Thursday, August 13, 2009

New Notes, Back to School edition

The August issue of Notes from the Horn Book is now out and about.

1 comment:

Catharine Bellinger said...

As the school year begins, many students will be tested on their summer reading -- either by giving book reports, writing essays, or taking essay tests. A student whom I tutor is reading Fahrenheit 451, and reading it with him has made me wonder what the best dystopian literature for young adult and youth readers is.

So far, for older students I've thought of Ayn Rand's Anthem, Brave New World (which I think is a better choice than Fahrenheit 451 for 10th grade summer reading), and the short story "Harrison Bergeron" by Kurt Vonnegut. For younger students, there's The Giver (of course), City of Ember, The Hunger Games, the Pretties/Uglies/Specials series, and Feed. I also seem to recall a hefty children's fantasy quartet in which families are assigned colors (browns, reds, yellows) according to a strict caste system, but I can't remember the name of the book, and I'm not sure if it would actually qualify as dystopian.

Anyone have further suggestions, or thoughts on the literary merits of the ones I've thought of so far? What is -- if there is one -- the BEST dystopian novel for young adults? And for middle schoolers?

Thanks for your help.