Planning for College:
Reading Your Way to Academic Success

By Danielle, age 16, New York

If you're like me and many other high school juniors, you're planning for college. You may have already taken your SATs and gotten teacher recommendations and a part time job to raise some cash. And you've already begun volunteering and all of that other wonderful stuff to help reach your dream of going to college and becoming successful later on in life. What else should you do?

I personally enjoy reading. It's always been a hobby of mine, and I always take time in my busy day to sit and read, even if it is only for half an hour or so. Reading helps me relax. It may also have to same effect on you.

If you enjoy reading and you want to be academically ready for college, I recommend the list of 101 Great Books to read before you enter college. Now you may not be able to read all 101, so don't feel bad, because so far I've only read about 15 of them! You also should not worry because you still have some time left until you enter college. But this summer is a perfect time to get going.

Reading books like the ones on this list will help you prepare to write papers and connect to books your professors may mention, enabling you to pick up on their lectures. You can also write a better essay if you are able to connect the topic to books you've read previously.

To give you a taste, by author, here are just the A's and B's:

Achebe, Chinua - Things Fall Apart
Agee, James - A Death in the Family
Austen, Jane - Pride and Prejudice
Baldwin, James - Go Tell It on the Mountain
Beckett, Samuel - Waiting for Godot
Bellow, Saul - The Adventures of Augie March
Bronte, Charlotte - Jane Eyre
Bronte, Emily - Wuthering Heights

The complete list is on, but here is the direct link to the list of 101 Great Books. I hope I've helped make your preparation for college easier by giving you a great list of books to help you with your academic success.

Good luck!

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February & March Magazine Issues

March 15, 2012

The February and March issues of Sweet Designs Magazine are now online, featuring a combined 53 new articles and features!!

- Cover: Stephanie Lynn reflects on 5 years
- Cover: India (of Darn-licious knitwear)
- Life in the dumps (moving in with my bf)
- The difference between men and women
- Angels among us (parts 1 and 2)
- Arts graduates & the dark night of the soul
- Triple threat (how I survived my teen yrs)
- Dating isn't easy (my true story)
- How to turn not-so-great gifts ... (fashion)
- Ten reasons to love being single
- Taking the big leap (college)
- Valentine's Day (not what you'd expect!)
- The last of the cold (hopefully) (fashion)
- A month full of love
- Ten tips for successful airline travel
- Reasons I love writing for SDM
- Who needs love?
- They're not all the same
- The life I'm glad I don't have (fiction)
- Professional dress/ finding Fendi (fashion)
- An airport anniversary: a true story
- Inappropriate Facebook photos
- The perks of a big city (college)
- A night(mare) to forget (part 2)
- The Anita Blake series (book review)
- Saving June by Hannah Harrington (book)
- Under the Mesquite by GG McCall (book)
- The Lullaby by Sarah Dessen (book)
- If I Stay by Gayle Foreman (book review)
- My sweetheart (original poetry)
- Isn't it funny (original poetry)
- The stranger (original poetry)
- A winter wonderland (original poetry)
- One night valentine
- The thick envelopes (college acceptance)
- Southern love
- Healthy hair and vitamins
- It's a date (dating idea alternatives)
- The 30 hour famine
- School's out forever!
- Marching right back into spring? (fashion)
- Dear John
- When TV shows depict your life
- 3 Fun ways to rock spring's hottest trends
- Neglected teeth
- Starting something new
- Guy movies
- To hesitate or dive in?
- Deadly, by Julie Chibbaro (book review)
- Beastly, by Alex Flinn (book review)
- I don't care (poetry)
- Together, alone (poetry)

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