Few people can pinpoint the point in time they realized what they wanted to do with their life. Even fewer can tell you exactly how it happened, where they were, when etc. They might be able to tell you when their feelings were validated, but not quite how they got there. I was in 4th grade reading the “The Royal Diaries” series. The particular princess I was on was “Elizabeth I, Red Rose of the House of Tudor.” I was enthralled. At the end of each book was historical background. Family trees, factual information about the characters in the book, being that the books were historical fiction, loosely based on actual events narrated by the titled princess. THERES NO WAY HE HAD 6 WIVES AND BEHEADED 2 OF THEM!? SHE DID WHAT!? I was hooked. Hook, line, sinker- absolute goner. I spent hours in the local library and on the internet looking up everything I could, reading everything I could, soaking up all of the information like a sponge. It wasn’t until high school that my love of the Tudors blossomed into a love of the culture and literature of the time with my exposure to William Shakespeare.

I am now a Senior Secondary English Education Major with a concentration in English Literature at Valley Forge Christian College. I am looking towards getting my MA as well as my PhD in this area of concentration.

I am a classicist. I dare say, maybe even a bit of a literature snob. However, as with many bookworms as myself, I could not possibly ever pick favorite books. The following list is some of my favorite books or pieces of literature by grade range. The end boasts more genre specific lists

Children’s/Elementary Literature:

Where The Wild Things Are- Maurice Sendak
The Very Hungry Caterpillar- Eric Carl
The Kissing Hand- Audrey Penn
Stellaluna- Janell Cannon
The Critters (series)- Mercer Mayer
Little Bear- Suzanne Collins
Mr. Carp- Dr. Seuss
The Magic Treehouse Series (All of them, I love them all!)- Pope Osborn
Dear America- Multiple Authors
Princess Diaries- Multiple Authors
Hatchet/The Other Side of the Mountain- Gary Paulsen
Charlotte’s Web- EB White

Middle School/High School:

Diary of Anne Frank- Anne Frank
The Outsiders- S E Hinton
Catcher in the Rye- J D Salinger
Of Mice and Men- John Steinbeck
Brave New World- Aldous Huxley
The Awakening- Kate Chopin
The Bell Jar- Sylvia Plath
The Great Gatsby- F Scott Fitzgerald
Lord of the Flies- William Golding
Little Women- Louisa May Allcott
The Hunger Games- Suzanne Collins (recognize this name!?)
To Kill a Mockingbird- Harper Lee
Harry Potter (Series)- JK Rowling

Henry V- Shakespeare
Merchant of Venice- Shakespeare
Much Ado About Nothing- Shakespeare
Midsummer Nights Dream- Shakespeare
Hamlet- Shakespeare
The Canterbury Tales- Geoffery Chaucer
Dracula- Bram Stoker
Pride and Prejudice- Jane Austen
Great Expectations- Charles Dickens
The Importance of Being Earnest- Oscar Wilde
Tales of King Arthur and the Round Table

Emily Dickinson
Edgar Allen Poe
Sylvia Plath
The Lady of Shallot- Alfred Lord Tennyson
Robert Frost

Shakespeare: The Invention of the Human- Harold Bloom
Henry VIII- Allison Weir
Steel My Soldiers’ Hearts: The Hopeless to Hardcore Transformation of U.S. Army, 4th Battalion, 39th Infantry, Vietnam- Col. David H. Hackworth
Lies My Teacher Told Me- James W Loewen


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