Narrow Down Theme
A good approach for selection of novels is that narrow down the theme. It can be that you select a certain period of history to pick novels from that era. Also you can narrow down theme in terms of American and British literature's era. Further, you have the choice to narrow down the theme by subject matter. It will help you to pick novels that may interest your students more than those from any other era or the subjects.
Take Advice From Instructors
An advice from literature instructors who have been through this all can help you in selection of novels for your class. Also, you will get an idea what they have been teaching to their students so even if you do not pick their recommended topics you can select topics of your own within the broader line of their literature choices.
Consider Age of Your Students
If you have an overview of your students' age, you can pick novels suiting their choices at that particular, although individual choice of all students will be different. For example, some might like history being told in a story and some might be interested in any social cause being promoted at a particular time of history.
Consult Classics Form British and American Literature
You can pick novels from a list of classics from British and American history. The selection process may not be easy still given there are so many themes and subjects claiming to be from era of classics novel.
Leave Students For Some Preference
In addition to picking novels of your choice for your literature class, it is a good idea to leave a couple of books to be recommended or selected by students. Those can be read along with students, and this will students to get something of what they wanted, which might be quite different from your choice of novel selection.