North Olmsted High School


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Summer Reading




     Students enrolled in English classes at North Olmsted High School are required to read novels during the summer.  Students registered for an honors level class will read the two novels from the right-hand column.  Students not registered for an honors level class may read any one of the novels listed for their grade level, but the novels from the left-hand column are recommended. One week after school begins, the students will be tested on their reading of the novels.  It is imperative that the students read the novels, particularly because their first grades in the classes will be based on the Summer Reading Test and the novels will be used and referred to throughout the year.

Non-Honors Reading List


The Martian - Andy Weir - Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars.  Now, he's sure he'll be the first person to die there.  After a dust storm nearly kills him, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he's alive - and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive.

Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet - Jamie Ford "In the opening pages of Jamie Ford's debut novel, Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, Henry Lee comes upon a crowd gathered outside the Panama Hotel. once the gateway to Seattle's Japantown. It has been boarded up for decades. but now the new owner has made an incredible discovery: the belongings of Japanese families, left when they were rounded up and sent to internment camps during World War II. As Henry looks on, the owner opens a Japanese parasol."


Everything Matters - Ron Currie Jr. - Junior Thibodeau knows somethng no one else knows-neither his exalted parents, nor his baseball-savant brother, nor the love of his life. The world will end when he is thirty-six.  While Junior searches for meaning in a doomed world, his loved ones tell an all-American family saga of fathers and sons, blinding romance, lost love, and reconciliation-culminating in one final triumph that reconfigures the universe.


Elsewhere—Gabrielle Zevin- Fifteen-year old Liz dies in a car accident and goes to a place called Elsewhere.  She must try to forget her old life and live a new life as she ages backwards until she is ready to return to Earth.


Ghost Boy - Martin Pistorius - When Martin Pistorius was 12 years old, he came home from school with a sore throat.  Over the next two years, his mind and body shut down, until he was left a quadriplegic who could not speak.  Then, around the time he was 16, his mind started coming back to life.  He tells his story in the book, Ghost Boy.

As Simple as Snow —Gregory Galloway- The story of a shy high school sophomore's unlikely love for a Goth girl (Anna Cayne) seems simple enough, but everything quickly gets complicated when Anna disappears and the narrator attempts to find out what happened to her. 



Night Circus - Erin Morgenstern  - The circus arrives without warning.  No announcements precede it.  It is simply there, when yesterday it was not.  It is called Le Cirque des Reves, and it is only open at night.  Behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway-a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors.

The Art of Racing in the Rain - Garth Stein - A heart-wrenching but deeply funny and ultimately uplifting story of family love, loyalty, and hope--a captivating look at the wonders and absurdities of human life . . . as only a dog could tell it.


Honors Reading List


 I am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban - Malala Yousafzai  the remarkable tale of a family uprooted by global terrorism, of the fight for girls' education, of a father who, himself a school owner, championed and encourged his daughter to write and attend school and of brave parents who have a fierce love for their daughter in a society that prizes sons.

The Boy Who Harnassed the Wind - William Kamkwamba - the immensely engaging and inspiring true account of an enterprising African teenager who constructed a windmill from scraps to create electricity for his entire community.


The Life of Pi—Yann Martel- The son of a zookeeper, Pi Patel has an encyclopedic knowledge of animal behavior and a fervent love of stories. When the ship carrying Pi’s family from India to North America sinks, Pi finds himself in a battle for survival.

Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore: A Novel - Robin Sloan The Great Recession has shuffled Clay Jannon away from life as a San Francisco web-design drone and into the aisles of Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore. But after a few days on the job, Clay discovers that the store is more curious than either its name or its gnomic owner might suggest. The customers are few, and they never seem to buy anything—instead, they “check out” large, obscure volumes from strange corners of the store. Suspicious, Clay engineers an analysis of the clientele’s behavior, seeking help from his variously talented friends. But when they bring their findings to Mr. Penumbra, they discover the bookstore’s secrets extend far beyond its walls.



The Sun Also Rises - Ernest Hemingway  A poignant look at the disillusionment and angst of the post-World War I generation, the novel introduces Jake Barnes and Lady Brett Ashley. The story follows the flamboyant Brett and the hapless Jake as they journey from the wild nightlife of 1920s Paris to the brutal bullfighting rings of Spain with a motley group of expatriates. It is an age of moral bankruptcy, spiritual dissolution, unrealized love, and vanishing illusions.

Unbroken - Laura Hillenbrand - On a May afternoon in 1943, an Army Air Forces bomber crashed into the Pacific Ocean and disappeared, leaving only a spray of debris and a slick of oil, gasoline, and blood.  Then, on the ocean surface, a face appeared--Lt.Louis Zamperini. Captured by the Japanese and driven to the limits of endurance, Zamperini would answer desperation with ingenuity; suffering with hope, resolve, and humor. (Biography)


The Lords of Discipline-Pat Conroy- In this coming-of-age novel, a young man experiences life at a military academy. Some mature language is included.

The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini- Amir and his best friend Hassan live a charmed life in Kabul, Afghanistan in the 1960s.  Their favorite pastime is summer kite running.  As part of a racial minority, Hassan becomes a victim of a neighborhood bully, which changes the course of his life and Amir’s life forever.