Elkton HS 9th Grade Summer Reading List

The Andromeda strain

Michael Crichton.

Action/Adventure, Science Fiction, Science/Technology

The United States government is given a warning by the pre-eminent biophysicists in the country: current sterilization procedures applied to returning space probes may be inadequate to guarantee uncontaminated re-entry to the atmosphere. Two years later, seventeen satellites are sent into the outer fringes of space to "collect organisms and dust for study." One of them falls to earth, landing in a desolate area of Arizona. Twelve miles from the l...


The call of the wild ; and, White Fang

Jack London ; with an introduction by John Seelye.

Action/Adventure

The biting cold and the aching silence of the far North become an unforgettable backdrop for Jack London's vivid, rousing, superbly realistic wilderness adventure stories featuring the author's unique knowledge of the Yukon and the behavior of humans and animals facing nature at its cruelest.


December stillness

Mary Downing Hahn.

Historical Fiction

Fourteen-year-old Kelly tries to befriend Mr. Weems, a disturbed, homeless Vietnam War veteran who spends his days in her suburban library, though the man makes it clear he wants to be left alone.


The hot zone

Richard Preston.

Nonfiction

A highly infectious, deadly virus from the central African rain forest suddenly appears in the suburbs of Washington, D.C. There is no cure. In a few days 90 percent of its victims are dead. A secret military SWAT team of soldiers and scientists is mobilized to stop the outbreak of this exotic "hot" virus.The Hot Zone tells this dramatic story, giving a hair-raising account of the appearance of rare and lethal viruses and their "crashes" into the...


The Martian chronicles

Ray Bradbury.

Science Fiction

Leaving behind a world on the brink of destruction, man came to the Red planet and found the Martians waiting, dreamlike. Seeking the promise of a new beginning, man brought with him his oldest fears and his deepest desires. Man conquered Mars—and in that instant, Mars conquered him. The strange new world with its ancient, dying race and vast, red-gold deserts cast a spell on him, settled into his dreams, and changed him forever. Here are t...


October sky : a memoir

Homer H. Hickam, Jr.

Biography, History, Science/Technology

The true story, originally published as Rocket Boys, that inspired the Universal Pictures film. It was 1957, the year Sputnik raced across the Appalachian sky, and the small town of Coalwood, West Virginia, was slowly dying. Faced with an uncertain future, Homer Hickam nurtured a dream: to send rockets into outer space. The introspective son of the mine’s superintendent and a mother determined to get him out of Coalwood forever, Homer fel...


Animal dreams : a novel

by Barbara Kingsolver.

Romance, Literary Fiction

"Animals dream about the things they do in the day time just like people do. If you want sweet dreams, you've got to live a sweet life." So says Loyd Peregrina, a handsome Apache trainman and latter-day philosopher. But when Codi Noline returns to her hometown, Loyd's advice is painfully out of her reach. Dreamless and at the end of her rope, Codi comes back to Grace, Arizona to confront her past and face her ailing, distant father. What the find...


Having our say : the Delany sisters' first 100 years

Sarah and A. Elizabeth Delany with Amy Hill Hearth

Nonfiction, History, African American

An intimate portrait of a multiracial family, taking us through the glory days of Harlem to the first days of integration in the New York City suburbs. Over six months on the New York Times bestseller list.


Ironman

Chris Crutcher.

Now with a stunning new look, this award-winning novel is the story of a high school triathlete who is close to being expelled because of his explosive temper. Assigned to an anger management class, he addresses his difficult relationship with his father.


The pigman

Paul Zindel.

Zindel's groundbreaking, bestselling tour de force is the unforgettable tale of two disillusioned high school students who have their faith in humanity restored by lonely, eccentric Mr. Pignati, whom they dub the Pigman. Includes a Q&A with Zindel's real-life Pigman.


Red scarf girl : a memoir of the Cultural Revolution

Ji-li Jiang ; foreword by David Henry Hwang.

Biography, History, Nonfiction

Ji-li Jiang was twelve years old in 1966, the year that Chairman Mao launched the Cultural Revolution in China. An outstanding student and much-admired leader of her class, Ji-li seemed poised for a shining future. But all that changed with the advent of the Cultural Revolution, when intelligence became a crime and a wealthy family background invited persecution'or worse. For the next three years Ji-li and her family were humilated and reviled by...


The Shakespeare stealer

Gary Blackwood.

Historical Fiction, Action/Adventure

High jinks and high adventure fill every page of this exciting, panoramic novel set in Shakespeare's time. Widge, a young orphan indentured to a cold, unscrupulous master, has a special talent--the ability to write a secret shorthand. The master is determined to acquire a script of "Hamlet" at any cost, so it becomes Widge's duty to transcribe it--or else!


Through a window my 30 years with the Chimpanzees of Gombe

Jane Goodall.

Nonfiction

Everything that Goodall writes becomes, by virtue of scientific import, an instant classic. In her book In the shadow of man she wrote of her first ten years at Gombe, on the shores of Lake Tanganyika, where the principal residents (other than herself) are chimpanzees. In this equally remarkable volume she brings the story up to the present, further completing her portrait of this animal community.


A tree grows in Brooklyn

Betty Smith ; with a foreward by Anna Quindlen.

Historical Fiction, Literary Fiction

The American classic about a young girl's coming-of-age at the turn of the century. This P.S. edition features an extra 16 pages of insights into the book, including author interviews, recommended reading, and more.


The Hobbit, or, There and back again

by J.R.R. Tolkien.

Science Fiction, Literary Fiction, Fantasy, Action/Adventure

THE GREATEST FANTASY EPIC OF OUR TIME Bilbo Baggins was a hobbit who wanted to be left alone in quiet comfort. But the wizard Gandalf came along with a band of homeless dwarves. Soon Bilbo was drawn into their quest, facing evil orcs, savage wolves, giant spiders, and worse unknown dangers. Finally, it was Bilbo–alone and unaided–who had to confront the great dragon Smaug, the terror of an entire countryside . . . This stirring adve...