Teen Blog

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

If you like The Reckoning by Kelley Armstrong

Apparently, you are not alone! There are a lot of holds on The Reckoning in our catalog. Here are some more titles that I hope you will enjoy! 

Shadow Kiss by Richelle Mead
Rose Hathaway knows it is forbidden to love another guardian. Her best friend Lissa – the last Dragomir princess- must always come first. Unfortunately, when it comes to gorgeous Dimitri Belikov, some rules are meant to be broken……

A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray
After the suspicious death of her mother in 1895, sixteen-year-old Gemma returns to England, after many years in India, to attend a finishing school where she becomes aware of her magical powers and ability to see into the spirit world. If you like this one, it is part of a series - #2 is Rebel Angels and #3 is The Sweet Far Thing.

The Students at Rodney Thompson Middle School have spoken

The Chosen One by Carol Lynch Williams

Cafe Book is over at Rodney Thompson...it was great to get together at lunch and talk about books.  On May 5th, 55 students voted for the books their favorites.  Here are their favorites.

Top Picks:

The Chosen One by Carol Lynch Williams
In a polygamous cult in the desert, Kyra, not yet fourteen, sees being chosen to be the seventh wife of her uncle as just punishment for having read books and kissed a boy, in violation of Prophet Childs' teachings, and is torn between facing her fate and running away from all that she knows and loves.

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.

Other Favorites:

The Cabinet of Wonders by Marie Rutkoski
Anything but Typical by Nora Raleigh Baskin
Eon Dragoneye Reborn by Allison Goodman
Comet's Curse by Dom Testa

If you like Summer Boys by Hailey Abbott

While I haven't read Summer Boys by Hailey Abbott, I see we have several other titles by her and they look like they would be summer romance books, too.

Meanwhile, here are three other titles you might like.

Improv Comedy Workshop and Performance

If you are interested in a workshop to learn some Improv games this is your lucky day! Join us Thursday, May 13, 6:15-7:15 at Headquarters Library. Sign-up now, grades 7-12.

Join us afterwards or only come for… an Improv performance!

It's Improv Nite with Awkward Pause Improvisational comedy show: Thursday, May 13, 7:30-8:30. Presented by Mr. Johnson and Mr. D'Addario, Stafford High School drama teachers, and SHS Improv Troupe, Awkward Pause. Grades 7-adult.

If you like Incarceron by Catherine Fisher

Have you read the series Hungry City Chronicles?

First book in the series is:  Mortal Engines by Philip Reeve
In the distant future, when cities move about and consume smaller towns, a 15-year-old apprentice is pushed out of London by the man he most admires and must seek answers in the perilous Out-Country, aided by one girl and the memory of another.

Rick Riordan's "The Red Pyramid"

Rick Riordan, author of the incredibly popular "Percy Jackson & The Olympians" 5-book series, has left behind ancient Greece in favor of a new mythology: that of ancient Egypt. Riordan's new series launches today with the release of "The Red Pyramid."

Here's the book description:

"Since their mother’s death, Carter and Sadie have become near strangers. While Sadie has lived with her grandparents in London, her brother has traveled the world with their father, the brilliant Egyptologist, Dr. Julius Kane.

One night, Dr. Kane brings the siblings together for a 'research experiment' at the British Museum, where he hopes to set things right for his family. Instead, he unleashes the Egyptian god Set, who banishes him to oblivion and forces the children to flee for their lives.

Soon, Sadie and Carter discover that the gods of Egypt are waking, and the worst of them--Set--has his sights on the Kanes. To stop him, the siblings embark on a dangerous journey across the globe--a quest that brings them ever closer to the truth about their family, and their links to a secret order that has existed since the time of the pharaohs."

Sounds really cool, doesn't it? There is a pretty sizeable hold list right now for the book at the library, but once you've placed your hold you can read and listen to the first chapter through Amazon here: http://amzn.to/dCVY5r

If you like Jay Asher's Thirteen Reasons Why.

Crash Into Me by Albert Borris.bm
Introverted Owen, brash confabulator Audrey, struggling lesbian Jin-Ae, and alcoholic Frank don't seem to have much in common, but they bond online over a shared interest: to commit suicide. Some of them have already made repeated attempts, and now they make a pact. They take a cross-country road trip from New Jersey, visiting the graves of famous people who have killed themselves, that will culminate at Death Valley.- Meredith Robbins

Cafe Book Top Teen Picks from Freedom Middle School


Eighth graders at Freedom Middle School will be the first to tell you that today's books for teens are hot! This year's Cafe Book club read 20 of the newest books and voted for their top 5 picks. Here are the winners!

Top Pick:  

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.

Other Favorites:

The Graveyard Book, by Neil Gaiman- After the grisly murder of his entire family, a toddler wanders into a graveyard where the ghosts and other supernatural residents agree to raise him as one of their own.

Word Nerd, by Susin Nielsen -When some bullies at his new school almost kill him by slipping a peanut into his sandwich, friendless nerd Ambrose, forced to be home-schooled by his overprotective mother, coerces his neighbor Cosmo into taking him to the West Side Scrabble Club, where people accept him for who he is. 

Somebody, by Nancy Springer - At the age of fifteen, a girl who has spent most of her life moving around the country with her father and brother, filling the emptiness inside her with chocolate, remembers her real name, Sherica, and searches the Internet to learn the truth about her mother and her own past.

The Chosen One, by Carol Lynch Williams - In a polygamous cult in the desert, Kyra, not yet fourteen, sees being chosen to be the seventh wife of her uncle as just punishment for having read books and kissed a boy, in violation of Prophet Childs' teachings, and is torn between facing her fate and running away from all that she knows and loves.