Vocabulary Lists

Literature

"Wonder" by R.J. Palacio, Part I

In this novel, a boy with facial anomalies tries to navigate the sometimes treacherous world of public school. Learn these words from R.J. Palacio's heartwarming and thought-provoking bestseller. Here are links to our lists for the novel: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3
30 Words

"Dulce et Decorum Est," by Wilfred Owen

In this poem, World War I veteran Wilfred Owen describes the horrors of war. The Latin Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori means "It is sweet and proper to die for one's country."
27 Words

"The Amber Spyglass" by Philip Pullman, Chapters 1-8

When the third book of Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials trilogy begins, Lyra has been kidnapped, and both Will and the evil forces of the Consistorial Court are searching for her. Lyra and Will must fight against a power-hungry archangel as they learn more about the mysterious substance called Dust. Here are links to our lists for The Amber Spyglass: Chapters 1-8, Chapters 9-16, Chapters 17-23, Chapters 24-31, Chapters 32-38 Here are links to our lists for works by Philip Pullman: The Golden Compass, The Subtle Knife, The Amber Spyglass
45 Words

"The Subtle Knife" by Philip Pullman, Chapters 1-3

In the second book of Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials trilogy, Lyra and her new friend Will learn how to open windows into different worlds. They discover truths that will change their lives and the universe. Here are links to our lists for The Subtle Knife: Chapters 1-3, Chapters 4-6, Chapters 7-9, Chapters 10-12, Chapters 13-15 Here are links to our lists for works by Philip Pullman: The Golden Compass, The Subtle Knife, The Amber Spyglass
45 Words

"The Golden Compass," Vocabulary from Chapters 1-4

This first novel in the award-winning "His Dark Materials" trilogy follows Lyra Belacqua as she attempts to rescue a kidnapped friend and learn about a mysterious substance called Dust. Practice these words and join Lyra on the beginning of her journey through Philip Pullman's fantasy world. Here are links to our lists for the novel: Chapters 1-4, Chapters 5-9, Chapters 10-13, Chapters 14-17, Chapters 18-23
40 Words

"The Remains of the Day" by Kazuo Ishiguro, Prologue: July 1956 - Day One: Evening

This novel by Nobel laureate Kazuo Ishiguro explores the interior life of a traditional English butler. Here are links to our lists for the novel: Prologue: July 1956-Day One: Evening, Day Two: Morning, Day Two: Afternoon-Day Three: Morning, Day Three: Evening, Day Four: Afternoon-Day Six: Evening Here are links to our lists for other works by Kazuo Ishiguro: A Village After Dark
45 Words

"Ulysses" by Alfred, Lord Tennyson

In Tennyson's poem, the hero Ulysses (Odysseus) has returned from his voyages but longs for new adventures. Read the text here.
32 Words

"A Village After Dark" by Kazuo Ishiguro

In this unsettling short story, a man returns to the village where he spent his youth. Rich with ambiguity, the text explores the uneasy relationship between the past and the present. Read the story by the Nobel Prize-winning author here.
20 Words

"The Sun Is Also a Star," Vocabulary from Prologue-Natasha

In one of the most popular and highly praised YA novels of 2016, Nicola Yoon tells the story of two teens who meet and fall in love over the course of a single day in New York City. Learn these words and see why this book shines. Here are links to our lists for the novel: Prologue-Natasha, Multiverses-Daniel, The Waitress-Daniel, Joe-Epilogue
40 Words

"Nothing But the Truth," Vocabulary from Chapters 1-4

Using journal entries, memos, letters, and dialogue, award-winning author Avi pokes fun at high school, politics, and the media. This satirical novel demonstrates that truth is always subjective. Here are links to our lists for the novel: Chapters 1-4, Chapters 5-8, Chapters 9-12, Chapters 13-15, Chapters 16-19
20 Words

An Excerpt from "The Underground Railroad" by Colson Whitehead

Colson Whitehead's reimagining of African-American history, The Underground Railroad, was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction on April 10, 2017. The novel had previously won the National Book Award this year as well. Even in the vocabulary from this small excerpt the reader gets a sense of Whitehead's vision and the care with which he portrays his characters. Here are 17 words from an excerpt from "The Underground Railroad".
17 Words

Derek Walcott (1930-2017) Tribute List

Nobel laureate Derek Walcott died on March 17, 2017. Born on St. Lucia to two schoolteachers, he grew up realizing that "if you learned poetry, you shouted it out." Read this list aloud to hear his lyrical rhythms of the sea of life.
15 Words

"Dracula," Vocabulary from Chapters 1-4

Enter the world of the UnDead through these words from eyewitness accounts presented by Bram Stoker. This list focuses on Dracula. Here are links to our lists for the novel: Chapters 1-4, Chapters 5-10, Chapters 11-16, Chapters 17-22, Chapters 23-27 Here is a link to the full text: Dracula
40 Words

"Measure for Measure," Vocabulary from Act 1

According to both human and divine laws, which of the characters developed by William Shakespeare can measure up? This list focuses on restraint. Here are links to our lists for the play: Act 1, Act 2, Act 3, Act 4, Act 5 Here is a link to the full text: Measure for Measure
35 Words

"Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea," Vocabulary from First Part: Chapters 1-8

Translated by F.P. Walter, these words from the narrator created by Jules Verne will guide you through an underwater tour of the world. This list focuses on monsters. Here are links to our lists for the novel: First Part: Chapters 1-8, First Part: Chapters 9-16, First Part: Chapters 17-24, Second Part: Chapters 1-7, Second Part: Chapters 8-14, Second Part: Chapters 15-23 Here is a link to the full text: Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea
40 Words

"Tess of the d'Urbervilles," Vocabulary from Phase the First

Thomas Hardy defended his main character with the subtitle "A Pure Woman," but this did not prevent Victorian censors from deleting some of the words in this list. Here are links to our lists for the novel: Phase the First, Phase the Second, Phase the Third, Phase the Fourth, Phase the Fifth, Phase the Sixth, Phase the Seventh Here is a link to the full text: Tess of the d'Urbervilles
40 Words

"The Last Olympian," Vocabulary from Chapters 1-4

In the final book of Rick Riordan's Olympians series, Percy is nearly 16 and faced with choices that will affect not only himself but his entire world. Learn these words from Percy's final adventure. Here are links to our lists for Book 5 of the pentalogy: Chapters 1-4, Chapters 5-8, Chapters 9-13, Chapters 14-18, Chapters 19-23 Here are links to our lists for the "Percy Jackson and the Olympians" series: The Lightning Thief, The Sea of Monsters, The Titan's Curse, The Battle of the Labyrinth, The Last Olympian
35 Words

"The War of the Worlds," Vocabulary from Book 1: Chapters 1-7

Reporting on a Martian invasion, these words from the narrator created by H.G. Wells gripped readers' imaginations in terrifying and inspiring ways. This list focuses on intelligence. Here are links to our lists for the novel: Book 1: Chapters 1-7, Book 1: Chapters 8-12, Book 1: Chapters 13-17, Book 2: Chapters 1-4, Book 2: Chapters 5-10 Here is a link to the full text: The War of the Worlds
40 Words

"The Handmaid's Tale," Vocabulary from Chapters 1-12

Through a first-person narrator whose identity is questionable, Margaret Atwood speculates on what America would be like if it were governed by a totalitarian theocracy. Here are links to our lists for the novel: Chapters 1-12, Chapters 13-23, Chapters 24-30, Chapters 31-39, Chapters 40-46
40 Words

"Ivanhoe," Vocabulary from Chapters 1-8

Images of medieval England were popularized by Walter Scott through his portrayal of knights, kings, and outlaws. Here are links to our lists for the novel: Chapters 1-8, Chapters 9-17, Chapters 18-27, Chapters 28-36, Chapters 37-44 Here is a link to the full text: Ivanhoe: A Romance
40 Words

"The Color Purple," Vocabulary from Preface-page 53

Confronting adversity in rural Georgia, the characters created by award-winning author Alice Walker find strength in God and sisterhood. Here are links to our lists for the epistolary novel: Preface-page 53, pages 54-110, pages 111-167, pages 168-225, pages 226-288
40 Words

"Purple Hibiscus," Vocabulary from Palm Sunday-page 54

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie describes lives falling apart from religious, political, and familial conflicts in Nigeria. Here are links to our lists for the novel: Palm Sunday-page 54, pages 55-109, pages 110-181, pages 182-253, After Palm Sunday-The Present
40 Words

"What Maisie Knew," Vocabulary from Introduction-Chapter 8

What can a young child know about the actions and desires of adults? Find out through the words of the omniscient narrator created by Henry James. Here are links to our lists for the novel: Introduction-Chapter 8, Chapters 9-16, Chapters 17-24, Chapters 25-31 Here is a link to the full text: What Maisie Knew
40 Words

"Echo," Vocabulary from Germany

Echoes of folktales and history surround the war-torn lives of three children Pam Munoz Ryan connects with a magical harmonica. Here are links to our lists for the novel: Germany, Pennsylvania, California-New York
45 Words

"A Thousand Splendid Suns," Vocabulary from Part 1

Khaled Hosseini shines the light on two Afghan women whose lives and goals merge through an abusive husband. Here are links to our lists for the novel: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4-Afterword
45 Words

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