unRequired Reading Blog

If you like Down to the Wire by Shannon Greenland

If you like Down to the Wire, you may like other titles in the Specialists series. They include Model Spy, The Winning Element, and Native Tongue, all by Shannon Greenland.

The White Darkness by Geraldine McCaughrean.

Taken to Antarctica by the man she thinks of as her uncle for what she believes to be a vacation, Symone--a troubled fourteen year old--discovers that he is dangerously obsessed with seeking Symme's Hole, an opening that supposedly leads into the center of a hollow Earth.

If you like the Pendragon series

Thanks for visiting our website and for your Book Match request. Also by D.J. MacHale is the new Morpheus Road series. Here are a few more titles you might enjoy:

 

If you like Life as we knew it, by Susan Beth Pfeffer.

Thanks for visiting our website and for your Book Match request. I also enjoy stories featuring science fiction plotlines like Life As We Knew It. Also by Susan Pfeffer are the companion novels The Dead and the Gone and This World We Live In. Here are a few more titles you might enjoy:

 

The votes are in at Thornburg Middle School

Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Cafe Book Thornburg voted on May 28th.  Fifty nine students cast their votes and picked the following winning titles.

Top Pick:

Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
In a future North America, where the rulers of Panem maintain control through an annual televised survival competition pitting young people from each of the twelve districts against one another, sixteen-year-old Katniss's skills are put to the test when she voluntarily takes her younger sister's place.

Other Favorites:
The Chosen One by Carol Lynch Williams
The Comet's Curse by Dom Testa
Eon: Dragoneye Reborn by Allison Goodman
The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
Happenstance Found by P.W. Catanese
Messed Up  by Janet Nichols Lynch
Somebody by Nancy Springer
The Tomorrow Code by Brian Falkner

12 Weeks of Hot Summer Reads: Incarceron by Catherine Fisher

This is Week 1 of a 12-Week series of blog posts reviewing new young adult books. Check back each Monday for a new review.

For me, summer reading is all about escaping somewhere else. The new vista doesn't have to be pretty, but it does need to be interesting. The world of Incarceron, introduced in the novel Incarceron by Catherine Fisher, delivers an escape like nothing else (for the reader, although not for the poor souls trapped within). Incarceron is a prison, but not like the prisons we are familiar with. It is a world unto itself, with areas of ruins and forests, and some wildernesses so wild that they are only whispered of but never traversed. Incarceron is also aware in a way that most prisons are not - it reacts to the prisoners' actions, manipulating them, and watching them with a pulsing, Sauron-like eye.

Our hero in the world of Incarceron is Finn, a seventeen-year-old prisoner who is considered "cell born" and remembers only vague memories of his life before he became aware three years ago. He is part of a band of rogues that troll the prison, called the Comitatus. He also has some freaky fainting spells, complete with visions. He believes that he was born "Outside" but no one believes him because that is very rare.

Cafe Book 2010 @ Heim Middle School

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Cafe Book 2010 has come to a close at Heim Middle School.  We had a great time sharing new books and talking about them all while eating lunch.  7th and 8th grade students came together, ate, and talked about new books in the school library.  After all the final votes were tallied ... the results are...

Top Picks:

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
In a future North America, where the rulers of Panem maintain control through an annual televised survival competition pitting young people from each of the twelve districts against one another, sixteen-year-old Katniss's skills are put to the test when she voluntarily takes her younger sister's place.

Eon Dragoneye Reborn by Alison Goodman
Sixteen-year-old Eon hopes to become an apprentice to one of the twelve energy dragons of good fortune and learn to be its main interpreter, but to do so will require much, including keeping secret that she is a girl.

Other Favorites:

The Chosen One by Carol Lynch Williams

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

Messed Up by Janet Nichols Lynch

The Tomorrow Code by Brian Faulkner

Antsy Does Time by Neal Shusterman

If the Witness Lied by Caroline Cooney

If you like The Summoning by Kelley Armstrong and City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

For City of Bones, I would recommend,

 

Lament (and its sequel Ballad) by Maggie Stiefvater.

On the day of an important music competition, talented but painfully introverted and nervous Deirdre Monaghan is helped to perform by the compelling and enigmatic Luke Dillon and finds herself inexorably drawn into the mysteries and dangers of the faerie world.

 

Wicked Lovely (and its sequels Ink Exchange and Fragile Eternity) by Melissa Marr .

Monsters of Men

If you're a fan of the Chaos Walking series, you'll be excited to hear that the third book in the trilogy, Monsters of Men, will hit U.S. bookstores on September 28, 2010. In the meantime, you can enjoy this trailer and maybe re-read The Knife of Never Letting Go and The Ask and The Answer.

If you haven't heard of this series yet (and you love intense, action-packed, dystopian novels), check out this blog post.

LOL with Maggie Stiefvater: Local Author Visits and Inspires

 It was a dark and rainy night . . . but that didn’t stop fans from coming out in droves to hear Maggie Stiefvater at the Salem Church Library, this past Monday! Books clutched in hands, hoping for an autograph, teens and adults alike were eager to hear this famous local author speak about reading, writing, and authorship.

     Ms. Stiefvater is the author of two popular young adult series, The Wolves of Mercy Falls and The Books of Faerie, as well as a talented artist and musician. A subsidiary of Warner Brothers has even purchased the movie rights for one of her more recent books, Shiver. Ms. Stiefvater arrived despite the gloomy weather and entertained the audience of nearly forty teens and adults for over an hour. Her honest, open, and easy-going style quickly relaxed the audience who kept her busy with questions for most of her time there. From publishing tips, to writer’s block advice, to detailed queries about her books and their characters, there was hardly time to pause, but Ms. Stiefvater jumped energetically around the stage (and occasionally onto her chair), keeping her audience laughing, often nearly in tears. One of her funniest tales was about how the titles for her books were chosen, as she acted out the various interpretations of, Still Wolves Watching, her original title for, Shiver.
 
     One of the ideas that kept returning when Ms. Stiefvater described authorship was that writers should write what they know and what they themselves like to read. Thus, she tends to write about, “homicidal faeries, angst, and kissing.” She also told anecdotes from her childhood writing efforts and college experiences, encouraging writers in the room to never take no for an answer unless it comes from their own heart. Turns out, she was a history major who had faith in herself and kept her passions alive by doing them on the side. The results can be seen not only in her published books, but in her music and artwork, which she has succeeded in as well. For inspiring examples, check out her book trailers, whose beautiful artwork and haunting music she arranged, created, and performed.

The votes are in at Dixon Smith!

Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Cafe Book Dixon Smith was great this year- getting together during lunch to talk about the hottest new books for teens! The school library was the place to be on May 12 when 56 students cast their votes and here are the results!

Top Pick:

Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
In a future North America, where the rulers of Panem maintain control through an annual televised survival competition pitting young people from each of the twelve districts against one another, sixteen-year-old Katniss's skills are put to the test when she voluntarily takes her younger sister's place.

Other Favorites:

Anything But Typical by Nora Raleigh Baskin
Cabinet of Wonders by Marie Rutkoski
Chosen One by Carol Lynch Williams
Comet's Curse by Dom Testa 
The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
If the Witness Lied by Caroline B. Cooney
Somebodyby Nancy Springer