Dog Days of Summer

by Julie Allen

“It was 7 minutes after midnight. The dog was lying on the grass in the middle of the lawn in front of Mrs. Shears’s house. Its eyes were closed. It looked as if it was running on its side, the way dogs run when they think they are chasing a cat in a dream.”

So begins the Lead Up 2018 summer read: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by British author, Mark Haddon.


What is it about summer that entices us to escape into the love, heartache, mystery or intrigue of a good book? Perhaps the habit stems from the teachers who waved goodbye with one hand while passing out a summer reading list with the other. Or, maybe it’s because books (well, some books) are the ultimate source of relaxation. There’s nothing quite like an afternoon in the sun with a good book at your side.

Whatever the reason, we’re always supportive of any kind of reading. In fact, out-of-school reading is one of Lead Up’s major strategies to prepare our student leaders for college and career.  Building vocabulary, improving brain function, reducing stress – take your pick. And for learning something new and appreciating diversity; books can’t be beat.

While curling up with a good book brings both knowledge and pleasure, one of the greatest joys of reading can come from the excitement we get from sharing the stories we love with others. What are you reading this summer? Do you have a beloved title you think our Leaders should experience?

Share your recommendations below and help our leaders build their college-ready reading lists.

P.S. If you haven’t yet read “The Curious Incident,” we highly recommend it.

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