This collection includes first chapters and other excerpts from works at the fourth grade reading level. They were selected from the Lit2Go free audiobook collection by the Florida Center for Instructional Technology at USF. The Lit2Go Collection features more than 200 complete works including over 5,000 individual passages. Download the remaining chapters of books you are interested in from either the Lit2Go section of the University of South Florida on iTunes U site (audio only) or the Florida Center for Instructional Technology's Lit2Go website (audio, text, and some suggested activities).
Black Beauty, Part 1, Chapter 1: My Early Home
Black Beauty is a novel told in the first person (or "first horse") as an autobiographical memoir told by a highbred horse named Black Beauty-beginning with his carefree days as a colt on an English farm, to his difficult life pulling cabs in London, to his happy retirement in the country.
The Tale of Tommy Fox, Chapter 1: Tommy Enjoys Himself
The Tale of Tommy Fox is a story about the adventures of the mischievous Tommy Fox and his escapades with the Farmer, his dog, and his boy.
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Chapter 1
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer is set in the 1840's in the fictitious town of St. Petersburg, Missouri, where Tom lives with his deceased mother's sister, Aunt Polly, and his half-brother, Sid. After Tom plays hooky from school, he is made to whitewash Aunt Polly's fence as punishment, but persuades his friends to do it for him.
Tom's real trouble begins when he and Huck Finn witness a murder committed by Injun Joe. They swear to never tell, and the wrong man, Muff Potter, is accused of the crime. Tom, Huck, and a friend run away to be pirates, but become aware that the whole town is searching for their bodies. Each of the boys make an appearance at their own funerals, where they are greeted with open arms. As Muff Potter's trial begins, Tom is overcome with guilt and testifies against Injun Joe, who quickly flees the courtroom.
Later, on a class field trip to a cave, Tom and his love interest, Becky Thatcher, get lost. As they run out of food and candles searching for a way out, Tom and Becky come upon Injun Joe, who is using the cave as a hideout. Tom finds a way out just as the search party is giving up. The town rejoices and Judge Thatcher, Becky's father, has the cave sealed, unknowingly trapping Injun Joe inside where he starves to death.
The Secret Garden, Chapter 1: There Is No One Left
The Secret Garden (1909) is one of Frances Hodgson Burnett’s most popular novels. The book tells the story of Mary Lennox, a spoiled, contrary, solitary child raised in India but sent to live in her uncle’s manor in Yorkshire after her parents' death. She is left to herself by her uncle, Mr. Craven, who travels often to escape the memory of his deceased wife. The only person who has time for Mary is her chambermaid, Martha. It is Martha who tells Mary about Mrs. Craven's walled garden, which has been closed and locked since her death. Mary becomes intrigued by the prospect of the forgotten garden, and her quest to find out the garden's secrets leads her to discover other secrets hidden in the manor. These discoveries combined with the unlikely friendships she makes along the way help Mary come out of her shell and find new fascination with the world around her.
Whitefoot the Woodmouse, Chapter 1: Whitefoot Spends a Happy Winter
An introduction to Whitefoot, who is a very optimistic mouse. Even humans have something to learn from his happy way of life and his various adventures.
The Story of Dr. Doolittle, Chapter 1: Puddleby
The Story of Doctor Dolittle is the first of his Doctor Dolittle books, a series of children's novels about a man who learns to talk to animals and becomes their champion around the world.