Monday, July 7, 2014

High School Must Reads

So we have talked about our little kid books as well as our middle school favorites and now is the time for some high school must-reads in our family.  I want to start by sharing each of my girls' favorite books and then share a few series that they love.

Keep in mind this is a pleasure reading list.  Our kids have pretty intense reading lists for 9th-12th grade and there you will find all the "classics," from A Scarlet Letter to To Kill a Mockingbird.  And some of those they even enjoyed!  But this list - just think curled up in a hammock or by a fire reading for just the fun and pleasure of it!

The 20 year old's favorite book is by far The Hiding Place.  Don't ask me why, and yes, it was on her required reading list.  I think it is a sad book.  She thinks it is convicting and is worth reading several times a year.  Seriously.

The 16 year old's favorite book is actually on our middle school list, Surviving the Applewhites, and she does not care who knows it.  She too reads this one over and over again.  When I made her pick a more "mature" book, she begrudgingly said any of the series below.

Some other favorites include:

Sherlock Holmes - This is also another favorite of my oldest.  Who doesn't like a good mystery?

The Inkheart Series - For a slightly more mature audience (it does contain some mild language), this series is one of the 16 year old's favorite.  She loves fantasy, but if that bothers you, let this one go. (Ashton does not like this series)

The Percy Jackson series -  Yes, this contains lots of mythology so be forewarned.  I feel at this older age, my kids are able to discern between fact and fiction, filtering books through their Christian worldview, but I know not everyone agrees with that philosophy.  Again, just be forewarned if mythology concerns you this is not the series for you.

Lord of the Rings series - I know many kids have seen the movies, but have they read the books?  If not, now is a good time to get started.  I would say the same thing about the Chronicles of Narnia series.

Let me also add two books that I think are must reads for every highschooler from a mom and teacher point of view, High School Prep Genius and Victus Study Skills.

We found High School Prep Genius as a review and I highly recommend it to anyone who is thinking about  going to college.  It covers a lot of information in a quick and easy style.  I figure as long as our teens are filling their days with reading, they should at least cover a few that are "real world" application books.

Victus Study Skills was also a review item that I loved.  While you will need to get the student workbook in addition to the guide, I assure you it is worth it.  Both my 12 year old and 16 year old learned a lot about themselves and their study habits as well as ways to improve those habits.  As they get older, those skills will be needed more and more so now is a good chance to slip in that information.

Beginning on Wednesday, fellow Crew members are sharing their favorite high school reading lists, so make sure you come back to follow the link to the carnival.  I always add to our list after reading someone else's!

Homeschool for Free


A Little R & R


  1. We just got to see the real "Hiding Place" a couple of weeks ago. This book and movie are an awesome testimony of how God can use people and what faith and courage they had. As we took the tour -- it is still being a testimony of our Lord to many people there who do not know Him. - Esther

  2. My high schooler is just keeping on with his school list, but I may see if he wants to give some of these a try. He's not a big "for fun" reader (I think because he reads so much for school), but these might interest him!

    1. Give them a try, Meg. It IS hard when they do so much for school as well...I am not sure how the girls balance a stack of school books and a stack from the library! It makes my head spin sometimes. I try hard to let them choose their own fun reading without too much input at this age.

  3. I've read a few Cornelia Funke books aloud to my kids. Forgot about Inkheart series that I myself have read. I bet my son would like them!

  4. Brandi, what others have you read that you liked from her? Watch the language for younger kids!

  5. Hmmm, I think I read Inkheart once and didn't recommend it for my daughter~ might give it another go, we shall see.

    My list was also more "summer reading" vs "Schoolish" ~ a couple on there that it sounds like your kids might enjoy... :)

  6. Headed to see your list! The daughter who likes Inkheart is pretty eclectic with her book tastes. Not for everyone, I am sure!

  7. Thanks for the suggestions. My middle child likes fantasy and is currently reading The Lord of the Rings. The librarian ordered Inkheart for her today thanks to your recommendation.

  8. OK, I'm not really anonymous, Michele - this is Cammy but I am on my husband's computer! Just had to put in my two bits on the Percy Jackson series. My oldest read most of these last year and ... I was amazed. We hit some mythology in our history studies about midway through the year, and she could literally name off every single character, what they were considered the "god" or "goddess" of, what their personalities were like, etc. At age 10. Obviously children differ, and you have to know your own kids' abilities. This child is discerning enough, at this age, to understand that it is all just FICTION. But she can also appreciate how learning mythology makes you more culturally literate (not that she'd put it in those words, haha.) FUN way to learn mythology, and a great read as well.

    1. Thanks for commenting, Cammy! I agree, a fun way to learn and Riley is the same way- she could make a chart if needed. haha That girl of yours is a smart chickie!!!


  9. Sherlock Holmes is on my kids' to-read list - just because they want to. o.O My daughter is crazy about The Lord of the Rings too; and she's just getting interested in the Percy Jackson series.


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