Best Page-Turners with Redeeming Social Value

This Listopia is inspired by Nicholas D. Kristof's "Best Beach Reading Ever" list, published by The New York Times, which includes great works of fiction with a social justice angle. He writes, "Summer reading often consists of mindless page-turners, equally riveting and vacuous. So as a public service I’m delighted to offer a list of mindful page-turners — so full of chase scenes, romance and cliffhangers that you don’t mind the redeeming social value."

Vote for your favorite works that combine great literature and a social conscience! You can vote for books already listed or add new books to the list.
1

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14

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16

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4.29 avg rating — 661,132 ratings
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17

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18

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19

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4.38 avg rating — 670,777 ratings
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20

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21

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really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 900,623 ratings
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22

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23

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24

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25

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4.13 avg rating — 534,378 ratings
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26

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27

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4.15 avg rating — 103,866 ratings
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28

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29

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30

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3.91 avg rating — 245,765 ratings
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31

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4.16 avg rating — 387,762 ratings
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32

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4.05 avg rating — 628,717 ratings
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33

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4.05 avg rating — 546,464 ratings
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34

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3.97 avg rating — 422,762 ratings
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35

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36

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4.34 avg rating — 321,397 ratings
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37

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38

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4.23 avg rating — 608,839 ratings
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39

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3.85 avg rating — 879,246 ratings
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40

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41

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42

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43

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3.82 avg rating — 148,179 ratings
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44

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45

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4.07 avg rating — 398,792 ratings
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46

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4.11 avg rating — 405,058 ratings
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47

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4.22 avg rating — 237,995 ratings
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50

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4.27 avg rating — 781,821 ratings
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51

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52

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53

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54

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55

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56

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57

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58

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3.87 avg rating — 352,962 ratings
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59

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3.68 avg rating — 283,867 ratings
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60

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61

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3.72 avg rating — 682,812 ratings
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62

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3.71 avg rating — 105,632 ratings
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62

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3.78 avg rating — 1,501,737 ratings
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64

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65

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66

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67

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68

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69

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70

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71

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72

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73

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74

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3.64 avg rating — 502,760 ratings
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75

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3.94 avg rating — 622,442 ratings
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76

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3.90 avg rating — 171,771 ratings
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77

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4.30 avg rating — 220 ratings
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78

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79

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80

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81

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82

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4.33 avg rating — 445,041 ratings
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83

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4.41 avg rating — 117,773 ratings
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84

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4.01 avg rating — 182,122 ratings
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85

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3.77 avg rating — 1,592,335 ratings
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86

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3.64 avg rating — 174,470 ratings
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87

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3.94 avg rating — 68,661 ratings
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88

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3.84 avg rating — 240,805 ratings
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89

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4.22 avg rating — 137,769 ratings
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90

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4.20 avg rating — 531,788 ratings
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91

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3.90 avg rating — 220,014 ratings
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92

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3.56 avg rating — 157,484 ratings
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93

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4.05 avg rating — 279,021 ratings
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94

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4.03 avg rating — 1,798,579 ratings
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95

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4.10 avg rating — 1,814,424 ratings
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96

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4.10 avg rating — 129,173 ratings
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97

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4.19 avg rating — 336,156 ratings
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98

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4.30 avg rating — 168,972 ratings
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99

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4.94 avg rating — 49 ratings
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100

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3.97 avg rating — 187,623 ratings
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1,454 books · 3,663 voters · list created July 9th, 2011 by Jessica (votes) .
446 likes · 
Lists are re-scored approximately every 5 minutes.


Jessica 1234 books
351 friends
Jean 15 books
1 friend
Heidi 412 books
68 friends
Karen 43 books
340 friends
Brandon 668 books
149 friends
Linda 241 books
6 friends
Carla 4838 books
459 friends
Kirstin 562 books
59 friends

More voters…


Comments (showing 1-50 of 64) (64 new)


message 2: by Moumendj (new)

Moumendj شكرا ، جزيلا ،


message 3: by Karen (new)

Karen White I don't know. I think this totally misses the point of the "beach read". That is, something you can read without having to strain your brain (and while having what my husband calls "boat drinks" OR while watching your kids play in the surf). That said, there are fantastic beach reads out there that are well written, but still offer that fun easy escape that I, at least, look for in a beach read.


message 4: by Janet (new)

Janet I just read "Summer Rental" by Mary Kay Andrews. It was well written, suspenseful and had themes of love, friendship and personal growth. Just because it was fun to read doesn't mean it has no value.


message 5: by Hayley (new)

Hayley Question...who put Life of Pi on here? that book bored me to death.


message 6: by Steve (new)

Steve Twilight books have "Redeeming Social Value" ?????


message 7: by Maureen (new)

Maureen :) the life of PI is awesome...and has a message..

but why are the twilight books included..and the bible


message 8: by Josette (new)

Josette Steve wrote: "Twilight books have "Redeeming Social Value" ?????"
Amen! The Twilight books may be an entertaining read for some, but I can't find their "Redeeming Social Value".
Hayley wrote: "Question...who put Life of Pi on here? that book bored me to death."


message 9: by Tracy (new)

Tracy I just finished reading The Help. It was a page turner, for sure! This is now at the top of my favorites list.


message 10: by Damira (new)

Damira I found the Life of Pi to be really good! The ending completely blew me away and kept me thinking about the "real version" of his journey for a while after I was done... A story of unconventional circumstances and perseverance makes for a good read.


message 11: by Breanne (new)

Breanne Tiger saga all the way!!!!


message 12: by [deleted user] (new)

I wouldnt call this beach reads but they are good page turners.


message 13: by Holly (new)

Holly The only thought the twilight series will provoke is thoughts of suicide


message 14: by Mdmebrat (new)

Mdmebrat 'Twilight books have "Redeeming Social Value" ?????'

^^ My thoughts exactly. :\


message 15: by Hayley (new)

Hayley Redeeming? Why would a page-turner need to be redeemed?


message 16: by Ally (new)

Ally Knowles What's with this Tiger Saga? I've never heard of them and all of a sudden they are popping up on every single list!


message 17: by The Pirate Ghost (new)

The Pirate Ghost (Formerly known as the Curmudgeon) WHere's Animal Farm? We learned more from that than about the rise and fall of comunism.


message 18: by Daenerys (new)

Daenerys I don't see the connection between the title of the list and half of its contents.. in particular, what in the world is the twilight saga doing in this list??


message 19: by Cassie (new)

Cassie Jasper Fforde's "Shades of Grey". Well, anything by Jasper Fforde, though you have to be a big reader to be in on some of the jokes.


message 20: by Amber (last edited Aug 24, 2011 06:44PM) (new)

Amber Steve wrote: "Twilight books have "Redeeming Social Value" ?????"That's exactly what I was wondering!

Nevermind, stopped reading list when I found the Anita Blake books on here... social value?


message 21: by G.w. (new)

G.w. Davies I've heard Victorian novels called a lot of things before but never page-turners.


message 22: by Ami (new)

Ami Blackwelder I love science fiction, but I enjoy the mix of scifi with romance and dabs of paranormal. I am biased, but I love Shifter Evolutions, books 1-6. When I'm bored with tv, I'll read them again and again. amiblackwelder.blogspot.com


message 23: by Ami (new)

Ami Blackwelder Ami wrote: "I love science fiction, but I enjoy the mix of scifi with romance and dabs of paranormal. I am biased, but I love Shifter Evolutions, books 1-6. When I'm bored with tv, I'll read them again and aga..."

And yes they have a lot of social commentary:)


message 24: by Ami (new)

Ami Blackwelder Daenerys wrote: "I don't see the connection between the title of the list and half of its contents.. in particular, what in the world is the twilight saga doing in this list??"

Exactly, most people don't have a clue about social value or commentary within books.
My books tend to be nothing like the mainstream reads. While the genres are typical PRN, my style and content is very different.

amiblackwelder.blogspot.com


message 25: by Ami (new)

Ami Blackwelder G.w. wrote: "I've heard Victorian novels called a lot of things before but never page-turners."

LOL-the state of modern reading....


message 26: by Andrea (new)

Andrea Aguilar I'm puzzled at how a lot of the books on here have "redeeming social value." Also, it sort of bothers me how a book with themes such as social justice can be classified as a "beach read".


message 27: by [deleted user] (new)

My feeling is that any book should be well written,be it a beach read,non-fiction,a mystery,a biography,a novel or just any book.I find myself getting tired of poorly written books no matter who wrote them.G.W. Try Phillippa Gregory for a good victorian novelist.She may not be a page turner but she is historically correct and a good writer.YES I totally agree about the Twilight saga redeeming features???where???


message 28: by G.w. (new)

G.w. Davies Thanks for the recommendation, Lucy. The truth is I have no problem with victorian novels. In fact, I've read plenty of them. I've just never heard them referred to as "page-turners," which to my mind does not necessarily denote a "well written book" but simply a book whose plot moves quickly. I don't believe the designation "page turner" is always tantamount to "well written."


message 29: by [deleted user] (new)

G.W.,you are absolutely right.Some page turners are horribly written,you seem to keep on reading them simply because they are page turners.I guess I like P.G. because she is historically correct and an interesting read.


message 30: by Erin (new)

Erin O'mara I think it is absolutely horrible that twillight books have managed to make it onto this list. where is the redeeming social value? besides that, i think its a perfect "to read" list.


message 31: by Katie (new)

Katie Rigney-zimmermann Erin wrote: "I think it is absolutely horrible that twillight books have managed to make it onto this list. where is the redeeming social value? besides that, i think its a perfect "to read" list."

I totally agree and was looking for a button which would allow me to vote against a book.


message 32: by Terry (new)

Terry I have never read a Twilight book,but I know many young people have and if it gets them turned on to
reading books..Hallelujah! With all of the media and
electronics..if anything can bring them back to books..don't knock it.
However, I agree with most of you that although I have
read a majority of these books, I definitely would not
call them beach reads.


message 33: by [deleted user] (new)

To TERRY I'm with you as far as getting kids turned onto reading. Some religious groups were against the Harry Potter series. My view is that if it gets kids reading more GREAT!! Lucy


message 34: by Evelyn (new)

Evelyn Maureen wrote: "the life of PI is awesome...and has a message..

but why are the twilight books included..and the bible"


Have you read the Bible?


message 35: by [deleted user] (new)

Yes, Maureen,I have a print out of how to read the Bible in one year and have done so x2. I have no idea why the Twilight series was included, I for one, didn't include it. Lucy @11:35 on 9-17-11


message 36: by Terry (new)

Terry Yes, Maureen, I have read the Bible too. Definitely
not a beach read. But lots of wisdom, social value,
and love.


message 37: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Roberts I agree with The Book Thief.

Where is the social redeeming value in the Twilight books? There really isn't any!


message 38: by Allie (new)

Allie Steve wrote: "Twilight books have "Redeeming Social Value" ?????"

I know, right! If anything, it has detrimental value. It presents a terrible role model for young girls.


message 39: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Roberts Allie wrote: "Steve wrote: "Twilight books have "Redeeming Social Value" ?????"

I know, right! If anything, it has detrimental value. It presents a terrible role model for young girls."


Agreed, 100%


message 40: by [deleted user] (new)

To Lisa from Lucy Absolutely right it does. @12:40 p.m. on 9-24-11


message 41: by [deleted user] (new)

What, biting people's necks is detrimental? At least it's not "The Hunger Games." However, for a totally uplifting page turner with a thoughtful undertone, read "The Ballad of Young Tam Lin." Love, romance, the Queen of Elfland, and neo-pagan morality. Can't put it down.


message 42: by [deleted user] (new)

I'll put this one on my tbr list Thanks!! LUCY @ 7:45p.m. on12-20-11.FOR karl


message 43: by Brian (new)

Brian Spiekerman Why isn't Harry Potter #1?


message 44: by [deleted user] (new)

Because it doesn't have enough sex or sexual symbolism (think about the whole neck biting thing in Twilight - penetration without the penis.)


message 45: by [deleted user] (new)

Reply to Brian, I don't know it certainly got lots of people to read.


message 46: by Dolly (new)

Dolly Steve wrote: "Twilight books have "Redeeming Social Value?

Perhaps could argue it teaches teens the value of self-restraint and delayed gratification. These characteristics aren't en vogue today with kids...so for its y.a. age category...I feel it has value here.



message 47: by [deleted user] (new)

Seems a lot of posters/voters ignored the "redeeming social value" element, but, in that context, I have to question Gone With the Wind. It's totally an apologist manifesto in favor of slavery. Redeeming social value???


message 48: by [deleted user] (new)

The Ballad of Young Tam Lin by Patricia A. Leslie On the surface, just a romantic fantasy, but lots of deep insight into what our purpose is on Earth, and what we owe to each other and the living world. Great writing.


message 49: by Brian (new)

Brian Spiekerman To Kill A Mockingbird shouldn't be on this list. It has redeeming social value, but it isn't a page-turner (chase scenes, fights, dragons, etc).


message 50: by Shanna (new)

Shanna Steve wrote: "Twilight books have "Redeeming Social Value" ?????"

Absolutely not. They teach horrible ideas about women and sex.


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