Normal Public Library Teens

Archive for August, 2010

Teens’ Top Ten voting has begun!

Posted by Kristi on August 23, 2010

It’s that time again – the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) has opened voting for the 2010 Teens’ Top Ten.  This is your chance to choose your favorite teen books published this year.  Last year over 11,000 teens voted and chose Paper Towns by John Green as their favorite.

Voting for this year starts today and ends September 17, and the results will be revealed during this year’s Teen Read Week, October 17-23.  There are some really great books that I LOVE that have been nominated this year, but sadly I don’t meet the age limit so I can’t vote – but you can!  Here’s the list of nominees:
 
Watersmeet by Ellen Jensen Abbott
Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson
Hate List by Jennifer Brown
Heist Society by Ally Carter
Fire by Kristin Cashore
City of Glass by Cassandra Clare
The Roar by Emma Clayton
Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins
Along for the Ride by Sarah Dessen
Incarceron by Catherine Fisher
Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick
If I Stay by Gayle Forman
Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl
Geektastic: Stories from the Nerd Herd edited by Holly Black and Cecil Castellucci
Dragonfly by Julia Golding
The Reformed Vampire Support Group by Catherine Jinks
I Am a Genius of Unspeakable Evil and I Want to Be Your Class President by Josh Lieb
Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler
Witch and Wizard by James Patterson
By the Time You Read This, I’ll Be Dead by Julie Anne Peters
Bloodhound by Tamora Pierce
Strange Angels by Lili St. Crow
Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater
The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya by Nagaru Tanigawa
Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld
City of Fire by Laurence Yep
 
 
Quite a list, huh?  So get reading if you haven’t started already, and then go here to choose up to three books from this year that you’d like to see take the prize.
 
 

Posted in Reading suggestions, Teens' Top Ten | Leave a Comment »

New Nonfiction

Posted by Kristi on August 20, 2010

Sir Charlie: Chaplin, the Funniest Man in the World by Sid Fleischman 

See him? That little tramp twitching a postage stamp of a mustache, politely lifting his bowler hat, and leaning on a bamboo cane with the confidence of a gentleman? A slapstick comedian, he blazed forth as the brightest movie star in the Hollywood heavens. Everyone knew Charlie—Charlie Chaplin. When he was five years old he was pulled onstage for the first time, and he didn’t step off again for almost three-quarters of a century. Escaping the London slums of his tragic childhood, he took Hollywood like a conquistador with a Cockney accent. With his gift for pantomime in films that had not yet acquired vocal cords, he was soon rubbing elbows with royalty and dining on gold plates in his own Beverly Hills mansion. He was the most famous man on earth—and he was regarded as the funniest.

Good Behavior by Nathan Henry 

Jailed at age sixteen for armed robbery, Nathan Henry was the kind of teenager most parents and teachers have nightmares about. His crime was the culmination of a life lived on the edge: guns and drugs, sex and violence, all set against the ordinary backdrop of a one-stop light town in rural Indiana. Nate’s personal history is both disturbing and fascinating. A rough childhood becomes an adolescence full of half-realized violent fantasies that slowly build to the breaking point. But these scenes alternate with chapters about Nate’s time in jail, where through reading and reflection he comes to see that his life can be different from all he’s known up to this point.

Under a Red Sky: Memoir of a Childhood in Communist Russia by Haya Leah Molnar 

Eva Zimmermann is eight years old, and she has just discovered she is Jewish. Such is the life of an only child living in postwar Bucharest, a city that is changing in ever more frightening ways. Eva’s family, full of eccentric and opinionated adults, will do absolutely anything to keep her safe—even if it means hiding her identity from her. With razor-sharp depictions of her animated relatives, Haya Leah Molnar’s memoir of her childhood captures with touching precocity the very adult realities of living behind the iron curtain.

Poetry Speaks Who I Am by Elise Paschen and Dominique Raccah 

Poetry Speaks Who I Am is filled with more than 100 remarkable poems about you, who you are, and who you are becoming. Dive in–find the poem you love, the one that makes you angry, the one that makes you laugh, the one that knocks the wind out of you, and become a part of Poetry Speaks Who I Am by adding your own.

Amigurumi World: Seriously Cute Crochet by Ana Paula Rimoli 

Get hooked into the quirky world of Amigurumi! Crochet these irresistibly cute creatures, today’s coolest craze in crochet.  This book contains over 20 projects, all of them super hip and super quick to make. You need only basic crochet skills and small amounts of yarn. Funky designs include mommy and baby owls, hedgehogs, and penguins, plus silly crocheted treats like cupcakes and ice-cream cones.

This is Rocket Science: True Stories of the Risk-Taking Scientists Who Figure Out Ways to Explore Beyond Earth by Gloria Skurzynski 

The compelling text—vetted by NASA scientists—is a combination of history, science, human drama, and future challenges. Readers learn how fireworks in ancient China developed into the fire arrows used by Genghis Khan; we meet Sir Isaac Newton, Jules Verne, H.G. Wells, and learn how their imaginations shaped rocketry. We revisit the era of Sputnik, the satellite that launched a superpower space race, ending with moonwalks and a rendezvous in space. Finally we look forward to the future challenges of Mars and beyond. We also get a sneak peek at new technologies like space elevators, solar sails, ion propulsion, and more.

Posted in New Nonfiction | Leave a Comment »

Join TAC and have your say

Posted by Kristi on August 18, 2010

Red Tack

The Normal Public Library Teen Advisory Council (otherwise known as TAC) wants YOU!  We’re looking for a few new members for the upcoming school year.  This is a great chance for you to have a say in what goes on for teens at NPL.  We meet at the library on the 2nd and 4th Thursdays of each month from 4:00 to 5:30 for book discussions, planning future teen events, games, and more.  All teens ages 12-18 are welcome to join.  Just come to a meeting – no need to fill out an application!  All we ask is that you be willing to commit to attending meetings regularly, especially if you’re interested in an officer position.  So plan on stopping by and bringing your best ideas for what we should be doing here at NPL.

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New Historical Fiction

Posted by Kristi on August 17, 2010

The Education of Bet by Lauren Baratz-Logsted 

When Will and Bet were four, tragic circumstances brought them to the same house, to be raised by a wealthy gentleman as brother and sister. Now sixteen, they’ve both enjoyed a privileged upbringing thus far. But not all is well in their household. Because she’s a girl, Bet’s world is contained within the walls of their grand home, her education limited to the rudiments of reading, writing, arithmetic, and sewing. Will’s world is much larger. He is allowed—forced, in his case—to go to school. Neither is happy. So Bet comes up with a plan and persuades Will to give it a try: They’ll switch places. She’ll go to school as Will. Will can live as he chooses. But once Bet gets to school, she soon realizes living as a boy is going to be much more difficult than she imagined.

Anastasia’s Secret by Susanne Dunlap 

For Anastasia Romanov, life as the privileged daughter of Russia’s last tsar is about to be torn apart by the bloodshed of revolution. Ousted from the imperial palace when the Bolsheviks seize control of the government, Anastasia and her family are exiled to Siberia. But even while the rebels debate the family’s future with agonizing slowness and the threat to their lives grows more menacing, romance quietly blooms between Anastasia and Sasha, a sympathetic young guard she has known since childhood. But will the strength of their love be enough to save Anastasia from a violent death?

The Pale Assassin by Patricia Elliot 

Spoiled, beautiful Eugenie de Boncoeur is accustomed to privilege. The French Revolution may rage around her, but Eugenie’s luxurious lifestyle is only improved by visits from her brother, Armand, who is especially doting since the two were orphaned. What Eugenie doesn’t know is that their guardian has promised her in marriage to the wealthy, vengeful Le Fantome, a revolutionary who is nursing a secret grudge against her family. As the Revolution becomes increasingly violent, Eugenie is shipped off to convent school. Finally, there is no place in France that is safe for her. Eugenie dusts off her lightly used brains and rises to the challenge of survival. Soon she is in the thick of turmoil and romance, confronting spies, secret agents, and double-crossing suitors in her quest to get out of France alive.

Folly by Marthe Jocelyn 

When Mary Finn, a young country girl and new maid to a lord in London, falls into the arms of handsome Caden Tucker, their frolic changes the course of her life. What possesses her? She’s been a girl of common sense until now. Mary’s tale alternates with that of young James Nelligan, a new boy in an enormous foundling home.

We Hear the Dead by Dianne Salerni 

It starts as a harmless prank…then one lie quickly grows into another. Soon Kate and Maggie Fox are swept into a dizzying flurry of national attention for their abilities to communicate with the dead. But living a lie is sometimes too much to handle, even if you have the best intentions. Based on a true story, We Hear the Dead reveals how secrets and lies can sometimes lead you to what’s real and what’s right. And how sometimes talking with the dead is easier than talking with the people around you.

Revolver by Marcus Sedgwick 

A loaded gun. Stolen gold. And a menacing stranger. A taut frontier survivor story, set at the time of the Alaska gold rush. In an isolated cabin, fourteen-year-old Sig is alone with a corpse: his father, who has fallen through the ice and frozen to death only hours earlier. Then comes a stranger claiming that Sig’s father owes him a share of a horde of stolen gold. Sig’s only protection is a loaded Colt revolver hidden in the cabin’s storeroom. The question is, will Sig use the gun, and why?

Posted in New Historical Fiction | Leave a Comment »

New Science Fiction and Fantasy

Posted by Kristi on August 15, 2010

Shipbreaker by Paolo Bacigalupi 

In America’s Gulf Coast region, where grounded oil tankers are being broken down for parts, Nailer, a teenage boy, works the light crew, scavenging for copper wiring just to make quota–and hopefully live to see another day. But when, by luck or chance, he discovers an exquisite clipper ship beached during a recent hurricane, Nailer faces the most important decision of his life: Strip the ship for all it’s worth or rescue its lone survivor, a beautiful and wealthy girl who could lead him to a better life…

Raised by Wolves by Jennifer Barnes 

Adopted by the Alpha of a werewolf pack after a rogue wolf brutally killed her parents right before her eyes, Bryn knows only pack life, and the rigid social hierarchy that controls it.  That doesn’t mean that she’s averse to breaking a rule or two.  But when her curiosity gets the better of her and she discovers Chase, a new teen locked in a cage in her guardian’s basement, and witnesses him turn into a wolf before her eyes, the horrific memories of her parents’ murders return. Bryn becomes obsessed with getting her questions answered, and Chase is the only one who can provide the information she needs. But in her drive to find the truth, will Bryn push too far beyond the constraints of the pack, forcing her to leave behind her friends, her family, and the identity that she’s shaped?

Forgive My Fins by Tera Lynn Childs 

Lily’s mermaid identity is a secret that can’t get out, since she’s not just any mermaid—she’s a Thalassinian princess. When Lily found out three years ago that her mother was actually a human, she finally realized why she didn’t feel quite at home in Thalassinia, and she’s been living on land and going to Seaview High School ever since, hoping to find where she truly belongs. Sure, land has its problems—like her obnoxious biker-boy neighbor, Quince Fletcher—but it has that one major perk: Brody. The problem is, mermaids aren’t really the casual dating type—the instant they “bond,” it’s for life.  When Lily’s attempt to win Brody’s love leads to a tsunami-sized case of mistaken identity, she is in for a tidal wave of relationship drama, and she finds out that happily ever after never sails quite as smoothly as you planned.

A Wizard of Mars by Diane Duane 

In the hotly anticipated ninth installment of the Young Wizards series, Kit and Nita become part of an elite team investigating the mysterious “message in a bottle,” which holds the first clues to the secrets of the long-lost inhabitants of Mars. But not even wizardry can help them cope with the strange events that unfold when the “bottle” is uncorked and a life form from another era emerges. Though the Martians seem friendly, they have a plan that could change the shape of more than one world. As the shadow of interplanetary war stretches over both worlds, Kit and Nita must fight to master the strange and ancient synergy binding them to Mars and its last inhabitants. If they don’t succeed, the history that left Mars lifeless will repeat itself on Earth.

Nomansland by Lesley Hauge 

Sometime in the future, after devastating wars and fires, a lonely, windswept island in the north is populated solely by women. Among these women is a group of teenaged Trackers—expert equestrians and archers—whose job is to protect their shores from the enemy. The enemy, they’ve been told, is men. When these girls come upon a partially buried home from the distant past, they are fascinated by the strange objects—high-heeled shoes, teen magazines, make-up—found there.  What are they to make of these mysterious things, which introduce a world they have never known? And what does it mean for their strict society where friendship is forbidden and rules must be obeyed—at all costs?

Dark Flame by Alyson Noel 

Ever is trying to help Haven transition into life as an immortal.  But with Haven drunk on her new powers and acting recklessly, she poses the ultimate threat—exposing their secret world to the outside.  As Ever struggles to keep the Immortals hidden, it only propels Haven closer to the enemy—Roman and his evil companions. At the same time, Ever delves deeper into dark magick to free Damen from Roman’s power. But when her spell backfires, it binds her to the one guy who’s hell-bent on her destruction. Now there’s a strange, foreign pulse coursing through her, and no matter what she does, she can’t stop thinking about Roman—and longing for his touch.  As she struggles to resist the fiery attraction threatening to consume her, Roman is more than willing to take advantage of her weakened state…and Ever edges closer and closer to surrender.

Toads and Diamonds by Heather Tomlinson 

Diribani has come to the village well to get water for her family’s scant meal of curry and rice. She never expected to meet a goddess there. Yet she is granted a remarkable gift: Flowers and precious jewels drop from her lips whenever she speaks. It seems only right to her stepsister Tana that the goddess judged her kind, lovely stepsister worthy of such riches. And when she encounters the goddess, she is not surprised to find herself speaking snakes and toads as a reward. Blessings and curses are never so clear as they might seem, however. Diribani’s newfound wealth brings her a prince—and an attempt on her life. Tana is chased out of the village because the province’s governor fears snakes, yet thousands are dying of a plague spread by rats. As the sisters’ fates hang in the balance, each struggles to understand her gift. Will it bring her wisdom, good fortune, love…or death?

Posted in New Fantasy, New Science fiction | Leave a Comment »

New Fiction

Posted by Kristi on August 13, 2010

Compromised by Heidi Ayarbe 

Living with a con-man dad, Maya’s spent half her life on the run. But when her dad ends up in prison and foster care fails, Maya grasps at her last possible hope of a home: a long-lost aunt, who may not even exist. So Maya formulates a plan, and with her wits, two unlikely allies, and twenty dollars in her pocket, she sets off in search of this aunt, navigating the unpredictable four hundred miles from Reno to Boise. Life on the streets, though, becomes a struggle for survival. And with each passing day, Maya’s definitions of right and wrong are turned upside down when she’s confronted with the realities and dangers of life as a runaway. She can’t help but wonder if trying to find her aunt—and some semblance of stability—is worth the harrowing journey or if she should compromise and find a way to survive on her own.

Freak Magnet by Andrew Auseon 

Charlie is the freak. Gloria is the freak magnet. They’re pretty much destined to meet. And when they do, sparks fly…for Charlie. Gloria, well, she just thinks he’s like every other freak who feels compelled to talk to her, although a little better-looking than most. While Charlie has his head in the clouds, Gloria’s got hers in a book: her Freak Folio—a record of every weirdo who’s talked to her in the last year (it’s a big book). But never before has she felt the pull to get to know one of them better. Until now.

Wolves, Boys, and Other Things That Might Kill Me by Kristen Chandler 

KJ Carson lives an outdoor lover’s dream. The only daughter of a fishing and wildlife guide, KJ can hold her own on the water or in the mountains near her hometown outside Yellowstone National Park. But when she meets the shaggy-haired, intensely appealing Virgil, KJ loses all self-possession. And she’s not sure if it’s a good thing or a bad thing that they’re assigned to work together on a school newspaper article about the famous wolves of Yellowstone. As KJ spends time with Virgil, she also spends more time getting to know a part of her world that she always took for granted…and she begins to see herself and her town in a whole new light.

Carter’s Big Break by Brent Crawford 

After somehow surviving his freshman year, Will Carter is unexpectedly cast in an independent film opposite the world’s biggest tween sensation, Hilary Idaho, who’s looking to give her image a makeover. With Hollywood knocking on his door, Carter gets a taste of the good life. Suddenly, his small town, boring friends, and embarrassing family don’t seem as great as they used to. As is prone to happen when Carter is around, the film spirals out of control, and he begins to fear that he’s not the “somebody” he thinks he is and more of the “nobody” he’s pretty sure he always has been. But maybe, with the help of a few friends, he’ll learn to see things in a whole new light. Sequel to Carter Finally Gets It.

Blindsided by Priscilla Cummings 

In many ways, Natalie O’Reilly is a typical fourteen-year-old. But a routine visit to the eye doctor produces devastating news: Natalie will lose her sight within a few months. Suddenly her world is turned upside down. Natalie is sent to a school for the blind to learn skills such as Braille and how to use a cane. Outwardly, she does as she’s told; inwardly, she hopes for a miracle that will free her from a dreaded life of blindness. But the miracle does not come, and Natalie ultimately must confront every blind person’s dilemma. Will she go home to live scared? Or will she embrace the skills she needs to make it in a world without sight?

The Half-Life of Planets by Emily Franklin and Brendan Halpin 

Lianna is an aspiring planetary scientist…and also a kissing expert, with maybe too much experience.  So this summer she decides to conduct an experiment: She’s going to give up the kissing part.  It shouldn’t be too hard for her–after all, none of her kissing partners so far have been worth the lip time. That is, until Hank comes along. Hank has never been kissed.  He’s smart and funny—sometimes without intending to be—and a little socially challenged. Hank’s got Asperger’s syndrome. This means he knows every track that Kirsty Maccoll has ever appeared on, but not when to shut up about it. He also doesn’t know when to say the things he should. Things like, I don’t have a father. I want to hold your handI want to kiss you. It would appear that Hank and Liana are in for an interesting summer—if the planets align correctly.

Sorta Like a Rock Star by Matthew Quick 

Amber Appleton lives in a bus. Ever since her mom’s boyfriend kicked them out, Amber, her mom, and her totally loyal dog, Bobby Big Boy (aka Thrice B) have been camped out in the back of Hello Yellow (the school bus her mom drives). Still, Amber, the self-proclaimed princess of hope and girl of unyielding optimism, refuses to sweat the bad stuff. But when a fatal tragedy threatens Amber’s optimism–and her way of life, can Amber continue to be the rock star of hope?

Posted in New Fiction | Leave a Comment »

Summer reading comes to an end…

Posted by Kristi on August 9, 2010

Just a reminder to all – today is the LAST DAY of the summer reading program.  So hurry in to turn in your reading logs and fill out a postcard to be eligible for our grand prize drawing!   Just get your final log turned in by 9:00 pm tonight to make sure you have a chance to win a netbook computer, iPod nano, gift cards, books, and more.  I’ll be doing the drawing and putting the postcards in the mail tomorrow, so you can expect to get yours by mid-week.  Then all you have to do is bring your postcard in to the library to pick up your prize!

Posted in Summer reading | Leave a Comment »

Six word memoirs

Posted by Kristi on August 4, 2010

Anyone heard of Smith magazine’s Six Word Memoirs?  It’s pretty much what it sounds like – describe your life or an event in your life in exactly six words.  Here’s one of mine as an example: Too much time spent reading? NO!

It sounds easy, but it can be ridiculously hard to sum up all your experiences in only six words.  Smith has published several books full of six word memoirs from both famous and ordinary people, including a version written entirely by teens, I Can’t Keep My Own Secrets (which you can check out right here at NPL).  Now they’ve got a website at www.smithteens.com where you can post your own efforts and vote on what others have submitted.  Go check it out, and if you come up with any great memoirs of your own, I’d love to see them!

Posted in Just for fun, Writing | Leave a Comment »