Area seventh and eighth grade teens have created the ultimate summer reading list, the Cafe Book Top Teen Picks. Each school year, students from fourteen area middle schools read from among twenty recently published young adult books and vote on their favorites. The titles they choose the most frequently are stickered and displayed in library branches, and we can’t keep them on the shelves! This year, six titles received this honor.
Do you LOVE Assassin’s Creed? So do I! Maybe not for the same reason as you, unless you really love to geek out over how historically accurate they make their games. They do their research, and they do it well, which makes this history major squeal with glee. But, truly, there are so many reasons to love Assassin’s Creed: history; assassins; action; adventure; and even a dash of mythology and romance. There are just so many books that can be matched to it!
"Because the day, it was school. It was the bells too loud or rattly in broken speakers that would never get fixed. It was the bad floors squeaky and footprinted, and the bang of lockers. It was writing my name in the upper-right-hand corner of the paper or Mr. Nelson would automatically deduct five points, and in the upper left-hand-corner of the paper or Mr. Peter would deduct three. "—Why We Broke Up by Daniel Handler
High school is a strange existence. It is a minefield of cliques, relationships, and hopefully schoolwork. There are several authors who have found a sharply accurate voice when writing as teens, John Green being the most successful.
When it does ring true, scenes and exchanges strike with the power to take us back to our most vibrant adolescent memories. These are the books that hold this ability for me. They are great high school narratives dealing with isolation, cliques, peer-pressure, and simply trying to survive.
332 poems -- our largest number so far -- were submitted electronically by teens from our region. Amanda Rutstein, a poetry professor at the University of Mary Washington and manager of the Fredericksburg Writing Center, had the unenviable task of selecting only 24 winners. But how do you choose the best of the best when there are so very many entries? “I look for a variety of characteristics in a winning poem, but my top three are vivid imagery, use of figurative language, and ingenuity,” says Amanda. “It's fun to find the poems from students who took risks and the see the effort they put into those poems to make them shine...The ones who play with language always stand out.”
Winners will be awarded prizes and invited to read their work at the Teen Poetry Night at Headquarters Library, Wednesday, May 27 from 7:30-8:30. There will be a reception afterward, and the public is warmly invited to attend.
Congratulations to the winners of our 2015 Teen Poetry Contest!