Auden is the child of divorced university professors. Pretty much since birth she’s been pressured to succeed academically, and in the quest for the highest grades and most attractive college application package she’s missed out on a lot. She’s never had close friends, been in a food fight, or learned to ride a bike. Her acceptance to a prestigious college secured, she heads off to spend the summer with her Dad and his new wife and daughter. All is not well at her Dad’s house, and the stress soon has Auden wandering the streets of the sea-side town at night, plagued with insomnia. She soon meets the small town’s other sleepless residents, including Eli, a boy with a secret hurt of his own. Eli and Auden decide to spend the summer nights filling in her lost carefree highschool years.
Along for the Ride is sweet and funny. Dessen is as amazing as always at describing the nuances of families and writing characters that sound and act authentic. Highly recommended, especially if you liked Dessen's other books.
A few years ago 30-something Sarah Brown started sharing her old diaries with friends and strangers, through the web and at a coffee-house event in New York. The project prompted an open call for old teenage journals, poetry and other writings from anyone willing to share; the most cringe-worthy and embarrassing results became this book. The entries are funny and sad, but it shows pretty clearly that a lot of people go through the same experiences.
As an FYI- Cringe contains uncensored journal entries, and some of the subjects covered are pretty sobering and explicit. Brown’s and the original authors’ approach to all the entries is tongue-in-cheek, so the commentary does not take even the most heart-wrenching subjects seriously.
In the America of the distant future books are outlawed. Guy Montag is a fireman, a burner of books, who has always followed the rules. He likes his life, and has never really questioned it, until one day, on his way home from work, he meets a unique young woman who is walking near his house. Soon after, his wife overdoses on sleeping pills and is revived by uncaring paramedics. Finally, while at work he accidentally reads a line of a book, something he has never done in his long and distinguished career. He steals the book, placing himself among the ranks of the insane and probably dangerous.
Image courtesy of Flickr user Poccreia who assures that the pictured books were not burned maliciously.
Sisters Octavia and Talia are pretty much prepared for the summer from hell: accompanying their 80+ year old grandmother Mare on a cross-country road trip to a reunion in Alabama. It’s not going to be pretty. Octavia and Talia haven’t really been friends lately, and Mare is far from being a normal sweater wearing, pie making grandma. Instead she drives her convertible like she’s in NASCAR, wears stilettos and smokes like a chimney. Along the way, Mare starts to tell her granddaughters about her history: what it was like growing up in the Depression, living in the segregated South, running away from home at 17 to join the Women’s Army Corps, about getting shipped off to Europe to help fight the Second World War.
Mare's War is a really good book. The story of the road trip is interesting and Octavia and Talia are good characters with a pretty realistic dynamic between them. The best part of the book is Mare’s storytelling. She is vivid, engaging and strong. Her story is heroic, and describes a little-known part of history, but it isn't preachy.
Come join in on the fun!
The Teen Lounge now boasts four iMac's exclusively for Teens to enjoy. That's right, fantastic four!!!
Here's a list of iMazing things you can do:
So, invite your friends and check out the awesome Teen Lounge on the Lower level of the library!!
See you there!
Blue Baker is a normal, nice kid with a normal, nice family: a Mom, a Dad and a little sister. He has friends, goes to school, and has regular run-ins with the town bully. When his Dad dies, he gets set up with a counselor at school, Mrs. Molloy, who tells him to try writing out his feelings, which is how he ends up writing the story of The Savage. The Savage is a savage: he lives under an abandoned chapel, hunts and kills for food, doesn’t speak except in grunts and has sticks and chicken feathers in his hair. The Savage is Blue’s private story, but as he writes more and more chapters, it starts to become real. The Savage starts showing up around town, and eventually Blue is going to have to face him.
Prom Nights From Hell is full of horrifying short stories about going to the prom, by all your fav authors. Stephenie Meyer writes about a girl (--or is she?) with a secret plan to ruin the prom. Lauren Myracle writes about what happens when you use magic to get a date. Meg Cabot tells the story of what happens when a vampire shows up at school and asks your best friend on a date.
These stories are fun and well written, and a little scary. Highly recommended, and a must if you’re trying to read through Stephenie Meyer, Meg Cabot, Lauren Myracle, Michele Jaffe or Kim Harrison.
This is the true story about how a regular guy managed to trade a paperclip for a home of his own. Kyle was pretty much a regular unemployed free-spirit without too many prospects. One night he decided to post an ad on craigslist offering to trade one red paperclip for anything better, with the intention of continuing to trade up until someone offered him a house. Kyle’s journey takes him to some strange and interesting places, he meets some weird and wonderful people and becomes an internet celebrity. He trades the paperclip for a fish pen, the fish pen for a doorknob and so on…
One Red Paperclip is unforgettable because it shows how nothing can be turned into something with the application of creativity and determination. Kyle is a quirky writer and a good storyteller. I really recommend this book. You can also read Kyle’s blog at oneredpaperclip.blogspot.com
Photo of the original red paperclip courtesy of flickr user kylemac
“The man in black fled across the desert, and the gunslinger followed.” It’s one of my all-time favorite opening lines in a book, setting the stage for a fantasy-horror-western seven-book epic that spans twenty-seven years of Stephen King’s career. The Gunslinger, Roland of Gilead, is the last of his kind in a world that no longer resembles the one he grew up in. He seeks the Dark Tower, a place that unites the universe, and which may hold the key to preventing more decay in the world. He seeks the Man in Black, who may hold the secret of finding the tower and to Roland’s destiny. Roland believes he will do anything to get to the tower, he has sworn to find it, but the price for a meeting with the Man in Black may be too high. The Dark Tower Novels are a must-read for Stephen King fans.
The series has spawned the prequel graphic novels The Dark Tower by Peter David, which was listed by the American Library Association as one of the best graphic novel series for teens for 2009. Beginning with Roland winning his guns, the comics show the love, the loss and the war that turn Roland from a serious kid into the hardened gunslinger we meet in the first Stephen King novels. The art in these books is amazing, but also gory. The story is scary and sad. I highly recommend it. The graphic novels are rated PG by Marvel, which they suggest as 15+ for more explicit content.
Angela Cardenas has not been an angel, and she knows it. By the time she goes to live with her grandfather, she’s been expelled from every school that will have her, and is ready for a new life. Instead, she meets a guy, the love of her life, and goes further than ever to make him happy. When her grandfather dies during a heated confrontation, Angela’s parents decide to send her to Hidden Oak, a last-chance boarding school for girls on the brink.
Hidden Oak is more than a normal reform school. Combining psychoanalysis, mind-games and physical abuse, Hidden Oak is clearly a dangerous place. As girls begin to disappear one by one, Angela and her friends begin to suspect that there is a dark secret at the school that goes beyond even the everyday horrors of the place.
The School for Dangerous Girls is a fun read. It doesn’t really stand up to close examination, but as a mystery and a thriller, it is satisfying. Angela is a bad girl with an essentially good nature, and you’ll find yourself hoping that she manages to get out of Hidden Oak alive.