10 Must-Read Graphic Novels (for the Graphic Novel N00b)

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If you’re a graphic novel newbie, chances are that when you hear the term “graphic novel,” you immediately think, “Oh, a comic book!” or something else to that effect. And who could blame you? With the ever-growing popularity of the Marvel Universe and the continuous makes and remakes of the Batman franchise, it seems that comic books are everywhere—and they certainly are graphic novels. But as it turns out, there’s more to this variety of storytelling than colorfully-dressed, muscly people with inhuman powers! In fact, while superhero comics have their place (and it’s a big place, mind you), there are a whole host of graphic novels about real-world issues that delve into intriguing, funny, mysterious, and even downright scary stories. Continue Reading ›

Remember More Than Just Rabbits: Understanding “Of Mice and Men”

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When people talk about influential pieces of American literature, there are a few titles you can just about guarantee will be thrown into the discussion, i.e. To Kill a Mockingbird, Grapes of Wrath, Huckleberry Finnand oh yeah, Of Mice and Men (kudos to Steinbeck for making my off-the-cuff list twice). Chances are that even if you haven’t read any of these titles (though that is unlikely, knowing how popularly they are assigned as staples of high school reading lists), you have at the very least heard of them. Continue Reading ›

Understanding “To Kill a Mockingbird”: Top Q&A from Students

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It may just be impossible to consider classic American literature without delving into the story of To Kill a Mockingbird. Written by Harper Lee and published in 1960, To Kill a Mockingbird remains one of the most well-known and impactful works of literature within the last century, and arguably on a more historical level as well. The novel tackles the realities of racial inequalities, gender roles, and class-based hierarchies as they existed in the 1930s, particularly in the American Deep South. Harper Lee was raised in the small town of Monroeville, Alabama and grew up experiencing life as it appears in her novel. Her father was even a lawyer who may have provided a great deal of inspiration for the character Atticus; in his day, Lee’s father worked to defend two black men accused of the murder of a white store clerk. Continue Reading ›

Book Covers… Anew!

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We’re all familiar with classic books (hence we call them “classic”). But along with the memorable stories they tell, these books have relatively well-known cover art. We’re betting that if you’re asked about the cover of Catch 22 or a Salinger novel, you’ll have something in mind. For that reason, we at eNotes thought it might be fun to take a look at some landmark titles and imagine what different, updated covers could look like. Below are five “covers” imagined (and painstakingly created) by yours truly! Continue Reading ›

Happy Birthday, Tennessee: 10 Famous Tennessee Williams Quotes

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Tennessee Williams was born on this day in 1911. Decades after his time on earth, his works such as A Streetcar Named Desire, The Glass Menagerie and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof are still referenced in pop culture (“STELLAAAAAAA…!”) and taught in high schools around the globe.

Here are ten of our favorite quotes that reflect William’s voice and inner turmoil, showing that not only your strong passions, but that overwhelming frustrations can be a turning point in your life filling you with inspiration.  Continue Reading ›

A Fun Introduction to History: Books That Give an Insight to Days Gone By

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Books are passports to other worlds, no matter how cheesy that sounds. With that in mind, there’s something particularly fascinating about works of fiction that take encompass times and events that really occurred. That isn’t to say that novels taking place outside the realm of real life aren’t wonderful—they are, but to be able to pick up a book and see what it was truly like to live as an average person during, say, the reign of King Henry VIII and the break with the Catholic Church? Well, that is something the average person would never be able to do without the help of author-historians. Continue Reading ›