Suggested Literature

This section offers general guides for finding quality literature and managing your personal library.


The following are literature recommends grouped by grade level:

The following are online literature summaries, reviews, recommends, and tools that I use frequently:

The following are additional online literature summaries, reviews, and/or recommends:

The following are reading guides are available at our local library:

  • The Well-Educated Mind: a guide to the classical education you never had by Susan Wise Bauer.  Published in 2003.
  • Invitation to the Classics by Louise Cowan and Os Guinness.  Published 1998.
  • Essaying The Past:  how to read, write, and think about history by Jim Cullen.  Published 2013.
  • Honey for a Child’s Heart by Gladys Hunt.  Published 2002.  Organized by age level and time period covered.
  • Great books for girls: more than 600 books for boys 2 to 14 by Kathleen Odean.  Published 2002.
  • Great books about things kids love: more than 750 recommended books for children 3 to 14 by Kathleen Odean.  Published 2001.
  • Great books for boys: more than 600 books for boys 2 to 14 by Kathleen Odean.  Published 1998.
  • The Joy of Reading: A Passionate Guide to 189 of The World’s Best Authors and Their Works by Charles Lincoln Van Doren.
  • How To Read A Book:  The Classic Guide to Intelligent Reading by Mortimer Jerome Adler and Charles Van Doren.  This book shows concretely how the serious work of proper reading for instruction and delight.  Published in 1940.
  • How to think about the great ideas: from the great books of western civilization by Mortimer Jerome Adler

The following books are not available at our local library.  I found them worth keeping in my personal library.

  • All Through the Ages: History through Literature Guide by Christine Miller – This is a massive list of books ordered by era.  I highly recommend this book.
  • Turning Back the Pages of Time by Kathy Keller – American history

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The following are resources for FREE literature in text and audiobook formats that I use frequently:

The following are additional resources for FREE literature in text and audiobook formats arranged in alphabetical order:


If your head is not spinning due to overwhelm, I commend you.   I, on the other hand, had a melt down until I created “virtual bookshelves” to manage our reading lists by grade level and by priority.  We aim for completing a classic per week.  The following FREE resources are intended to make managing massive reading lists less overwhelming:

  • – You can also design your virtual library on a FREE Google spreadsheet.  This is where I keep my child’s reading list.
  • – Can list up 100 books for FREE.
  • – Pinterest is a fun place to organize favorite literature, if you prefer picture galleries. Here you can easily find more resources similar to your favorites.
  • – LibraryThing is an online service for people who like books. You can share your library with others, and meet people with similar tastes.  Can list up 200 books for FREE.

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“Be as careful of the books you read, as the company you keep; for your habits and character will be as much influenced by the former as by the latter.” ~ Paxton Hood

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