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Accelerated Reader FAQ
- How does the Library choose novels?
Most of our novels are selected from the annual American Library Association Best Books for Young Adults lists. We also regularly consult lists for Canadian young adult fiction. We try to read trade journal reviews to assess the age level, genre, and special themes of every book.
- What range of novels does the Library buy?
We aim to have a broad representation in all genres and at different reading levels. We fully understand that some students read only reluctantly, so we purchase shorter novels, novels with lower difficulty levels, and graphic novels. Most of our recent purchases were specifically written for students in grades 8-12. Our collection also includes a selection of longer, more difficult works that are suitable for advanced or ambitious readers.
- Do you buy books with sexual content or violence?
Yes. Again, we judge each book by the reviews it receives in journals such as Booklist, Publisher’s Weekly, and School Library Journal. If the reviewers consider the book to have literary merit and to be appropriate for high school readers, then some sexual content and/or violence is acceptable. Books with gratuitous sex or violence are not considered for purchase. Please note that one role of the school’s Christian Education Department is to address issues such those found in many novels.
- Will the library buy a book if I request it?
Yes. We welcome suggestions from students, teachers, and parents. We make every effort to buy books that students will recommend to their friends. Send an email to Mr. McCracken if you want the library to order a particular book.
- What novels are not eligible for AR points?
We have disallowed the novels below because they are commonly read in grades 5-7:
- The Cay
- Star Girl
- Maniac McGee
- Everything on a Waffle
- The Giver
- The Lightning Thief
- Banner in the Sky
- Harry Potter series
- The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
- Prince Caspian
- Where can I find comprehensive reviews of novels?
One useful site for parents and kids alike is www.commonsensemedia.org. If parents have any concerns about the suitability of their child’s reading choice (or movies or video games), this site can be of assistance.