This American Literature textbook is almost exactly the textbook I'd write for my ESL students if I were ever so ambitious. It has several stories in it that I've always copied for my classes to supplement what was in our actual textbooks (such as "The Cask of Amontillado" and "Dr. Heiddeger's Experiment"), several ironic classics I remember loving in high school (such as "The Last Leaf", "The Gift of the Magi", and "The Lady or the Tiger"), and many stories that are new to me (such as "Yoruba" and "There Will Come Soft Rains"). Thankfully, the stories have a wide range of emotions attached to them which are not all tragedies as one usually finds in literature texts.
I love the format of the textbook. The author has 3 separate tables of contents to order the stories by literary topic, subject, or date. The stories are ordered from easiest to hardest. Each story begins with 2 vocabulary activities and pre-reading questions. Each story is also followed by a journal section (so we don't have to use separate notebooks as we did before), questions, discussion topics, and writing exercises. The editor of the book also suggests summarizing each section of the story in the margins. I plan to have students read one story per week so that we can get more out of each story. With some introductory material of my own and a student survey at the beginning of the course to find out which stories the students might like most, I think this book is going to be a wonderful change for the class. Yay!