Classic Books to Crack Open This Month
By Marco McEldowney, reporter
School is back in session, and slowly going into full swing. After over a year of being stuck at home, it’s time to refresh our minds. One way to do this is by reading a nice book!
Since English class often focuses on reading older works and building your vocabulary, that refresh lies in timeless classics. You would expect most old books to be boring, generic heaps of fancy words, but that couldn’t be further from the truth.
The works of H.G. Wells are a must-read for any science fiction fan. He pioneered the genre with his stories, notable examples being War of the Worlds and The Invisible Man. War of the Worlds is a novel about one man’s experience with Martians invading Earth.
It’s told from a first-person perspective and is fairly localized in one area, which makes the story feel more personal and interesting. The science in this book also makes sense; the Martians use “heat rays”, which are created by parabolic mirrors reflecting sunlight into a deadly beam. It’s still fictional, of course, but it’s very believable.
The Invisible Man is exactly what it sounds like, and more. The story is a lot more than a silly invisible man doing silly things, leaning towards horror a bit more than War of the Worlds. Going more in-depth on it would spoil the best parts of the story, sadly.
It’s not just one opinion you should take.
English teacher Stephanie Powell recommends any of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes books.
She said, “Even though these books were written in the late 1800s and early 1900s, they are so modern. Any fan of mystery or murder mystery will love these. The way Holmes solves the cases is much like the way modern-day forensics is done. There's always a twist and it keeps you entertained trying to solve the mystery along with the main characters.”
She also recommends The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, as it’s a very deep book that leaves you thinking about it with every reread.
No matter what genre you’re into, there’s definitely a classic book out there that has all the aspects of a modern one. Reading is educational, and it’s always worth doing!
Reading some new books is a fantastic way to get your head back in the game for ELA!