Over the next few months, we will be revealing the titles that will become our additional summer reading options for the summer of 2016. Students will select one title from a list of six novels per grade (In the subject line of the post, “Freshmen” means that the book will be read by incoming freshmen, not existing ones, etc.).
The Beach by Alex Garland
In this novel, Richard is a young Brit who has traveled to Thailand in an attempt to find something new. When he gets there, though, he’s disappointed in how many other westerners are there seeking the same sort of adventure. That’s when he finds out about The Beach – a secluded island that has not yet been tainted by commercialism. What follows is Richard’s efforts to find this island and become a part of the ragtag group of people who have turned it into a secret utopia. But what that utopia really is, and what it demands of Richard, quickly changes.
This book takes a harsh look at globalization, and how the desire to be unique sometimes becomes an unattainable and foolish quest. The pacing is quick, and the writing is sharp. If you liked Lord of the Flies or LOST, you’ll love The Beach.