My students chose topics from Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird in order to conduct research. As we read, I simply told them to consider researching topics of interest to them prompted by our reading. Once approved, they would then use the topics for mini-research papers after finishing the novel.
Here is the list of 28 topics entirely formed by my 9th grade honors students. They enjoyed learning more about all of these and reporting back to the class. Enjoy!