Book Art created by students. Photographed on Day 156 of the Centennial year (Fri., May 10, 2013) by Maddie Binning.

Summer reading cheat-sheet

A reading list to occupy your carefree summer hours

“I travel in time and space, across gender lines, across culture lines,” said English teacher Janet Johnson, describing the reasons behind her love for books. “But I always learn something about myself when reading a good book.”

With school ending, the time crunch has begun for teenagers to finalize their summer reading lists. Yes, I said reading. The hiatus from school is the prime time to retreat to your preferred reading spot and disappear for hours with a book of your choice.

Though finding your next favorite book can be tricky, plenty of people have got your back. Whether the book is hiding in the public library, gathering dust on your friend’s bookshelf or awaiting a new owner at the local bookstore down the block, with just a little help it can be in your hands quickly.

When finding your next read, the experts say to look for a few key things, such as an author you’ve liked in the past.

“If you really enjoyed an author, go back to that author,” said Marcus Mayer of Addendum teen bookstore in Saint Paul. When you find a book you click with, make sure to remember the writer’s name. If you enjoyed their writing style in one novel, you will again.

Many authors also mention a brief, inside-joke riddled thank you in the acknowledgements to a fellow author friend who assisted them in their endeavors. If a writer is praised at the end of your beloved novel, you may often be surprised to find how similar the writing styles are between friends. Some websites, such as, allow you to follow an author, check up on their current project and even see what they’re reading right now.

Minnehaha librarian Bonnie Morris is offering a way to get your hands on the book you’ve chosen. This summer, Morris is allowing any returning students to check out books until they come back for the 2013-14 school year.

With tips for picking stories and ways to get ahold of them for free, students are prepared to build and take on the To-Be-Read pile. But in case issues still doom your page-turning future, here are some ideas for your reading list.



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