||Sign up for
more great advice on:
Here are some more excellent recommendations for summer reading:
With gas prices at an all time high, this summer is a great time to learn about different cultures through books.
An added bonus is that many colleges will ask you on the application or during the interview what you've read,
so make it something you really enjoyed and can talk about. Reading is also a great way to improve SAT scores.
Here are a few great reads by country:
Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky
If you liked the movie Matchpoint by Woody Allen, you'll love C&P.
I read it in college with initial dread, but once I started reading it, I was hooked.
A lot has been written about Germany and how the Holocaust impacted the Jews and other victims,
but what was Germany like for ordinary Germans during and after the Holocaust?
The following three books give interesting insight into Germany during and after World War II
from the German perspective.
The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak
Imagine "Death" as a person, narrating a story.
That's what Zusak does in this extraordinary tale of how books feed life
to a German girl and her family and friends during WWII.
The first 75 pages is a little weird because "Death" narrates the story,
but once you get past the idea, it's a wonderful read.
Stones from the River by Ursula Hegi
This book chronicles the life of Trudi Montag, a Zwerge or dwarf born between WWI and WWII.
As a dwarf, she knows what it means to be different and as the Nazi regime gains power
and she sees the negative impact it has on her small German town,
she must make difficult decisions about how to lead her life.
For some, it may start off slowly, but keep reading because it is a magnificent story
that will make you question your own actions in difficult times.
The Reader by Bernard Schlink
Set in post-WWII Germany, this story gives yet another perspective.
The prose is straight forward and reads like a memoir.
It describes how a 15-year-old boy's encounter with an older woman influences his life in numerous ways.
I don't want to give too much of the story away, but it's a relatively short book and a thought-provoking read.
I must warn that if it was a movie, it would be rated R.
The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahari
A great book that traces the coming of age of an Indian boy.
Great writing and an excellent portrayal of the culture. It was made into a movie last spring.
The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
Amazingly written and told coming-of-age story about an Afghanistani boy set against the politics of Afghanistan.
His most recent book, A Thousand Splendid Suns, describes the culture from a girl's perspective.
Both books bring you into the culture and make you realize how different our lives are in the United States.
Snow Flower and the Secret Fan by Lisa See and The Good Earth by Pearl S. Buck
The first chronicles two women's friendship in nineteenth-century China
from their childhood days of footbinding to their later arranged marriages.
This is a wonderful story about friendship and quite literally,
the ties that bind and how they can be broken.
The second book, The Good Earth, was first published in 1931 and won a Pulitzer Prize.
It tells the story of an honest, hard-working farmer during the early part of the twentieth century.
The historical context adds to the richness of both of these stories.
Copyright 2008 © College Bound Mentor. All Rights Reserved
Are you going to the beach this summer? Take along a book!
Not just the one required by your English teacher, but one you really want to read on your own.
I encourage the students with whom I work to read for pleasure and enjoyment.
A good book offers a chance to imagine, to learn, and to escape into the world of literature.
There is also a correlation between leisure reading habits and academic achievement.
Reading improves your comprehension and vocabulary and may contribute to a better SAT score.
Let me suggest a few books which appeal to a variety of interests and which I hope you might enjoy:
Water for Elephants, Sara Gruen:
A circus in the 1930s is saved by an elephant and a young veterinarian.
The Color of Water, James McBride:
A well written and different childhood memoir.
Friday Night Lights: A Town, A Team and a Dream, H.G. Bissinger:
the culture of high school football as it is lived in Odessa, Texas.
Days of Grace, Arthur Ashe:
The memoir of Arthur Ashe, tennis champion,
social activist and Aids victim, who went from the segregated south to the Davis Cup.
The Princess Bride, William Goldman:
This comical fantasy addresses what happens when the most beautiful girl in the world marries the handsomest prince.
Girl with a Pearl Earring, Tracey Chevalier:
A sixteen year old is hired as a maid in the home of famous painter Johannes Vermeer in 17th century Holland.
There are so many good books from which to choose.
Go to the library, a bookstore or borrow a book from a friend.
Reading is rewarding and great preparation for college. Enjoy!
The views expressed herein are those of their authors alone, and do not necessarily represent the views of Hundreds of Heads or of IECA.
TO NARROW MY CHOICES DOWN,
I visited the schools that offered the specific program I was looking for (in my case, journalism).
And I weighed the pluses and minuses of my other options,
such as whether the college was liberal or conservative,
whether or not the school had an honors program,
whether or not it offered scholarships, and its size.
-- JASON TORREANO
STATE UNIVERSITY OF NEW YORK, BROCKPORT
BE SELECTIVE DURING THE APPLICATION PROCESS.
My parents told me to do as much as I could do to narrow my choices so I could focus attention on fewer schools.
They said that when you get in, you'll know it's where you want to go.
Try to avoid getting into 20 schools. Other people applying to college might get screwed
if you apply to a school you don't even want to go to and you get accepted and take their place.
-- BRIAN ROSEN
If you haven't gotten enough yet, point your browser to Collegeboard.com
If you haven't already, make a file for each college that interests you.
Include brochures, maps, any important names and contact numbers, deadlines for admission, and financial aid forms.
To make sure you continue to receive
Up! Get Into College e-mails in your inbox (and that
they aren't sent to junk folders), please add
firstname.lastname@example.org to your address