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Below you’ll find a list of books and movies that I enjoy.

A good place to look for an SSR book.


  • The entire Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling- If you haven’t read these books you should do yourself a favor and pick up the first one ASAP. Once you start reading it becomes hard to stop, and the next thing you know six months of your life has flown by. My favorite quote that I saw concerning Harry Potter came out this summer: “Harry Potter is about confronting fears, finding inner strength and doing what is right in the face of adversity. Twilight is about how important it is to have a boyfriend.” -Stephen King
  • World War Z by Max Brooks- I currently list this as my favorite book. An eerily plausible look at the complete disintegration of civilization in the face of the zombie apocolypse. But really, if the word zombies doesn’t move you to read this book now than I wouldn’t recommend it. Also, if you don’t love everything zombie then I’m sorry, but we can’t be friends anymore.
  • Columbine by Dave Cullen- Released ten years after the horrible shootings at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado Dave Cullen went incredibly in-depth to get into the mind of the killers. Another disturbing read, made all the more unsetteling due to the fact that it’s real.
  • All in the Timing by David Ives. A book full of short comedic plays. Ives is probably my favorite source of material for ensemble acting when I pick pieces for large group speech. His material is very funny, and I find myself laughing out loud even when I read. (In the classroom library.)
  • The Blind Side by Michael Lewis. This book did inspire the popular movie, which was released around this time last year. The book is a good mixture of biography and non-fiction information about football. I would recommend this book to all football fans.
  • I am America, and so can you! by Stephen Colbert. If you’re a fan of The Colbert Report on Comedy Central or good political satire I would highly recommend this book. (Coming soon to the classroom library.)
  • The Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins. These books are just as good as everyone says they are. The first 50 pages are a little slow, but once you get into the action you won’t be able to put them down. (1 copy of each in my classroom library.)
  • The Help by Kathryn Stockett. A great look at race relations in the South during the 1960s in the era of civil rights. I read it this summer and did nothing but read for 1.5 days. A great book told from three different perspectives.
  • Looking for Alaska by John Green is a great young adult novel about a boy and his experiences at a boarding school in Alabama. It’s written in a very unique way; instead of chapters the book is sectioned off in a timeline format. It begins 100 or so days ‘before’ and goes through the climax of the book, then after the climax it talks about the events in terms of how many days had passed since the climax. It’s a great coming of age novel and it holds your interest throughout the entire book.
  • The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie is a very quick read, which puts a personal story on the hardships that many Native Americans face in today’s society.


  • State of Play– Released in 2009 I believe this is the greatest piece of film centering around journalism since All the President’s Men.
  • Good Night and Good Luck- Another journalism based film that dramatizes Edward R. Murrow’s showdown with Wisconsin Senator Joseph McCarthy.
  • Wayne’s World– Best SNL movie ever. Sorry Blues Brothers fans.
  • The Big Lebowski– My favorite movie ever, but that’s just like, my opinion, man.  Synopsis: All the Dude ever wanted was his rug back.

Got a book or movie that I should add to my list? Tell me about it with a comment.

News and journalism links

Interesting information on social media and Twitter.

The Daily Iowan

The Gazette


NY Times

Mashable- great for technology junkies.


Written by CRWashPhillips

October 11, 2010 at 1:37 pm

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