This article presents the pedagogical implementation of the reader-response theory in a class of English as a foreign language with language pre-service teachers as they experience the reading of two short stories. The research took place over a 16 week period in which students kept a portfolio of their written responses to the stories. Participants also discussed their interpretations in class. The core constructs of this study are the reader-response theory, the use of literature in English as a foreign language classes and its relation to critical thinking. Results showed that the application of tasks based on the reader-response theory encourages a meaning seeking process as well as the development of higher order thinking skills in future language teachers.