Grade 9 Summer Reading

Language and Literature 9 students should read Ready Player One by Ernest Cline and 1 other book from the list below. Students may pick up their copy of Ready Player One in the school store before they leave for summer vacation. It is expected that students come to class on the first day with their books. They should be ready to discuss literary techniques and devices in their free choice text.

Cinema titles are recommended but not mandatory.

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A Perfect Spy by John le Carre
A high-level secret agent mysteriously disappears after his father's funeral. From the man who founded many of our conceptions about spy novels comes a tale of suspense and betrayal.

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
Junior is a budding cartoonist growing up on the Spokane Indian Reservation. He leaves his troubled school on the 'rez' to attend an all-white high school where the only other Indian was the school mascot. The story of a boy who attempts to break away, and take charge of his future.

All That Matters by Wayson Choy
Follows the lives of the Chen family—strict but loving—as they try to negotiate love and culture in Vancouver of the 1930s. Sequel to The Jade Peony. Very readable.

The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein
Events of family life told from a dog's point of view. Both amusing and moving. Mrs. Jackson's pick. Easy read.

Demons Don't Dream by Piers Anthony
From one of the most popular fantasy adventures ever published, this multiple perspective video-game fantasy quest pulls in any reader: easy to enjoy, clever plotting, and memorable characters. Also, it's very punny.

Empire of the Sun by J.G. Ballard
Jim is separated from his parents in a world at war. To survive, he must find a strength greater than all the events that surround him. Award-winning novel! Mr. Burnett's pick.

The Far Side of the Sky by Daniel Kalla
Jewish doctor escapes Kristallnacht, ends up in Shanghai. Explores the moral dilemmas faced during wartime.

The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova
Late one night while exploring her father's library, a young woman finds an ancient book and a cache of old letters addressed to 'My dear and unfortunate successor.' This discovery sends her into an unexpected world of her parent’s secrets. A great story.

Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld
In an alternate 1914 Europe, fifteen-year-old Austrian Prince Alek forms a partnership with Deryn, who is disguised as a boy to join the British Air Service and fly genetically-engineered animals.

Looking for Alaska by John Green
Miles "Pudge" Halter's whole existence has been a non-event. He heads off to an anything-but-boring boarding school, and there he meets Alaska. And nothing will ever be the same again. Great YA read! Mrs. Nielson's pick!

The Monstrumologist: Isle of Blood by Rick Yancey
The third book in the wonderfully gruesome series takes young protagonist Will Henry to a far darker place than ever before, and this time it’s not the monsters outside he fears so much as the monster within.

My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante
The story of two friends growing up in the 1950s on the outskirts of Naples. Growing up on these tough streets, the girls learn to rely on each other. Life happens, and the two remain friends, whose destinies are reflected in each other. (Book 1 of 4 in a series.)

My Grandmother Asked Me To Tell You She's Sorry by Fredrik Backman
A young girl explores the world she lives in through a fictional land she creates with her grandmother. Lots of people loved this story!

Pay it Forward by Catherine Ryan Hyde
Taking on a challenge by his social studies teacher, 12-year old, Trevor, comes up with an idea to change the world: 'Pay it forward.' He began by helping three people in need, and from there, the idea spread. A feel-good read!

The Name of the Wing (The Kingkiller Chronicle #1) by Patrick Rothfuss
If you like swords and sorcery, this is the best book! Mr. Irvine's pick.

Salt and Saffron by Kamila Shamsie
Flying from London to Pakistan, Aliya is drawn into the mysteries of her grandparents' past: a family of ancient aristocrats, torn by love, betrayal and the Partition.

The Secret History by Donna Tartt
A small group of friends at an elite American college, and one is murdered in cold blood. Who is the murderer? Tartt will tell you right away. Why and how will take a little longer...

Station 11 by Emily St. John Mandel
Set in the collapse of civilization—this is a story of a Hollywood star, his would-be savior, and a nomadic group of actors roaming the scattered outposts of the Great Lakes regions, risking everything for art and humanity.

Where Things Come Back by John Corey Whaley
Cullen Witter is a suspicious, sarcastic seventeen-year-old who works at a gas station, fills his journal with the titles of books he might write and hopes to someday leave his hometown of Lily.

WWW: Wake by Robert by J. Sawyer
A blind teenage girl is enlisted for experimental eye surgery, a gorilla paints pictures, and in China there is a flu outbreak. Interesting novel that mixes reality and science fiction.

E.T. by Steven Spielberg
Alluded to by Science Fiction films over the past thirty years, the latest being the TV show, Stranger Things.

Fantastic Mr. Fox by Wes Anderson
A contemporary animated tale that alludes to a more innocent past that never was.

Hugo by Martin Scorcese
Ostensibly a children's film, this is a master class in early film-making.

The Incredibles by Brad Bird
An animated parody of a half century of heroes and superheroes on film.

The Iron Giant by Brad Bird
Based on a poem by Ted Hughes, the animated film explores cold war fears in a noirish style.

Safety Last by Harold Lloyd
A silent-film precursor to the parkour-like action films of today.