Accessible Classic Literature for Middle-School

Accessible classic literature for middle-school readers? Poe Illustrated will fill that bill. Adapted Classics has this Edgar Allan Poe collection in pre-production right now. We plan to publish in April 2021. It will include three illustrated Poe stories – our previously published Thou Art the Man and Hop-Frog, plus a new Adapted Classics title – The System of Dr. Tarr and Professor Fether.

We know many middle school students have like reading classic literature just as originally written and presented. But we also know that many readers in this age group reject this type of reading matter for personal enjoyment. And, for that matter, they would prefer to reject it as a classroom assignment. Therefore, we publish illustrated classic literature with this latter group of readers in mind.

What makes Literature Accessible?

What makes for accessible classic literature? First and foremost, who doesn’t like to look at illustrations executed with surpassing skill and imagination? That’s exactly what Marc Johnson-Pencook brings to our adapted classic stories. You’ll see a series of three of them attached to this post. Poe Illustrated will include 49 illustrations like these.

Secondly, short is accessible. As an introduction to classic literature, short stories are the best approach for the audience we focus on. Long classic novels usually seem too daunting for young readers to try. Likewise, at first, they often seem too daunting for adults.

Finally, classic literature usually requires some language modification to make it accessible for middle school readers. We deeply respect the authors who created the stories we adapt. Consequently, we only lightly touch-up their prose, mostly to simplify it. But also to modernize it. We are proud that Voya Magazine rated our Adapted Classics collection as Top Shelf Fiction for Middle School Readers.

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