WP-Kolumne „Lesenswerte Literatur auf Englisch“

Frances Hogdson Burnett’s children’s novel “The Secret Garden” tells the story of the spoilt, selfish and unloved Mary Lennox, who becomes orphaned at the age of ten and is shipped off to live with her uncle Archibald Craven. Mary’s uncle leads a very secluded life since his wife died and travels often, so that Mary is currently not only left behind but also left to her own devices. One day, she finds a locked door and, behind that, a secret and overgrown garden. Suddenly, Mary has a purpose: She cares for the garden and also comes into bloom herself. But her uncle’s estate holds even more secrets: Time and again, Mary hears eerie wails in the house. Finally, during a stormy night, she sets out to discover the origin of the wails and thus uncovers a mystery even more astounding than the secret garden.

Seit Januar 2015 schreibt Katie für die Westfalenpost Meschede eine Kolumne zum Thema „Lesenwerte Literatur auf Englisch“.  Hier findet ihr gesammelt alle Beiträge – inklusive englischer Übersetzung für diejenigen, die schon beim Lesen der Kolumne ihre Englischkenntnisse trainieren wollen.  Viel Spaß beim Schmökern!

Westfalenpost Meschede 14.01.2015

Westfalenpost Meschede
14.01.2015

Januar 2015 | January 2015

Westfalenpost Meschede 14.01.2015

Westfalenpost Meschede
14.01.2015

This column starts with a classic that is widely read in American High Schools. Harper Lee’s 1960 novel “To Kill a Mockingbird” is about the young white girl Scout Finch growing up in Alabama in a town filled with an atmosphere of prejudice against blacks. Together with her brother Jem and their friend Dill she spends the summers getting into trouble and fearing their strange neighbor Boo Radley. Scout’s father Atticus is a lawyer defending a colored man who is on trial for raping a white woman. In the course of the novel, Scout learns a lot about injustice, but also about tolerance towards people who are different from others. Against the background of the Pegida-movement in Germany and our increasingly diverse society in Europe, the novel’s strong message that emphasizes tolerance is still important today. The novel is set in the 1930s Deep South, so the language can be a little tricky. But it is worthwhile getting into it – and it will help you to better understand hot TV shows like “True Detective”.

___________________

Februar 2015 | February 2015

Westfalenpost Meschede 11.02.2015

Westfalenpost Meschede 11.02.2015

What do you do when, at 26 years of age, you have the feeling that you have lost everything? Cheryl Strayed decided to hike 1100 miles on the Pacific Crest Trail. She describes her experiences in her moving memoire “Wild”. Cheryl doesn’t only have to deal with the physical hardships of hiking the trail, but also works her way through all the wrong choices, unlucky turns and tests of her life – above all her mother’s early death from cancer. The reader will be swept along by Cheryl’s story, in which descriptions of the difficulties she is faced with on her hike are interspersed with flashbacks to her own past. Even for those who don’t want to slip into a pair of hiking boots themselves, this inspiring book can provide the impetus to go on an inner journey to find happiness. The language is contemporary and therefore easy to understand. A good way to ease one’s reading comprehension is to first go and see the Oscar-nominated movie adaption of the book featuring Reese Witherspoon as Cheryl.

___________________

März 2015 | March 2015

Westfalenpost Meschede 11.03.2015

Westfalenpost Meschede
11.03.2015

Stanley Yelnats IV. is in huge trouble. Wrongfully accused of stealing, Stanley, whose family has been haunted by bad luck for decades, is sent to Camp Green Lake, where bad boys are sent to build character by digging holes every day. Thus begins the enthralling young adult novel “Holes” by Louis Sachar. Stanley’s life is turned upside down at Camp, though this happens in a way neither he himself nor the reader ever would have thought. That’s why I don’t want to reveal too much about the twists and turns of the plot. Suffice it to say that “Holes” features old family secrets, a feared bandit, a great love and a fabulous treasure. The novel, however, is so much more than just an exciting adventure story. It is thought-provoking and allows the reader to reflect upon important themes such as friendship, justice and injustice, and the power of fate. The language is easy to understand and therefore suited for teenagers aged 14 and up.

___________________

April 2015 | April 2015

Westfalenpost Meschede 15. April 2015

Westfalenpost Meschede
15.04.2015

Looking for an alternative to “A Song of Ice and Fire” and “Lord of the Rings”? Then “The Name of the Wind” by Patrick Rothfuss, the first volume in the fantasy-trilogy “The Kingkiller Chronicle”, is just the ticket. In the novel, the unimposing innkeeper Kote tells the tale of his past as Kvothe, a legendary lute player, thief, magician, warrior, and – ever since his parents were killed by mysterious creatures – orphan. The story of Kvothe’s life takes the reader on a journey to a multilayered and detailed world of magic and science, adventure and intrigue, justice and injustice. At the end of the first novel, it is still unclear how the charismatic Kvothe became the dull Kote, since this is just the first party of the trilogy that continues with “The Wise Man’s fear”. Enthusiasts of fantasy will not be deterred by the length of the novel, especially considering that the language is easy to understand, making Kvothe’s story suited for readers aged 16 and up.

___________________

Mai 2015 | May 2015

Westfalenpost Meschede 06. Mai 2015

Westfalenpost Meschede
06. Mai 2015

English literature doesn’t just have to be for those who have been learning English for a long time. There are many books for young readers as well. Mary Pope Osborne’s “Magic Tree House”-series provides young readers with a lot to read. In the series, siblings Jack and Annie go on fantastic adventures. They find a magic tree house full of books, which takes them to faraway places and long ago times. Jack and Annie visit dinosaurs, knights, mummies, pirates, ninjas, dolphins and much more on their travels. The children are faced with dangerous situations, tricky riddles and many a surprising twist and turn. Throughout the books, they are on a bigger mission, given to them by the magical librarian Morgan le Fay. The 28 installments of the series are short, written in a child-friendly language and are great for girls and boys aged 10 and up.

___________________

Juni 2015 | June 2015

Westfalenpost Meschede 03.06.2015

Westfalenpost Meschede
03.06.2015

This month’s column begins with a confession. I am a huge Jane Austen fan and love all of her six novels. However, to me, one is her absolute masterpiece: “Persuasion”. The novel tells the story of Anne Elliot, who long ago gave up the love of her life, Frederick Wentworth, due to her family’s disapproval of the match. When Wentworth happens to come back into her life six years later, he is still bitter over the fact that Anne left him. There seems no chance of reconciliation. The novel has an important message for our fast moving times, in which we are constantly confronted with other people’s opinions, judgments and advice, especially in social media: Some things need time and sometimes you should simply listen to your own heart and give yourself a change. It’s worthwhile getting into the admittedly tricky language of the early 19th century. For once you have read the novel, you will believe in happy endings again.

___________________

Juli 2015 | July 2015

2015 - 7 - Muttersprachler-Edition

___________________

August 2015 | August 2015

Westfalenpost Meschede 19.08.2015

Westfalenpost Meschede
19.08.2015

What was happening in Britain before England was founded? This question is at the center of Bernard Cornwell’ historical epos “The Saxon Stories”, which features Uhtred of Bebbanburg as its protagonist, a Saxon lord who was adopted by the Danish invaders. The first book in the series is “The Last Kingdom”. It deals with Uhtred’s childhood in Northumbria, his kidnapping and then adoption by the Danes and the beginnings of the two great quests that will define his life: firstly, recapturing Bebbanburg from his uncle, and secondly, helping to unite England as one kingdom. A fierce warrior, Uhtred himself is often torn between his loyalties to the Saxons and the Danes. If you want to learn more about one of the exciting times in English history and if you like complex characters, intriguing intrigues, great battles and skillful diplomacy, “The Last Kingdom” and the following novels are exactly right for you. If you hurry up and read the eight books published so far, you can even look forward to the ninth installment coming out in October.

___________________

September 2015 | September 2015

Westfalenpost Meschede 23. September 2015

Westfalenpost Meschede
23.10.2015

Orson Scott Card’s “Ender’s Game” is a Science-Fiction-classic and a great read even for those of you who don’t usually go for the genre. Even though aliens are important, the novel actually deals with human interaction, strategic thinking and moral questions. Protagonist Ender Wiggin is only six years old when his extraordinary intelligence leads him to be chosen to travel to Battle School in space in order to be trained alongside other children for humanity’s war against the aliens. Readers will be rooting for Ender, who isn’t just smart but also empathetic and tactically brilliant. However, he makes only few friends at Battle School and faces many obstacles put in his way both by the adults at Battle School and by other children. What Ender doesn’t know: He is part of something bigger and will play a decisive role in the storm that is brewing not only in space but also back home on Earth. The novel makes you think about friendship, guilt and morality.

___________________

Oktober 2015 | October 2015

Westfalenpost Meschede 14.10.2015

Westfalenpost Meschede
14.10.2015

Some people lead such an interesting life that other write books about them. Lily Casey Smith was such a person and her extraordinary life is described in “Half Broke Horses”, a novel written by Lily’s granddaughter Jeannette Walls. Lily is a free spirit: She earns her money as a teacher, selling moonshine, playing poker, as a rancher, as a taxi driver and racing horses. Her life is filled with tragedy, hardship and back luck, but nevertheless Lily continuously shows strength, intelligence, courage and tenacity and thus fulfills many of her dreams despite these troubles. Lily’s sometimes almost hard to believe adventures enthrall the reader from the first to the last page. Even if the times Lily lived in are long gone, she can still be a role model as a strong, resourceful, independent and vigorous woman.

___________________

November 2015 | November 2015

Westfalenpost Meschede 11.11.2015

Westfalenpost Meschede
11.11.2015

Some stories never let you go. Khaled Hosseini wrote such a touching story in his novel „The Kite Runner“. He describes life in Afghanistan growing up in 1970s Kabul and later the Soviet invasion and the takeover of the Taliban, all from the viewpoint of the young Afghan Amir. Amir is the son of a well-situated Pashtun. His life is closely connected to that of Hassan, the servant’s son and a Hazara. A tragedy, in which Amir plays a decisive part, changes Hassan’s life forever and later comes back to haunt Amir as well. The reader not only learns a lot about life in Afghanistan during the monarchy, the Soviet occupation and under the Taliban regime. Hosseini also writes about the universal themes of guilt and redemption, friendship and betrayal as well as difficult father-son relationships.

 ___________________

Dezember 2015 | December 2015

2015 - 12 - How the Grinch stole Christmas

Westfalenpost Meschede 09.12.2015

Dr. Seuss’ story “How the Grinch Stole Christmas!” became a classic almost right upon publication in 1957. The book tells the story of the Grinch, who hates Christmas and therefore decides to steal Christmas from the Whos down in Whoville, who have a huge Christmas celebration every year. The Grinch dresses up as Santa Claus und together with his dog Max, whom he disguises as a reindeer, he steals the Whos’ presents, their decorations and even their Christmas feast. But the Whos’ reaction is not what the Grinch expected it to be. This book about the true meaning of Christmas will warm the hearts of both young and old readers and is written with lots of charm and humor.

___________________

Januar 2016 | January 2016

2016 - 1 - Wonder

Westfalenpost Meschede 13.01.2016

“Wonder” by R.J. Palacio is a moving novel about kindness and courage. Ten-year-old August Pullman is attending school for the first time after having been homeschooled for years. This challenging situation is particularly difficult for August due to a rare medical facial disfigurement. The novel tells the story of August’s first year of school. The ups and downs as well as the kindness and animosity August experiences are not only told from his perspective, but also from the perspective of his classmates, friends and older sister. Therefore, the reader not only gains insight into the daily challenges August faces but also into how the people in his environment deal with his disfigurement. While this is officially a children’s novel, “Wonder” holds inspiring messages for readers of all ages.

___________________

Februar 2016 | February 2016

2016 - 2 - Outlander (3.2.16)

Westfalenpost Meschede 03.02.2016

If you are interested in the fascinating history of Scotland, France and the United States during the 18th century, look no further than Diana Gabaldon’s “Outlander” series. In the first novel, “Outlander”, British war nurse Claire, who is spending a second honeymoon with her husband Frank in 1945, falls back through time quite accidentally and ends up in 1743. These are tumultuous times, since the Catholic Highlanders are rebelling against the rule of the Anglican English. Claire finds security with the Highlander Jamie, whom she is forced into marrying but soon comes to love. The first novel is set mostly in the Highlands. The following installments lead Claire and Jamie, and thus the reader, to the French Court of Louis XV, the Caribbean and finally the American colonies before and during the Revolution. Gabaldon brings history to life, draws fascinating side characters. Since Claire and Jamie face new challenges in every novel, their story will always leave you hungry for more.

___________________

März 2016 | March 2016

2016 - 3 - From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler (23.03.2016)

Claudia is certain that her parents are only interested in her younger siblings, so she decides to run away from home. Her destination: the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. She takes her brother Jamie with her, since he has saved his allowance and has enough money to help her plan succeed. E.L. Konigsburg’s “From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler” takes the readers along on Claudia and Jamie’s adventure and lets them experience how the children get to know the museum during the day, hide from the guards in the toilets in the evenings, bathe in the museum’s fountain (and find some much-needed change) and sleep in antique beds. When the statue of an angel that might have been sculpted my Michelangelo is put on exhibit, Claudia and Jamie become part of a huge mystery that has something to do with the old art collector Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler… The novel not only makes you want to pack your bags and move to a museum, it is an especially thrilling read for children and teenagers.

___________________

Mai 2016 | May 2016

2016 - 5 - Flavia de Luce Series

Westfalenpost Meschede 04.05.2016

Flavia de Luce is no ordinary heroine: She is a passionate chemist, has a razor-sharp mind and solves murders at the young age of eleven. She lives in her family’s country manor Buckshaw in rural England in the 1950s, together with her two older sisters, her father and the gardener Dogger. In the first installment of the Flavia-series, “The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie”, a series of strange events takes place: someone leaves a dead bird on the de Luces’ doorstep, Flavia’s father has a late-night argument with a stranger, and, finally, Flavia finds this stranger dying in Buckshaw’s cucumber patch. The police soon come to clear up the murder, but Flavia starts her own investigation, which leads her deep into her father’s past and soon has her looking for two very rare postage stamps, which somehow are connected to the stranger’s death. Author Alan Bradley has created a likeable heroine, whose outlandish but at the same time enthralling adventures are very entertaining.

___________________

Juni 2016 | June 2016

2016 - 6 - City of Thieves

Westfalenpost Meschede 15.06.2016

The task sound simple enough: To avoid being executed, Lev and Koyla only have to find twelve eggs needed by the city’s military commander’s daughter for her wedding cake. But the novel “City of Thieves” by David Benioff splays in January 1942 in Leningrad, which is being besieged by the German Wehrmacht. Food is scarce and misery is in abundance. Lev and Kolya meet a series of shady and even cannibalistic characters before deciding to look for eggs outside of the city. There, however, they are met with new dangers at every turn. Finally, the two friends come up with a desperate plan to get the twelve eggs on time: They allow themselves to be taken prisoner by the Germans and bet on Lev’s big talent… Benioff manages to depict the deadly seriousness and everyday atrocities of Leningrad in 1942 and at the same time to tell a thrilling, entertaining and in fact very humorous story. The unlikely friends Lev and Kolya are very memorable.

___________________

Juli 2016 | July 2016

2016 - 7 - The Secret Life of Bees

Westfalenpost Meschede    13.07.2016

The South in 1964: 14-year-old Lily, the protagonist of Sue Monk Kidd’s „The Secret Life of Bees” has been living with a terrible burden even since she killed her mother ten years before in a tragic accident. Once again, her life turns upside down when Rosaleen, her family’s black maid, is unfairly arrested. In order to escape her father and to protect Rosaleen, Lily helps her friend escape. Together they set out for Tiburon, a town which Lily’s mother had jotted down on the back of a picture of a black Virgin Mary before her death. In Tiburon, Lily and Rosaleen discover that the picture is used by the three honey-making Boatwright sisters, who put the picture on their jars of honey. The sisters allow Lily and Rosaleen to stay with them and slowly but surely Lily starts to learn the secrets of beekeeping. Against the backdrop of the Civil Rights Movement, Lily also starts to delve into her the past. For the Boatwright sisters are keeping more secrets than just those of beekeeping.

___________________

September 2016 | September 2016

2016-9-year-of-wonders

Westfalenpost Meschede 07.09.2016

What to do when the plague suddenly breaks out in a secluded mountain village? Based on a true story, the historical novel “Year of Wonders” by Geraldine Books describes how an English village voluntarily goes into quarantine in 1666. From the perspective of Anna, a young maid, the reader witnesses the slow but steady moral decline of the community. Amidst the death of more and more villagers and despite the fact that the living turn to lynch law in order to settle old scores, deal with new injustices and get rid of alleged witches, Anna and the young rector’s wife Elinor do their best to save as many as possible. But just as the plague seems to be over, fate tests Anna once again. The novel not only provides deep insights into rural life in the 17th century, it also gives readers a real understanding of the horrors of the plague… and of the wonders that can happen despite or maybe because of such terrible times.

___________________

November 2016 | November 2016

2016-11-runaway

Westfalenpost Meschede 02.11.2016

Sometimes you don’t have the time to read an entire novel. When this happens, turn to the works of Alice Munro, queen of the short story. In “Runaway”, a collection of eight short stories, she gives readers a glimpse into the complicated lives of different women: Juliet, whom readers get to know in three of the stories, once as a young woman, then as a young mother and finally as a lonely widow; Carla and Sylvia, between whom many things remain unsaid; Grace, who takes a look behind the façade of a seemingly perfect family; Lauren, who wishes for nothing more than a normal life; Robin, who misses a chance and whose entire life is shaped by it; and Nancy, whose politeness leads her to a life she never expected. Munro’s stories are a pleasure to read due to her special narrative style, which is notable for its flashbacks and flash-forwards and in which the actions and comments of the characters speak for themselves, allowing readers profound insights into the women’s inner lives. Each story can easily be read in one evening.

___________________

Dezember 2016 | December 2016

2016-12-the-secret-garden

Westfalenpost Meschede 07.12.2016

Frances Hogdson Burnett’s children’s novel “The Secret Garden” tells the story of the spoilt, selfish and unloved Mary Lennox, who becomes orphaned at the age of ten and is shipped off to live with her uncle Archibald Craven. Mary’s uncle leads a very secluded life since his wife died and travels often, so that Mary is currently not only left behind but also left to her own devices. One day, she finds a locked door and, behind that, a secret and overgrown garden. Suddenly, Mary has a purpose: She cares for the garden and also comes into bloom herself. But her uncle’s estate holds even more secrets: Time and again, Mary hears eerie wails in the house. Finally, during a stormy night, she sets out to discover the origin of the wails and thus uncovers a mystery even more astounding than the secret garden.

___________________

Februar 2017 | February 2017

2017-2-circle-of-friends

Westfalenpost Meschede 08.02.2017

Sometimes, you just want to lose yourself in a new, foreign but at the same time familiar world. A perfect book to help you with just that is “Circle of Friends” by the Irish author Maeve Binchy. The novel tells the story of two girls in the 1950s. In Knockglen, a small town near Dublin, Benny Hogan fells suffocated in her sheltered single child upbringing and Eve Malone is raised as an orphan by nuns. Both girls long for freedom and seem to get their wish partly fulfilled when they start college in Dublin. Soon they make new friends and with new friends come new ups and downs. Life in Knockglen continues as well. While Benny and Eve concentrate more and more on their life in Dublin, a storm is brewing in their home town. Binchy brings her characters to life and manages to vividly describe both the life in the Irish country and in vibrant Dublin. And you will be surprised at how many problems that people dealt with 60 years ago still are relevant today.

___________________

März 2017 | March 2017

2017 - 3 - Pirates

Westfalenpost Meschede 29.03.2017

The Caribbean in the 18th century: Nancy Kington and Minerva Sharpe, two you women who couldn’t be more different, are drawn together by fate and embark on an epic adventure when they decide to take to the high seas and live as pirates. Nancy is a rich merchant’s daughter, escaping from a forced marriage to a ruthless plantation owner, and Minerva is a slave, fleeing the brutal life on the plantation. Although both young women come to be important members of the crew, they are constantly haunted by their old life and secrets of their past. And everything is entwined with a breathtaking treasure which could lead to Nancy and Minerva’s downfall … In “Pirates!”, Celia Reese both life on the high seas and the determination, courage and loyalty of the two young protagonists, who forge their own path whatever the cost, with great attention to detail. This young adult novel is also a suitable read for adults interested in history.

___________________

Juni 2017 | June 2017

2017 - 6 - In The Woods

Westfalenpost Meschede 28.06.2017

As a twelve-year-old, Rob Ryan went playing in the woods with two friends and was the only one to come out alive, with no memory of what had happened to his friends. Today, twenty years later, he works at the Dublin Murder Squad and returns to the same woods in which his friends disappeared in order to solve the murder of a young girl. In her crime novel “In the Woods”, Tana French artfully weaves together the two stories of Rob’s past and the current abhorrent murder. Besides the young girl’s death, Rob’s relationship with his partner Cassie Maddox takes center stage, since she is the only member of the murder squad to know Rob’s past. This slightly different but nevertheless suspenseful novel – in which the police and their psyche are just as prominently displayed as the murder case itself – is the first in a series of novels about the Dublin Murder Squad.

13 Gedanken zu “WP-Kolumne „Lesenswerte Literatur auf Englisch“

  1. Pingback: Katies neue Kolumne in der WP Meschede | Katie Grosser

  2. Pingback: “Wild” in WP-Kolumne | Katie Grosser

  3. Huhu 🙂

    Jetzt hab ich auch deinen Mockingbird-Review gefunden! Schön geschrieben – besonders toll übrigens die Verknüpfung zu Aktuellem 🙂

    Liebe Grüße,
    Marie

  4. Pingback: Katie als multitalentierter Geschichtenerzähler | Katie Grosser

  5. Pingback: WP-Kolumne im März: “Holes” | Katie Grosser

  6. Pingback: WP-Kolumne im April: “The Name of the Wind” | Katie Grosser

  7. Pingback: WP-Kolumne im Mai: “Magic Tree House” | Katie Grosser

  8. Pingback: WP-Kolumne im August: “The Last Kingdom” | Katie Grosser

  9. Pingback: WP-Kolume im Oktober: “Half Broke Horses” | Katie Grosser

  10. Pingback: WP-Kolumne im November: The Kite Runner | Katie Grosser

  11. Pingback: WP-Kolumne im Dezember: “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” | Katie Grosser

  12. Pingback: WP-Kolumne im Januar: “Wonder” | Katie Grosser

  13. Pingback: WP-Kolumne im Mai: Flavia de Luce | Katie Grosser

Kommentar verfassen

Trage deine Daten unten ein oder klicke ein Icon um dich einzuloggen:

WordPress.com-Logo

Du kommentierst mit Deinem WordPress.com-Konto. Abmelden / Ändern )

Twitter-Bild

Du kommentierst mit Deinem Twitter-Konto. Abmelden / Ändern )

Facebook-Foto

Du kommentierst mit Deinem Facebook-Konto. Abmelden / Ändern )

Google+ Foto

Du kommentierst mit Deinem Google+-Konto. Abmelden / Ändern )

Verbinde mit %s