All-School Read

All-School Read

The Holderness All-School Read is an annual tradition for Holderness’s students, parents, faculty, staff, and alumni. The nominations are always inspired, sometimes silly, very often intellectual, riveting, passionate, and/or quirky. The pool is always wide-ranging, each newly nominated book stirring debate and ideas about what we read and why we read. Then, the Secret and August Committee meets—and voila! A book is chosen for all the community to enjoy during the summer break. When school commences in the fall, the conversations begin—on the paths to class, around the tables at dinner, and of course in the classrooms. What parts did you like? What surprised you? Would you read the book again? It’s a great way to begin the year as a community.
Students: Make sure to check out the Reading Questions and other summer assignments by logging into the myHOLDERNESS portal and clicking on the Summer Work Resource Board.

Purchase The All-School Reads

eBook copies are also available through the Alfond Library’s Overdrive ebook collection

And the 2020 winner is...

It is a pleasure to announce this year's All-School Summer Reads. Yes, you read that correctly: for the first time ever, we are inviting you to read either or both of these two books: The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas and The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot.

The Hate U Give was proposed by Dawn Gagnon, mother of rising senior Garrison. Here is an excerpt from her proposal: "The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas touches on several issues, teens, police brutality, minorities, women of color and empowerment. The novel was written as an expansion of a short story Ms. Thomas wrote in college reacting to the 2009 police shooting of Oscar Grant. The main character is a young black woman who is caught between the two worlds: her poor, mostly black neighborhood and her mostly white prep school. She witnesses a fatal shooting that changes her life and how she sees herself."

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks was proposed by Cecily Peterson, mother of rising senior Chip. This is from her proposal: "Each of our lives have been made healthier by a woman who is neither our parent, our doctor, nor anyone we know. Henrietta Lacks, without choice or remuneration, provided a gift of health to the world. Her story, and that of her family, is masterfully and honestly delivered in this work of non-fiction by an author who admits she did not know what she was getting herself into when she began a decade’s long relationship with this work. Critical reading for students and masters of science, medicine, history, and social justice, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks reminds us all of the legacy of slavery, the undercurrent of institutionalized racism, and the burden of poverty in America."

We hope the reading of one or both of these books will provide enrichment and fulfillment over the summer months. Students will all be asked to write about their summer reading in English class next year and may reach into other classes, as well.

May your summer be filled with books.

Past Reads

Holderness School
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