MSS News Detail


The following is information about summer reading requirements at LZHS.

Dear LZHS Students and Parents/Guardians:

As an English Department, we firmly believe that reading is the foundation of learning.  To be successful in academics and in life, it is critical to have strong reading skills.  Therefore, the English Department would like to share opportunities for all students to enjoy reading over the summer break while also communicating the summer reading expectations for students enrolled in honors and AP level courses for the upcoming school year.


We invite all students to read at least one book of their choosing during summer break.  There are several exciting ways to participate in reading over the summer.

·        Find a book to read from the Lincoln Award: Illinois Teen Readers’ Choice list for 2020.  These texts have been selected by high school librarians, teachers, public librarians, and students as the best in young adult fiction and non-fiction for the year.  You can find the list of titles here.

·        Participate in the ELA Library summer reading program through Beanstack which will start on July 1st.  Contact ELA Library for more information.


When students choose to enroll in an honors or AP course, it is with the knowledge that the course will be taught at an advanced or accelerated pace.  Therefore, our intent in assigning summer reading is to present a challenging read that allows students to practice effective reading and analysis over the summer in order to prepare for the rigor of assignments during the school year.  For students enrolled in these courses, the summer reading assignment also introduces the expected level of reading for the class and some of the skills associated with the classwork.

If you are enrolled in an honors or AP level English course for the upcoming school year, please check the list below for the course and complete the reading before the start of school. You can expect your teacher to assign work covering the reading the first week of school.  Please check the Lake Zurich High School homepage for summer reading materials and specific assignments.  They will be available by June 1st, 2020.

We recommend that students have access to a book that they can annotate; during the first few weeks of school, students will be engaged in activities where they will need to interact with the summer reading text.  Therefore, it benefits students to have their individual, annotated copies.   All of the texts are available on Amazon to purchase a paperback copy or digital copy for Kindle; several of the texts are available for free in digital form through Amazon as well.  Several of the texts can be found through the LZHS digital library or are available as an eBook or audiobook through Hoopla.  You may also buy the books which are available at local bookstores.  In addition, there will be a limited quantity of each title available at the local public library.

We appreciate your support as we continue our efforts in developing continuous learners with strong reading skills.


Honors English I: Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck



Honors English II: Ordinary People by Judith Guest

AP Seminar: Information about the readings will be emailed home by July 1st.



Honors English III: Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury  

AP English III: Choose one of the memoirs listed below.

Into Thin Air, Jon Krakauer

An American Childhood, Annie Dillard

The Year of Magical Thinking, Joan Didion



Honors English IV: Read and annotate “Country of the Blind” by HG Wells; the text, along with annotation instructions, will be available on the high school website in early June.   

AP English IV:

Read and annotate How to Read Literature Like A Professor by Thomas Foster.

Also, read at least two of the following novels. 


Bronte, Jane Eyre

Chopin, The Awakening

Conrad, Heart of Darkness

Dickens, Great Expectations

Dostoevski, Crime and Punishment

Ellison, Invisible Man

Euripides, Medea

Faulkner, As I Lay Dying

Faulkner, Sound and the Fury

Faulkner, Absalom!  Absalom!

Gardner, Grendel

Heller, Catch-22

James, Turn of the Screw



Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

Kesey, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest

Kingsolver, The Poisonwood Bible

McCarthy, All the Pretty Horses

McCarthy, The Road

Momaday, House Made of Dawn

Morisson, Beloved

Salinger, Catcher in the Rye

Shakespeare, King Lear

Shakespeare, As You Like It

Thompson, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas

Wharton, The House of Mirth

Williams, Streetcar Named Desire

Wilson, Fences



AP Research:  Information about the readings will be emailed home in early July.



Advanced Journalism: Information about the assignment will be emailed home and shared on students’ Google Drive.

If you have a question about which course your son/daughter is enrolled in for the upcoming year, please contact his/her counselor in the Student Services Office.

If you have any questions about the summer reading assignments, please contact the English Department Chairperson, Dr. Lauren Katzman, at


Wishing you a pleasant and productive summer,


Lake Zurich High School English Department Faculty