12th Grade


Incoming 12th Grade Academic Summer Reading


Summer Reading is required for students taking Academic English 12.

Students are required to acquire their own book and bring it with them, annotated, on the first day of class.

If borrowing a book, or using an audiobook, bring double-entry notes on separate paper, including page numbers.

Annotate for evidence of this question:

How does the text (author, characters, plot, etc.)  reflect the beliefs and/or values of the culture it is from? 

On the first day of class:

  • Annotations will be collected for 30 formative points.
  • There will be a reading quiz worth 20 summative points
  • Other writings based on the novel will occur throughout the first marking period.

Students must choose one (1) of the following books to read:

The Road by Cormac McCarthy (Lexile 670)

NATIONAL BESTSELLER • WINNER OF THE PULITZER PRIZE • A searing, post-apocalyptic novel about a father and son's fight to survive, this "tale of survival and the miracle of goodness only adds to McCarthy's stature as a living master. It's gripping, frightening and, ultimately, beautiful" (San Francisco Chronicle). 287 pgs.

Feed by MT Anderson (Lexile 770)

Feed takes place in a dystopian version of the United States of America in which the majority of the population uses a “feed”—a surgically-implanted device that enables the user to communicate electronically with others, look up any information, access limitless hours of free entertainment, and exposes them to endless advertisements for products. Titus of the novel, Titus, is a teenager from an upper-class family who spends his time horsing around with his friends Link Arwaker and Marty, going to School™ (corporations control the educational system, and use it to train kids to buy their products), and going on expensive vacations. 320 pgs.

My Sister’s Keeper by Jodi Piccoult (Lexile 770)

Jodi Picoult tells the story of a girl who decides to sue her parents for the rights to her own body in this New York Times bestseller that tackles a controversial subject with grace and explores what it means to be a good person. My Sister’s Keeper examines what it means to be a good parent, a good sister, and a good person. Is it morally correct to do whatever it takes to save a child’s life, even if that means infringing upon the rights of another? Is it worth trying to discover who you really are, if that quest makes you like yourself less? Should you follow your own heart, or let others lead you? Once again, in My Sister’s Keeper, Jodi Picoult tackles a controversial real-life subject with grace, wisdom, and sensitivity. 496 pgs.

A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman (Lexile 870)

A grumpy yet loveable man finds his solitary world turned on its head when a boisterous young family moves in next door. Meet Ove. He's a curmudgeon, the kind of man who points at people he dislikes as if they were burglars caught outside his bedroom window. He has staunch principles, strict routines, and a short fuse. People call him the bitter neighbor from hell, but must Ove be bitter just because he doesn't walk around with a smile plastered to his face all the time? 368 pgs.

Educated by Tara Westover NON-FICTION

Born to survivalists in the mountains of Idaho, Tara Westover was seventeen the first time she set foot in a classroom. Her family was so isolated from mainstream society that there was no one to ensure the children received an education, and no one to intervene when one of Tara’s older brothers became violent. When another brother got himself into college, Tara decided to try a new kind of life. Her quest for knowledge transformed her, taking her over oceans and across continents, to Harvard and to Cambridge University. Only then would she wonder if she’d traveled too far, if there was still a way home. 352 pgs.

Station 11 by Emily St. John Mandel (Lexile 690)

Kirsten Raymonde will never forget the night Arthur Leander, the famous Hollywood actor, had a heart attack on stage during a production of King Lear. That was the night when a devastating flu pandemic arrived in the city, and within weeks, civilization as we know it came to an end.

Twenty years later, Kirsten moves between the settlements of the altered world with a small troupe of actors and musicians. They call themselves The Traveling Symphony, and they have dedicated themselves to keeping the remnants of art and humanity alive. But when they arrive in St. Deborah by the Water, they encounter a violent prophet who will threaten the tiny band’s existence. And as the story takes off, moving back and forth in time, and vividly depicting life before and after the pandemic, the strange twist of fate that connects them all will be revealed. 336 pgs.



Incoming 12th Grade Honors Summer Reading

All incoming 12th grade students must read Seamus Heaney's Beowulf

Composed toward the end of the first millennium, Beowulf is the elegiac narrative of the adventures of Beowulf, a Scandinavian hero who saves the Danes from the seemingly invincible monster Grendel and, later, from Grendel's mother. He then returns to his own country and dies in old age in a vivid fight against a dragon. The poem is about encountering the monstrous, defeating it, and then having to live on in the exhausted aftermath. In the contours of this story, at once remote and uncannily familiar at the beginning of the twenty-first century, Nobel laureate Seamus Heaney finds a resonance that summons power to the poetry from deep beneath its surface. Drawn to what he has called the "four-squareness of the utterance" in Beowulf and its immense emotional credibility, Heaney gives these epic qualities new and convincing reality for the contemporary reader.


  • Each student is responsible for purchasing his/her books.
  • Read and Annotate the text
  • Books with annotations will be checked and counted as a Learning Activity grade on the first day of class.
  • Complete a Formative (Learning Activity) reading quiz at the beginning of the course.
  • After a classroom discussion on the novel, students will develop a summative (Achievement Assessment) essay discussing the epic's literary devices and meanings (themes).


AP English Literature & Composition Summer Reading

An Advanced Placement English course in Literature and Composition should engage students in the careful reading and critical analysis of imaginative literature. Through the close reading of selected texts, students should deepen their understanding of the ways writers use language to provide both meaning and pleasure for their readers. As they read, students should consider a work’s structure, style, and themes as well as such smaller-scale elements as the use of figurative language, imagery, symbolism, and tone." (The College Board 39)

The following texts are expected to be READ and ANNOTATED by the start of the school year in August. (Annotations will be CHECKED and you will be tested on each work at the BEGINNING of the year! PLEASE READ THE INFORMATION ON THE HOME PAGE, ESPECIALLY THE ANNOTATIONS RUBRIC !) This course is taught with collegiate demands and expectations, so please prepare yourself accordingly. For additional information on course readings, see the attached file below titled "AP English Literature and Composition: Literary Works".

Demian by: Hermann Hesse

First published in 1919 under the pseudonyn Emil Sinclair, Demian follows the life of a troubled German youth as he navigates the duality of a world filled with illusions and spiritual truth. When Sinclair first meets childhood classmate Max Demian, his eyes are opened to the contradictions of his existing Christian knowledge. As Sinclair continues to question his worldview, the two friends are separated and reunited throughout their lives, with each encounter being a vantage for Sinclair to reconcile a world at discord. He ascends on his path to freedom and a realization of self as the friendship evolves in surprising and explosive ways.

Heart of Darkness by: Joseph Conrad

Heart of Darkness (1899) is a short novel by Polish novelist Joseph Conrad, written as a frame narrative, about Charles Marlow's experience as an ivory transporter down the Congo River in Central Africa. The river is "a mighty big river, that you could see on the map, resembling an immense snake uncoiled, with its head in the sea, its body at rest curving afar over a vast country, and its tail lost in the depths of the land". In the course of his travel in central Africa, Marlow becomes obsessed with Mr. Kurtz. The story is a complex exploration of the attitudes people hold on what constitutes a barbarian versus a civilized society and the attitudes on colonialism and racism that were part and parcel of European imperialism. Originally published as a three-part serial story, in Blackwood's Magazine, the novella Heart of Darkness has been variously published and translated into many languages. In 1998, the Modern Library ranked Heart of Darkness as the sixty-seventh of the hundred best novels in English of the twentieth century.

Life of Pi by: Yann Martel

After the sinking of a cargo ship, a solitary lifeboat remains bobbing on the wild blue Pacific. The only survivors from the wreck are a sixteen-year-old boy named Pi, a hyena, a wounded zebra, an orangutan—and a 450-pound royal bengal tiger. The scene is set for one of the most extraordinary and beloved works of fiction in recent years

Sula by:Toni Morrison (This novel may contain material deemed objectionable by some.)

Two girls who grow up to become women. Two friends who become something worse than enemies. In this brilliantly imagined novel, Toni Morrison tells the story of Nel Wright and Sula Peace, who meet as children in the small town of Medallion, Ohio. Their devotion is fierce enough to withstand bullies and the burden of a dreadful secret. It endures even after Nel has grown up to be a pillar of the black community and Sula has become a pariah. But their friendship ends in an unforgivable betrayal—or does it end? Terrifying, comic, ribald and tragic, Sula is a work that overflows with life.


English 12 Learning Support

Please use the link below for information regarding summer reading assignments for English 12 Learning Support requirements.
English 12 Learning Support Summer Reading Requirements