Book Review: Twilight

Twilight by Stephenie Meyer

SUMMARY: Deeply sensuous and extraordinarily suspenseful, Twilight captures the struggle between defying our instincts and satisfying our desires. This is a love story with bite.Isabella Swan's move to Forks, a small, perpetually rainy town in Washington, could have been the most boring move she ever made. But once she meets the mysterious and alluring Edward Cullen, Isabella's life takes a thrilling and terrifying turn. Up until now, Edward has managed to keep his vampire identity a secret in the small community he lives in, but now nobody is safe, especially Isabella, the person Edward holds most dear. The lovers find themselves balanced precariously on the point of a knife-between desire and danger. (from the Amazon.com book description)

OPINION: This has been on my reading list for a long time, and I finally got to it! I couldn't put it down, and I am very relieved to hear that the sequel, New Moon, is being released in August. The cliffhanger at the end of the book is just plain mean! This book humanizes vampires and really makes it seem like they could be walking among us. The story is a great combination of romance and action, with enough plot twists to keep it interesting. Look for Twilight if you are in the mood for an engrossing and engaging read.

RECOMMENDED READING: If you liked Twilight, you should look for Silver Kiss and Blood & Chocolate by Annette Curtis Klause.


New Now!

I am still finding new books to tell you about every time I walk in the teen section!

  • The Goblin Wood by Hilari Bell
  • Code Talker: A Novel about the Navajo Marines of World War Two by Joseph Bruchac
  • Pieces of Georgia by Jen Bryant
  • Ask Me No Questions by Marina Budhos
  • The Black Canary by Jane Louise Curry
  • Ark Angel (an Alex Rider Adventure) by Anthony Horowitz
  • The Book of Everything by Guus Kuijer
  • Bloody Jack: Being an Account of the Curious Adventures of Mary "Jackie" Faber, Ship's Boy by L. A. Meyer
  • A Bad Boy Can Be Good for a Girl by Tanya Lee Stone


Ratty Reads!

Read some rat-related fiction and nonfiction:


  • That Pesky Rat by Lauren Child
  • Hooway for Wodney Wat by Helen Lester
  • Cinderella’s Rat by Susan Meddaugh


  • The Tale of the Swamp Rat by Carter Crocker
  • Space Station Rat by Michael J. Daley
  • The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo
  • The Giant Rat of Sumatra Or Pirates Galore by Sid Fleischman
  • Spy Mice: For Your Paws Only by Heather Vogel Frederick
  • The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame
  • Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH by Robert C. O’Brien
  • The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents by Terry Pratchett
  • A Rat’s Tale by Tor Seidler
  • The Revenge of Randal Reese-Rat by Tor Seidler
  • I Was a Rat! By Philip Pullman
  • Walter: The Story of a Rat by Barbara Wersba
  • Peeps by Scott Westerfeld
  • The Red-Hot Rattoons by Elizabeth Winthrop
  • Pay the Piper: A Rock ‘N’ Roll Fairy Tale by Jane Yolen and Adam Stemple
  • Rats by Paul Zindel


  • Gregor the Overlander series by Suzanne Collins
  • Redwall series by Brian Jacques


  • Rats! The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly by Richard Conniff
  • Rat Attacks by Cyntha Laslo
  • Scary Creatures: Rats by Dr. Gerald Legg, Mark Bergin, and Bob Hersey
  • Keeping Unusual Pets: Rats by June McNicholas
  • Rats by E. Sandy Powell
  • Rats: Observations on the History and Habitat of the City’s Most Unwanted Inhabitants by Robert Sullivan


Missed the Rat Party?

Glorify rats in the comfort of your own home!


  • Willard (1971) and its sequel, Ben (1972)
  • Harry Potter and the Prizoner of Azkaban (2004)
  • Rat Race (2001)
  • Charlotte's Web (1973)

  • the song Ben by Michael Jackson
  • any songs sung by Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, or other members of the Rat Pack
  • any songs by the hair band Ratt


  • The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo
  • Gregor the Overlander by Suzanne Collins
  • Peeps by Scott Westerfeld
  • A Rat’s Tale by Tor Seidler




Tonight, 28 teens came to our Rat Party at the library. We played some games and watched some rat-related media. We also ate theme food, like rat chow, rat poison cookies, and sewer water punch.

The highlight of the evening were our guests: Maria Pandolfi, Alyce Pandolfi, and Emily Elizabeth the rat! Maria runs Philadelphia's Rat Chick Rat Rescue, and her sister Alyce volunteers for the organization. Did you know that rats eat grapes, as well as other fruits and vegetables? We learned lots of great information from them and had fun hanging out with Emily Elizabeth. Check out the photos below!

Look for more events relating to our summer reading theme, Creature Feature. You can sign up now for Animal Mask Making and Redwall Feast & Fun.


Monopoly Craziness!

Today, 34 teens attended the library Monopoly tournament. This was our first teen event since I've been back and it was wild! It totally burned me out...and I wasn't even playing!!

We started out with six games of five or six people. It was really loud! The winners of those games were: Conor, Kara, Shakira, Lamar, Sena, and Sophia. They went on to a final game. The winner of that game was Sophia, followed closely by Kara and Sena. The three winners got Parker Brothers games and all six finalists got candy bars. Thanks to everyone who attended. We'll do it again sometime, but maybe a bit differently! And with food!

For those of you who miss Giselle, you really missed out today because she surprised us by showing up to hang out at the tournament!

Check out the event pix below...


Book Review: Nothing but the Truth (and a Few White Lies)

Nothing but the Truth (and a Few White Lies) by Justina Chen Headley (*NEW*)

SUMMARY: Hapa (Half Asian and half white) Patty Ho has never felt completely at home in her skin. Life at House Ho is tough enough between her ultra-strict Taiwanese mom (epic-length lectures and all) and her Harvard-bound big brother. But things get worse when a Chinese fortuneteller channels Patty's future via her bellybutton...and divines a white guy on her romance horizon. Faster than Patty can add two plus two, her mom freaks out and ships her off to math camp at Stanford. Just as Patty writes off her summer of woe, life starts glimmering with all kinds of probabilities... (from the inside flap)

OPINION: If you have ever struggled with your identity, your parents, your race, or your relationships, this is a book you will want to pick up. What I appreciated most about this story was the humor, especially the Mom Lecture Series and Patty's geometry-inspired Truth Theorems. Plus, I learned about cool things like buildering (climbing buildings rather than mountains) and product naming. How do those fit into the story? You have to read and find out! I guarantee you will enjoy this story of half-Asian, half-white Patty making a place for herself in her family, among her friends, and in her school.


Book Review: Nailed

Nailed by Patrick Jones

SUMMARY: The nail that sticks out farthest gets hammered the hardest. Flint Southwestern High School is run by a cult: the jockarchy. And Bret Hendricks could never fit into their conformity cult. Bret doesn’t mind standing out from the crowd when he’s on stage acting or singing in his band. And he feels at home in his funky girlfriend’s arms because sticking out together doesn’t seem as hard. But loyalties aren’t what Bret thinks they are, as his safe havens seem to disappear one by one, and he learns that sometimes you just have to risk getting hammered in order to build the future. (excerpted from the inside flap)

OPINION: If you sometimes feel like an outcast in your own life, let alone in your school, you will identify with this book. It is full of thrift store shopping, punk rock, and betrayal...all the best elements of a non-conformist story. Bret's frustration with coach-teachers who let jocks slide, his anger at being muzzled in a class debate, his helplessness as a target of bullies, and his passivity in relationships are experiences that too many of us can identify with. Visit the dark side of high school in this book, if you haven't had enough of it yourself...


Book Review: Startled by His Furry Shorts

Startled by His Furry Shorts (Book 7 in the Confessions of Georgia Nicolson series) by Louise Rennison (*NEW!*)

SUMMARY: "On the rack of romance. And also in the oven of luuurve. And possibly on my way to the bakery of pain. And maybe even going to stop along the way to get a little cake at the cakeshop of agony. Shut up, brain, shut up." Georgia is in quite a predicament. Dave the Laugh has declared his love for her (at least she thinks he was talking about her), leaving her in a state of confusiosity. And then when she finally decides to give Masimo an ultimatum--to be her one and only--he tells her he needs to think about it. To distract herself from her romantic woes, Georgia throws herself into MacUseless play rehearsals and planning a Viking wedding, and tries to avoid all thoughts of boy decoys, Italian-American dreamboats . . . and let’s not forget guitar-plucking Sex Gods! (from the inside flap)

OPINION: I was hooked on this series when I read the first book (Angus, Thongs, and Full Frontal Snogging) in my YA lit class in grad school. The series is total chick-lit fluff, but I love it! It has always made me laugh out loud, and this book is no exception. Any book that details the creation of a Viking disco dance is OK with me! One complaint: it ends with a HUGE cliffhanger. Grrr.