There are some jurisdictions where teachers are given a free hand, in selecting reading materials for their high school literature students. This is as opposed to other jurisdictions, where the selection of reading materials for high school literature classes is done by, say, the school district or national curriculum boards. If you happen to be in one such jurisdiction (where you have a free hand in selection of reading materials), there are several factors that you need to take into consideration, when selecting the reading materials for high school literature students.
Firstly, the reading materials you ultimately select need to be interesting, and capable of capturing the readers’ attentions. The objective is to make the students develop a love for books, and if you choose uninspiring reading materials, that objective won’t be achieved.
Secondly, the reading materials you ultimately select need to be challenging enough for the minds of the readers. Don’t underestimate the abilities of the high students. Some of them turn out to be folks who are already doing part time jobs – and dealing with ‘complex’ things like Walmart schedules, Walmart paychecks, Walmartone benefits… and so on. So if you choose for them texts that are too simple, you won’t be challenging them enough, and you risk losing their interest/attention — soon or later. On the other extreme, you need to avoid texts that are too challenging, knowing very well that some texts are best left for college literature students: who have better developed abilities and more time for the study of literature.
Thirdly, the reading materials you ultimately select need to be of such a nature that they can be quite easily analyzed. In most cases, the teaching of literature in high school revolves around things like the analysis of themes, plots, characters and stylistic devices. Now there are books in which such analysis is easy, and others in which such analysis is very hard. The books you select should be the ones where the analysis – and subsequent teaching – won’t be too hard.