Once in a while, an English teacher is so great they instill a love of reading in you for life. The best English teachers make us believe we have brilliant thoughts on all classic novels that have never been discussed before. Here at Mischief Merch, we’ve been talking about those English teachers a lot, and our hearts are with the teachers and students who’ve had to pivot to Zoom and online learning to finish out the school year. This Memorial Day weekend, it’s a great idea to revisit your favorite English teachers and the best books you read with them.
It has been difficult to start reading a ton of new books during this ongoing quarantine. It’s sort of weird to dive into a new world and not know what’s going to happen. Rereading, like rewatching, is such an easy way to work yourself back up into reading. Although people may yell about reading another book, there really is nothing like revisiting a comforting favorite. Instead of despairing of your unread pile, you can always go back to the favorites.
High school English class books are a great sector to return to because they helped us form the way we think. The way we read and the way English teachers taught us to engage with reading was a formative experience for many. Returning to some classics and seeing how they hit when you’re older and wiser is an amazing way to also feel like you’re reading a new book. Even returning to genre fiction like our favorite vampire books will hit differently when you’re older. Here are our recommendations for twenty books to dive back into if you need a lift from high school English curricula!
- Macbeth by William Shakespeare
- Sula by Toni Morrison
- To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
- The Yellow Wall-Paper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman
- The Awakening by Kate Chopin
- Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller
- 1984 by George Orwell
- Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut
- Frankenstein by Mary Shelly
- The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka
- As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner
- The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
- The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
- Hamlet by William Shakespeare
- The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros
- No Exit By Jean Paul Sartre
- The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde
- The Stranger by Albert Camus
- The Odyssey by Homer
- A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hasberry
- Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie
If you’d like, you can even try writing a five paragraph essay to pass the time. One of my teachers used the hamburger metaphor, and another one used the layer cake. I always got hungry during those classes.
What favorite books are you revisiting during this quarantine time?