Tuesday, November 9, 2010

CLASSIC FICTION - WHAT'S THAT?

The year has rolled round to the 7th grade classic fiction assignment.  Bringing the question once again to a quiet simmer: which of the books in the Young Adult collection are classics?  It is probably easier for most teens to confidently identify a classic car than to find a classic book.  It used to be that a classic was a literary work from ancient Greece or Rome, such as The Iliad, or The Odyssey, or Ovid's Metamorphoses.  I might be wrong, however I don't think those illustrious titles are what the seventh grade teachers had in mind when they launched their students on the worthy quest to find and read a classic book.  Never fear!  There are many classic book lists, hibernating in cyberspace, and in reference books, which, after study, boils down to this:  a classic book is one with recognized excellence (usually a book with an award), and is timeless (a book that has not gone out of print for half a century, or has stood the test of time). There are classic childhood favorites such as:  Around the World in Eighty Days; Pinocchio; The Wheel on the School; Winnie the Pooh; The Secret Garden; Black Beauty; Heidi; The Lion, The Witch & The Wardrobe, and many more (see the Must Read Classics for Older Kids link below).  Did you miss one of these wonderful stories?  Perhaps now is your chance to check one out to read, and get credit for a school assignment.

Currently there is a display of classic books on one of the counter tops in the Library's Young Adult area.  Below are a few of the choices arranged by genre. What's your ride?:
Adventure classic: The Call of the Wild; Kidnapped 
Fantasy classic: The Hobbit; Watership Down; AWizard of Earthsea
Historical Fiction classic: The Red Badge of Courage
Mystery classic: Rebecca; The Hound of the Baskervilles
Romance classic: Jane Eyre
Science Fiction classic: The Giver, A Wrinkle in Time; The Left Hand of Darkness, War of the Worlds, 1984
Supernatural classic: Dracula; The Picture of Dorian Gray

Here are a few classics in the Young Adult collection that are in Graphic Novel format:  Beowulf, Fahrenheit 451, The Merchant of Venice; The Tempest, The Picture of Dorian Gray, The Odyssey  (Please ask your teacher if a graphic format classic is okay to choose for the reading assignment)

For more choices check out these classic lists from EBSCO's NoveList Plus database:
NoveList Must Read Classics for Teens
NoveList Must Read Classics for Older Kids

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