From the Pile Beside My Bed, I Recommend...

Al Capone Does My Shirts by Gennifer Choldenko (NEW!)
Living on Alcatraz Island in the 1930s does have its perks...

The Haunting of Alaizabel Cray by Chris Wooding (NEW!)
Serial killers, mystery, cults, adventure, and supernatural beings--this book has it all! This gothic-style story is set in London, where Thaniel and Cathaline are wych-hunters. While seeking out the creatures who lurk in the Old Quarter, they find Alaizabel, who is lovely, half-crazed, and possessed. And that is only the beginning! This thriller will keep you turning the pages.

Monsoon Summer by Mitali Perkins
Jazz, 15, and her best friend (and secret love), Steve, own a successful small business in Berkeley. But when her mother wins a grant to spend the summer in India, the whole family has to go. Once burned for following a do-gooder impulse, Jazz is initially afraid to befriend Danita, a talented 15-year-old orphan who dreams about starting her own business. Influenced by the magic of the monsoon season, the girls push one another to take chances rather than play it safe.

Waters Luninous & Deep: Shorter Fictions by Meredith Ann Pierce
The stories in this book of fantasy range from fragment to retold fairy tale to novella, each with a stong heroine, a tangibly imagined world, and unforgettable imagery.

What My Mother Doesn't Know and One of Those Hideous Books Where the Mother Dies by Sonya Sones
Sonya Sones writes novels in verse that address issues of family, friendship, and romance. Although these two books are not related in content, I gave you two titles because they are quick but fulfilling reads. Her command of free verse poetry is immaculate. (She even uses it on her website: http://sonyasones.com.)


Almost Famous

So, my husband was surfing the web today and decides to look for our blog. During a Google search, he manages to locate some other interesting info. Such as our blog was used as an example in an another library's blogging presentation. And our blog got noticed by Jenny, aka The Shifted Librarian, who runs one of the best librarian blogs out there. Her comment came way back in June 2004 when we were first starting out! So go figure. Entyway, he sent me the links to show how popular we are.

Now ya'll need to start writing on here more.


Note to Self: Read These!

Girls in Pants by Ann Brashares (NEW!)
In this third book in the Sisterhood series, the girls are celebrating their last summer together before college. The pants continue to work their magic as families, friendships, and romances thrive!

Gothic! Ten Original Dark Tales edited by Deborah Noyes
This book of short stories pays homage to classic gothic tales in wide-ranging descriptions of the supernatural and surreal. It includes stories by Garth Nix, Neil Gaiman, Joan Aiken, Celia Rees, and Vivian Vande Velde, among others.

The Misfits by James Howe
Bitter about school elections turning into popularity contests, this group of four friends, "the misfits," try to take back their school to end racism and bullying.

So B. It by Sarah Weeks (NEW!)
Heidi has spent her whole life living with her severely mentally retarded mother and being cared for and homeschooled by her agoraphobic neighbor. When Heidi finds a camera of old pictures, she is determined to unravel the secrets of her past.

Trickster's Choice and Trickster's Queen by Tamora Pierce
Alianne is the teenage daughter of the famed Alanna, the first lady knight in Tortall. Young Aly follows in the footsteps of her father, however, delighting in the art of spying. When she is captured and sold as a slave to an exiled royal family, it is this skill that makes a difference in a world filled with political intrigue, murderous conspiracy, and warring gods. Aly's skills gain her the trust of this family, and lead her to form a spy ring that will fulfill an ancient prophecy.


Cool Article!

I was reading a news article on MSNBC's website, and I found a link to a story about guy knitters. Jamie, I don't know it you read the blog, but it you do, go read the story! And it's kinda cool for the rest of the knitters too. The link's http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6913654/.


Blog Trend

OK, so convincing one other YA librarian to start a teen blog is not really a trend, but go check out the new teen blog from the Media library: http://www.mediateenscene.blogspot.com/!!! Brandi, their very cool YA librarian, started this blog last week (I helped). Maybe you could post a supportive comment???


Writers' Workshop Celebrates Valentine's Day

Yesterday, the workshop members practiced writing dialogue using only the phrases found on the Valentine's Day candy conversation hearts and M&Ms. It was tough, but the results were hilarious! After reading all of their dialogues out loud, the group voted Megan B.'s story with the ambiguous ending and Will's story of, um, "rejection" as the winners. Many of the dialogues are posted below, with some pictures of our writing process!


New Art Challenge

The current art challenge for the Cartooning Club is to create something that is "Green." Don't just limit yourself to St. Patrick's Day stuff or spring designs. It can be anything!

Also, look for the New Year display, coming soon to a library near you.


Book Group Stuff

The YA Book Group met today to discuss The House of the Scorpion by Nancy Farmer. This dark story had a lot of interesting points for discussion, including the current issues surrounding human cloning. Look for a short story by Nancy Farmer in Firebirds : An Anthology Of Original Fantasy And Science Fiction. She has also written several other books for teens that you might want to look for:
  • The Ear, the Eye, and the Arm

  • A Girl Named Disaster

  • Sea of Trolls
Next month, we will be reading Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson. She also wrote Fever 1793, which the book group read last year. Anyway, check out her website because it is really gorgeous: http://www.writerlady.com/. Roll your mouse over the images to see the links.

Let me know if you want to join, and I will order you a book!!


Teens Find More to Like about Libraries

I was just made aware of a new article from the Lancaster Intelligencer Journal about library teen events. They have done some good teen library stuff out there. Check it out, especially you TAB-types! How can we get in the newspaper???



Check Out These Books!

I was really sick last week, so that's why you haven't seen me at the desk. I have been at home in bed. Of course, I read tons of stuff, so it wasn't a total waste. And I am back in business now, so see you all this week!

Feeling Sorry for Celia and The Year of Secret Assignments by Jaclyn Moriarty
When a private school english teacher hatches a plan to have his students become pen pals with the public school kids down the road, he has no idea what forces he is unleashing in the community! These companion novels follow the same letter-writing project, which inevitably leads to rude graffiti, hate mail, chance meetings, love letters, revenge plots, date plans...and much more!

Girl, 15, Charming But Insane by Sue Limb (NEW!)
"...seeks, well, seeks Ben Jones, but failing that, seeks large burka-type garment to cover her deformities." Jess Jordan's hilariously overactive imagination complicates her life, but it will keep you entertained!

So Yesterday by Scott Westerfeld
Did you ever wonder why certain things become trendy? Or who starts clothing and enteratinment fads? Or what would happen if marketing became sinister????

The Teacher's Funeral by Richard Peck (NEW!)
Russell Culver is fifteen and itching to leave his tiny town for adventures in the Dakotas. When the schoolteacher dies, Russell figures that the schoolhouse will bel shut down for good and he can get on with his life. No such luck, though: the new teachers is the stuff nightmares are made of!


We're In the Money!

Guess what! We won some grant money to do a health and fitness program with the YMCA. Here is the official press release. I sent it to a bunch of local newspapers, so let me know if you see it in print!!!

Libraries for the Future Announces Get Real, Get Fit! Grant Winners
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Upper Darby Township and Sellers Memorial Free Library Selected for Innovative Program Promoting Physical Fitness and Healthy Eating for Teens

Libraries for the Future (LFF) recently announced the 40 public libraries selected for Get Real, Get Fit!, a national library-based program promoting physical fitness and healthy eating made possible by a $175,000 grant from MetLife Foundation. Upper Darby Township and Sellers Memorial Free Library, located at 76 S. State Road in Upper Darby, is the only library in Pennsylvania chosen to participate in Get Real, Get Fit! The library will receive $1700 to plan and implement their Get Real, Get Fit! program.

Get Real, Get Fit! focuses on teens and their families in an effort to help combat the growing epidemic of obesity and physical inactivity among young people. Through library collaboration with community partners, Get Real, Get Fit! also aims to promote awareness and use of public libraries as key resources for health and wellness information.

Sellers Library’s Get Real, Get Fit! program is called Small Changes for Big Health Results and is a collaboration with Community YMCA of Eastern Delaware County. This cooperative program educates parents/guardians and teens about basic changes they can make in their everyday routines to incorporate health and fitness. The program includes a short video, discussions, games, and role-playing, as well as healthy snacks and prizes. Small Changes for Big Health Results will be presented in at least four different Upper Darby Township locations during the next year. Staff members from both Sellers Library and the Community YMCA will lead this program.