This list contains a selection of books that are generally considered to be classics in English literature. They have been chosen for the middle and high school reader and are a small number of the many wonderful titles that have entertained and educated us for generations.
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, by Mark Twain
Huckleberry Finn and Jim the runaway slave have many exciting adventures as they float down the Mississippi on a raft.
The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
The adventures of the world’s greatest detective are recounted for us by his faithful friend Watson. See if you can solve the mysteries before Sherlock Holmes.
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, by Mark Twain
Tom and his friends play truant from school and set off for a nearby island to seek adventure. Here they decide to play pirates but their game is interrupted when they witness a murder. It is time to grow up and do the right thing. Twain engages readers with tales of life along the Mississippi.
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, by Lewis Carroll
A little girl falls down a rabbit hole and discovers a world of nonsensical and amusing characters. Follow her on a wondrous journey.
Anne of Green Gables, L. M. Montgomery
Anne, an eleven-year-old orphan, is sent by mistake to live with a lonely, middle-aged brother and sister on a Prince Edward Island farm and proceeds to make an indelible impression on everyone around her.
Around the World in Eighty Days, by Jules Verne
Shocking his colleagues at the exclusive Reform Club, Phileas Fogg wagers his fortune, undertaking an extraordinary and daring enterprise: to circumnavigate the globe in eighty days.
Black Beauty, by Anna Sewell
A horse in nineteenth-century England relates his experiences with both good and bad masters.
The Black Stallion, by Walter Farley
When the steamer Drake is shipwrecked off the Spanish coast, there are only two survivors. One is young Alex Ramsay and the other is the Black Stallion. Stranded on a desert island, boy and stallion develop a deep and special bond. This is their story.
Caddie Woodlawn, by Carol Ryrie Brink
Caddie is a real adventurer. She’d rather hunt than sew and plow than bake. Family and friends don’t understand her at all. Caddie’s brave, and her story is special because it’s based on the life and memories of Carol Ryrie Brink’s grandmother, the real Caddie Woodlawn.
The Call of the Wild, by Jack London
This is the exciting story of Buck a sturdy crossbreed canine who must survive as a sled dog in Alaska’s harsh landscape.
Captains Courageous, by Rudyard Kipling
After being washed overboard from an ocean liner, a spoiled millionaire's son is rescued by New England fishermen who put him to work on their boat.
Charlotte’s Web, by E. B. White
Wilbur, the pig, is desolate when he discovers that he is destined to be Christmas dinner until his spider friend, Charlotte, decides to help him.
The Count of Monte Christo, by Alexander Dumas
Dumas recounts the events in a sailor's preparation for and execution of revenge against the three men responsible for his fifteen years in prison.
Death Be Not Proud, by John Gunther
Johnny Gunther was only seventeen when he died of a brain tumor. During the months of his illness, everyone was impressed by his courage, wit and patience. This book is a father’s memoir of a brave, intelligent and spirited boy.
The Diary of a Young Girl, by Anne Frank
Anne Frank, a 13-year-old Jewish-German girl, left a diary that reveals how she and her family hid from the Nazis and were eventually captured and deported to concentration camps during World War II.
Dracula, by Bram Stoker
Stoker gives us a tale of the notorious vampire Count Dracula, lord of the undead, who travels to England in search of fresh blood.
Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley
A monster assembled by a scientist from parts of dead bodies develops a mind of his own as he learns to loathe himself and hate his creator.
Hiroshima, by John Hersey
On August 6, 1945, Hiroshima was destroyed by the first atom bomb ever dropped on a city. In this book, John Hersey tells what happened on that day. This is a timeless, powerful and compassionate account of a horrifying event.
The Hobbit: Or There and Back Again, by J. R. R. Tolkien
Enjoy the story of Bilbo Baggins, a peace-loving hobbit, who is drawn into a quest, facing evil orcs, savage wolves, giant spiders, and worse as he journeys in Middle-earth and wins a magical ring in a riddling contest.
The Hunchback of Notre Dame, by Victor Hugo
This is the tragic story of Quasimodo, the hunchback bell tender of Paris’s Notre Dame Cathedral, and his struggle to save Esmeralda, a girl falsely accused of a crime she did not commit.
The Island of the Blue Dolphins, by Scott O’Dell
Left alone on a beautiful but isolated island off the coast of California, a young Indian girl spends eighteen years, not only merely surviving through her enormous courage and self-reliance, but also finding a measure of happiness in her solitary life.
Journey to the Center of the Earth, by Jules Verne
In this science fiction tale from a nineteenth-century French novelist, a scientist and his young nephew enter a volcano’s crater and descend deep into the earth, where they encounter strange and exciting challenges.
The Jungle Book, by Rudyard Kipling
Kipling has written the story of Mowgli, the lost boy who is befriended by Baloo the bear, Bagherra the panther, and Grey Brother the wolf.
Kidnapped, by Robert Louis Stevenson
David Balfour, a sixteen-year-old orphan betrayed by his uncle, is kidnapped, sold into slavery and forced to work aboard a sailing ship. After escaping he returns to Scotland and becomes involved in the struggle of the Scottish highlanders against English rule.
The Last of the Mohicans, by James Fenimore Cooper
Hawkeye, the frontier scout, escorts two sisters through hostile Indian country with the aid of the Mohican Chingachgook. This action-packed adventure brings the wilds of the American frontier and the drama of the French and Indian War to life.
The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, by C. S. Lewis
Four adventurers step through a wardrobe door and into the land of Narnia, a land frozen in eternal winter and enslaved by the power of the White Witch.
Martian Chronicles, by Ray Bradbury
Bradbury’s Mars is a place of hope, dreams, and metaphors—of clear crystal pillars and fossil seas where a fine dust settles on the great empty cities of a silently destroyed civilization. It is here that the invaders have come to despoil and commercialize and to grow and learn—rushing from a world with no future toward the promise of tomorrow.
Mysterious Island, by Jules Verne
Five Union prisoners escape the siege of Richmond by hot-air balloon. A raging hurricane sweeps them off course and onto the shores of a deserted island. This is their story.
Old Yeller, by Fred Gipson
Travis and his dog, Old Yeller, meet many hardships in 1860’s Texas. This is the story of a wonderful and enduring friendship
Peter Pan, by J. M. Barrie
This book is the adventures of the three Darling children in Never-Never Land with Peter Pan, the boy who would not grow up.
Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austen
The story of the rocky courtship of proud Mr. Darcy and prejudiced Elizabeth Bennett, and Mrs. Bennett’s attempts to marry off all five of her daughters.
Raisin in the Sun, by Lorraine Hansberry
This is the story of a poor black family struggling to become part of the middle class. Family hardships test the faith of all involved and the result is unexpected and filled with heartbreak.
The Red Badge of Courage, by Stephen Crane
This book recounts the story of a young and confused Union soldier under fire for the first time during the Civil War.
Robinson Crusoe, by Daniel Defoe
Defoe gives us the story of a shipwreck and the sole survivor’s adventures while living on a deserted island.
The Scarlet Letter, by Nathaniel Hawthorne
In this novel of betrayal and trials, Hester Prynne is found guilty of adultery and must wear a scarlet “A” wherever she goes. Her story is filled with the slow process of redemption and eventual love.
The Secret Garden, by Frances Hodgson Burnett
Ten-year-old Mary comes to live in a lonely house on the Yorkshire moors and discovers an invalid cousin and the mysteries of a locked garden.
Swiss Family Robinson, by Johann Wyss
A terrible storm strands a Swiss pastor, his wife and four sons, on a tropical island. The Robinsons are optimistic and inventive, and with what they salvage from the wrecked ship, and the island’s abundant fruits, plants and animals, they soon adapt – each day discovering new dangers, skills and delights.
Tarzan of the Apes, by Edgar Rice Burroughs
Tarzan, an English nobleman raised in the African jungle by apes, rediscovers his human heritage and is torn between the civil and the savage.
The Three Musketeers, by Alexandre Dumas
D’Artagnan joins the Three Musketeers, Athos, Porthos and Aramis, as they fight to protect their King from the wicked Cardinal Richelieu.
The Time Machine, by H. G. Wells
When a scientist travels into the distant future in his time machine, he expects to find progress and superior people. Instead he discovers a world in decay.
Treasure Island, by Robert Louis Stevenson
While going through the possessions of a deceased guest who owed them money, an innkeeper and her son find a treasure map that leads them to a pirate’s fortune.
War of the Worlds, by H. G. Wells
As life on Mars becomes impossible, Martians and their terrifying machines invade the earth.
The Wind in the Willows, by Kenneth Grahame
Enter the world of the great river and meet the marvelous riverbank animals: the poetic Rat, his friend Mole, and the boastful Toad, as they voyage down the river and into the Wild Wood to great adventures.
The Witch of Blackbird Pond, by Elizabeth George Speare
This is the story of a high-spirited young girl whose rebellion against bigotry and her surroundings culminates in a terrifying witch hunt and breath-taking trial.
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, by L. Frank Baum
After a cyclone transports her to the Land of Oz, Dorothy must seek out the great wizard in order to return to Kansas. Read about her many adventures.