Booking Through Thursday asks:
We all had to read lots of different things in school—some of which we liked, some of which we didn’t. Are there any authors that you’ve grown to love because you were introduced to them in your English Lit class? Or—the contrary. Are there any you hate because you were forced to read them? Did you ever go back to try them again?
When I was in elementary school, we had to read a couple of books by Geoffrey Trease: Cue for Treason and Word to Caesar. We read the former in Grade 6 and the latter in Grade 7. Actually, we didn't even finish Word to Caesar since we started it so close to the end of the school year. I was enjoying it so much that I asked the teacher if I could borrow it for a few days so I could finish!
I don't think I had another positive experience with assigned reading until I got to university. That's where I read Jane Eyre for the very first time. I was surprised at how much I could love an assigned-reading book!
But there's always two sides to every coin. In the same class where we read Jane Eyre we also had to read Joseph Andrews by Henry Fielding. I never actually did. It was so awful, so boring and confusing, that I couldn't get past the first twenty pages. I used Coles Notes to write the essays and got rid of that stupid little paperback as soon as I could. I have no desire to try reading that book again. Ever.
I also have no desire to read any more Hemingway, Dickens, or Hardy, thanks to my high school English classes. In fact, I didn't read a lot for enjoyment throughout much of high school... and I think it's because I was feeling worn out from reading books I wasn't enjoying!