Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Book Review: How Lamar's Bad Prank Won a Bubba-Sized Trophy

How Lamar's Bad Prank Won a Bubba-Sized Trophy by Crystal Allen

13-year-old Lamar Washington likes to pull pranks, has asthma, and is always overshadowed by his basketball superstar older brother. Lamar does have one thing going for him-bowling. He is known as "The King of Strikers" down at his small town's bowling alley. Suddenly, things seem to start looking up for Lamar-pretty Mekeda likes him even though she used to be the victim of his pranks, professional bowler Bubba Sanders is coming to visit his town, and Lamar thinks he has come up with the perfect plan to make tons of money to purchase an expensive professional bowling ball! It doesn't take long for everything that was going so well in Lamar's life to start going wrong...
This is a funny, touching story that reminds me a lot of one of my favorite books of all time- The Watsons Go To Birmingham-1963 by Christopher Paul Curtis. Some other read-alikes include:

The Schwa Was Here by Neil Schusterman
Donovan's Word Jar by Monalisa DeGross
The Big Bike Race by Lucy Jane Bledsoe
The Stories Julian Tells by Ann Cameron
The Hundred Penny Box by Sharon Bell Mathis
Fast Sam, Cool Clyde, and Stuff by Walter Dean Myers
Edgar Allen by John Neufeld
Read for Me, Mama by Vashanti Rahaman
Justin and the Best Biscuits in the World by Mildred Pitts Walter

-Reviewed by Jen

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Haunting Halloween Reads

Halloween is one of our favorite holidays in Youth Services! What is more fun than dressing up, carving pumpkins, and of course, trick-or-treating? Get into the spirit with some of the following books. All are available either at the library or by interlibrary loan.

Picture Books:
Halloween Hunt: A Spot-It Challenge EASY SCHUETTE
Can you spot all the Halloween items on each page? Perfect for those who love I Spy books!

AlphaOops! H is for Halloween EASY KONTIS
While putting on a Halloween pageant, the alphabet mixes things up with some funny and spooky results!

13 Ghosts of Halloween EASY MULLER
Ten children, two dogs, and a cat enter a haunted fun house. On their journey throughout the house, they encounter witches, goblins, bats and lots of fun!

The Three Bears' Halloween EASY DUVAL
Is it a real witch or a trick-or-treater by the spooky house when the bears go trick-or-treating?

Cinderhazel: The Cinderella of Halloween EASY LATTIMORE
An untidy witch discovers Prince Alarming likes dirt just as much as she does!

The Picky Little Witch EASY BROKAMP
Mama Witch tries to get her daughter to eat some Halloween soup before going out trick-or-treating, but Picky Little Witch finds many reasons to refuse. Includes a recipe for soup!

A fun Halloween lift-the-flap book.

The Hungry Ghosts EASY LESTER
A helpful boy tries for find something to eat for three ghosts.

Chapter Books:
The Ghost's Grave J FIC KEHRET
Josh soon finds an adventure when he meets the ghost of a coal miner while spending the summer with his Aunt in Washington State.

Lily's Ghosts J FIC RUBY
Strange happenings at her great-uncle's summer home draw Lily and a new friend into a mystery involving lost treasure, a fake medium, and ghosts of all sizes, shapes, and dispositions.

Ghosts Beneath Our Feet J FIC WRIGHT
During a summer in an abandoned mining town, Katie's relationship with a rebellious stepbrother improves as they probe the past to find out why there seem to be ghosts, literally, beneath their feet.

Mrs. Jeepers' Scariest Halloween Ever J PB DADEY
A Good Night for Ghosts J SERIES MAGIC

Want to learn more about Halloween? Or maybe you need help with your costume? Check out some interesting and spooky nonfiction titles!

Ghosts and Other Spectors J 133.1 WES
A World Full of Ghosts J 133.1 COT
Do You Believe in Ghosts J 133.1 SUT
Ghosts and Goosebumps: Poems to Chill Your Bones J 811 GHO
Witches, Pumpkins and Grinning Ghosts: The Story of Halloween Symbols
J 394.2683 BAR
Paper Crafts for Halloween J 745.594 MCG
Halloween Propmaker's Book YA 394.2646 PIT
The Encyclopedia of Ghosts and Spirits YA 133.1 GUI

Maybe not about Halloween per se, but still pretty eerie and fun!

Young Adult Titles:
After dying, Charlotte ends up at a sort of alternative high school for dead teens. If you like this one, there are two more books in the series!

Tempted: An It Girl Novel
Beginning with Waverly Academy's Halloween Ball, Jenny watches her own popularity soar, while Tinsely's plummets.

All Hallow's Eve: 13 Stories YA FIC VANDE VELDE
Thirteen Halloween horror stories, including ghosts, vampires and pranks gone awry.

Anya's Ghost
Anya, embarrassed by her immigrant family has given up on trying to fit in at school, falls down a well and meets a ghost who wants to be her BFF.

Ghost and the Goth YA FIC KADE
After being hit by a bus and killed, a homecoming queen gets stuck in the land of the living with only a loser classmate to help her.

Acorn has many more titles than the short list above! Please call or stop in the library and ask a librarian to find more titles.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Acorn's Teen Volunteer Bowling Champs

This past Friday, July 22, our teen volunteers took part in a bowling challenge against teen volunteer groups from Orland Public Library and Homer Public Library at Orland Bowl. We are happy to announce our teens brought home the traveling trophy! Acorn's teens have won the challenge 3 of the last 4 years. Our volunteers have been a huge help this summer by helping keep the Youth Services Department in order and helping out at programs, and we are so proud of them!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

An Interview with Jennifer Burghard, Oak Forest High School's 2011 Salutatorian

Acorn Library shelver, Jennifer Burghard, is Oak Forest High School's 2011 Salutatorian! We are so proud of Jen, and thought it would be a great idea to interview her for our Youth Services blog to learn a bit more about her!

-How does it feel to the the 2011 Oak Forest High School Salutatorian?

Jen: It's an honor to be recognized for all the hard work I have put into my schoolwork for the past four years.

-What do you attribute your success to?

Jen: I think it has been really helpful for me to challenge myself and not hesitate to take more difficult classes. A lot of people advised me against taking so many difficult or AP classes, but I think taking these classes has really allowed me to get the most out of my high school education. It's also important to stay dedicated to school and schoolwork, especially when "senioritis" begins to kick in!

-Who inspires you?

Jen: It may seem cliché to say my parents, but they have truly set the best example for me in terms of staying dedicated and working toward a greater purpose. I have also has some amazing teachers who have gotten me interested in so many different subjects and have really influenced me in my desire to pursue a higher education.

-Besides excelling in school, and being a stellar library employee, what other activities are you involved in?

Jen: I have been on the tennis team for 4 years. I was editor of the yearbook for 3 years and editor-in-chief this year. I taught a 4th grade CCD class at St. Damian for 3 years. I have also been involved in NHS and Bengal tutors at school.

-Which college are you headed to and what do you plan on majoring in?

Jen: I am planning on attending Loyola University in the fall. I'm thinking about majoring in something in the field of education-I am not sure exactly what, but I enjoy working with kids.

-Where do you see yourself in 20 years?

Jen: I honestly have no picture of anything specific, I just hope that wherever I am, I am happy, and that I can use the education I plan to achieve to the benefit of others.

-What are your plans for the summer?

Jen: I plan of RELAXING and enjoying not having any homework! I also have to get organized and go shopping for everything I am going to need before I leave for school in the fall.

-If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would it be?

Jen: I would LOVE to have the opportunity to travel-I'm actually hoping to participate in a study abroad program while I'm in college. I would especially love to see Europe, there's so much art and history there that I would love to learn about.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Cloaked in Red by Vivian Vande Velde

Cloaked in Red is a short story collection of 8 twisted fairy tale versions of Little Red Riding Hood. All stories are set in the time period of most fairy tales- no concrete clues as to when or where the tales are taking place. Some of the stories are creepy-creepier than the original-which Vande Velde notes in her prologue is "a strange and disturbing story that should probably not be shared with children." Some are pretty funny such as Deems the Wood Gatherer, the tale of a near-sighted and clueless woodcutter (time period: before glasses were invented, of course) who crosses paths with not only Little Red Riding Hood, but a large cast of fairy tale characters. This quick read is highly recommended for anyone who loves clever re-tellings of classic stories and fairy tale fans. Gr. 7-10

Monday, May 9, 2011

Three Quarters Dead by Richard Peck

Kerry is an invisible sophomore at an extremely prestigious public school on the East Coast. One day, miraculously, three of the most popular girls in school notice her, and ask her to sit with them at lunch. This begins a friendship that oftentimes leaves Kerry feeling somewhat awkward, but awed by her perfect and popular new friends. One day, the unthinkable happens and the three girls are killed in a car accident. Kerry is left feeling alone and misunderstood, until a few months later, she gets a text from her deceased friends telling her to meet them at her aunt's apartment in New York City. Kerry goes to meet them...
This is a great book for anyone who loves to read books about the supernatural, ghosts or even mysteries. It's a quick, scary read, by the extremely well-known and often-honored, Richard Peck. I am more familiar with Peck's historical and oftentimes hilarious novels intended for a younger audience, but this was a good departure.
Gr. 6-10

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Book Review: Strings Attached by Judy Blundell

This is a fantastically noirish young adult novel that contains the perfect combination of historical fiction and suspense/thriller. The story begins with 17-year-old Kit Corrigan attempting to make her way in New York City as a Broadway actress. She left behind her brother, sister and father in Providence, RI after a fateful night involving her estranged boyfriend Billy. Billy's father is a lawyer associated with the mob, and makes Kit an offer-a new apartment and the chance to work in one of NYC's most famous nightclubs-as long as she keeps tabs on Billy. Soon Kit becomes caught up in a world she wants nothing to do with...

This book is somewhat similar to Blundell's What I Saw and How I Lied which was named an ALA Best Book for Young Adults, and winner of the 2008 National Book Award. Both of these books are among my favorites, so I looked up what other books she has written. Interestingly, she has been writing series fiction for nearly 20 years under the pen name Jude Watson, and most recently has written two books of the popular 39 Clues series.


Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Upcoming Programs

Weekly Story Times continue this week! Feel free to drop in if you are looking for something fun to do Thursday morning! We offer Lapsit Story Time for very young children up to age 2 1/2 at 9:30 AM and again at 10 AM. 3-5 year-old Story Time is at 11 AM. If you stop in, you will get a chance to see how much the department has changed in the last couple of weeks! The new carpeting is in, and all the children's books are out of the Meeting Room and back in the department! Our new service desk is coming along, and you can see its permanent location as it is being constructed. When you visit, I am sure you will notice lots of other exciting changes!

Our Acorn Teen Corp is meeting Thursday evening in the Board Room upstairs at 7 PM. The group is open to all young adults, grades 6-12, interested in volunteering at the library, in their community and participating in fun group activities. This meeting, the group will work on some interesting and tricky brainteasers! As always, snacks will be provided.

Don't forget, our next Panera Story Time is next Wednesday, May 4. We read stories, participate in activity songs, and Panera generously provides a cookie and milk for each child. In April, we had a great turn out with 40 children and 20 adults attending! We'll be at the Panera Bread located at 15854 Harlem Ave. in Orland at 10 AM.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Young Adult Book Discussion Group

We had a great turn out at our last Young Adult Book Discussion Group of The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. Our next meeting will be on Friday, May 6 at 3:30 PM and we'll be discussing The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents by Terry Pratchett. Copies of the book are available at the Youth Services Desk. To learn a bit about our next selection, take a look at out book trailer below!

Monday, April 11, 2011

"Create Your Own Story @ Your Library" Bookmark Contest

The winners have been chosen! We received lots of creative entries and had a hard time choosing our winners. In addition to getting their winning designs made into bookmarks, which are currently available in the Youth Services Department, winners also received an art supply kit and a certificate of achievement. Please stop in to see the winning designs on display now at the Youth Services Desk!

3rd and 4th Grade Category: Peyton Nielsen

5th and 6th Grade Category: Cherish Recera

6th 7th Grade Category: Emily Cooper

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Museum Adventure Passes

Lots of people are on Spring Break this week, and if you are looking for something to do, don't forget Acorn offers Museum Adventure Passes. With your valid Acorn Library card you can obtain a pass at the Youth Services Desk or Reference Desk to one of 18 local museums and cultural institutions, including the Brookfield Zoo, The Children's Museum in Oak Lawn and the Morton Arboretum. Here is a complete list of participating institutions, including a listing of what each pass entitles. Passes are limited, and available on a first come, first serve basis. You must present your valid Acorn Library card in order to obtain the pass. You are limited to one pass at any given time, and each pass is valid for one week. Please call the Youth Services Desk (708) 687-3700 for more information or to check on pass availability.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Hunger Games Book Trailer

Take a look at the book trailer Mike created for our upcoming YA Book Discussion on Friday, April 8 at 3:30 PM. Copies of the book are available at the Youth Services Desk!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Young Adult Book Discussion Group

In April, we will discuss the award-winning, best seller…


by Susanne Collins

The Hunger Games is the first novel in the trilogy, and introduces readers to a futuristic dystopian society where an overpowering government controls the lives and resources in twelve different districts. Each year, as punishment for District 13's attempted rebellion, two children in each district are chosen by lottery to fight each other to the death in an arena. The event is called the Hunger Games and is televised for everyone in the Capitol to see; the winner is given food and a life of ease for themselves and their families, along with food and resources for their district. Katniss Everdeen’s little sister is chosen to fight, but Katniss volunteers to replace her and is taken to the Capitol with Peeta, a boy from her school, to fight other children in the Hunger Games.

Now is a perfect time to read, or re-read, the first in the Hunger Games trilogy and discuss it with fellow readers!

We will meet on April 8th at 3:30pm. The group is open to all patrons in 6th grade or older, and copies of the book are available at the Youth Services Desk.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Great Reads for 3rd Graders

Recently, Ms. Janice conducted a visit and tour for a group of Cub Scouts. During their visit, she pulled some great books to show them--here's the list!

Interesting Non-Fiction Titles:

Great White Sharks by James Martin
J 597.31 MAR

Fairy Tale Feasts: A Literary Cookbook for Young Readers & Eaters by Jane Yolen
J 641.5 YOL

Entertaining Chapter Books:

Frindle by Andrew Clements

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl

Danny, the Champion of the World also by Dahl

Because of Winn-Dixie by Kate DiCamillo

Hachiko Waits by Leslea Newman

If you are a fan of series books, check out Geronimo Stilton and The Time Warp Trio books!

Maybe you are in the mood to share a picture book:

Stellaluna by Cannon

The Junkyard Wonders by Polacco

How to Make an Apple Pie and See the World by Priceman

Zathura by Van Allsburg

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Young Adult Book Discussion Group

All patrons in grades 6 and up are invited to join out discussion every second Friday of the month.

On Friday, March 11 we will be discussing the Rebecca Caudill Young Readers' Book Award Nominee...

The Great Wide Sea by H. M. Herlong

Ben, Dylan and Gerry are still mourning their mother's death when their dad decides to buy a boat and take them on a year-long sailing trip. Tensions flare between Ben and his father, but they gradually learn to live together in close quarters. One morning, the boys wake up to discover their father has disappeared-and they are lost. What happened to him? Where are they? And what will they do when a treacherous storm looms on the horizon?

Don't miss our discussion of this gripping tale of adventure, survival and the bonds of brotherhood! Copies are available at the Youth Services Desk.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Upcoming Youth Services Programs

"Create Your Own Story @Your Library" Bookmark Contest
We're holding our annual @Your Library Bookmark Contest again this year! This year's theme is "Create Your Own Story @Your Library." The contest is open to children in grades 3-8, and entry forms are available in the Youth Services Department. The designs should feature the phrase "Create Your Own Story @Your Library" and may not contain images of any copyrighted characters. Winners from each of the three age categories will get their winning design made into a bookmark to be distributed in the library during National Library Week, April 10-16. Entries will be accepted from February 22 to March 19. We can't wait to see your creative designs! Questions? Please call the Youth Services Desk at 687-3700, or email

Acorn Teen Corp
Formerly known as our Teen Advisory Group, the ATC will be meeting next week Thursday, February 24 at 7 PM in the Library's Break Room. Our To Do List includes discussing the possibility of holding a gift card drive for the Pediatric Oncology Treasure Chest Foundation. Also, we be discussing Book Buddies and Teen Techies, two programs that we would love to see the library offer, but we need teen volunteers! The Book Buddies program would involve pairing up teen volunteers with younger children for one-on-one reading time to take place in the library. Teen Techies is a program where teen volunteers spend time working one on one helping people with computer tasks, such as downloading pictures from a digital camera. Both of these programs would be a great benefit to the teens volunteering and those they are helping! If these exciting volunteering ideas interest you, and you are in the 6th grade or older, please come to our meeting! If you have any questions, call the Youth Services Desk at 687-3700.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

2010 Best Books for Young Adults

Even though we are well into 2011, great books remain great, so the following is a listing of some of YALSA's 2010 Best Books for Young Adults that can be found here at Acorn.

Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson                                  
A girl is haunted by her best friend's death from an eating disorder, while she struggles with her own.

Tales of the Madman Underground by John Barnes           
Karl attempts to distance himself from the rest of the students in his school's therapy group known as the Madman Underground.

Going Bovine by Libba Bray                                               
Cameron knew there was something wrong when he started seeing pillars of fire and angels, but he never imagined he had mad cow disease. 

Hate List by Jennifer Brown                                                 
In the year following the devastating shootings at her high school orchestrated by her boyfriend Nick, Valerie must come to terms with her grief and guilt.

All the Broken Pieces by Anne Burg                                 
Matt struggles to cope with memories of family left behind in war-torn Vietnam with the help of his adoptive parents, baseball coach and music teacher.

Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins                                         
The second book in the Hunger Games Trilogy. If you haven't read these books, you should start with The Hunger Games.

Along for the Ride by Sarah Dessen                                  
Dessen fans won't be disappointed!  Auden's summer becomes one of second chances and self-discovery.

If I Stay by Gayle Forman                                                   
While in a coma after her family is killed in an accident, Mia struggles to decide whether to live or die.  A thoughtful and compelling read!    

The Orange Houses by Paul Griffin                                      
Despite poverty, gang violence and lack of support, three inner-city teens try to beat the odds and succeed in life.

Into the Wild Nerd Yonder by Julie Halpern                        
Feeling used by her best friends, Jessie decides to go in search of new friends.

The Great Wide Sea by M.H. Herlong                                  
March's YA Book Discussion Group pic!  Ben and his young brothers try to survive a horrific storm while their father is missing at sea. 

The Reformed Vampire Support Group by Catherine Jenks 
Nina, forever a teenage vampire, leads her dysfunctional group on a mission to halt vampire persecution.  A fun read, and a departure from the rest of the vampire books out currently. 

Liar by Justine Larbalestier                                                      
For years, Micah has been a liar, and after her boyfriend's brutal murder will anyone believe what she has to say?

Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater                                                     
Grace is drawn to one of the wolves she has spent years watching in the woods behind her house.  Fans of Twilight will love the first book of this series.

Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld                                              
A steampunk novel mixing Victorian times with mechanical inventions.  An extremely fresh novel!

Monday, January 31, 2011

Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow!

Weather reports indicate we are in for quite a snowstorm!  Whether or not it hits us remains to be seen, but in the meantime, here are some of our favorite cold weather tales.

Snow Rabbit, Spring Rabbit: A Book of Changing Seasons by Il Sung Na
     We read this in Lapsit a few weeks ago and the illustrations are gorgeous, with lots of spring time scenes for those of us who are focusing on warmer weather!

Snow is My Favorite and My Best by Lauren Child
     A Charlie and Lola book-when the weather man predicts snow, Lola cannot wait!

Snow Trouble by Melinda Crow
    Great beginning reader!

Dinos in the Snow by Karma Wilson
     It's a snow day, and some dinosaurs enjoy a day full of sledding, building snowmen and having snowball fights.

In the Snow by Sharon Denslow
     A gentle tale about forest animals who venture out after a fresh snow to eat seeds a thoughtful child scattered on the ground.

Snip, Snip...Snow! by Nancy Poydar
     A young girl anxiously awaits a predicted snowstorm by making paper snowflakes.  Instructions on how to make your own paper snowflakes included!

If you are looking for informational books, how about these?

The Story of Snow: The Science of Winter's Wonder by Mark Cassino
     Dazzling up-close pictures of snow crystals with clear and straightforward explanations make this a great introduction to the topic. 

Blizzard: The Storm that Changed America by Jim Murphy
     This an awesome account of a massive snowstorm that hit the northeastern US in 1888, dumping between 40 and 50 inches of snow.  Told through personal accounts, newspaper articles and historic photos.  A must read for weather or history buffs!

Step-by-Step Crafts for Winter by Kathy Ross
     Get creative!

Winter Poems selected by Barbara Rogasky
     A collection of cold weather poems from noted authors, including Shakespeare and Edgar Allan Poe.

If you are looking for a chapter book, maybe Larryboy and the Sinister Snow Day or Blizzard of the Blue Moon would be good choices.  If you are a horse lover, pick up Hoofprints in the Snow, a title from the Thoroughbred series.  If you would rather a movie try Snow Dogs or The Chronicles of Narnia.

Keep Warm!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Story Time at Panera!

We are really excited to announce that we will be offering a story time at Panera Bread on Wednesday, February 9 at 10 AM! The location is 15845 Harlem Ave., Orland Park, just north of 159th on Harlem. Come to listen to stories, sing songs and have fun. Panera is generously providing all the children a cookie and milk! Space in the Youth Services Department is getting a little tight, so come to Panera on Wednesday, February 9th at 10 AM for a fun program! Please contact the Youth Services Department if you have any questions.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

All About Pets!

This week, we are all about Pets in the Youth Services Department! The Winter Story Time Session began Thursday, and we focused on books about pets.

We read:
Wanted: The Perfect Pet by Fiona Roberton
-Very cute book about a boy who desperately wants a pet dog, but ends up with a clever duck instead.
The Pigeon Wants a Puppy by Mo Willems
-Who doesn't love the pigeon books? He pleads the reader for a puppy, until he realizes he is terrified of them.
Children Make Terrible Pets by Peter Brown
-A young bear named Lucy finds a lost boy in the woods and begs her mom to let her keep him, but she soon realizes children make less than ideal pets.
What Pet to Get? by Emma Dodd
-Jack tries to determine which pet he should get...a Tyrannosaurus Rex? A shark? A polar bear?

We also have other books about pets that are sure to appeal to older readers!

Guinea Dog by Patrick Jennings
-Rufus always wanted a dog, but his dad objects because they bark, beg, drool & scratch. His mom brings him home a guinea pig, figuring dad would be okay with this "quiet" little pet. Everyone is surprised when this guinea pig acts just like a little dog! Fido is tiny but she barks, bites & fetches on command. This is an adorable story about an unusual guinea pig!

If horror is your thing, check out Little Shop of Hamsters by R. L. Stine, a part of the Goosebumps Series.

Maybe you would like to make your cat or dog a fun toy, or a comfy pillow? Check out Pet Crafts: Everything You Need to Become Your Pet's Craft Star! by Megan Friday.

If you would like information on different kinds of pets and how to care for them, it can be found in the juvenile non-fiction section (temporarily located in the meeting room) under J 636. As always if you need help finding a book on pets, or any topic, just stop by the Youth Services Desk!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Teen Advisory Group

If you are unfamilar with it, our Teen Advisory Group meets once a month, and is open to anyone in grades 6 and Up. The group mostly focuses on volunteering in the library, participating in and supporting community events, and having fun!
If you are interesting in joining the group, call the Youth Services Department to register for our next meeting, Thursday, January 27 at 7 PM.

Topics we'll focus on in next week's meeting include:
-Brainstorm ideas for upcoming meetings.
-Come up with a new, updated group name from the narrowed-down suggestions.
-Discuss volunteer opportunities that are still available during the construction process. Have you stopped in the library lately? The Youth Services Department looks very different!

See you at next week's meeting!

Friday, January 14, 2011

February Young Adult Book Discussion

Come discuss the book of the month with other readers. Copies of the book are available at the Youth Services Desk. We will meet on Friday, February 11, 2011 to discuss...

The Amulet of Samarkand by Jonathon Stroud

Presenting a thrilling voice in children's literature — a witty, gripping adventure story featuring a boy and his not-so-tame djinni.

Nathaniel is a young magician's apprentice, taking his first lessons in the arts of magic. But when a devious hotshot wizard named Simon Lovelace ruthlessly humiliates Nathaniel in front of everyone he knows, Nathaniel decides to kick up his education a few notches and show Lovelace who's boss. With revenge in his mind, he masters one of the toughest spells of all: summoning the all-powerful djinni, Bartimaeus. But summoning Bartimaeus and controlling him are two different things entirely, and when Nathaniel sends the djinni out to steal the powerful Amulet of Samarkand, Nathaniel finds himself caught up in a whirlwind of magical espionage, murder, blackmail, and revolt.

Set in modern-day London spiced with magicians and mayhem, this extraordinary, funny, pitch-perfect thriller will dazzle the myriad fans of Artemis Fowl and the His Dark Materials trilogy.

Young Adult Book Discussion

The group meets every second Friday of the month at 3:30 to discuss a Young Adult book. The discussion is open to anyone grade 6 and up interested in talking with other readers about each month's book. All are welcome! We serve Snacks!
January's book is:

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

It’s just a small story really, about among other things: a girl, some words, an accordionist, some fanatical Germans, a Jewish fist-fighter, and quite a lot of thievery. . . .

Set during World War II in Germany, Markus Zusak’s groundbreaking new novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a foster girl living outside of Munich. Liesel scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can’t resist–books. With the help of her accordion-playing foster father, she learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement before he is marched to Dachau.

This is an unforgettable story about the ability of books to feed the soul.