The Out of Print Book Madness Finals!

Here are the two finalists for the Out of Print vote for the BEST BOOK OF THE 21st CENTURY
Click HERE for the bracket
The Blind AssassinAuthor: Margaret Atwood (@MargaretAtwood)
Published: 2000

Path to the Finals

  • Rd1: def Let the Great World Spin, 70%-29%
  • Rd2: def 2666, 79%-20%
  • S16: def Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, 68%-31%
  • E8:  def Cloud Atlas, 65%-34%
  • F4:  def The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, 75%-24%

The Girl with the Dragon TattooAuthor: Stieg Larsson
Published: 2005

Path to the Finals

  • Rd1: def The Shipping News, 74%-25%
  • Rd2: def Never Let Me Go, 77%-23%
  • S16: def The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, 63%-36%
  • E8:  def American Gods, 50%-49%
  • F4:  def The Kite Runner, 77%-22%

Book Recommendation – Mrs. Crossman

Cat’s Table  by Michael Ondaatje

Cat’s Table is the story of an 11-year-old’s voyage from Sri Lanka to England in the 1950’s.  On board the ship the Oronsay, Mynah forms friendships with the ragtag group of dubious travelers at his dining table and wastes no time immersing himself in the ship’s many mysteries.  Years later, even as an adult, Mynah is still trying to unravel some of these mysteries and to understand how those 21 days on the Oronsay influenced him.  The narrative shifts back and forth in time and only gradually are seemingly loose strands woven together.  The more I read, the more I was drawn in.

Book Recommendation – Mrs. Crossman

The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach

How to sum this one up?  Certainly it’s a baseball book.  But it’s really about relationships between family, friends and lovers and the complications set off by a single baseball error.  Set on a college campus, it’s a bromance.  And a romance.  And a gay romance too.  It’s also got lots of literary allusions (Melville, Emerson, Dickinson and more!).  It’s fast paced reading that I found engaging and often funny.  It’s a page turner in that I wanted to know what was going to happen next in the lives of the characters:  three team mates, a college president and his daughter.  The Art of Fielding was among The New York Times 10 Best Books of 2011.  Pretty impressive.


The Free Books Keep Coming

Check the English Hallway … the following titles are currently available… FOR FREE!

Lord Byron’s poetry
Dianetics (foundation for Scientology)
Killing Pablo – Non-fiction about the hunt for Pablo Escobar, one of the world’s worst drug kingpins
The Iditorod (non-fiction)
Exploring China (travel book)
Of Mice and Men
Hour of Gold, Hour of Lead – non-fiction book about the Lindburgh baby kidnapping (written by the baby’s mother)
Poet’s Market – A resource for getting your poetry published
College Knowledge – Good for seniors!
A Child Called “It”
John Adams – a biography
Aristotle’s Poetics

Classic Fiction, Young Adult Fiction, non-fiction, poetry, travel, reference guides, pseudo-religion, WE HAVE IT ALL!

For students interested in getting more free books, join Lally’s Literati (check in the Points of Pride tab above, in the header)

Book recommendations – Mr. Holbrook

Recommended by Mr. Holbrook

Chomp by Carl Hiaasen

“Mickey Cray had been out of work ever since a dead iguana fell from a palm tree and hit him on the head.” You’ve just got to love a story that starts this way. Carl Hiaasen’s brand-new YA story Chomp is about a boy who, along with his animal-wrangler father, gets tangled up with a delusional reality TV star in a wild Everglades adventure. I cast my vote for Hiassen as the funniest excellent writer working today (as opposed to the most excellent funny writer working today). If you’ve read his YA novel Hoot, the story of three middle schoolers who take on corrupt Florida land developers, you know what I mean. If you’re already hooked on this prose master and want to try one of his novels for adult readers, check out Tourist Season or Double Whammy.

And for something completely different…

King, Kaiser, Tsar: Three Royal Cousins Who Led The World To War by Catrine Clay

This amazing book might as well be a novel. That George, Willy and Nicky, through the quirks of their intimate family relationships, should bring the civilized world to the brink of the most destructive conflict it had ever experienced and then not be able to stop it is a story nothing short of first-rate fiction. “They saw themselves as royal colleagues, a trade union of kings, standing shoulder to shoulder against the rise of socialism, republicanism, and revolution, and in 1914, on the eve of war, they controlled the destiny of Europe and the fates of millions of their subjects.” Extensively researched and beautifully told, this is a natural read for those studying World War I in history class or for those who simply enjoy a fantastic story that just happens to be true. For example, consider that Willy, the German Kaiser, began his quest to make Germany’s navy superior to England’s (which England could never allow) because when they were lads he lost a sailboat race to his cousin George, the future king of England. You can’t make this stuff up!

Hunger Games Field Trip

Ms. Stuart, Mr. Milton and Mrs. Nichols have put together a field trip to take their freshmen to see The Hunger Games on April 11th. These teachers have introduced this novel to our courses at BHS this year, and they are excited to bring their students to go see the film. Starting next year, the book will be one of our core novels in our Young Adult Fiction elective, which is available to freshmen and sophomores. If you have seen the movie and want to get course credit for reading the book, take Young Adult Fiction!

Class of 2013 to sponsor Bingo Night

From the Class of 2013:

The Class of 2013 would like to cordially invite you to their second annual Bingo Night fundraiser on Tuesday, April 10 in the Cafeteria from 6:30-8:30pm.  We had an incredible turnout last year and hope to have as many attendees this year.  The night promises to be a lot of fun.  Bingo boards cost $5.  There will be a variety of prizes from restaurants and stores.  It is a family friendly event, and we hope to see you there!

Macbeth at Merrimack College

On Friday, March 23rd, over 200 BHS seniors enjoyed Shakespeare & Company’s production of William Shakespeare’s tragedy Macbeth at Merrimack College.  Following the production, a talk-back was held between the actors and the audience (pictured below) during which students had the opportunity to interact with cast members on such topics as condensing a five-act play into 90 minutes, how to enact a realistic sword-fight, and the difficulty of memorizing lines for multiple characters (all actors played at least 2-3 roles in the play).