Summer Reading 2022

  • Summer Reading Banner

    “We read to know we are not alone.” ~ C. S. Lewis

    Why Summer Reading?

    Encouraging reading over the summer can help avoid what experts call the “summer slide.” This refers to the loss of learning that occurs over the course of a summer, and it is more dramatic than you might think.  Studies show that choosing to read in the summer may be the difference between the college-bound student and the non-college bound student.  Reading just one book over the course of the summer can minimize the “summer slide,” and keep you on track to reach your potential.

    islma Lincoln Award Check out the Abraham Lincoln Award Illinois High School Readers’ Choice Awards, or even the New York Times Best-Sellers List.  The New York Times even has a Young Adult Best Sellers List.  The important thing is to find a book that appeals to you, and spend some time this summer reading.  As Oscar Wilde observed, “It is what you read when you don’t have to that determines what you will be when you can’t help it.”

    Feel free to browse our new digital library at OverDrive, to check out these titles and read them on the go. Learn more about our digital library and how to access it here.

    Pick a book and enjoy your summer!

  • Required Summer Reading

    Some English classes require a specific summer reading book.  Those courses are 108, 208, 319, and 419.  The books are listed below.  For this year, we are asking that students read the book(s) over the summer; they will be asked to complete assignments pertaining to the books upon return in the fall.  Assignments may include, but are not limited to, objective tests, essays, passage analysis, etc.




    Ms. Ksiazek

    Mr. Cedeno

    Mr. Klinger

    Greetings, Scholars!  As Honors-level students, many of you are already familiar with the general idea of summer reading.  Over this particular summer, we expect that you read and annotate The Devil’s Highway by Luis Alberto Urrea.  You will also complete a triple entry journal (instructions found in the page below this one on the summer reading website and summer reading Schoology page) to be handed in upon the start of the school year.

    The access code for our AP Summer Lang Reading 2022 is: 7VST-XJH3-6PQ76.

    The Devil's Highway 

    “In May 2001, a group of men attempted to cross the Mexican border into the desert of southern Arizona, through the deadliest region of the continent, the ‘Devil's Highway.’ Three years later, Luis Alberto Urrea wrote about what happened to them. The result was a national bestseller, a Pulitzer Prize finalist, a ‘book of the year’ in multiple newspapers, and a work proclaimed as a modern American classic”  (Courtesy of Amazon).

    While reading The Devil’s Highway, focus your annotation on the rhetorical triangle: what can you tell about the speaker of the text, who do you think his intended audience is, and what is his purpose throughout the book? To help you figure out these major areas of analysis, consider the following specific questions as you read in order to track the rhetoric:

    ●    What does the author try to make you think, feel, or do?

    ●    What diction (word choice) and syntax (sentence structures) does he use to help impact the audience?

    ●    What appeals does he rely on to help convince the audience (logos, ethos, pathos)?

    ●    Where do we see the author utilizing imagery and anecdotes (illustrative stories) to help achieve his purpose?

    ●    What tone(s) does the author use to write the book?

        o    Does it change in places throughout the text?

        o    If so, how?

             ▪    What is the effect of the shift?

    ●    Does the author seem to be balanced or biased in his narration?

    ●    What is the author trying to argue by the end of the text?  How/where can you tell so?

    ●    (How) does the author address any contrary or opposing perspectives? (Counterargument)

    Upon our return to school, you should be prepared to:

    1. Submit a complete Triple Entry Journal

    2. Conduct informal analysis of self-selected quotes from The Devil’s Highway

    3. Write an in-class rhetorical analysis essay or an argumentative essay responding to a passage

    from The Devil’s Highway

    4. Participate in Socratic Seminar discussion regarding the text


    Q: Must I annotate aggressively--similar to the annotation of a poem for close reading purposes?

    A: Not necessarily, no! You should annotate in a fashion and to an extent that is useful for you to produce

    organized analysis/writing.

    Q: Must I turn in my annotations for credit?

    A: That is not a requirement for our summer reading assignment, BUT you will be encouraged to use any

    notes that you take for any of our assignments or assessments. (It’s also important to remember that

    we reserve the right to collect evidence of annotation for diagnostic purpose--so we can determine

    whether, or how, we need to re-teach annotation.)

    Q: What is a Socratic Seminar?

    A: A Socratic Seminar is a formal, student-lead, graded discussion based on the text. Prior to the first day

    of class, students can prepare for the discussion by thoroughly responding to the discussion questions

    and providing textual evidence when necessary. During a Socratic Seminar, students are expected to

    demonstrate their depth of understanding of the text while using their notes and their book to support

    their responses.

    When school begins and prior to the Socratic Seminar, students will learn about and practice effective

    discussion skills such as posing open-ended questions, responding to open-ended questions, drawing

    connections, expanding on other student comments, respectfully providing alternate or contradicting

    perspectives, and supporting thoughtful responses with textual evidence.

    The Socratic Seminar grade will be based on two parts: student's written responses and student's oral

    participation in the discussion.

    Q: What if I need help?

    A: Please post a question to our E319 Summer Reading Schoology page or email one of the instructors

    identified at the top of this document.

  • Devil’s Highway Rhetorical Analysis Triple-Entry Journal


    Devil’s Highway Rhetorical Analysis Triple-Entry Journal

    Complete the attached Triple-Entry Journal chart for Devil’s Highway. You will have ten
    total entries. For each entry, you will need to do the following:

    Triple-Entry Journal Chart




    At least one sentence, but less
    than a page! Important quotes
    are quotes which are either
    rich stylistically, make a
    significant point or argument,
    provide evidence for a
    previously-given argument,
    question a different idea or
    statement, etc.

    Discuss the intended impact of that quote
    on the target audience. In other words,
    what is the author trying to make the
    audience think, feel, or do as a result of
    this quote? (Impact must go beyond:
    informing, entertaining, emoting, etc.)
    What particular words or phrases draw
    attention and create significance? How

    What do you think about the quote? Do
    you agree with that perspective? Why
    (not)? Perhaps consider connecting to
    another quote from the text; connecting to
    real-world experience, news, or events;
    extending the argument within the quote;
    or posing a question that the quote

    “In Arizona, critics are more
    direct… Toxic materials
    appear in jugs that looks like
    drinking water. Humane
    Borders’ water stations are
    vandalized, the 300-gallon
    tanks broken open so they run
    dry. Small groups of
    Mexicans are found tied and
    shot in the head. The Border
    Patrol is sentimental, though,
    and they keep building towers”

    Urrea details the opposition to life-saving
    measures that USBP and other groups
    have put into place. Juxtaposing the
    cruelty of lay people against the mercy of
    the professional Border Patrol members,
    causes the readers to sympathize with the
    “illegal immigrants” and those who seek
    to help them. Despite the paradox/irony,
    the authorities seek to protect the

    I believe that the fact that there are groups
    who go out of their way to sabotage efforts
    to save the lives of “walkers” is sickening.
    While crossing the border illegally is
    wrong, I think it is encouraging that there
    are people and groups who work to help
    save lives. Malicious acts to disrupt or
    damage the aid resources only serves to
    harm and kill poor people. But it will not
    stop the flow of illegal immigration.

    If this browser does not support PDFs or you like to download the file, please download it here.

  • 2022 Required Summer Reading – Honors/AP Students

    Students who are taking E108 Honors Freshmen English will be reading The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry.  Please scroll below to see the E108 Summer Reading Assignment.

    Students who are taking E208 Honors Sophomore English will be reading Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury.

    Students enrolled in E319 AP Language and Composition will read The Devil’s Highway by Luis Alberto Urrea and Hiroshima by John Hersey.  Please scroll below to see the E319 Summer Reading Assignments/Expectations.

    Students taking E419 AP Literature and Composition will be reading The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini.  Please scroll below for the E419 Summer Reading Assignment.

  • E108 - The Storied Life of AJ Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin

    The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry

    The Storied Life of AJ Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin

    A. J. Fikry’s life is not at all what he expected it to be. He lives alone, his bookstore is experiencing the worst sales in its history, and now his prized possession, a rare collection of Poe poems, has been stolen. But when a mysterious package appears at the bookstore, its unexpected arrival gives Fikry the chance to make his life over--and see everything anew.

    The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry has a little bit of mystery and a little bit of romance but is at its core a love story: love of books, love of family, love of community. It is as enchanting a book as you will read this year.


    The Storied Life of AJ Fikry references short stories that we will be using in our curriculum this fall. When reading, consider setting, motifs, author’s purpose, and your own journey as a reader. If you have already learned annotation strategies, feel free to annotate, but it is not required and it will not be graded. We will discuss annotation strategies when we get to our short story unit.                             

    Fall 2022 The Storied Life of AJ Fikry Assignments: 

    1. Finish reading the novel (Please complete before the first day of class)
    2. Socratic Seminar Discussion Questions (Please complete before the first day of class) 
    3. Socratic Seminar (Conducted in class) 


    What is a Socratic Seminar? 

    A Socratic Seminar is a formal, student-lead, graded discussion based on the text. Students can prepare for the Socratic Seminar by thoroughly responding to the discussion questions and providing textual evidence when necessary.  During a Socratic Seminar, students are expected to demonstrate their depth of understanding of the text while using their notes and their book to support their responses.  

    When school begins and prior to the Socratic Seminar, students will learn about and practice effective discussion skills such as posing open-ended questions, responding to open-ended questions, drawing connections, expanding on other student comments, respectfully providing alternate or contradicting perspectives, and supporting thoughtful responses with textual evidence. Students will also have time during the first week of class to respond to the questions. 

    The Socratic Seminar grade will be based on two parts: student's written responses and student's oral participation in the discussion.

  • E208 - English 2/Honors

    E208 English 2/Honors

    Fahrenheit 45; by Ray Bradbury

    Fahrenheit 451

    Book Summary: “Ray Bradbury's internationally acclaimed novel Fahrenheit 451 is a masterwork of 20th-century literature set in a bleak, dystopian future. Guy Montag is a fireman. In his world, where television rules and literature is on the brink of extinction, firemen start fires rather than put them out. His job is to destroy the most illegal of commodities, the printed book, along with the houses in which they are hidden. Montag never questions the destruction and ruin his actions produce, returning each day to his bland life and wife, Mildred, who spends all day with her television "family". But then he meets an eccentric young neighbor, Clarisse, who introduces him to a past where people didn’t live in fear and to a present where one sees the world through the ideas in books instead of the mindless chatter of television. When Mildred attempts suicide and Clarisse suddenly disappears, Montag begins to question everything he has ever known. He starts hiding books in his home, and when his pilfering is discovered, the fireman has to run for his life” (Amazon).

    As a sophomore entering an E208 class in the fall, you will be responsible for completing summer reading. The text you will be required to read over the summer is Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury. Please read through the information on this handout. If you have any questions over the summer, please contact Mrs. Serafini at, Mrs. Micheletto at, or Ms. Bingham at 

    There is also a schoology where you can find additional resources.

    Code: 4T34-Q9TT-R3M6X

    Over the summer, you will complete 1 assignment; you will also write a paper and take a test on the novel when school begins. 

    By the first day of class, you must finish the book and analysis chart assignment below.

    Analysis Chart Directions: Due the first day of class; please have an electronic copy 

    While reading the novel, instead of annotating, please find 10 examples of literary elements. After choosing important and meaningful quotes, please provide deconstructive analysis pertaining to the purpose and meaning of the quote.

    Please follow the format below: (Use this list of terms to help you)


    Literary Element Identification.

    Text Evidence from F451 

    Purpose and Meaning

    1. Allusion & Alliteration

    Information    Montag brags, "It's fine work. Monday burn Millay,

    Wednesday Whitman, Friday Faulkner, burn 'em to ashes, then burn the ashes. That's our official slogan" (Bradbury 3).

    The governing body within this society restricts information with the end goal of preventing individual thought. The quote alludes to well-known authors who have influenced readers over history to demonstrate that by burning their 

    thoughts/ideas, they are 

    essentially destroying their influence. Ultimately, an ignorant society is a controllable society.


    Literary Element Identification

    Text Evidence from F451 

    Purpose and Meaning

    2. Metaphor 

    Montag watches “while the flapping 

    pigeon-winged books died on the porch and lawn of the house” (Bradbury 1).

    Opening the novel, Bradbury describes the books as “pigeon-winged.” Because birds symbolize freedom, the fact that the books are dying depicts the death of that freedom due to the burning of information. Additionally, the books are flapping as they die; this is connotatively showing 

    their struggle and that their death is not an easy one. Still further, pigeons are often seen as bothersome and “flying rats.” The depiction of them as such underscores the society’s view of books as unwanted pests. Lastly, mentioning the porch of the house appeals to pathos as the porch is historically a place for contemplation and 

    congregation; by having the books die here, a way of life is symbolically dying as well.

    The following information on dystopias may help you connect your literary devices to the overall meaning of the work.  

    Dystopias: Definition and Characteristics 

    Utopia: A place, state, or condition that is ideally perfect in respect of politics, laws, customs, and conditions. 

    Dystopia: A futuristic, imagined universe in which oppressive societal control and the illusion of a perfect society are maintained through corporate, bureaucratic, technological, moral, or totalitarian control. Dystopias, through an exaggerated worst-case scenario, make a criticism about a current trend, societal norm, or political system. 

    Characteristics of a Dystopian Society 

    • Propaganda is used to control the citizens of society. 
    • Information, independent thought, and freedom are restricted. 
    • A figurehead or concept is worshipped by the citizens of the society. 
    • Citizens are perceived to be under constant surveillance. 
    • Citizens have a fear of the outside world. 
    • Citizens live in a dehumanized state. 
    • The natural world is banished and distrusted. 
    • Citizens conform to uniform expectations. Individuality and dissent are bad. • The society is an illusion of a perfect utopian world. 

    Types of Dystopian Controls 

    Most dystopian works present a world in which oppressive societal control and the illusion of a perfect society are maintained through one or more of the following types of controls: 

    • Corporate control: One or more large corporations control society through products, advertising, and/or the media. Examples include Minority Report and Running Man
    • Bureaucratic control: Society is controlled by a mindless bureaucracy through a tangle of red tape, relentless regulations, and incompetent government officials. Examples in film include Brazil
    • Technological control: Society is controlled by technology—through computers, robots, and/or scientific means. Examples include The Matrix, The Terminator, and I, Robot
    • Philosophical/religious control: Society is controlled by philosophical or religious ideology often enforced through a dictatorship or theocratic government. 

    The Dystopian Protagonist 

    • often feels trapped and is struggling to escape. 
    • questions the existing social and political systems. 
    • believes or feels that something is terribly wrong with the society in which he or she lives. 
    • helps the audience recognize the negative aspects of the dystopian world through his or her perspective.

  • E419 - Advanced Placement Literature and Composition

    E419 Advanced Placement Literature and Composition  

    Mrs. Gilkey

    Mr. Micheletto

    If you would like to have digital access to this information, please join our AP Lit Summer Reading Schoology Group. Access Code: QHQW-FSMJ-C7HDM

    The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

    The Kite Runner

    Note:  The Kite Runner contains adult situations. Some of the depictions are graphic. 

    Amazon Link:

    Book Summary:

    Amir is the son of a wealthy Kabul merchant, a member of the ruling caste of Pashtuns. Hassan, his servant and constant companion, is a Hazara, a despised and impoverished caste. Their uncommon bond is torn by Amir's choice to abandon his friend amidst the increasing ethnic, religious, and political tensions of the dying years of the Afghan monarchy, wrenching them far apart. But so strong is the bond between the two boys that Amir journeys back to a distant world, to try to right past wrongs against the only true friend he ever had. 

    Elements from The Kite Runner will infuse many of the other works in the 419 curriculum. Be advised that you must have the novel completed before returning to school. When reading, think in terms of motifsallusionsarchetypessymbols, and social issues, as well as the rhetorical strategies learned in English 319. In addition, consider the following points as you read and mark the text. We will be using the points below to drive our discussions and analysis:

    • Trace the psychological progress of the main characters in the story. How are their private lives shaped by the larger forces of history or culture?
    • Consider Hosseini’s narrative style in the novel and the importance of connecting past and present.
    • Explore the political and religious themes in the novel.
    • Analyze the novel as a Bildungsroman (coming-of-age) story. 
    • Consider the ideas of trauma, guilt, and redemption.
    • How does Hosseini use literary elements/devices, especially symbolism, to reflect important themes or ideas in the novel?

    While we will not be collecting text-marking, you will be expected to identify specific passages from the text, as we navigate the above topics. You should be able to quickly access these passages during graded class discussions and on essays. In other words, notes, post-its, etc. will help your class discussions and essays. 

    Fall 2022 Kite Runner Assignments: When we return to school, you will engage in the following assignments/assessments:

    1. Multiple Choice Reading Comprehension Test
    2. 2 AP Open Ended Essays
    3. Socratic Class Discussions

  • Books You May Enjoy This Summer

    • For this summer, SHS is encouraging all students to pick a book and read.  For most students, there will not be a required reading book.  We’ve included some titles that students have enjoyed in the past, but the best book for summer reading is the book that is interesting to you. 


      The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein

      The Art of Racing in the Rain

      Enzo knows he is different from other dogs: a philosopher with a nearly human soul (and an obsession with opposable thumbs), he has educated himself by watching television extensively, and by listening very closely to the words of his master, Denny Swift, an up-and-coming race car driver. Through Denny, Enzo has gained tremendous insight into the human condition, and he sees that life, like racing, isn’t simply about going fast. Using the techniques needed on the race track, one can successfully navigate all of life’s ordeals. A heart-wrenching but deeply funny and ultimately uplifting story of family, love, loyalty, and hope, The Art of Racing in the Rain is a beautifully crafted and captivating look at the wonders and absurdities of human life…as only a dog could tell it.

      Esperanza Rising By Pam Muñoz Ryan

      Esperanza Rising

      Esperanza thought she’d always live with her family on their ranch in Mexico–she’d always have fancy dresses, a beautiful home, and servants. But a sudden tragedy forces Esperanza and Mama to flee to California during the Great Depression, and to settle in a camp for Mexican farm workers. Esperanza isn’t ready for the hard labor, financial struggles, or lack of acceptance she now faces. When their new life is threatened, Esperanza must find a way to rise above her difficult circumstances–Mama’s life, and her own, depend on it.

      The Glass Castle By Jeanette Walls 

      The Glass Castle

      The Glass Castle is a memoir written by gossip columnist Jeanette Walls, which details he unconventional childhood growing up with an alcoholic father and a mother who seems to be mentally ill. Walls begins the book by explaining what has prompted her to write about her family: after she has “made it” and become a successful writer living in New York, she comes across her mother picking trash out of a dumpster and, in shame, slinks down in her taxi seat and pretends not to see or know her. Later, Walls con-fronts her mother, asking what she is supposed to tell people about her parents, and her mother replies, “Just tell the truth. That’s simple enough.”

       Lockdown: Escape from Furnace By Alexander Gordon Smith


      Furnace Penitentiary: the world’s most secure prison for young offenders, buried a mile beneath the earth’s surface. Convicted of a murder he didn’t commit, sentenced to life without parole, “new fish” Alex Sawyer knows he has two choices: find a way out, or resign himself to a death behind bars, in the darkness at the bottom of the world. Except in Furnace, death is the least of his worries. Soon Alex discovers that the prison is a place of pure evil, where inhuman creatures in gas masks stalk the corridors at night, where giants in black suits drag screaming inmates into the shadows, where deformed beasts can be heard howling from the blood-drenched tunnels below. And behind everything is the mysterious, all-powerful warden, a man as cruel and dangerous as the devil himself, whose unthinkable acts have consequences that stretch far beyond the walls of the prison. Together with a bunch of inmates–some innocent kids who have been framed, others cold-blooded killers–Alex plans an escape. But as he starts to uncover the truth about Furnace’s deeper, darker purpose, Alex’s actions grow ever more dangerous, and he must risk everything to expose this nightmare that’s hidden from the eyes of the world. 

      Unbroken: A WWII Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption
      By Laura Hillenbrand


      The inspiring true story of a man who lived through a series of catastrophes almost too incredible to be believed. From his delinquent childhood to the Berlin Olympics to World War 2, Louis Zamperini embarked on a journey that led to his doomed flight, a tiny raft, and a drift into the unknown. Ahead of Zamperini lay thousands of miles of open ocean, leaping sharks, a foundering raft, thirst and starvation, enemy aircraft, and, beyond, a trial even greater. Driven to the limits of endurance, Zamperini would answer desperation with ingenuity; suffering from hope, resolve, and humor; brutality with rebellion. His fate, whether triumph or tragedy, would be suspended on the fraying wire of his will.

      Blink By Malcolm Gladwell


      Blink is about the first two seconds of looking–the decisive glance that knows in an instant. Gladwell campaigns for snap judgments and mind reading with a gift for translating research into splendid storytelling. Building his case with scenes from a marriage, heart attack triage, speed dating, selling cars, and military maneuvers, he persuades readers to think small and focus on the meaning of “thin slices” of behavior. The key is to rely on our “adaptive unconscious”–a 24/7 mental valet–that provides us with instant and sophisticated information to warn of danger, read a stranger, or re-act to a new idea.

      City of Bones By Cassandra Clare

      City of Bones

      When fifteen-year-old Clary Fray heads out to the Pandemonium Club in New York City, she hardly expects to witness a murder—much less a murder committed by three teenagers covered with strange tattoos and brandishing bizarre weapons. Then the body disappears into thin air. Within twenty-four hours, Clary is pulled into Jace’s world with a vengeance when her mother disappears and Clary herself is attacked by a demon. But why would demons be interested in ordinary mundanes like Clary and her mother? And how did Clary suddenly get the Sight? The Shadowhunters would like to know. . . .

      The Enemy By Charlie Higson

      The Enemy

      In the wake of a devastating disease, everyone sixteen and older is either dead or a decomposing, brainless creature with a ravenous appetite for flesh. Teens have barricaded themselves in buildings throughout London and venture outside only when they need to scavenge for food. When a mysterious traveler arrives and offers them a safe haven at Buckingham Palace, they begin a harrowing journey across Lon-don. But their fight is far from over—the threat from within the palace is as real as the one outside it. Full of unexpected twists and quick-thinking heroes, The Enemy is a fast-paced, white-knuckle tale of survival in the face of unimaginable horror.

      The Selection By Kiera Cass

      The Selection

      For thirty-five girls, the Selection is the chance of a lifetime. The opportunity to escape the life laid out for them since birth. To be swept up in a world of glittering gowns and priceless jewels. To live in a palace and compete for the heart of a prince. But for America Singer, being selected is a nightmare. It means turning her back on her secret love with Aspen, who is a caste below her. Leaving her home to enter a fierce competition for a crown she doesn’t want. Living in a palace that is constantly threatened by violent rebel attacks. Then America meets Prince Maxon. Gradually, she starts to question all the plans she’s made for herself – and realizes that the life she had always dreamed of may not compare to a future she never imagined.

      Escape from Camp 14 By Blaine Harden

      Escape from Camp 14

      North Korea’s political prison camps have existed twice as long as Stalin’s Soviet gulags and twelve times as long as the Nazi concentration camps. No one born and raised in these camps is known to have escaped. No one, that is, except Shin Dong-hyuk. In Escape From Camp 14, Blaine Harden unlocks the secrets of the world’s most repressive totalitarian state through the story of Shin’s shocking imprisonment and his astounding getaway. Shin knew nothing of civilized existence-he saw his mother as a competitor for food, guards raised him to be a snitch, and he witnessed the execution of his mother and brother. Harden’s harrowing narrative exposes this hidden dystopia, focusing on an extraordinary young man who came of age inside the highest security prison in the highest security state. It is a tale of endurance and courage, survival and hope.

      Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

      Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children

      A mysterious island. An abandoned orphanage. A strange collection of very curious photographs. It all waits to be discovered in Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, an unforgettable novel that mixes fiction and photography in a thrilling reading experience. As our story opens, a horrific family tragedy sets sixteen-year-old Jacob journeying to a remote island off the coast of Wales, looking for Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. As Jacob explores its abandoned bedrooms and hallways, it becomes clear that the children were more than just peculiar. They may have been dangerous. They may have been quarantined on a deserted island for good reason. And somehow—impossible though it seems—they may still be alive.

      Monument 14 by Emmy Laybourne


      Fourteen kids. One superstore. A million things that go wrong. In Emmy Laybourne’s action-packed debut novel, six high school kids (some popular, some not), two eighth graders (one a tech genius), and six little kids trapped together in a chain superstore build a refuge for themselves inside. While outside, a series of escalating disasters, beginning with a monster hailstorm and ending with a chemical weapons spill, seems to be tearing the world—as they know it—apart.  

      Peace Like a River by Leif Enger

      Peace Like a River

      Leif Enger’s novel about a father raising his three children in 1960s Minnesota is a breathtaking celebration of family and faith. Through the voice of eleven-year-old Reuben, Peace Like a River tells of the Land family’s cross-country search for Reuben’s older brother, an outlaw charged with murder.  Reuben’s dad, Jeremiah, leads the family in an unforgettable journey marked by tragedy, romance, and the unique magic that can be seen in everyday life.

      The Testing by Joelle Charbonneau

      The Testing

      Keep your friends close and your enemies closer. Isn’t that what they say? But how close is too close when they may be one in the same? The Seven Stages War left much of the planet a charred wasteland. The future belongs to the next generation pass The Testing—their one chance at a college education and a rewarding career. Cia Vale is eager to prove her worthiness as a University student and future leader of the United Commonwealth. But on the eve of her departure, her father’s advice hints at a darker side to her upcoming studies’ chosen few who must rebuild it. But to enter this elite group, candidates must first trust no one. But surely she can trust Tomas, her handsome childhood friend who offers an alliance? To survive, Cia must choose: love without truth or life without trust