Book Recommendation – Irina Grigoryeva (Class of 2014)

Our final student-written book recommendation of the calendar year comes from senior Irina Grigoryeva, whose work you may have read on The Devils’ Playlist. We’ll continue to run student recommendations into 2014, so if you’d like to add your own, please email it to Mr. Lally.

Flowers for Algernon
by Daniel Keyes

Flowers-for-Algernon-_book_coverAlthough defined as a science fiction novel, Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes is more of a fictional memoir, slightly cushioned with a hypothetical experiment. Written as a series of diary entries, the book explores the life of Charlie Gordon, a man who has chosen to undergo treatment to increase his intelligence. Because of his simple personality and loving outlook on life, you will find yourself loving and caring for Charlie, eager to defend him against any of the other characters. It is a novel perfect for readers who enjoy the scientific experimentation aspect of science fiction, minus the time-travel and alien invasion. Although understood by the lovers of surprise, during your venture into the cracking spine of Flowers for Algernon, I strongly urge you not to even as place a glance further than you have read. The book’s progression is a special tearjerker and something truly worthy of experience.

Book Recommendation – Jill Daniels (Class of 2014)

Our first student recommendation for non-fiction comes from senior Jill Daniels – Enjoy!

Stiff – The Curious Life of Human Cadavers
by Mary Roach

Stiff-262x350A few of you might remember reading Stiff in middle school with Mrs. Rogers.  And I bet you can agree that it’s quite a unique book.  Author Mary Roach’s repetoire includes Spook, and her latest work, Gulp.  Stiff delivers that same punch of humourous, intellectually-stimulating weirdness.  It chronicles Roach’s journeys across the world to unveil what happens to the deceased.  She also touches upon Britain’s history of bodysnatching, medical usage of body parts, and crash test subjects.  I highly recommend sticking it out until the chapter discussing alternative forms of burial.

Note: Contains some mature content/language.

Book Recommendation – Juliana Casella (Class of 2016)

Here’s the latest student recommendation. BHS students, if you’d like to spread the word about a book that YOU really like, send your recommendation to Mr Lally. Now, on to Juliana’s review!

The Guardian
by Nicholas Sparks

the guardianI would like to recommend The Guardian by Nicholas Sparks. I thoroughly enjoyed this book for many reasons. It was a romance book but was full of suspense at the same time.  I would reccomend this book to people ages 16-50 because it is mature in the sense that some sad things occur. Nicholas sparks does an amazing job pulling you in to this novel so when you start reading you won’t be able to stop.

Fifteen 21st Century Books Destined to Become Classics

With the end of the year comes a slew of “Best Of” lists, hailing the best literature of the past 12 months. We posted one already. But here, instead, we offer a retrospective look at the 21st Century in literature, courtesy of

This list does a good job of handling both the popular and the literary bests from the past 13 years. If you’d like their article, and their arguments behind their list, CLICK HERE.

Otherwise, here is it:

15) Freedom by Jonathan Franzen
14) The Fault in Our Stars by John Green (Read Green’s Paper Towns in our Young Adult elective)
13) We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver
12) A Storm of Swords by G.R.R. Martin (This is the book that turn dingo Game of Thrones)
11) The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini (Currently a grade 10 option at BHS)
10) The Help by Kathryn Stockett
9) The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón
8) The Amazing Adventures of Cavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon
7) American Gods by Neil Gaiman
6) Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J. K. Rowling
5) The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
4) Bel Canto by Ann Patchett
3) The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
2) The Road by Cormac McCarthy

And the top book of the 21st century…

1) Life of Pi by Yann Martel (also currently a 10th grade option at BHS)

AP Lit classes travel to MFA for Photo Exhibit

On Tuesday, Mrs. Janovitz’s AP Literature classes and Ms. Djordjevic’s photography students had the pleasure of viewing the She Who Tells a Story exhibit at Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts. The exhibit, which includes photographs from 12 female artists from Iran and the Arab world, provides viewers with a glimpse into the realities of the region. In their exploration of the exhibit, the students focused on parallel themes that were evident in both the photographs and the literature covered in class. Viewing the images through varied critical frames, students discussed the concept of identity in relation to gender, war, culture, place, perception, boundary, and inspiration. The exhibit does an amazing job of simultaneously creating a sense of shared experience across cultures and highlighting the richness in the often-misunderstood cultures reflected in the photographs. It was a great day!


5th Annual Idle Hands Holiday Extravaganza

The 5th annual Idle Hands Holiday Extravaganza is fast approaching.
On December 20, we will once again be improvising in the BHS auditorium during blocks 4, 5, 6, and 7 (with a break during 2nd lunch). For those folks not inside the hallowed halls of BHS, that is from 10 am – 2 pm, with a break from 12 noon to 12:30 pm.
For anyone new to BHS, (and for those who need a reminder): Idle Hands is BHS’s improv troupe. We perform/play most Mondays and Fridays right after school in the Lower Library. Students and staff are always welcome to come join in or watch. For the past five years, ever since the group’s inception, we’ve performed improv (which are unscripted performances, like what you’d see on “Whose Line Is It Anyway?”) on the last day before winter break. We also welcome back any Idle Hands alumni for the show, which has been well-attended in the past.
To attend, teachers simply bring their class(es) down to the Auditorium during blocks 4, 5, 6, or 7. We’ll be starting at the beginning of each block, but if your class wants to attend for only a portion of the period, that is fine, too. The only caveat to that is that we have reached capacity during some periods in past years, so just be aware that space might be limited.
Also, we do not use microphones, so please sit in the seats up front first, and then fill in towards the back of the room.
We hope to see a big crowd there! We promise to make you laugh at least once.

Book Recommendation – Yitzhak Maurer (Class of 2014)

Welcome to the Monkey House
by Kurt Vonnegut

welcome_to_the_monkey_house.largeAs opposed to Vonnegut’s longer works, which are still amazing,Welcome to the Monkey House is a collection of his short stories.  The upside of having a collection of his short stories is you get more of his brilliant story ideas as well as his unique writing style.  The stories range in terms of weirdness, but each of them have an off-the-beaten-path science fiction feel to some level.  Playfully dark, This collection is perfect for anyone looking for a quick sadistic chuckle.

Torn between your loves of Jane Austen and MMORPG? Worry no longer

It is a truth universally acknowledged that video gamers love Jane Austen novels. The Kickstarter campaign that was aiming to raise enough money to create an online multi-player video game in which players inhabit lives of Jane Austen’s Georgian England and attend fancy balls and whisper saucy gossip about the town’s eligible bachelors … well, they’ve reached their goal, and sometime soon, YOU can be Mr. Darcy or Catherine Moreland or Elinor Dashwood, etc. It’s sort of like The Sims, but it would more likely be called Society and Dissimulation. See the video below for a sneak preview of what it will be like when massive multiplayer online role playing games and Jane Austen at last converge.