Reading is one of the most fun and effective ways to improve your English language skills. It can help to expand your vocabulary and expose you to different sentence structures, all while you enjoy some wonderful stories.
E-readers and tablets make learning English even easier because if you don’t know a word, you can simply click on it to read its definition. On the Kindle you can even add new words you’ve learnt to its Vocabulary Builder feature, which is stored on the device. Others recommend listening to and reading text at the same time as an excellent way to enhance the learning process. Kindle’s Whispersync for Voice is designed for just this purpose and includes audio with selected books, so you can listen and follow the text as you read.
Here is our selection of nine great novels to help improve your English…
1. The Wind in the Willows – Kenneth Grahame
This classic tale takes place in the English countryside and shares the adventures of the animals that live by the river. Grahame’s simple use of language with imaginative stories makes this a pleasurable read for both adults and children.
2. Lord of the Flies – William Golding
This book is a modern classic and a popular study text for schools all over the world. When a group of boys are isolated on a desert island, the society they create descends into ruthless behaviour. Golding uses dramatic and descriptive language, almost like poetry, that makes you feel as though you’re in the scenes yourself.
3. The Old Man and the Sea – Ernest Hemingway
Ernest Hemingway is well-known for his clear, straightforward writing style and short sentence structure, which is great for English language learners and many people have read it in school. It’s the courageous tale of a Cuban fisherman and his battle to land a giant marlin and it’s a perfect introduction to Hemingway as an author.
4. Animal Farm – George Orwell
This short, allegorical novel tells the story of animals rebelling against their human masters, and is a satire of Stalin era in the Soviet Union. Orwell uses simple English to appeal to all reading levels with a ‘less is more’ approach, and the animals speak in short, clear sentences.