Senior British Literature Reading List (download)

Dear Students of 12th grade British Literature,

Happy summer! This letter is to inform you of the summer reading list and assignments for your English class. Please read and discuss it with your parents. It would be best to have a reading schedule to keep you accountable for your summer reading.

Here is your reading list:

  • Pride & Prejudice, Jane Austen
  • Rebecca, Daphne du Maurier
  • A Tale of Two Cities, Charles Dickens
  • Ivanhoe, Sir Walter Scott
  • Pygmalion, George Bernard Shaw
  • The Scarlet Pimpernel, Baroness Orczy
  • The Moonstone, Wilkie Collins
  • Honors: The Mayor of Casterbridge, Thomas Hardy

You must choose two books from the list to read over the summer. You will do a book report paper on one book and a project on the other. In addition, honors students MUST read the honors book, for a total of three books. There will be a quiz for honors students only on the first day of class—no paper or project is due for the honors book.

Your book report is due Wednesday, August 21st. The following information MUST be included. Each section could be written as one or two paragraphs. Setting and time period may be combined in the same paragraph.

  • Setting – Where does the story take place? Is it a real place or imaginary? If the author does not state exactly where the story is set, what can you tell about it from the way it is described?
  • Time period – Is the story set in the past, present, or future? How does the time period affect the story? Could it have taken place in a different era and retained the same impact?
  • Main characters – Who is the story mostly about? Give a brief description of each.
  • Plot – What happens to the main characters? Be careful not to report every single thing that happens. Instead, explain the situation of the main characters as the story begins, and include the basic plot element. Often, this will be the conflict of the story. Are the main characters trying to overcome something, achieve something, etc.? Next, describe a few more of the important things that happen to the main characters on the journey to the goal. Finally, describe how the conflict is resolved.
  • Your opinion – Discuss the impression the book made upon you. Ask yourself what the author was trying to achieve and if he/she achieved it, in your opinion. What part did faith in God play in the book (even if He wasn’t mentioned)? Discuss the larger ideas the story conveys. Although these books are not Christian fiction, what scriptural principles are illustrated? How did you feel about the author’s style of writing, point of view, etc.? Choose something that caught your attention, negatively or positively, and give your personal response.

Your project is due Wednesday, September 11th. You must complete some type of visual and oral presentation to represent the book. You may choose to decorate a shoe box, create a poster, construct a power point presentation, a diorama or even a puppet show – be creative!

If you have any questions regarding the book list, assignments, or specifications for your project, please do not hesitate to contact me. I’m available by email at I look forward to seeing what you produce! Have a great summer.

Enjoy Reading!

Mrs. Bolick
British Literature Teacher