The Highlander

How (AP) Lit were this year’s books?

Ranking of the books chosen for this years AP Literature class

Anjali Kumar, Reporter

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A girl who has a sexual awakening under a pear tree grows up and fights societal constructs in her 3rd marriage.


From a man who turns into a dung beetle over night, to a young English girl who lies to the police and falsely incarcerates an innocent man, these are my ranks of books chosen for this years AP Literature students.

  1. Atonement, by Ian McEwan- I chose Atonement as my number one choice because the plot was different from the other books. The main character, Briony, was the one who deceived everyone else. She didn’t have an existential crisis, a sexual or social awakening, nor did she go crazy. Briony just wanted to atone for the mistakes she made as a kid.
  2. Their Eyes Were Watching God, by Zora Neale Hurston- This book was honestly amazing-aside from the fact that I could barely understand what was being said half the time. The mix of educated and illiterate language captured what it must have been like for African Americans in southern America. Janie, the protagonist, has her life drawn out in three very distinct stages by Hurston. Hurston addressees race, gender, and social divisions in one underrated superb book.
  3. A Dolls’s House, by Henrik Ibsen- The main character, Nora, does a complete 180 character change in this short play. She was treated as an object by her husband, as many women were during this time period, thus resulting in her leaving her family to “find herself”. I would’ve ranked this lower based solely on the face that Nora left her kids behind with a not-so-great husband, but I ended up being in favor of her wanting to branch out and find what she wanted to do-especially considering the circumstances she was put in.
  4. Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austen- The Bennett family is an upper class English family during the 19th century. As always, the women are trying to find a rich man to marry, while also trying to find love at the same time. Normally these things don’t go hand-in-hand, but somehow 19th century romance novels always make it happen. I wasn’t a huge fan of this book because it was pretty slow and repetitive in the beginning. Also because a majority of the first part of the book continuously took place at a dance.
  5. The Stranger, by Albert Camus- This book was ridiculous and reminded me of my brother, which ended up making it more uncomfortable. I didn’t understand-and still don’t- how a man could be so indifferent towards his mothers funeral, kill a man a few days later, and then not care that he was sentenced to death. I will never understand the French Algerian mind.
  6. The Metamorphosis, by Franz Kafka- This story is about a man who metaphorically, or physically (who knows), turns into a bug. Gregor, the main character, wakes up as a bug, pays no mind, and goes back to sleep. I think the bug was chosen to represent how the working class is treated. He’s so disgusted with himself that he hides away from his family in his room. Eventually Gregors sister brings him food while he hides away and listens to his family’s conversations about their financial problems.
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