Summer Reading

I think I am the only girl in the history of high school that took seriously the summer reading.  And by that I mean that I not only was STRESSIN’ that I hadn’t completed a novel (probably some pastoral romance like Julie because you know those nuns would have been finding The Thornbirds wayyy tooooo racy) by the 4th of July, but I was taking copious notes, chewing my pen as I considered whether Mr. Darcy was really a protagonist or villain, and slapping those post-it notes between chapter pages —

Again. Reason 32934802582 why I got my first kiss at the painfully late of 17.  And I kid!

I was 18!

When late August came and we pleated skirt-rocking bun-haired lasses found ourselves stuffing books into a different locker in some hall that totally felt promoted from the dank corner of the unlit hall we were formerly occupying in locker land, there was much buzz about how little of the summer reading everyone had done.

Girls are good at this, aren’t they?  “Ohmygawsh, I am going to fail this!  I didn’t study at all!”  This means, “I will probably nail this.”

Why do women do this? Fake like everything is very hard, fake like we are very fat, fake like we are broke, when none of those things we know to be true.

Anyway. Summer reading. I remember it, and I remember what a chore it was. What was the best assigned book you read once upon a summer? I think Dead Man Walking by Sr Helen Prejean was one of my favorites. Definitely gave me a new set of lenses for the death penalty.


My girl lovin’ her some story hour at the BPL with her mate….


Our good pals Maddy, Claire and their mama school our Madi in Berensteins….

summer reading

About The Author


Kendraspondence is the personal mischief of Kendra Stanton Lee.


  1. OK…I TOTALLY took summer reading seriously!!! I was just yapping at my mom about my niece who is going to be a junior this year and how she informed she did NOT do her summer reading!! AND she told me she didn’t care if they booted her from Honors English…I would have DIED.

    Slaughter House 5 by Kurt Vonnegut and Night by Eli Wiesel are my faves…

  2. I think “To Kill A Mockingbird” for ninth grade…..I’d read it before, but I think that was the first non Judy Blume book that I read multiple times realizing that I could continue to read it for the rest of my life and love it more each time.

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