Tell Us If You've Read These Books and We'll Guess Your High School GPA

EDUCATION

William J. Wright

7 Min Quiz

Image: Jacobs Stock Photography Ltd/DigitalVision/Getty Images

About This Quiz

Love them or loathe them, literary classics are a fact of life for high school students. Exposure to great books during those formative years can inspire a lifelong passion for the written word, or as is so often the case, an aversion to reading anything longer than a text message. Sadly, academic agendas and passionless teaching can transform reading into a chore — the educational equivalent of eating your vegetables. While it may be good for you, it's liable to leave a bad taste in your mouth. So, it's no wonder that many students (and maybe you were one of them) felt held captive by the canon. Nevertheless, the value of reading for pleasure shouldn't be underestimated. Many of the benefits are obvious: improved concentration, expanded vocabulary, the cultivation of better writing skills, and reduced stress. There's also mounting scientific evidence that reading fiction may even make you a better and more empathetic person. It's never too late. The library is still free.

Don't worry. If you were the kid who screamed out, "How is knowing what the symbolism of the moors means in 'Wuthering Heights' ever going to help me in life?" this quiz is as much for you as it is for all the literary prodigies out there. Relax. The pressure's off.

If you were your high school's answer to Rory Gilmore, you only studied for the tests, or you just skimmed your neighbor's notes, we're willing to wager that we can find your place on the academic spectrum, and maybe you'll discover or rediscover some favorite books along away. 



Herman Melville's "Moby Dick" is a tale of obsession and revenge on the high seas. Did you slay the white whale?

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Mary Shelley's "Frankenstein" has been interpreted as everything from a warning about unchecked technology to a terrifying treatise on motherhood. Did you read this monster of a book?

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Emily Bronte's gothic romance "Wuthering Heights" is a tale of love, cruelty, and revenge set on the English moors. Did you open your window for this beloved novel?

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Did you make it to the attic of "Jane Eyre's" gothic house of mysteries?

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John Steinbeck's novella "Of Mice and Men" tells the story of two itinerant farm workers during the Great Depression. Have you read it or were you too busy living off the fat of the land?

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John Knowles' 1959 novel "A Separate Peace" is an elegy to lost innocence. Have you taken the leap and read this book?

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"The Metamorphosis" by Franz Kafka tells the story of Gregor Samsa, who awakes to find himself transformed into a monstrous insect. Did you read it or do bugs make your skin crawl?

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Joseph Conrad's "The Heart of Darkness" tells the story of Charles Marlowe and his journey up the Congo River to find the elusive ivory trader, Kurtz. Have you read this one, or are you afraid of the dark?

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Set during the American Civil War, Louisa May Alcott's 1868 novel "Little Women" follows the lives of four sisters. Have you read this beloved classic?

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One of Charles Dickens' most popular novels, "Great Expectations" is the story of a poor orphan who transcends his station in life thanks to a secret benefactor. Did you read it?

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Did you make it through the savage fight for survival that is "The Lord of the Flies"?

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Mark Twain's "Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" is among the most controversial works of American literature. Have you read it or are books just too "sivilized" for you?

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Published in 1951,"The Catcher in the Rye" is J.D. Salinger's perennially controversial novel of teen angst. Have you read it?

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Daniel Keyes' "Flowers For Algernon" tells the story of Charlie Gordon, a mentally challenged man who undergoes experimental surgery to boost his intellect. Have you read this heartbreaking tale?

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Have you driven a stake through the heart of Bram Stoker's "Dracula"?

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Not to be confused with H.G. Wells' science fiction classic, Ralph Ellison's "Invisible Man" concerns itself with racial rather than physical invisibility. Have you read this powerful novel?

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"Mythology: Timeless Tales of Gods and Heroes" by Edith Hamilton is a compilation of ancient myths and legends. Have you stolen lightning from the gods and read these epic tales?

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Did you commit the thoughtcrime of reading George Orwell's "1984"?

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Have you explored the accursed confines of "The House of the Seven Gables"?

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It would be tragic to skip over Sophocles. Have you read "Oedipus Rex"?

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Many actors consider this play cursed! Do you have the blood of Shakespeare's "Macbeth" on your hands?

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Ray Bradbury's 1953 novel "Fahrenheit 451" is set in a dystopian future where books are forbidden. Have you read this science fiction classic?

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F. Scott Fitzgerald's Jazz Age novel "The Great Gatsby" tells the story of self-made millionaire Jay Gatsby and his doomed love for the inconstant Daisy Buchanan. Say, old sport, have you read this American classic?

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"Ethan Frome" is the story of a tragic love affair set against the backdrop of a bleak New England winter. Have you read Edith Wharton's most enduring novel?

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Jonathan Swift's satiric "Gulliver's Travels" skewers class, politics, religion and human nature. Have you taken the journey to Lilliput?

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Henry David Thoreau's "Walden" is a celebration of simple living. Have you read this declaration of personal independence?

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Did you slay the beasties of "Beowulf"?

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Do you know the sinful secrets of "The Picture of Dorian Gray"?

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In Robert Louis Stevenson's novel "Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde," Henry Jekyll accidentally creates a murderous alter ego. Have you read this Victorian shocker?

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Have you felt the icy grip of "The Turn of the Screw"?

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