, Classic Fiction, Children's Literature, Bullying

Roald Dahl’s 1998 children’s fantasy Matilda tells the darkly humorous story of a brilliant and kindly little girl who reads grown-up books, plays pranks on her emotionally abusive parents, and uses her telekinetic ability in her battles with a tyrannical school principal. Dahl is widely considered one the greatest children’s storytellers. His books have sold more than 250 million copies worldwide; they include Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, James and the Giant Peach, The BFG... Read Matilda Summary


Publication year 1998Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Relationships: Family, Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: courageTags Action / Adventure, Realistic Fiction, Bullying, Grief / Death, Trauma / Abuse / Violence, Relationships

Published in 1998, Rodman Philbrick’s Max the Mighty is a novel for middle grade and young adult readers. The sequel to the award-winning book Freak the Mighty, it continues the story of Max Kane, a giant of a 14-year-old who rescues book-loving schoolmate Rachel from her abusive stepfather, after which she and Max go on the run from the authorities. Max the Mighty won a place on the National Council of Teachers of English annual... Read Max the Mighty Summary


Publication year 2002Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Identity: Gender, Identity: Sexuality, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Self Discovery, Society: Community, Society: Immigration, Values/Ideas: Equality, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Values/Ideas: Science & Technology, Values/Ideas: Truth & LiesTags Historical Fiction, LGBTQ

Middlesex is a 2002 novel by Jeffrey Eugenides that tells a multigenerational, epic tale of a Greek family who immigrates to the US. The narrator, Calliope (or Cal) tells the story of how his grandparents, Lefty and Desdemona Stephanides, flee their homeland during a time of war and uncertainty, settling in the US. They harbor a family secret that changes the course of the narrator’s life: They’re brother and sister, and carry a genetic mutation... Read Middlesex Summary


Publication year 1946Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Natural World: Place, Values/Ideas: ArtTags Philosophy, German literature, History: European, Western

Publication year 1925Genre Essay / Speech, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Life/Time: The Past, Natural World: Appearance & RealityTags Modernism

Publication year 2010Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Regret, Emotions/Behavior: Nostalgia, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: The Past, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Natural World: Place, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Friendship, Society: Community, Society: Class, Society: Economics, Society: Immigration, Society: Education, Society: War, Society: Politics & Government, Society: Nation, Values/Ideas: Equality, Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Values/Ideas: Trust & DoubtTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature, Mystery / Crime Fiction, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman

Moon Over Manifest is a 2010 novel by author Claire Vanderpool. It relates the story of 12-year-old Abilene Tucker, a drifting girl in search of her father, a home, and a sense of belonging. When the novel starts, her father, Gideon Tucker, has just sent Abilene to the Kansas town of Manifest, claiming that he can’t take her to Iowa, where he is allegedly taking a railroad job. It is 1936, and the Great Depression... Read Moon Over Manifest Summary


Publication year 2016Genre Novel, FictionThemes Society: Class, Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: MemoryTags Romance, Historical Fiction, British Literature

Mothering Sunday is a 2016 novella written by British author Graham Swift. Like much of Swift’s writing, it has a psychological bent, exploring the relationship between history and memory. Swift won the Booker Prize for his 2006 novel Last Orders and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. This guide uses the 2016 Scribner edition of the text.Plot SummaryIt is March 30, 1924 in the upper-middle-class house of Beechwood in Berkshire, Southern England... Read Mothering Sunday Summary


Publication year 1929Genre Essay / Speech, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Values/Ideas: ArtTags Modernism

Publication year 2012Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Society: Education, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

Publication year 1901Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Literature, Identity: FemininityTags Historical Fiction, Gender / Feminism, Romance

Publication year 2020Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Psychological Fiction, Love / Sexuality

Publication year 1942Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: ArtTags Mythology, Classical Period

Originally published in 1942, Mythology is primarily a compendium of Greek and Roman myths, with a brief final section on Norse mythology, written by American educator and classicist Edith Hamilton. Hamilton engages with the myths as both a storyteller and a literary critic. She organizes and retells the myths narrated in ancient sources, and she assesses those ancient sources as works of literature. Her approach is grounded in the assumptions that Greek and Roman civilizations... Read Mythology: Timeless Tales of Gods and Heroes Summary


Publication year 1836Genre Essay / Speech, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Values/Ideas: Beauty, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Philosophy, Science / Nature, American Literature, Transcendentalism

Publication year 1966Genre Poem, FictionThemes Identity: Femininity, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Values/Ideas: Fame, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: Literature, Identity: GenderTags Lyric Poem, Arts / Culture, Gender / Feminism, American Literature, Confessional

Publication year 2000Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Coming of AgeTags Realistic Fiction, Humor, Education

No More Dead Dogs by Gordon Korman (Hyperion Books, 2002) is a humorous middle-grade fiction book about how one boy’s unwillingness to lie changes his life and the lives of everyone at his school. No More Dead Dogs won the 2002 Young Reader’s Choice Award (intermediate), one of many award-winners penned by Korman. Gordon Korman published his first book (This Can’t be Happening at Macdonald Hall, first in the Macdonald Hall series) when he was... Read No More Dead Dogs Summary


Publication year 1985Genre Poem, FictionThemes Life/Time: The Past, Natural World: Place, Identity: Language, Values/Ideas: Literature, Society: WarTags Lyric Poem, Irish Literature, History: European

Publication year 2023Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Relationships: Marriage, Self Discovery, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Psychological Fiction, Realistic Fiction, Relationships, Arts / Culture, American Literature

Publication year 1967Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Identity: Language, Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Philosophy

Publication year 2021Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: ForgivenessTags Romance, Fantasy

Publication year 2002Genre Graphic Memoir , NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Art, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Identity: Femininity, Identity: Language, Identity: Race, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Midlife, Natural World: Animals, Natural World: Food, Relationships: Mothers, Self Discovery, Society: Class, Society: Education, Society: Immigration, Values/Ideas: Beauty, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Humor

One! Hundred! Demons! is a semi-autobiographical genre-defying graphic novel by American cartoonist and pedagogue, Lynda Barry. Over the course of her career as a prominent cartoonist with nationally syndicated comic strips, published collections, and illustrated novels, Barry has received many national and state-wide awards for her work, including two Eisner awards and MacArthur Genius Grant.Originally published serially in Salon magazine, the collected cartoon chapters were collected and published by Sasquatch Books in 2002, and later... Read One! Hundred! Demons! Summary


Publication year 2008Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Gratitude, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Identity: Indigenous, Identity: Language, Natural World: Animals, Natural World: Flora/plants, Natural World: Place, Self Discovery, Society: Colonialism, Society: Community, Society: Education, Society: Nation, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Beauty, Values/Ideas: Equality, Values/Ideas: Fate, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Music, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies

Publication year 1939Genre Essay / Speech, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Philosophy, Fantasy, Fairy Tale / Folklore, Mythology

Publication year 1816Genre Poem, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: Gratitude, Emotions/Behavior: JoyTags Classic Fiction, Lyric Poem

“On First Looking into Chapman’s Homer” is a sonnet by the English poet John Keats. It was first published in The Examiner on Dec. 1, 1816, and describes Keats’s awed reaction to Elizabethan playwright George Chapman’s startling translations of Homer’s The Iliad and The Odyssey. Keats’s lyric poem is informed by the Romanticism movement, of which he became a chief practitioner in its late form, despite his brief life.The poem is the most famous of... Read On First Looking into Chapman's Homer Summary


Publication year 1859Genre Essay / Speech, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Society: Politics & Government, Society: NationTags Philosophy, Politics / Government, Arts / Culture, History: European, British Literature, Victorian Period

On Liberty is a philosophical essay on ethics, society, and politics published in 1859 by the English philosopher John Stuart Mill. His work on the subject matter extended back several years, through an illustrious career as a politician and philosopher. Mill’s ideas center on the concept of utilitarianism, which emphasizes efficiency and collective well-being. The book remains in print in the 21st century.SummaryOn Liberty is divided into five chapters: an introduction; “On the liberty of... Read On Liberty Summary


Publication year 1991Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of Age, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Realistic Fiction, Sports, American Literature

On the Devil’s Court is a novel aimed at teenage boys that follows 17-year-old Joe Faust through the basketball season of his senior year. Written by Carl Deuker, the book was originally published in 1988 and has remained a popular print title for more than 30 years. On the Devil’s Court was the first of three young adult sports novels by Deuker to be included among the Authors League of America Best Books for Young... Read On the Devil's Court Summary


Publication year 100Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: BeautyTags Philosophy, Arts / Culture, Ancient Greece, Italian Literature

On the Sublime is a treatise on aesthetics and literary criticism originally written in Greek between the first and third centuries AD. The author is not definitively known, but the text is typically credited with the name Longinus. Although the work has come to be known as On the Sublime in English, its subject is advice to writers on “the essentials of a noble and impressive style.” For this reason, G. M. A. Grube translates... Read On the Sublime Summary


Publication year 2019Genre Memoir in Verse, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Family, Identity: Mental Health, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Identity: Race, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: Mothers, Self Discovery, Values/Ideas: Equality, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality

Publication year 1928Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Literature, Identity: GenderTags Gender / Feminism, LGBTQ, Historical Fiction, Classic Fiction, British Literature, Modernism

Orlando: A Biography is a novel published in 1928 by the English author Virginia Woolf. It tells the story of Orlando, a member of the English nobility who is born a male in 16th century England. Around the age of 30, Orlando mysteriously changes into a woman and lives for centuries without visibly aging. Author Jeanette Winterson called Orlando “the first trans novel in English.” (Winterson, Jeanette. “’Different sex. Same person’: How Woolf’s Orlando became... Read Orlando Summary


Publication year 2021Genre Biography, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Society: Politics & Government, Natural World: Environment, Values/Ideas: Beauty, Values/Ideas: Truth & LiesTags Arts / Culture, History: World, Politics / Government, Philosophy, Social Justice

Publication year 2022Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Values/Ideas: Literature, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Mothers, Natural World: Animals, Natural World: Place, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: MemoryTags Magical Realism, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Grief / Death, Relationships

Publication year 2022Genre Novel, FictionThemes Identity: Race, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Relationships: Family, Society: Community, Society: Politics & Government, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Science-Fiction / Dystopian Fiction, Race / Racism

Publication year 2013Genre Novel, FictionThemes Society: Class, Relationships: Friendship, Identity: Sexuality, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Values/Ideas: Literature, Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Natural World: Nurture v. Nature, Relationships: Fathers, Identity: Gender, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: HopeTags Historical Fiction, Mystery / Crime Fiction, Realistic Fiction, Southern Literature, Trauma / Abuse / Violence

Out of the Easy, written by Ruta Sepetys and published in 2013, is a young adult historical fiction novel. Sepetys is an award-winning Lithuanian American writer of young adult historical fiction. Her honors include the Carnegie Medal, awarded to one work of children’s or young adult literature per year. Her novels are international best sellers and are widely translated. Out of the Easy is about Josie, a teenage girl living in the French Quarter of... Read Out of the Easy Summary


Publication year 1962Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Values/Ideas: ArtTags Classic Fiction, Russian Literature, Post Modernism

Pale Fire is a 1962 experimental novel by Vladimir Nabokov, the author of seminal novels like Lolita and Pnin. The novel consists of a 999-line poem by a fictional poet and the accompanying notations by a fictional editor. Rather than analyze the poem, however, the notations create a new narrative. Pale Fire has been heralded as a landmark example of metafiction and one of the most important novels of the 20th century. This guide is... Read Pale Fire Summary


Publication year 1946Genre Novel/Book in Verse, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Natural World: Environment, Natural World: PlaceTags American Literature, Science / Nature

Publication year 1836Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Society: Politics & Government, Society: Community, Self Discovery, Values/Ideas: Order & Chaos, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Equality, Values/Ideas: Fate, Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Relationships: Family, Relationships: MarriageTags Classic Fiction, Victorian Period, Action / Adventure, Humor, Travel Literature, Class, History: European, Politics / Government, Social Justice, Sports

The debut novel of British author Charles Dickens, The Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club (commonly known as The Pickwick Papers) was first published as a series by Chapman and Hall between 1836 and 1837. The Pickwick Papers chronicles the adventures of the members of the Pickwick Club, a group of travelers who journey around England and share their experiences. Because of the original serial format of the novel, the chapters contain individual but interconnected... Read Pickwick Papers Summary


Publication year 1939Genre Short Story, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Trust & Doubt, Identity: LanguageTags Humor, Post Modernism

Publication year -1Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Philosophy, Narrative / Epic Poem, Arts / Culture, Creative Nonfiction, Ancient Greece

Poetics, written around 335 BCE, is one of the most important works of the ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle. This guide refers to the 2013 Oxford World’s Classics edition, translated and edited by Anthony Kenny.Poetics sets out to analyze the nature and uses of poetry. To Aristotle, poetry doesn’t just mean verse but theater; the works he examines are mostly plays. While Poetics is one of the most influential works of world philosophy, it’s also incomplete:... Read Poetics Summary


Publication year 1980Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Good & EvilTags Philosophy, Psychology, Gender / Feminism, French Literature

Publication year 1800Genre Essay / Speech, NonfictionThemes Natural World: Environment, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Arts / Culture, Romanticism / Romantic Period

“Preface to Lyrical Ballads” is an essay by the English Romantic poet William Wordsworth. In 1798 Wordsworth wrote, with Samuel Taylor Coleridge, the poetry collection Lyrical Ballads. Believing that the poems were so novel in theme and style that they required some explanation, Wordsworth wrote a prefatory essay to accompany the second edition of the poems in 1800; he then expanded the essay for the third edition of 1802. The “Preface” is often considered a... Read Preface to Lyrical Ballads Summary


Publication year 2006Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Art, Identity: Language

Publication year 2003Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Society: War, Self Discovery, Society: Politics & GovernmentTags Gender / Feminism, History: Middle Eastern, Politics / Government

Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books is a memoir by Iranian American author Azar Nafisi, first released to widespread critical and popular acclaim in 2003. The memoir recalls Nafisi’s experiences living and teaching in Iran after the 1979 revolution that created the Islamic Republic of Iran, until her eventual exile in the United States in 1997. At the center of the memoir is Nafisi’s account of a secret book club she hosted during... Read Reading Lolita in Tehran Summary


Publication year 2010Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Relationships: Grandparents, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: Nostalgia, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Joy, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Values/Ideas: Fame, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Values/Ideas: Trust & Doubt, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Values/Ideas: Order & Chaos, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Natural World: Animals, Natural World: Environment, Natural World: Flora/plants, Natural World: Food, Natural World: PlaceTags Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Mystery / Crime Fiction, Psychological Fiction, Trauma / Abuse / Violence, Crime / Legal

IntroductionEmma Donoghue’s Room is a 2010 novel about a boy named Jack who lives in a single room with his mother, Ma. Room is a crime thriller novel that explores themes of trauma, innocence, and adaptability through the eyes of five-year-old narrator, Jack. Room has received many awards, including the ALA Alex Award, the Indies Choice Book Award for Fiction, and The New York Times Book Review Best Book of the Year award. Room was... Read Room Summary


Publication year 2005Genre Reference/Text Book, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: FameTags Arts / Culture, Education