Required Reading: The Great Gatsby

Last Thursday, after I finished reading The Great Gatsby, I found myself in a situation that I know all too well being a high school student: saying, ‘I enjoyed that, but I would’ve enjoyed it much more if I hadn’t had to cram it for school.’ This brings up the question that many students have been asking for years, why do I have to read books for school? It only ruins the books for people who enjoy reading, and everyone else simply doesn’t read the book.

I actually enjoy reading books in English class! It has introduced lots of books to me that I would’ve never read otherwise, but, due do to looming due dates forcing me to cram, I find it hard to enjoy some required books. My recent read of The Great Gatsby, sadly, falls into the second category. I was enjoying the book until I got to the second half and had to read one hundred pages in one night. Once I finished the book all I could think was that I enjoyed the book but I would’ve enjoyed it a lot more if I could’ve taken my time with it. I might reread The Great Gatsby sometime in the future in an attempt to better understand the novel, but we’ll see.

Have you ever been in this situation? Do you tend to like required reading or does required reading usually taint your enjoyment of the books? Tips for not getting behind on required reading?

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