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Hi group,

Sorry for the misfire earlier with my attempt to post
a HIT on the above subject. I didn't realize LM_NET
would not support an attachment.

Below is my original inquiry for 9th grade read a loud
suggestions followed by compiled responses. Thanks

Brett Daggs
School Library Media Specialist
Oneida High School
Oneida, NY 13412

9th-10th Grade Read-A-Loud Suggestions

(My inquiry on LM_NET listserv)

Two English teachers at our high school are just
finishing up read-a-louds of the realistic fiction
novel "Speak" (Laurie Halse Anderson) and want to
begin another for their 9th grade classes. They wish
to find something with a male protagonist this time
around. Something too that is written at the same
maturity level as Speak though not necessarily the
same issue(s). Preferably realistic but not too
graphic either. I've identified The Body of
Christopher Creed by Carol Plum-Ucci as a possibility
and I'm combing lists and materials for others but
would welcome suggestions.

Also, I have a request for a humorous read-a-loud for
9th graders. The teacher and I have spoken of Fat Kid
Rules the World by K.L. Going but I believe too much
of the language would have to be edited for a
read-a-loud. Looking for suggestions here too.

Many thanks!

Brett Daggs
School Library Media Specialist
Oneida High School

(Responses below complied from LM_NET listserv)

"Queen of Second Place", by Laura Peyton Roberts is
humorous. I don't remember the language as being as
bad as Fat Kid...

How about "Inexcusable", by Chris Lynch? "Breaking
Point" by Alex Flinn deals with a boy's trying to
figure out how far he'd go to get in with the popular
kids. Another title to look at is "Stuck in Neutral"
by Terry Trueman. Both gripping. I think the language
is OK for read aloud.

What about "Sleeping Freshmen Never Lie", by Lubar
(humorous and boy-centric) or "Tears of a Tiger" by
Draper (not humorous, but a powerful story w/a male
protagonist), or "Son of the Mob" by Korman (not sure
how the language is in that one, but definitely
humorous and has a male protagonist)?

I don't have "Sleeping Freshmen Never Lie" yet, but
"Tears of a Tiger" and "Son of the Mob" are very
popular with boys of that age at my school; they like
"Fat Kid Rules the World" too, but you're probably
right about the language.

One of my favorite realistic fiction works told by a
boy is "Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes", by Chris
Crutcher.  Good luck!

Have you thought about any of Alex Flinn's books
("Breathing Underwater", "Nothing to Lose") or Terry
Trueman's "Stuck in Neutral"?  The latter is very
short, but very much a book that generates discussion.
 I've had kids get into impromptu debates over the
merits of the ending (very ambiguous) and have had a
number of previously identified non-readers get hooked
on reading with this book.  All mentioned have male

Oh, just thought of a couple more:  Green's "Looking
for Alaska" (last year's Printz award winner) and
Plum-Ucci's "Body of Christopher Creed".

"Breathing Under Water" by Alex Flinn, "Shattering
Glass" by Gail Giles and "Double Helix" by Nancy
Werlin are all excellent YA novels with male

One of my favorite books is "Monster", by Walter Dean
Myers.  It would be an excellent read-a-loud for the
9th grade.

One of my favorite YA novels with a boy protagonist is
"The First Part Last" by Angela Johnson.  It was the
Coretta Scott King award winner for 2005 (I think). 
It's a fantastic story about a 16 year-old boy and his
struggles as a teen father.  It has great voice and
might work well for your classes.

Have you considered "Big Mouth and Ugly Girl", by
Joyce Carol Oates? Alternating chapters (his/hers),
bomb threats, gossip, not “rocking the boat”…

Some serious boy read-a-louds: "Give the Boy a Gun"
(Strasser), "Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes" (Crutcher)
and "Choosing Up Sides" (Ritter). Some funny
read-a-louds: "My Angelica" (Williams) and "Flipped"
(Van Draasen).

For a funny book how about "Sleeping Freshmen Never
Lie". I think the author is Lubar but I’m not sure. It
was funny and had some great example of various types
of writing. Can't remember is there is anything
objectionable in it. Another one is "My Angelica"
about a girl who wants to enter a writing contest and
keeps trying out what she is writing on her friend (a
guy) who really likes her and doesn't want to tell her
how bad her writing is. Example: “His lips were as
thin as a slice of pepperoni when viewed from the
side.” It's a pretty short book but I laughed out loud
as I read it.

This is in regards to your request for 9th grade
read-alouds. I think it's great that the English
teacher is reading aloud to them at this level. Here
are a few I like: "Tell No One" by Harlen Coben is a
good one with a male protagonist. It's sort of a
thriller/murder mystery, but not too graphic. It has a
good ending, too. Then there are two by Gail Giles:
"Playing in Traffic", which is sort of graphic, but
the other one is "Whatever Happened to Cass McBride?"
The Cass book is so good and brings up so many
discussion topics. Also, they are both pretty short.

How about: "Sleeping Freshmen Never Lie" by David
Lubar, "Drums, Girls, and Dangerous Pie" by Jordan
Sonnenblick or "No More Dead Dogs" by Gordon Korman.

"Harris and Me" by Gary Paulsen is a great read a
loud. Our freshmen English teacher has his students
read it and he reads some of it aloud. 

Just about anything by Chris Crutcher.

I liked "Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes" by Chris

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