Illuminating Literature: When Worlds Collide Review

Do you need an English Literature course for your homeschooled highschooler? Then you might want to check out Illuminating Literature: When Worlds Collide by Writing with Sharon Watson.

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This is a huge and fun Highschool Literature course.  It is designed to be used by students in the 9 grad and up.   It covers a full year (2 semesters) of learning.  You can earn 1 Highschool English or Language Arts credit for completing the course. Lots of humor is woven through out the lessons and lightens the normal mood of studying literature.   The course is made up of a Student Text, Teacher’s Guide, Quiz and Answer Manual, and the Novel Notebook and in addition there is 8 additional literature story books to buy or borrow to complete the course work.

Student Manual

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285 Page, Large Softback Book

70 Lessons divided into 8 chapters.

Self directed.

Retails for $39.49

Teacher’s Guide

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182 Page, Large Softback Book

All 70 Lesson Plans

Teaching Tips

Retails for $16.49

Quiz and Answer Manual

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101 Page, Softback Book

Retails for $8.49

Novel Notebook

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102 Page PDF Download

Has lots of comprehension activities related to each fictional novel the students read during this course.


Additional Reading

Students will read 1 literature book a month during the course.  The author says she chose the books based on their potential to help students apply moral, ethical, spiritual, and biblical Godly life choices.  These additional books are sold separately on the web site, or you can purchase them at online bookstores, or pick them up at the local library.

Pudd’nhead Wilson by Mark Twain
The War of the Worlds by H. G. Wells
The Friendly Persuasion by Jessamyn West
Peter Pan by Sir James Barrie
Warriors Don’t Cry by Melba Pattillo Beals
A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
The Screwtape Letters by C. S. Lewis

What Is Covered In This Course?

  • Text and context
  • Pseudonym (nom de plume)
  • Foreshadowing
  • Conflict types (against self, against society, inner, outer, and so on)
  • Protagonist,  Antagonist
  • Satire,  Irony
  • Theme
  • Allusion
  • Genre
  • Mood,  Tone
  • Symbol, Motif
  • Memento mori
  • Tense
  • Narrative shift
  • Deus ex machina
  • Memoir
  • Hero’s journey
  • Voice
  • Style
  • Backstory
  • Christ figure
  • Plot
  • Ironic ending
  • Plot stages (exposition, inciting incident, and so on)
  • Connotation,  Denotation
  • Alliteration,  Assonance
  • Simile,  Metaphor, Analogy
  • Apostrophe
  • Authorial intrusion
  • Hyperbole
  • Euphemism
  • Empathetic character
  • Reaction
  • Prolepsis (flashforward)
  • Mirror scenes
  • Setup and payoff
  • Telling detail
  • Loose (cumulative) sentences
  • Periodic sentences

How we used this curriculum in our home:

We were sent the Student Text, Teacher’s Guide, Quiz and Answer Manual, the Novel Notebook PDF download, and two of the literature novels Pudd’nhead Wilson by Mark Twain
The War of the Worlds by H. G. Wells.

Illuminating Literature

The first thing I did when receiving this curriculum was to print off the FREE Novel Notebook, hole punch it and put it into a three ring binder to keep it organized.  Then we started reading the curriculum.


There are 8 Chapters expected to last you 2 semesters or about 9 months, a full school year of study.  Each chapter contains between 7 and 10 lessons each.  Each chapter corresponds to one of the literary reading books.


You have about a month to read each chapter, and the corresponding novel, and complete the learning assignments and quizzes.


My son is really enjoying this course.  He has completed reading the first supplemental book Pudd’nhead Wilson, and the 1st chapter of his student workbook.   When you begin a chapter, there are several lessons to complete before reading the novel.  Then there is time allotted to read the novel. This is when to fill in answers and notes in your Novel Notebook.  Finally the student goes back to the Student Book and completes the final lessons in the chapter.  Then they take a quiz.  The quiz can be done in writing or online. The teacher can grade the comprehension of each chapter with a Grading Grid found in the Teacher’s manual.

The next book he will be working on reading and deciphering is The War of the Worlds.  He is so excited about these books.  Both of these literature novels were sent to us for the purpose of the review.  I will need to purchase the remaining books for him to complete the course.   It takes him about an hour each day to work on his Student Workbook and reading.  He could spend half that much time, but he really gets into it and loves to read.  He would rather read than write in the workbook.   But I am so glad to see him put in genuine effort into this curriculum.  We are both excited about this course and so thankful to be adding it to my son’s school year this year.  He will be able to receive 1 credit for English on his Highschool transcript.

You can do this course as an individual or as part of a larger Coop or Book Club or even an online Facebook Book Club specific for this course.  Sharon gives many examples in the Teacher’s Manual about how to do this and has a list of suggested questions you can ask and leadership and participation ideas for the group too.  We chose not to be in a larger book club at this time and my son is enjoying working through the curriculum independently.

You can TRY BEFORE YOU BUY with these FREE download samples.  Check them out and see what a great course this is for your teen.

Social Media

Be sure to follow Sharon Watson on her social media links for all the latest news and updates.


Writing with Sharon Watson Review

Check out what other Homeschool families on the TOS Review Crew had to say about using this curriculum in their home.

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About Melinda Weiser

I am a sinner, saved by grace. I am on a journey and offer to share my story with the hope that it will bless you. My one desire is to bring glory to my creator. I am a wife and the mother of 6 children, plus two in heaven. I enjoy homeschooling, research, teaching, homesteading, natural gardening, grass based farming, cooking, fresh raw milk, herbs, children, midwifery, and music. I am a writer, biblical mentor, and also work part time in the healthy foods and vitamin business I have a BSW degree from Kansas State University, and trained professionally as a medical social worker, biblical counselor, tutor, and vocal performer. Thank you for stopping by to read about our homeschool and family life adventures. Be blessed!

One thought on “Illuminating Literature: When Worlds Collide Review

  1. Sharon Watson

    Hi, Melinda! Your Novel Notebook looks exactly like mine! I used that size 3-ring binder, too.

    Thank you for your review of Illuminating Literature and your fun pictures of your son using it, and thank you for walking people through a chapter of the course and how it works!

    Have a great school year!


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