Thursday, September 30, 2010

Box One is here...

Just got to order several books from my favorite online bookseller and shipment one came in today!  So excited to be able to offer these books to my students.  We received:
Fallout by Ellen Hopkins
Freefall by Ariela Anhalt
Dark Song by Gail Giles
Girl, Stolen by April Henry
I am Number Four by Pittacus Lore
The House of Dead Maids by Clare B. Dunkle
Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta
The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson
Black Hole Sun by David Macinnis Gill
The Space Between Trees by Katie Williams
Low Red Moon by Ivy Devlin
The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting
Shipbreaker by Paolo Bacigalupi
The Called Themselves the K.K.K. by Susan Campbell Bartoletti

So happy these came today.  Now....which do I read first?

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

A New Stack...

I went shopping...and I have a new stack of books to read.  Hoping to plow through these this week, but I need to finish Life as We Knew It first.  This stack includes:
Ghostgirl: Homecoming by Tonya Hurley
Crusade: by Nancy Holder & Debbie Viguie'
Reckless by Cornelia Funke
Zombies vs. Unicorns by Justine Larbalestier & Holly Black

Have any of you read these?  What did you think?

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Happy Fall!!!

Wow!  The weather here in the south is getting much cooler.  We really needed the relief from the heat and humidity.  Fall makes me thing of football games, chili, curling up with a blanket and a book, and, my favorite,...pumpkin spice lattes from the 'bucks.  What do you think of when the weather gets cooler?

I was blessed with a slower day than usual yesterday, so...I worked on some displays.  Obviously, we needed something up for BBW (Banned Books Week).  I have a list of these books on our library software, but I wanted to highlight them by displaying several of the challenged titles. 

 This is the board outside the library.  It is pretty simple, but I wanted to make sure even those that don't enter the library know what is happening.  Even my wimpy kid dislikes censorship...

Here are some of our copies of banned/challenged books at the circulation desk.  This area gets the most traffic so I have had to spend some time replacing books, but...that means students are reading.  Yay!!
We put some of our titles in a cage to draw even more attention to this wonderful week.  The kids are intrigued as to why anyone would EVER want to ban books.  Hmmm...high school students are smarter (and more open-minded) than we expect sometimes.
Other displays....

Thought I would get a headstart on all things Halloween, so I put out the Fall decorations and put up a display of mysterious and frightening selections.
There are already books missing....always a good sign!

I also updated my Dewey display (switched from the zeroes to the 100s).

Lots of cool things on this shelf....makes me want to read a self-help book or two.

Anyway, I have also read two more books in my quest to read 100 this school year.  I finished these two babies last week:

The Savage by David Almond
This novel, told in text and images, explores the life of a young boy after the sudden death of his father. Short, yet disturbing, this book makes readers sympathetic towards young children who experience tragedy at a young age.

Recommended for: Boys and readers who are looking for a short, yet dense story

Rating: 3 stars

The Invention of Hugo Cabret
This book was recommended to me by a student who really enjoyed it.  I'm trying to branch out and read some graphic novels this has been interesting.  This book tells the story of a young, orphaned boy who must fix the town's clocks in order to stay under the radar after the disappearance of his uncle. Stealing to survive, he is caught by an elderly shop owner who takes his beloved book of drawings.  The boy must work at the shop in order to get his book back.  While he works, he develops a friendship with a young girl.  She helps him get his notebook back and they discover many things about their pasts....

Recommended for: Graphic novel lovers who want to try something a little (or a lot!) longer than the usual graphic novel books.  This would also be good for inventive types.

Rating: 3 Stars

Monday, September 20, 2010

Book Seven...done!

Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

Loved, Loved, Loved it!!  I have been anticipating finishing this book since it came out in August and FINALLY I got the chance to sit and read.  Although this is not quite as action-packed as the previous books, Mockingjay still packs quite a punch.  This is the pick for the October book club meeting, so....I am NOT going to review it yet! 

Seven books down...93 to go!  Ahhhhh!

Friday, September 3, 2010 short.

Okay...I have read five books and have 95 left!  There was a football game last night, so no reading was done:(  Here are my five....

Rosie and Skate by Beth Ann Bauman
Teen sisters, Rosie and Skate, are left to deal with things when their alcoholic father goes to jail.  Rosie visits him often and wants to believe that he can be a better father.  Skate has given up on her dad and pinned her hopes on a future with her boyfriend.  Heartbreak, betrayal, and loss are all evident in the lives of these sisters, but they rely on each other and find that they can manage.  I have never before describe a book as "quiet," but that is the first word that comes to mind.  The struggles of the girls are told simply and even their actions, when faced with adversity, are calm and deliberate.  This is an enjoyable and quick teen read.

                                     Recommended for: Teen girls who like romance and drama (i.e. Nicholas Sparks)
                                     Rating: 4 stars (out of 5)

The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner by Stephanie Meyer
I LOVED this novella!  Short and favorite.  This novella explores the life of newborn vampire Bree Tanner.  Readers will get a sense of what it is like on the dark side and how powerful the scent of blood is for the young vampires.  Bree explains the confusion she feels when the newbies are trained for the fight against the Cullens and how she reacts to the kindness after they find her in the forest.  I can only hope Ms. Meyer publishes more of these....

Recommended for:  Obviously, Twilight fans, but also those reluctant to delve into the series...this may make for even more book lovers!
Rating: 4.5 stars

Stitches: A Memoir by David Small
I have to admit...I am not a fan of graphic novels.  I buy them for my students, but have never read them myself.  This novel has received glowing reviews, so I thought I'd give it a try.  I was pleasantly surprised by this book.  David Small shares his childhood memories filled with demanding, gruff parents and a short battle with cancer.  Through the pictures and the text, the reader can be prepared to really feel for Mr. Small.  I wanted to pick his little-boy self up and give him a hug when I saw how he was treated as a child.  This is a very quick read that many readers will enjoy.

                                     Recommended for: Empathetic teens and those who love graphic novels
                                     Rating: 4 stars

Twisted by Laurie Halse Anderson
This is the selection for my teen book club this month.  It was recommended to me by a colleague last year and I have to say that I truly enjoyed reading it.  I tend to be more of an action/fantasy gal, but this realistic fiction book stood out as one of the better ones I have read.  Unpopular high school senior, Tyler Miller, gets into some trouble and is forced to spend his summer doing hard labor.  The result is a new, stronger Tyler Miller.  He begins to get some attention from the school beauty, Bethany.  After a night at a wild party, Tyler is accused of doing some bad things...This novel does a great job illustrating what it is like in high school as well as what it is like having a dysfunctional family.  The reader will see how easily a story can get twisted...
                                     Recommended for: all teens
                                     Rating: 4 stars

Last Night I Sang to the Monster by Benjamin Alire Saenz
Seventeen-year-old Johnny is battling some serious monsters.  He is currently in rehab and although he knows he is an alcoholic, he is not sure what led him to this place.  His mind refuses to let him relive a traumatic event from his recent past, yet his therapist and small-group peers are forcing him to remember.  Johnny's journey is not unique, but the circumstances which led him to rehab are.  An interesting read...

Recommended for: Teens who can handle controversial issues
Rating: 4 stars

Now...I am going to enjoy my Labor Day weekend with my family and hopefully finish a few books.  On the list: Mockingjay (I'm so excited!), Going Bovine, and The Invention of Hugo Cabret.