Tag Archives: bibliophiles

Five Titles I Can’t Wait to Book Talk This Year

With the school year almost upon me, and a lot of free time on my hands (I am sitting in my recliner, recovering from a septoplasty), I am starting to get really excited about all of the great books I have read over the summer. Net Galley has certainly been kind to me.

While I have definitely worn out the new “New Adult” genre this summer (I kinda hate it now), I have also read a ton of great books in my favorite genre- Young Adult. I love reading YA for two reasons- first, the YA authors out there are putting out some really great stuff that isn’t all depressing or pretentious like adult fiction can get. Second, I LOVE being able to bring YA to my middle school readers that is just appropriate for them… that’s the stuff that they really get excited about reading. My eighth grade boys were drooling over titles like World War Z and Rot and Ruin a couple of years ago, and I like to keep it coming.

Without further adieu…

41TzYsSC84L._SY300_Time After Time by Tamara Ireland Stone. So many sequels fall flat or completely lose the tone of the first book, but this is an awesome sequel to Time Between Us. Since I am Bennett’s age, I love reading from his point of view, too. Going back to 1995, in my hometown (Chicago), is pretty cool- and I love the fact that teachers and librarians can talk to kids about when we grew up without sounding stupid.

51ZhFCzTS9L._SY300_The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater. This is another sequel, but I have to say- Maggie Stiefvater is probably the best paranormal writer for teens out there right now. The Shiver series sees a ton of circulation every year, and now the Raven Boys has seen the same kind of popularity. I like the fact that Stiefvater’s heroines aren’t weak and her narrative voice doesn’t make kids sound stupid.

41SzknL9faLKindness for Weakness by Shawn Goodman. So many books touch on the insecurities of girls, but not many capture the real emotions that go through boys’ heads these days- and so realistically. I actually felt the dirt under my fingernails as I read this one. The tone of the book is so gritty and the way in which the protagonist interacts with the world will resonate with introverts everywhere- whether down-and-out like this guy, or not.

51xb9EOj5HLThe Rules for Disappearing by Ashley Elston. I have read a couple of Witness Protection program books lately, and I watched My Name is Earl from start to finish with my son this summer, so I feel like an expert on the genre (insert sarcasm icon here). This one surprised me. I love the fact that this isn’t action- it is a classic mystery. Mystery is a genre that so often gets bogged down by paranormals and sci fi. When I find a good one that is just a good mystery, I hang on to it. I will be hanging on to this one for sure.

51g07mPX-7LBeing Henry David by Cal Armistead. Like number three, this is a “boy book” that isn’t cheesy. Even boys can only handle so many teenage spy books.  I loved this book when I read it a while back, and it stuck with me. Who doesn’t like a good amnesia mystery? The fascinating thing about this book is the fact that it is a mystery and a coming of age story wrapped in one beautiful, lyrical package. When I want boys to read deeper and experience more, I will turn to this one first.

I hope Net Galley keeps em coming, because I get a lot of my best stuff because of them.  I can’t justify buying YA for my middle school library unless I have a chance to read it first, you know?  If you like hearing about YA that is just appropriate for middle schoolers, let me know in the comments or “like” this post and I will keep the suggestions coming.  🙂  Thanks!



In The Weeds

Over the course of this year, I will be converting my library from the Dewey Decimal System to a more user-friendly browsing-centered experience.  Goodbye Dewey!  Good riddance!

I decided to use Metis, a system designed by some brilliant librarians in New York.  More information on Metis can be found here.  While I love Metis as is, it is a little elementary for my middle school library.  I will be tweaking along the way.  Good thing I have a graphic designer at home.

Step One in the process is (cue ominous music) weeding.  We have done some weeding over the years, but like the true bibliophile I am, it is hard for me to get rid of books.  I have to get over it, though.  Here is book truck number five:



I offer them to teachers first, but honestly…

Ew.No one wants this.  That “Brand New” circle is funny.  It isn’t a sticker- it is built into the cover.  It was brand new in 1995.


Double Ew.Oh, dear.  What can I say about this?  The copyright date is 1988.

Or even this.

He's cool and all, but...


And, really?  I don’t think we could make a super cool guy look any less cool:

I'm sorry, Uncle Stevie.

I’m sorry, Uncle Stevie.

Before we weed a section, the shelves look like this:

Jam Packed!


And after we weed,

So bare!


That’s okay, though.  It is better for the kids to be able to get to the good stuff without having to sift through all of the garbage.  Even if it does make the collection look really puny.

I’ll rant about all the reasons I want to make this change later.  I am really excited about it.

Happy Reading!