The Ripley Academy

Year 11 Reading List

The Time Machine – HG Wells
A timeless classic of science fiction and adventure. A short novel that explores man’s impact on the world and the pointlessness of war.

Midnight’s Children – S Rushdie
This is a historical chronicle of modern India centring on the inextricably linked fates of two children who were born within the first hour of independence from Great Britain.

The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
A highly anticipated and competitive local kite championship attracts Amir and Hassan, who are keen to win. Set in Afghanistan in 1975, this novel hinges on one event afterwards which will change Hassan’s life forever, and one which years later he seeks to put right.

The Last Lecture – Randy Pausch
Suffering from terminal cancer, Professor Randy Pausch gave one final lecture. In it, he described, how to dream, how to overcome obstacles and how to live those dreams.

A Short History of Nearly Everything – Bill Bryson
A masterful and accessible synthesis of mankind written with zip and flair. Funny and yet thought-provoking, Bill Bryson’s book is great for sparking interest in areas such as Physics, History and Geography which school teaching might have dampened.

Dune – Frank Herbert
A very readable and gripping science fiction trilogy with memorable characters. It’s like Lord of the Rings meets Games of Thrones set on a remote desert planet system.
The Name of the Rose – Umberto Eco A murder mystery set in a 14th-century Italian monastery but, in essence, a questioning of “truth” from theological, philosophical, scholarly, and historical perspectives.

The Colour Purple – Alice Walker
This novel documents the traumas and gradual triumph of Celie, an African American teenager raised in rural isolation in Georgia, as she comes to resist the paralyzing self-concept forced on her by others. Celie narrates her life through painfully honest letters to God.

Birdsong – Sebastian Faulks
Stephen moves to live with a family in northern France and soon falls in love. But as tensions rise in the build-up to the first world war, so do tensions in his relationship. Although he escapes fighting for his country, he does not realise what awaits him.

Felix Ever After - Kacen Callender
With complex themes of transphobia, racism, destructive relationships and self-discovery, this modern coming of age novel is sharply framed and beautifully written, but it’s also one that may well become a period benchmark for future generations.

Award Winners and Shortlisted books
Normal People – Sally Rooney
Girl, Woman, Other – Bernadine Evaristo
The Poet X – Elizabeth Acevedo
The Long Shot - Kennedy Ryan
The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood
When Mr Dog Bites – Brian Conaghan
Orangeboy – Patrice Lawrence

The British Library
Really good, challenging content for English Literature. Search for ‘Macbeth’ and ‘A Christmas Carol’ as a starting point.
BBC Bitesize
Lots here to consolidate knowledge of English Language and Literature.
Sparknotes / Cliffnotes
Really useful for chapter/scene reviews, annotations, quick quizzes etc.aiting content