Posts tagged with "Recommendations"

Posted by tspicer on 07/10/14
What if the people who raised you had been lying to you for your entire life?  What if everything you believed, everything you were, was nothing more than someone trying to manipulate you for their own ends?  In Bloodwitch by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes, that’s the question that Vance Ehecatl has to face.
 
Vance is a quetzal, a shapeshifter who can take the form of a bird.  Abandoned by his own people, Vance has been raised by the vampire rulers of the powerful Midnight Empire.  His sheltered life is interrupted by Malachi Obsidian, who tells Vance he’s a bloodwitch, a powerful magic user, and that the vampires have been lying to him all his life to make him their tool.
 
Vance struggles to discover his identity and figure out who he can trust in this compelling fantasy tale.  It’s the first of a new trilogy, but if you enjoy it you can follow the ongoing “Lilith’s Explorations of Midnight” tale that the author posts on her Facebook page.
 

Posted by red_sonya on 02/07/14
                                                                       
 
Drawings don’t normally move but Katie swears the mysterious Tomohiro’s drawings just did. Katie, an American girl, is a world away from home in Japan, still adjusting to the language barrier and culture gap. When Katie gets involved with the intriguing and sometimes dangerous Tomohiro and his moving drawings, her life changes forever. She is left wondering why the ink is seemingly drawn to her all while learning about Kami (Shinto Gods) and dodging the Yakuza (a Japanese gang).
 
 
This is a book full of Japanese mythology, danger, with a dash of romance. As an avid manga reader, I felt like Ink could easily be made into one; as the plot is very similar to many shojo mangas. The book has many images within it that coincides with what you are reading. There are many Japanese words you learn through out Ink (there is a glossary in the back to explain them so don’t worry!). This book is wonderful for those Japanophiles out there. It gives a good look at what life is like living in a foreign country, dealing with the different culture, and their everyday lives.
 
 
Ink was a very quick read; it’s very intriguing, and gripping. I thoroughly enjoyed and it and will be purchasing it for my own collection at home. The book does end on a cliffhanger and sadly the next book, Rain, doesn’t come out till June this year (which I have on preorder already).
 
There is also a prequel to Ink, called Shadow, which is available for free on Amazon!
 

Posted by red_sonya on 02/24/14
                                                        
 
 
Insanity is a gripping page turner, full of suspense. Taking place in Never, Kentucky and the medical facility/mental institution called Lincoln. Lincoln isn’t your average medical facility, the dead never seem to fully rest here. Lincoln is a gateway to the other-side, and might even be a living being itself. Four kids whose lives intertwine are all pulled into Lincoln’s mysterious, sometimes terrifying ways. Together they go on a journey full of ghosts, shades, and other supernatural beings, and find their lives drastically changed.

I found this book to be a thrilling read. I simply couldn’t put it down. The author does a fantastic job of making you connect to the characters. The book is told in four different parts, each part another kid, and all connected. I enjoyed reading the same progressing story line but told through the different points of views, and their own voices.I did think the book could have ended earlier, but I did like the ending the author chose.
 
For a supernatural read I found this book to be an exciting one. I felt the fear and terror that the characters were feeling. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who is looking for a good ghost story.
 
 

Posted by amypelman on 02/11/13
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Let's face it.  Valentine's Day isn't for everybody.  Even if you're in love and your boyfriend/girlfriend is your best friend and everything couldn't be more perfect with your relationship, you STILL might not be into the holiday.  Cheesy, Hallmark holiday, forced romance, too many hearts and roses... there are a lot of reasons you might find it a tad, shall we say, uncool. Don't get me wrong!  No disrespect if you <3 February 14th, I'm just giving a shout-out to those of us on other side of the candy heart....
 
So. If the thought of Valentine's makes you feel a little bit like hurling, here are some books to distract you this week! 
 
When her boyfriend ends their relationship, high school sophomore Lucy thinks she will never recover from the heartbreak until she meets three magical girls who say they can heal her, but at a cost.
 
Sadie Allen has spent the last two years pining for Garrett, but when he heads off to camp for the summer without her, she decides to kick her crush for good, with the help of her co-workers, another boy, and her own twelve-step program.
 
And Then Things Fall Apart by Adriana Tibensky
Devastated by her parents' decision to split up, pressured by her boyfriend to have sex, and saddled with a case of chicken pox, fifteen-year-old Keek finds consolation in her beloved, well-worn copy of Sylvia Plath's "The Bell Jar."
 
Why We Broke Up by Daniel Handler
Sixteen-year-old Min Green writes a letter to Ed Slaterton in which she breaks up with him, documenting their relationship and how items in the accompanying box, from bottle caps to a cookbook, foretell the end.
 
 

Posted by amypelman on 06/24/13
 
Books open doors, expand your mind, and provide insight into experiences that you might never have otherwise.  It's the original "edutainment!" (that's education and entertainment combined).  We are lucky in this day and age because we have an additional avenue for edutainment, it's the interwebs!  You might already know about John and Hank green's Vlog brothers and Crash Course videos which are informative and very entertaining.  Here are a few more video channels that are fun, funny, interesting, thought-provoking all while being extremely EDUCATIONAL!!  (Yeah I said it. In the summer no less!). 
 
The host poses really crazy cool questions like "Is the Universe a Computer?" and "Is twitter the Newest Form of Literature?" then attempts to answer them in a matter of a few minutes.
 
 
Have a burning science question and don't have time to start from scratch with atoms and neurons?  ASAP Science might have already put together a little video to de-mystify even the most difficult brain chemistry! 
 
Another good video channel where interesting and seemingly unknowable ideas are explored and explained.  The creator Michael Stevens went to the University of Chicago!  
 
Thinker is great because it is a mash up of content and you never know what kinds of strange and interesting videos will pop up! 
 
They say you never stop learning.  As someone who is older and wiser than... some other people, I can say with complete confidence that it's true, you don't.  But why would you want to?  Anyway, do you get your edutainment fix somewhere else besides the sites mentioned above?  Let me know about it in the comments! 
 
 

Posted by red_sonya on 08/11/14
                                                        
 
Plague Inc. is a game I recently have come into contact with. The infection of this new addiction must be spread, get the game from the app store, or google play, or the PC version, soon to be on the xbox one. The goal of the game is simple enough. You create a plague (which you get to name, my first plague was stubbedtoe) you have to pick a country to start in, and from there, infect the world. Once you have the world infected you start increasing the symptoms, while strengthening your plague to fight off their work for a cure. 
 
The game is an interesting look at how plagues are spread, certain countries are better to start in for instance. Figuring out how you want your plague to be transmitted, what the symptoms are and how to build the strength of it is quite challenging. It's an addicting game as you can change the type of plague type; you start with a bacteria form, and how it’s transmitted. Right now there is a special Dawn of The Planet of The Apes download that was free on google play. It's a great game for those who have also watched Contagion one too many times, and those who frequent the 614.5 section of non-fiction. 
 
Who else plays Plague Inc. and what are your strategies? 
 

Posted by tspicer on 06/21/12
Love this review as there is an interesting back story about the author . . . great job!cover

"I read the book "In a Heartbeat" by Loretta Ellsworth. The story begins when, Eagan, an amazing figure skater, dies after attempting a triple-lutz in a competition. The story then is handed over to Amelia, a girl with CHF, or Congestive Heart Failure. She has waited months for  transplant, but is troubled when she is able to receive one. She knows that it means someone else must die for her to be happy. Slowly, things are revealed about Eagan's troubled relationship with her mom and Amelia's new attitude and cravings. Is her donor trying to tell her something, or is it just side effects from the drugs?

I highly recommend this book, as I couldn't put it down and finished it in less than 2 days. (around 2 hours). The coolest thing is that the book is dedicated to her mother and nephew. She began the story as therapy at the loss of both. Her mother had passed away from Congestive Heart Failure and her nephew, Jason, had a fatal motorcycle accident. Jason was an organ donor, as shown on his driver's license, like Eagan. She felt happy that part of him lived on, like Eagan's parents. This book was written in the memories of both and helped her keep writing through her grief.

This is a great book to read so don't hesitate to pick it up. The book is amazing and worth a try. It also teaches great lessons such as to enjoy life while you have it, because some are not as fortunate. The author did a great job with the tricky subject of death and turned the book into something you want to read."

~Rosy


Posted by emather on 12/09/13
 
 
Now that it's all snowy and wintery outside, my very favorite thing to do is to light a fire (preferably in a fireplace) and cuddle up under a blanket with a warm drink and (most important ingredient) a good book.  My favorite books to do this with are often fantasies or science fiction (The Dark is Rising, The Magicians, and A Wrinkle in Time are perfect examples.) I really enjoy anything long and involved with a completely unique world that I can get completely lost in.  (Even better if the unique world exists just beneath our own reality.)  It's super-extra fun if the book takes place in winter. (Think along the lines of City of Thieves, Blankets, and The Golden Compass.) That way, I can feel all lucky and superior to the characters freezing their tails off.
 
In addition to the books posted here, we’ve got a display in the HUB of more “Books to Keep You Warm.” Come in and grab some great titles to take home and make your own magical toasty story cocoon.  You’ll just need to provide your own fire, blanket, and cocoa/cider/coffee.
 
How about all of you?  What books keep you warm when the snow is falling all around? Keep the convo going on our Facebook page, send us a Tweet, or just stop by the HUB to chat books.

Posted by amypelman on 03/21/13
 
 

Did you see Skyfall yet?  It's pretty entertaining if you ask me.  Did it make you want to see more James Bond flicks?  How about reading a spy story or two?  I've read one recently that I enjoyed.  It's called Also Known As by Robin Benway.  It's about a girl named Maggie who is a professional safecracker.  She can break into any vault, door, safe, you name it.  She's actually like one of the best in the world.  When her family gets sent to New York City for Maggie's very first solo assignment, she is pretty excited about it.  Too bad this assignment involves attending a high school and pretending to be a normal teenager.  So far Maggie has been fine avoiding that kind of drama and isn't really looking to try her hand at the regular high school lifestyle.  But in order to complete this very important assignment, she has to get close enough to Jesse Oliver to crack the case of his possibly corrupt father.  Jesse Oliver is cute and probably annoying, but a job's a job and this may be the most important job ever!

Intrigued?  I give more suggestions for fun spy books at YALSA's Hub.  Take a look at it here: Not Undercover: Superb Spy Fiction.


Posted by amypelman on 02/06/13
 
Need a break from textbooks and essays?  Craving a treat for your brain?  You might not think reading would be the way to go, but I beg to differ.  Especially when it comes to graphic novels!  The combination of expressive pictures, short bursts of text, and fast-moving storylines is a perfect recipe for great entertainment that won't insult your intelligence.  There are so many different types of graphic novels and comics out now, that there is sure to be one to fit your mood.  Creepy, hilarious, thought-provoking, suspenseful, dramatic, romantic...  they've got it all!  We recently updated our Recommended page with a list of Great Graphic Novels for Teens!
 
Here are few that I personally enjoyed:
 
In the mood for something funny and light? 
Drama
While working on the sets and stage crew for her school play artistic, enthusiastic, (and just a little bit clueless) Callie stumbles into some rocky relationship territory.  Pick up this cute story and prepare to forget your own troubles!  
 
Want something more serious and thought-provoking? 
Trinity
This interesting book details the race to develop, build, and deploy the first atomic bomb.  Chronicling everything from the initial intellectual pursuit to the ultimate and incredible devastation caused by dropping the bomb, it's anything but forgettable.    
 
2012 was a great year for graphic novels. What are some of your favorites?  Let us know in the comments!