Students love "The Most Dangerous Game." They love the story, suspense, and characters. What they don't love is the lengthy exposition. I teach conflict with this story, but by the time we get to the main conflict, students get bored and check out.
I took the first half of the story and turned it into a two-part reader's theater. The first part takes students to the initial discussion with Zaroff with a chance for them to predict what the most dangerous game is. The second part takes them to Rainsford and Zaroff's "hunt."
Even reluctant readers get engaged by acting out the parts and participating in the discussion. This reader's theater hooks kids quickly (Whitney has a pirate accent, and I include plenty of jokes students will roll their eyes at but secretly laugh at), but still focuses on them reading and analyzing the literature.
There's also an activity where students are to analyze the internal and external conflict of the story.
I use these types of Reader's Theater (dubbed "Whit Skits" by my students) for challenging texts. Students ask for them with every story.