Adventures of Huckleberry Finn : an authoritative text, backgrounds and sources, criticism

Twain, Mark, 1835-1910.
Call Number: Ed.d

Huckleberry Finn's is deftly woven social criticism from seemingly innocent observations from the uneducated Huck and the even-less-educated escaped slave, Jim.

Black boy : (American hunger) : a record of childhood and youth

Wright, Richard, 1908-1960,
Call Number: 813 W952W2 2015

The author relates his life as an African American growing up in the South during the Jim Crow years.

 

Brave New World

Huxley, Aldous, 1894-1963.
Call Number: Ed.g

One of the twentieth century's great classic dystopian novels which portrays mass manipulation of people through propaganda and indoctrination.

The call of the wild

London, Jack, 1876-1916.
Call Number: YA

The Call of the Wild tells the story of Buck, a domesticated dog ripped from a comfortable life when he is stolen from his home on a California ranch. Sold to a pair of men in Canada, Buck is trained as a sled dog in cold wilderness of the Klondike region. However, Buck's ordeal has only begun, as he is forced to learn how to overcome both in the brutal conditions and as the primal social facets as a member of a dog sled pack.

 

The catcher in the rye

Salinger, J. D. (Jerome David), 1919-2010.
Call Number: Ed.e

The influential and widely acclaimed story details the two days in the life of 16-year-old Holden Caulfield after he has been expelled from prep school. Confused and disillusioned, he searches for truth and rails against the "phoniness" of the adult world. He ends up exhausted and emotionally ill, in a psychiatrist's office. After he recovers from his breakdown, Holden relates his experiences to the reader.

Chinese Cinderella ; the true story of an unwanted daughter

Mah, Adeline Yen, 1937-
Call Number: 92 M2135 1999a

A Chinese proverb says, "Falling leaves return to their roots." In Chinese Cinderella, Adeline Yen Mah returns to her roots to tell the story of her painful childhood and her ultimate triumph and courage in the face of despair. Adeline's affluent, powerful family considers her bad luck after her mother dies giving birth to her. Life does not get any easier when her father remarries. She and her siblings are subjected to the disdain of her stepmother, while her stepbrother and stepsister are spoiled. Although Adeline wins prizes at school, they are not enough to compensate for what she really yearns for -- the love and understanding of her family.

The color purple

Walker, Alice, 1944-
Call Number: Ed.f

Celie is a poor, black woman in 1930s American south whose relentless abuse by the men in her life threaten to make this story a tragedy. But tenacity, a momentous character evolution, and the kindness (and love) of women transform her into one of the greatest female characters in literature.

The diary of a young girl : the definitive edition

Frank, Anne, 1929-1945.
Call Number: 92 F8275 1997

The Diary of a Young Girl is the record of two years in the life of a remarkable Jewish girl and one of the most moving and eloquent accounts of the Holocaust, Frank's triumphant humanity in the face of unfathomable deprivation and fear has made the book one of the most enduring documents of our time. This edition reprints the Definitive edition authorized by the Frank estate, plus a new introduction, a bibliography, and a chronology of Anne Frank's life and times.

Fahrenheit 451

Bradbury, Ray, 1920-2012,
Call Number: SF Ed.k
Bradbury’s classic tale of a dystopian society that has forgone reading to the point that a fireman’s job is to start fires (of books, and any buildings where books are found) still has much to say more than 60 years after it was published.
 

Flowers for Algernon

Keyes, Daniel.
Call Number: SF Ed.e

When brain surgery makes a mouse into a genius, dull-witted Charlie Gordon wonders if it might also work for him. With more than five million copies sold, Flowers for Algernon is the beloved, classic story of a mentally disabled man whose experimental quest for intelligence mirrors that of Algernon, an extraordinary lab mouse. In poignant diary entries, Charlie tells how a brain operation increases his IQ and changes his life. As the experimental procedure takes effect, Charlie's intelligence expands until it surpasses that of the doctors who engineered his metamorphosis. The experiment seems to be a scientific breakthrough of paramount importance, until Algernon begins his sudden, unexpected deterioration. Will the same happen to Charlie?

Go tell it on the mountain

Baldwin, James, 1924-1987.
Call Number: Ed.f

The story of John, a fourteen-year-old boy whose stepfather is a Pentecostal minister in Harlem in 1935, as he struggles to discover his own identity.

The Great Gatsby

Fitzgerald, F. Scott (Francis Scott), 1896-1940.
Call Number: Ed.j

F. Scott Fitzgerald's portrait of the Jazz Age in all its decadence and excess, is, as editor Maxwell Perkins praised it in 1924, "a wonder." It remains one of the most widely read, translated, admired, imitated and studied twentieth-century works of American fiction. This deceptively simple work, Fitzgerald's best known, was hailed by critics as capturing the spirit of the generation. In Jay Gatsby, Fitzgerald embodies some of America's strongest obsessions: wealth, power, greed, and the promise of new beginnings. The recording includes a selection of letters written by Fitzgerald to his editor, Maxwell Perkins, his agent, Harold Ober, and friends and associates, including Willa Cather, H.L. Mencken, John Peale Bishop and Gertrude Stein.

The handmaid's tale

Atwood, Margaret, 1939-
Call Number: Ed.a

Offred is a Handmaid in the Republic of Gilead. She may leave the home of the Commander and his wife once a day to walk to food markets whose signs are now pictures instead of words because women are no longer allowed to read. She must lie on her back once a month and pray that the Commander makes her pregnant, because in an age of declining births, Offred and the other Handmaids are valued only if their ovaries are viable. Offred can remember the days before, when she lived and made love with her husband Luke; when she played with and protected her daughter; when she had a job, money of her own, and access to knowledge. But all of that is gone now...

 

The House on Mango Street

Cisneros, Sandra.
Call Number: Ed.a

Told in a series of vignettes, it is the story of a young Latina girl growing up in Chicago, inventing for herself who and what she will become. Few other books in our time have touched so many readers.

I know why the caged bird sings

Angelou, Maya.
Call Number: 810.92 A584-2 1997

Maya Angelou's memoir of growing up black in the 1930's and 1940's.

The Joy Luck Club

Tan, Amy.
Call Number: Ed.f

In 1949, four Chinese women--drawn together by the shadow of their past--begin meeting in San Francisco to play mah jong, invest in stocks and "say" stories. They call their gathering the Joy Luck Club--and forge a relationship that binds them for more than three decades.

The jungle

Sinclair, Upton, 1878-1968.
Call Number: Ed.t

Describes the conditions of the Chicago stockyards through the eyes of a young immigrant struggling in America.

Kindred

Butler, Octavia E.
Call Number: SF Ed.b

Dana, a modern black woman, is celebrating her twenty-sixth birthday with her new husband when she is snatched abruptly from her home in California and transported to the antebellum South. Rufus, the white son of a plantation owner, is drowning, and Dana has been summoned across the years to save him. After this first summons, Dana is drawn back, again and again, to the plantation to protect Rufus and ensure that he will grow to manhood and father the daughter who will become Dana's ancestor. Yet each time Dana's sojourns become longer and more dangerous, until it is uncertain whether or not her life will end, long before it has even begun.

Lord of the flies : a novel

Golding, William, 1911-1993.
Call Number: Ed.e

Schoolboys marooned on a tropical island revert to primitive savagery.

The metamorphosis

Kafka, Franz, 1883-1924.
Call Number: YA

A series of stories that follow the life of Gregor Samsa, a traveling salesman. Gregor awakes to find himself transformed into a large insect-like creature. His family and colleagues abhor his grotesque appearance. Gregor realizes what a burden he is to the family, and how they are constantly repelled at his new appearance.

Of mice and men

Steinbeck, John, 1902-1968.
Call Number: Ed.i

A dramatic novelette about two itinerant ranch workers in the Salinas Valley

Night

Wiesel, Elie, 1928-2016.
Call Number: 940.547243 W651 1982

Born in the town of Sighet, Transylvania, Elie Wiesel was a teenager when he and his family were taken from their home in 1944 to the Auschwitz concentration camp, and then to Buchenwald. This novel is the terrifying record of Elie Wiesel's memories of the death of his family, the death of his own innocence, and his despair as a deeply observant Jew confronting the absolute evil of man.

Nineteen eighty-four : a novel

Orwell, George, 1903-1950.
Call Number: Ed.g

Portrays life in a future time when a totalitarian government watches over all citizens and directs all activities.

On the road

Kerouac, Jack, 1922-1969.
Call Number: YA

Follows the counterculture escapades of members of the Beat generation as they seek pleasure and meaning while traveling coast to coast. As he travels across 1950s America, aspiring writer Sal Paradise chronicles his escapades with the charismatic Dean Moriarty. Sal admires Dean's passion for experiencing as much as possible of life and his wild flights of poetic fancy.

Their eyes were watching God

Hurston, Zora Neale.
Call Number: Ed.f

When Janie, at sixteen, is caught kissing shiftless Johnny Taylor, her grandmother swiftly marries her off to an old man with sixty acres. Janie endures two stifling marriages before meeting the man of her dreams, who offers not diamonds, but a packet of flowering seeds.

To kill a mockingbird

Lee, Harper.
Call Number: Ed.h

The explosion of racial hate in an Alabama town is viewed by a little girl whose father defends a black man accused of rape.

 

Watership Down

Adams, Richard, 1920-2016.
Call Number: Ed.d

Fiver could sense danger. Something terrible was going to happen to the Warren; he felt sure of it.  They had to leave immediately. So begins a long and perilous journey of survival for a small band of rabbits.