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The Great Gatsby 

by F. Scott Fitzgerald
12/07/2017 Categories: classic romance

Image result for the great gatsby bookThis book takes place during the 1920's in New York. Where there's two sides, the East Egg and West Egg, the rich neighborhood. Wealthy people in 1920's use their money to get out of problems. They didn't take responsibilities over their accidents.

I like this book because it shows how in the 1920's wealthy people believe they could buy off anything because of money. At the end they learn that no matter how much money they have, they can't be happy.

If you are in eleventh grade, then you are going to read this book. I recommend this book to everyone. This book has so many lessons to learn from.

Yessica, 16

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Sense and Sensibility 

by Jane Austen
09/07/2017 Categories: classic dating drama romance siblings

This book details the trials and tribulations in the love lives of the Dashwood sisters. The eldest sister, Eleanor, is logical, reasonable and levelheaded, while Marianne, the younger sister, is emotional, passionate, and romantic. Eleanor finds herself in love with an engaged man, while Marianne is pining after a local rascal.

I liked this story a lot because it kept me on the edge of my seat. Jane Austen novels are wildy unpredictable, but always possess a happy ending.

I definitely recommend this book to others because of its dynamic plot. If you like classic love stories or other Jane Austen books, Sense and Sensibility is perfect for you.

Bethany, 15

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The Sun Also Rises 

by Ernest Hemingway
09/06/2017 Categories: classic france romance

The Sun Also Rises chronicles the disillusionment of American expatriates in post-World War I Europe. Jake Barnes, Lady Brett Ashley, and their friends travel to Pamplona, Spain to observe the bull-fighting. Hapless Jake continuously pines after the beautiful, charming Brett, though she hops from one man to another.

I liked this book. Hemingway's style of writing is very different from what I have read before, with his short, declarative sentences. His point comes across very promptly, yet poignantly. The story itself is very short, yet full of meaning, which I really enjoyed.

I would recommend this book to others due to its exciting, ever-changing storyline. This novel is a good read for those that like the classics.

Bethany, 15

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This Side of Paradise 

by F. Scott Fitzgerald
09/06/2017 Categories: classic world war I

Image result for this side of paradiseThis novel describes life during the Jazz Age through the eyes of the egotistical Amory Blaine. The story follows the course of his life through his adolescent years, through Princeton University, and ends at a crossroads in Amory's career. Along this journey, Amory falls in love with many mysterious, charming "flappers" who leave him heartbroken, yet thrilled.

I enjoyed this book, however the plot progression was slightly slowed by Fitzgerald's vivid descriptions. I really liked the illustrative writing because I could clearly picture the plot events, as if I were Amory himself.

I would definitely recommend this book to others due to its rich and descriptive plot. If you like other classic novels, then you should read this book.

Bethany, 15

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Pride and Prejudice 

by Jane Austen
07/20/2017 Categories: classic friendship historical romance

Image result for pride and prejudice bookPride and Prejudice, which takes place in early 1800s England, follows the relationship between Elizabeth Bennett and Mr. Darcy. Upon first meeting, Elizabeth thinks the wealthy Mr. Darcy as arrogant, conceited, and rude. The story describes the many twists and turns in their relationship that ultimately leads to a gratifying conclusion.

This book was very enjoyable because of the many unanticipated dips and turns in the plot. I especially liked the witty dialogue between the characters and the resolution of the story.

I would recommend this book to others because it was very well-written and also possesses a very valuable lesson. If you like the classics, then you will love Pride and Prejudice.

Bethany, 15

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Emma 

by Jane Austen
07/19/2017 Categories: classic friendship funny romance

This book takes place in early 1800's England in a small village named Highbury and follows the story of Emma, a cunning and well-mannered girl. Emma is very clever, and uses this skill to her advantage in order to pair couples together. Ultimately, Emma's mischievous hijinks result in many awkward situations between her and her friend Harriet, whom she tries to match with men of noble birth.

Emma is a fantastic book. However, the beginning is a bit slow and it took me a while to get into it. Near the middle of the story, I couldn't put the book down because it was so interesting. I really enjoyed this book because it takes dozens of unexpected turns and is quite comical at times.

I would definitely recommend this book to others. Although the story starts off slow, I encourage you to keep reading it because it grows increasingly more interesting and fun. For those that like classic literature and other Jane Austen novels, this book is perfect!

Bethany, 15

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Les Miserables 

by Victor Hugo
06/29/2017 Categories: classic epic poetry france movie

This story is filled with passion, the strength of love, and sadness on a low scale. The story begins with a lady named Fantine. Her husband abandoned her while she was still pregnant with their future daughter, Cosette. Fantine had to work at a factory, so she decided to put her daughter in the greedy hands of the Thenardiers. They own an inn. Little did Fantine know of the dangers that her daughter had to go through while living with the selfish family. . .

I found the story itself enjoyable with lots of interesting characters to explore and get-to-know-of. Other than the sadness, and some miserable people in this book, some characters, like Jean Valjean, change in a good way throughout the book. Jean was changed by a man by the name of M. Myriel who is a humble bishop of Digne.

Other than being a world-famous book, this story really highlights the hardship of the past. Filled with odd and cool characters, such as Cosette, Marius, or even Javert, people who admire bravery, flames of love, and a book filled with real historic events would love this book.

Priscilla, 12

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The Great Gatsby 

by F. Scott Fitzgerald
06/29/2017 Categories: classic materialism romance

The Great Gatsby takes place during the 1920's, or the Jazz Age. It is about the downfall of a man named Jay Gatsby that throws lavish parties in his Long Island Mansion every Saturday night, all through the perspective of Nick, his neighbor. Jay Gatsby throws parties every week in hopes of reuniting with his former lover, Daisy, who doubles as Nick's cousin. Through Nick, Daisy and Gatsby rekindle their love, which ultimately leads to a wild turn of events.

I really enjoyed this book. It is an amazing story due to its sad, yet beautiful plot. It is also very realistic and a true epitome of life in the roaring 20's.

I would recommend this book to others because it has a great message behind it. If you like realistic fiction, historical fiction or other authors of the time such as Hemingway, The Great Gatsby is the perfect book for you.

Bethany, 15

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Hatchet 

by Gary Paulson
06/10/2017 Categories: classic survival stories

Brian is flying from the U.S. to Canada to visit his dad. When the pilot has a heart attack, Brian tries to fly himself the rest of the way, but he ends up crashing the plane into a lake. Until somebody comes to rescue him, Brian must survive in the wilderness by himself with only his surroundings and a hatchet his mother gave him.

I thought Hatchet was a very good book. It was very exciting, and it was fun reading about Brian having to survive in the wild by himself.

I would recommend this book to others if you like excitement and adventure in your books. This book also had tips, I guess, of a few survival strategies.

Cailin, 11

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Romeo and Juliet 

by William Shakespeare
05/10/2017 Categories: classic family drama play romance

This play is about two young lovers who are from different families who are rivals. Romeo is the son of Montague and Lady Montague. Juliet is the daughter of Capulet and Lady Capulet. The two fall in love but can't be together so they end up killing themselves. At the end their deaths bring the families together.

I liked this play because it's interesting because of how the two decide to kill themselves when they realize they can't be with each other. Also I though it was I interesting that death brought the families togerther instead of love.

I recommend this play if you like stories that deal with love and fate. Also, if you like plays that have symbols of light and dark I suggest this one.

Sandra, 16

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The Old Man and the Sea 

by Ernest Hemingway
04/29/2017 Categories: classic friendship

In this book, an old aging fisherman named Santiago, battles against a large marlin. The book takes place off the coast of Florida. Its starts with Santiago not being able to catch a fish for 84 days, when he claims his unluckiness. The story continues as he comes across the large marlin.

I really liked this book because it deals with the struggle between man and nature. Also I thought it was an interesting idea to put a man and an animal against each other.

I would recommend this book to anyone who likes reading books that contain significant symbols in everyday things. If you haven't read anything about man vs nature, this is something to try!

Sandra, 16

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Of Mice and Men 

by John Steinbeck
04/29/2017 Categories: classic friendship

Two migrant workers, George Milton and Lennie Small, move from place to place in California looking for jobs during the Great Depression. George is a smart but uneducated man while Lennie is a big man with special needs.The men eventually find a job, but soon things go bad after Lennie accidentally kills a man's wife.

I liked the book because it had a surprising ending. I never would have thought the author would have his characters have a dream that would not succeed. The dream was an important part of the book because many people's dreams are crushed because of unexpected events.

I would recommend this book to anyone who likes reading about the Great Depression. If you like reading books with unexpected endings, you would really read this book.

Sandra, 16

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The Odyssey of Homer 

by Translated and with an Introduction by Alexander Pope
02/23/2017 Categories: classic epic poetry mythology

Image result for The Odyssey of Homer / in the English verse translation by Alexander Pope

The Odyssey of Homer is a classic Greek novel about a man named Odysseus and his struggles as he tries to get home to his wife and child after the war. In this book, Odysseus runs into many problems, because of his own ignorance, or because of the selfishness of his crew. Throughout this interesting tale, we see Odysseus not only struggle to get home, but also struggle to find himself as he morals and values change on his journey.

I loved reading The Odyssey, because it is not a simple book. While Odysseus' journey is fun to read, the language is difficult to understand, as well as the messages underneath. I loved reading this book, because it makes you think and has a lot of depth.

If you don't like books with depth, The Odyssey is not the right book for you. However, if you like to read challenging books that not only have interesting stories, but a lot of depth, I would highly recommend it. 

Sara, 14

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Little Women 

by Louisa May Alcott
02/16/2017 Categories: classic friendship romance siblings

This novel follows the lives of four sisters living in New England around the time of the Civil War. Meg, Jo, Amy, and Beth all face their own personal trials in growing up. They struggle to find happiness and independence while facing heartbreak and lost dreams.

This is an all time favorite of mine. Although the book mainly focuses on the lessons that the girls learn, none of the lessons or situations come off as cheesy or unrealistic. The book emphasizes the importance of finding contentment even when things do not turn out as you expect. The girls find comfort in their loving family when things become difficult.

Anyone who appreciates a heartwarming novel, or who is looking for something with classic themes of love and family, would like this novel. Little Women is a great book for all ages. I first read it in sixth grade, but still enjoy rereading it.

Julia, 17

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A Tale of Two Cities 

by Charles Dickens
02/16/2017 Categories: classic france history revolution

Image result for tale of two cities

This book is set in both London and Paris during the French Revolution and shows how the escalation of violence affected both the innocent and the guilty. Themes addressed in the book include loyalty and self-sacrifice. Although it is an older book, Dickens approaches these topics in a way that still seems applicable to today.

I enjoyed this novel because of the wide variety of characters. I felt like it provided insight to all types of people and relationships that everyone faces in their lives. Since the book is set over a period of a few years, the reader is able to watch the development of these characters and becomes attached to them.

I would recommend this book to anyone who is interested in historical fiction or in unique, complex characters. It is also a good choice for anyone who wants to start reading some of Dickens' works. 

Julia, 17

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