I thought I’d read next to nothing this month, but as I was compiling my list, I was actually really pleased with my reading in terms of both quality and quantity.
Here’s everything I read in October:
*She Said by Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey. For an in-depth look at the brave and unrelenting investigative reporting that helped launch the #MeToo movement.
- Can I teach it? Yes! In spite of the difficult subject matter, this would make an excellent book for a journalism or rhetoric class.
The Virgins by Pamela Erens. For a dark atmospheric story of jealousy, desire, and burgeoning sexuality.
- Can I teach it? While this one features teenage protagonists, it’s definitively NOT appropriate for the classroom.
The Familiars by Stacey Halls. For a meticulously done reimagining of a real witch hunt with a perfect touch of the supernatural.
- Can I teach it? Yep. This is very clean and gives a very in-depth look at how women were treated during a specific historical period.
Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout. For the most exceptional hard-to-love character I’ve ever encountered penned in Pulitzer-worthy prose.
- Can I teach it? For sure. On the one hand, this would make a great choice because it’s a Pulitzer-prize winning female author and extremely relevant. On the other hand, most of the themes in this novel will be more accessible for older readers. It’s currently an option in my Women in Literature class and I’m looking forward to seeing how students respond.
*The World That We Knew by Alice Hoffman. For a devastatingly real look at the evil at work in Nazi Germany and an examination of the magic in hope, love, and resiliency.
- Can I teach it? Yes! There’s one uncomfortably weird scene, but this book is both very readable and very profound.
Know My Name by Chanel Miller. For one of the bravest, most vulnerable memoirs in recent memory.
- Can I teach it? Not to high school students, but I firmly believe every girl should be aware of this book.
*Red at the Bone by Jacqueline Woodson. For a complicated, yet moving family story crafted in Woodson’s signature poetic style.
- Can I teach it? Yes, although I tend to think Woodson’s Another Brooklyn is more relevant and approachable for high school students.
*The Starless Sea by Erin Mogenstern. For a magical adventure that will totally transport you and a gorgeously penned love letter to the stories.
- Can I teach it? You could, and it is a great example of metafiction. However, I think the classroom might ruin this book and would probably rather kids discover it on their own.
Magic for Liars by Sara Gailey. For a campus mystery with magic...need I say more?
- Can I teach it? Nope. This is magic school book for adults.
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by JK Rowling. For all the nostalgic waterworks and a masterclass in how to end a series.
- Can I teach it? I’ll ask it again: why aren't we teaching Harry Potter?!
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*Starred books were graciously gifted to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.