Extra credit points can be added to any assignment. These novels are college level and may contain adult subject matter. Do your research before you read one of these books.

Novels

Finnegan's Wake by James Joyce--10 points to a student who reads the first page of this novel and can write down what is happening on that page.

The Road by Cormac McCarthy--15 points to any student who writes an essay describing the ways in which this novel is hopeful about humanity.

In Cold Blood by Truman Capote--25 Points One of the most famous true crime books ever written. Write an essay about how unique Capote's style of writing is for a true story.

Misery by Stephen King--15 Points A haunting novel about a writer who is taken hostage by his biggest fan. Something similar happened to Stephen King after the writing of this book. Write about the themes of isolation and rage in this book.

All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque--20 Points A novel about the German front of World War One. Write about how this depiction of the war may differ from more modern depictions of the war.

The Spectacular Now by Tim Tharp--10 Points Write about how the narrator of this book is a textbook case of Narcissistic Personality Disorder

Sphere by Michael Crichton--15 Points Write about how the Sphere is the most developed character in the novel.

The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien--20 Points Write about the ways in which this novel confronts the idea of truth, and how we perceive truth in the context of storytelling.

Time's Arrow by Martin Amis--20 Points Write about how the structure of the novel changes your perspective on the events within it. Use specific examples.

Love Medicine by Louise Erdrich--25 Points Write about how this novel tells the story of America through the lens of this family.

East of Eden by John Steinbeck--50 Points Read this novel and write an essay comparing each major section with its Biblical allegory. Include quotations and other evidence from both texts.

Revolutionary Road by Richard Yates--25 Points Read this novel and explain how Richard Yates uses the narrator to show bias toward each half of the relationship at a time. Use quotations to support your answer.

Disgrace by J.M. Coetzee--25 Points Read this novel and write how Lurie's constant humiliation and degradation is an earned punishment for his crimes. Use quotations and examples from the text to support your answer.

The Corrections by Jonathan Franzen--30 Points Read this novel and write down the ways in which the three adult children resemble their parents. Use quotations and evidence from the text to support your answer.

The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner--50 Points Write an essay discussing the ways in which each section of the novel represents a different fault of Southern culture in early twentieth century America in regards to Reconstruction after the Civil War. Use quotations and evidence from the text to support your answer.

Graphic Novels

City of Glass by Paul Auster--15 Points Write an essay describing what this novel is actually about. What are the themes, and what do they mean?

Ghost Stories by Jeff Lemiere--20 Points Read this graphic novel and write an essay about how the relationship between the brothers relates to the sport of Hockey. Use specific quotations and examples from the text.

Poems

"The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" by T.S. Eliot--15 points to any student who writes an essay on what this poem is about.

"Lighthead's Guide to the Galaxy" by Terrence Hayes--10 points to a student who writes an essay on what this poem's theme may be.

Music (Albums)

In the Aeroplane Over the Sea by Neutral Milk Hotel--20 points for any student who will listen to this entire album and write an essay on its themes of Anne Frank's diary, WWII, and Jeff Mangum(the singer's) personal life.

I Had a Dream That You Were Mine by Hamilton Leithauser & Rostam Batmanglij--15 points for a student who can explain why each song is a different genre of music on this album. (Hint: listen to the lyrics)

The Rising by Bruce Springsteen--15 points for any student who listens to this entire album and writes an essay on how Springsteen captures the feelings Americans had after 9/11

Illinois by Sufjan Stevens--15 points to any student who listens to this album and writes an essay describing how AT LEAST three of the songs relate to the themes of loss, abandonment, freedom, and redemption.

Have One on Me by Joanna Newsom--My favorite album! 20 points for any student who listens to this album in its entirety and writes an essay on what the themes are that run through it.

Music (Songs)

"Will it Grow" by Jakob Dylan--5 points to any student who writes about the themes of this song, and how it uses juxtaposition to make its points.

"Distant Sky" by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds--5 points to any student who writes how this song may have been written as a response to Cave's son's young death.

"The Traitor" by Leonard Cohen [Martha Wainwright's version is best...]--5 points to any student who listens to this song and writes about the theme.

"Heaven" by The Talking Heads--5 points to any student who writes about how this song is a direct reference to the singer, David Byrne's, autism.

"Dead Leaves and the Dirty Ground" by The White Stripes--5 points for any student who writes at least one (5-7 sentences) paragraph on the themes of this song.