- 1997 AP STUDENTS' FAVORITE NOVELS
- The Andromeda Strain by Michael Crichton
- This novel is, according to Ari Margolis (upon watching
me type), "awesome. " I read this book on my
own three or four summers ago and still frequently refer
to the concepts it taught me; it has withstood my own
test of time and memory and, consequently, remains one of
my favorites. Crichton's plot enraptures and excites,
but, more importantly, he reminds the
scientist/problem-solver in me not to lose track of
simple, everyday concepts; routine protocol; and common
sense. Short and simple but quality of the mostest. P.S.
The movie suffers in comparison.
- Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand
- "Who is John Galt?"
- Dagny Taggart wastes her life running Taggart
Transcontinental, the largest railway in the nation, for
unappreciative people who believe they deserve everything
for nothing. Finally, she shrugs her shoulders, refusing
to carry the world any longer. She joins her soul mate,
John Galt, in a camouflaged capitalist utopia, located in
a random Colorado valley, where hard-working, intelligent
people idolize the sign of the dollar.
- -Nina Flax
- -Kush Parmar
- The Bourne Identity by Robert Ludlum
- An amnesiac discovers the facts of his former life as a
covert operative of the government.
- Davita's Harp by Chaim Potok
- discusses a young girl's awakening to her heritage and
discovery of her independence as a budding spirit who
wishes to act freely.
- Dracula by Bram Stoker
- Sometime in the late nineteenth century, Jonathan Harker,
a young English lawyer, is traveling to the Castle
Dracula, which is located in Transylvania, in order to
finalize a transfer of real estate in England to Count
Dracula; a "pale, gaunt man, rather strange"
who is intent on killing Harker. The Count survives by
drinking the blood of human beings; each successive
draught rejuvenating his youth. Harker manages to stave
off the attack of the bloodthirsty Count who travels to
England in hopes of leeching off of a blossoming
population. Eventually, a group of those having suffered
from the Count's hand band together with Jonathan and
successfully plot the Count's demise.
- The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand
- An extremely talented architect, Roarke, rejects the
conventions of society and falls in love with a gorgeous
woman, Dominique, who finds joy in his pain. Dominique
marries Wynand, the man Roarke hates the most, but
ultimately, after much inner-struggle and self-torture,
Dominique and Roarke unite and Roarke is commissioned by
Wynand to build the most magnificent building in New
- The Hobbit by
- The Hobbit is a tale about a band of dwarves accompanied
by Bilbo the Hobbit, who has a magic ring that makes him
invisible, and Gandalf the wizard on their quest to steal
a ageless dragon's treasure. On the way, they encounter
many different kinds of creatures; some they battle with
and some they have dinner with. The magic and heroic
deeds bring out the good qualities in Bilbo and spark the
imagination of the reader. The "feel good" read
of the year!
- Life Is Elsewhere by Milan Kundera
- This famed Czech writer and dissident of the former
Communist regime discusses the difficult life of Jaromil,
the poet, during wartime and later Communist
Czechoslovakia. He effectively illustrates not only the
harshness of the times but also the hardships and the
pleasures of growing up and of life in general.
- The Stranger by Albert Camus.
- Through Camus' writing the reader can delve into the
thoughts of one man, lonely and awaiting death for a
crime which he commits almost involuntarily, in a brief,
hot, fleeting moment. The novel itself is a wonderful
examination of contemporary society, with all its dogmas
and values, and gives the reader a wonderful
introspective into the mind of one solitary man, and the
conflicts which he must face before he dies. I truly
recommend this brief novel, for the author's writing
style is very fluent, and the context delightfully forces
the reader to stop and think about society and human
nature as we know it.
- One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel
- The author reaches into a deep Colombian heritage rich in
traditions, magic, stories, and indigenous culture to
produce a virtual Bible of magical realism. The novel
traces the rise and fall-- and the beautiful, tragic, and
surreal moments in between-- of the Buendia family. Its
literature is absolutely magnificent, the stories and the
chapters are powerful, in slow motion, and undeniably
complete. Because the novel is so concerned with being a
breathing story, the themes are vividly approachable and
lifelike, very close to the touch. Wonderful, wonderful,
- She's Come Undone by Wally Lamb
- This book is a touchingly entertaining story about the
life of a overweight and desperate girl who overcomes
pain and humiliation to discover what happiness and life
is really all about.