Wednesday, March 29, 2006
(and, as you already know, just click on the book cover or title to go to our catalog for more info)
The Killer's Tears, by Anne-Laure Bondoux
Riddle in the Mountain, by Daryl Burkhard
Corydon & the Island of Monsters, by Tobias Druitt
Swan Town : The Secret Journal of Susanna Shakespeare, by Michael J. Ortiz
The Necessary Beggar, by Susan Palwick
The Wall and the Wing, by Laura Ruby
Duckling Ugly, by Neil Shusterman
The Case of the Missing Marquess : an Enola Holmes Mystery, by Nancy Springer
No Right Turn, by Terry Trueman
Hard Hit, by Ann Turner
Miracle : Bobbly Allison and the Saga of the Alabama Gang, by Peter Golenbock
GV1032.A3 G65 2006
Chillin' Trix for Cool Chix, by Leanne Warrick
The Campfire Collection : Spine-tingling Tales to Tell in the Dark, edited by Eric B. Martin
PN6071.O87 C36 2000
With a Little Luck : Surprising Stories of Amazing Discoveries, by Dennis Brindell Fradin
Q180.55.D57 F73 2006
Since you cannot join us in the discussion perhaps you would like to comment to the blog after you read the book.
Tuesday, March 28, 2006
We'd like to start posting reviews by teens on this blog. Basically, if you read a book you like (or dislike), write a review of it and we'll probably post it.
Not sure what to review? Ask! We often get advance reading copies sent to us by publishers, so you might even be able to read a book before it comes out. Or, one of us can tell you what titles we've ordered lately...or you can just pick a book yourself.
If you do want to review a book, here's what you should include:
Author and title (duh)
Did you like the book? Why or why not?
Who would you recommend the book to?
Of course, use your own personal style and your own words.
If you're interested in reviewing for our blog, send us an email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Thursday, March 23, 2006
Wolf seems to see these books the same way somebody would look at Teen People--as a message from media that is intrinsically designed to model behaviors, looks, and products for you to buy. Wolf doesn't seem to have any faith in you (by you, I mean teens) to evaluate these characters and stories so to decide for yourself what to take and apply to your lives, if anything.
But teenagers, or their parents, do buy the bad-girls books — the "Clique," "Gossip Girl" and "A-List" series have all sold more than a million copies. And while the tacky sex scenes in them are annoying, they aren't really the problem. The problem is a value system in which meanness rules, parents check out, conformity is everything and stressed-out adult values are presumed to be meaningful to teenagers. The books have a kitsch quality — they package corruption with a cute overlay.
When I first started working here, I must admit I had similar feelings (not about the teens, but about the books). I soon learned that I'm nobody to judge anyone else's reading interests, especially when that judgment amounts to generalizing the hopes, dreams, and emotional lives of the thousands and thousands of people who enjoy these novels. Wolf's critique of these books, and all the social hierarchy in the novels, feels like it amounts to a whole new hierarchy--of prep-school-turned-Yale-alumni adults like Naomi Wolf knowing what's "best." (Though, even if one was to accept the principle of "bad" in these characters' behaviors, I fail to see how any character completely aligned at the pole of revoltingly cruel consumer-driven materialist provides any emotional access point for readers to want to emulate their experience of these characters.)
I'm curious to hear what all of you think about this article. How do you interact with your reading interests? What do they mean to you?
Okay, take care, everyone. This is my first post to the blog, and I'm signing out.
P.S. -- I'm just going to take this opportunity to plug Natalie Standiford's Dating Game novels. Three high school sophomores--Madison, Lina, and Holly--make waves at their preppy school for the gifted when they start a matchmaking blog. Little do people know that they each have their own issues with being forlorn in love, sex, and the social life. Standiford has quite a knack for creating a sensational life without sensationalizing it. Despite their rather average quality, the Dating Game novels have a quick, urgently exciting feel, with characters rushing through life and getting hit with a few key realizations along the way.
P.P.S. -- If you're interested in further discussions of how media--specifically visual media like photographs, television, and movies--impact society, culture, and our minds, please call me here at the library, at 412-622-3121. We have a free Media Literacy & Digital Video Production class for high school students every fall and spring, in which we talk about these issues and apply what we learn to representing ourselves through digital video exercises. It's intense and fun, and I would be happy to add you to the list of people to contact for the fall!
Tuesday, March 21, 2006
Here is what one high school senior had to say about his experience,
"SureTalk has been a new and interesting program for us. The instructors are really good and make all of us feel comfortable when we are asked to speak. I feel as though I'm getting better each time and so do most of my friends. I would recommend this program for all teens because it can only help you later on in life."
Tuesday, March 14, 2006
Okay, now for coherent thoughts: I just read on YALSA-BK that Cornelia Funke's absolutely fabulous book, Inkheart, is being made into a movie. If you're not familiar with the story, Inkheart is about a young girl named Meg and her father, Mo. Mo has an amazing talent: he can read characters from books into being. That's right, he can read a book out loud and make characters from that book appear in real life. The only problem is, he can't really control what characters appear...and every time he reads a character out, something from the real world must go in. Hmm.
Anyway, Inkheart is amazing, as is its sequel, Inkspell. So I'm very excited about this movie. I'm also very excited about who'll be playing Mo: Brendan Fraser! For a little bit more info, check out the Internet Movie Database, here.
Monday, March 13, 2006
The Road of the Dead, by Kevin Brooks
Grand and Humble, by Brent Hartinger
Ask Me No Questions, by Marina Budhos
Thursday, March 09, 2006
Now, we know that you guys love your Myspace. We see you using it in the library and, as you know, we've started using it to communicate with you! Here's our request, though: be safe. Use common sense and follow some basic guidelines like the ones set forth by the Center for Missing and Exploited Children. We like y'all, and want you to be careful.
Stepping off my pedestal,
Wednesday, March 08, 2006
There will be a party in Teen
Where all will be wearin' their green
Teens'll come from afar
To dance DDR
To eat and to drink they'll be keen.
ERIN GO BRAGH!
Thursday, March 02, 2006
Tomorrow is DDR Day! Be sure to stop by and dance the afternoon away with your friends. And, because a lot of you have trouble getting here after school on Friday, we're going to keep doing DDR one Saturday a month. F ebruary's DDR Saturday was a great success!! The next date is March 25th.
As always, next Monday we'll show a movie in the Teen Meeting Room at Main, and Wednesday is the Safe and Respectful Place. ***edit: Safe and Respectful Place will no longer occur on Wednesday afternoons. More information will be posted as it becomes available.*** I know y'all enjoy the free popcorn and soda on Monday afternoons! Please let me know, either by commenting to the blog or by emailing us at email@example.com, if there are any movies in particular you'd be interested in seeing. I will do my best!
March 18th will be second annual Teen Read Buffet, requested by members of the Teen Advisory Group. This is a really fun event that combines two of MY favorite things: food and books. We'll have a selection of great books and snacks available, or you can pick something to read off our well-stocked shelves. Then, basically, hang out, read, eat, talk about what you're reading, eat some more, read some more...sounds like fun, eh?
There are other things going on for teens at libraries all over the city, if you can't get to Oakland. A lot of our neighborhood locations already have or are starting Teen Advisory Groups/Councils of their own: B-TAG, the Brookline Teen Advisory Group, will meet at 4:30 on Wednesday, March 15th; Carrick is having a TAG meeting at noon on March 18th; and the meeting at Southside will be at 1:00 on March 25th.
If you're planning on attending Tekkoshocon the weekend of March 31st but aren't sure what to wear, stop by the Squirrel Hill library on March 19th to design and make a costume. And if you're just looking for a good place to go and hang out, check out the After School Club at the Carrick library, held every Wednesday afternoon, or the For Young Women Only - Teen Chat at the Hill District library at 4:30 on March 23rd.
In other news, we got a bunch of new books in today. Most of them are just going straight to our new book display, but here are some I thought looked particularly interesting:
Now Starring Vivien Leigh Reid: Diva in Training, by Yvonne Collins and Sandy Rideout
Criminal Minded, by Tracy Brown
Gil's All Fright Diner, by A. Lee Martinez
My So-Called Digital Life: 2,000 Teenagers, 300 Cameras, and 30 Days to Document Their World, Created by Bob Pletka