Formal Literary Canon
Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
Written as an epistolary novel, Frankenstein is told in multiple point of views, switching from Dr. Frankenstein's to the monster's. The main character, Doctor Victor Frankenstein, taints with nature and spends months trying to form a creation out of old body parts. With secrecy, he is able to bring his creation to life and is horrified by its appearance. The monster leads Victor into remorse and isolation, as he realizes what he did is wrong, for the monster "ought to be thy Adam, but [is] rather the fallen angel." Victor later abandons the monster when the monster decides to kill Victor's family since Victor never created him a wife. The ongoing conflict of man vs. nature is important to learn from this novel, for there are always consequences when you do something you know is wrong.
The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Hamlet by William Shakespeare
Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison
Macbeth by William Shakespeare
Night by Elie Wiesel
Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen
The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
While the children were busy at the Radley place, Atticus encountered a colored man, named Tom Robinson, who is accused of raping a white woman. Atticus agreed to defend Tom, which causes everyone in the neighborhood to look down on the Finch family. As the trial nears, Tom Robinson faces Mayella Ewell (girl he "raped") and her father, Bob, who accused Tom in the first place. The evidence clearly states that Tom is innocent, but the verdict states otherwise and he is sent to jail, where he is eventually shot to death while trying to escape. Although Bob Ewell got what he wanted out of the trial, he still feels like Atticus embarrassed him in front of everyone, so he decides to get revenge and attack Atticus' children, but Boo intervenes and saves them, stabbing Ewell instead. The lessons learned from this novel make it an important read, for it teaches everyone to to not judge a book by its cover and to always do the right thing, no matter the outcome.