AP Language Summer Reading Packet 2024

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  • The Anthropocene Reviewd: Essays on a Human-Centered Planet

    by John Green Year Published:

    In these essays, the Anthropocene is defined as the era in which humans decided that humanity was the most important influence on the world. It is a circuitous definition, the humor and despair of which is not lost on Green (Turtles All the Way Down). In his first foray into nonfiction, Green explores the joys, sorrows, and inconveniences of being human, through essays reviewing things he has encountered in his life, from Diet Dr Pepper to viral meningitis. Each review is less about its central object or circumstance and more about how it reflects on the user or observer (we also learn Green's true feelings on wintry mix). The book is a review of humanity: how we grow, how we build, how we destroy, and how we observe ourselves. 

    Review from Library Journal

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  • Educated

    by Tara Westover Year Published:

    Educated is a memoir by Tara Westover. It tells the story of her experiences growing up in and subsequently leaving a radical, survivalist Mormon home. Abused by a loved and trusted older brother, Westover struggles for years to escape the cycles of abuse and finally finds her escape through her education. It's a story of struggles and triumphs and the conflict in the mind of a woman torn between family loyalty and her survival instincts.

     

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  • Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City

    by Matthew Desmond Year Published:

    "In Evicted, Princeton sociologist and MacArthur “Genius” Matthew Desmond follows eight families in Milwaukee as they each struggle to keep a roof over their heads. Hailed as “wrenching and revelatory” (The Nation), “vivid and unsettling” (New York Review of Books), Evicted transforms our understanding of poverty and economic exploitation while providing fresh ideas for solving one of twenty-first-century America’s most devastating problems. Its unforgettable scenes of hope and loss remind us of the centrality of home, without which nothing else is possible."     

    Summary/ Review from Amazon.com

     

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  • Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can't Stop Talking

    by Susan Cain Year Published:

    At least one-third of the people we know are introverts. They are the ones who prefer listening to speaking; who innovate and create but dislike self-promotion; who favor working on their own over working in teams. It is to introverts—Rosa Parks, Chopin, Dr. Seuss, Steve Wozniak—that we owe many of the great contributions to society. 

    In Quiet, Susan Cain argues that we dramatically undervalue introverts and shows how much we lose in doing so. She charts the rise of the Extrovert Ideal throughout the twentieth century and explores how deeply it has come to permeate our culture. She also introduces us to successful introverts—from a witty, high-octane public speaker who recharges in solitude after his talks, to a record-breaking salesman who quietly taps into the power of questions. Passionately argued, superbly researched, and filled with indelible stories of real people, Quiet has the power to permanently change how we see introverts and, equally important, how they see themselves.

    Summary/ Review from amazon.com

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  • Gang Leader for a Day: A Rogue Socialist takes to the Streets

    by Sudhir Vankatesh Year Published:

    When first-year graduate student Sudhir Venkatesh walked into an abandoned building in one of Chicago’s most notorious housing projects, he hoped to find a few people willing to take a multiple-choice survey on urban poverty--and impress his professors with his boldness. He never imagined that as a result of this assignment he would befriend a gang leader named JT and spend the better part of a decade embedded inside the projects under JT’s protection. From a privileged position of unprecedented access, Venkatesh observed JT and the rest of his gang as they operated their crack-selling business, made peace with their neighbors, evaded the law, and rose up or fell within the ranks of the gang’s complex hierarchical structure. Examining the morally ambiguous, highly intricate, and often corrupt struggle to survive in an urban war zone, Gang Leader for a Day also tells the story of the complicated friendship that develops between Venkatesh and JT--two young and ambitious men a universe apart. 

    Summary/ Review from Amazon.com

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