Saturday, March 30, 2013

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

I would like to thank the people who put together the Hub reading challenge because I love it. I just finished reading Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secret of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz and the book was amazing.

(I'm not the greatest at book reviews but here goes.)

So, first this book is not what you may think from reading the title. My original though was it would involve the historical versions Aristotle and Dante, but not so much. Aristotle, Ari, and Dante are two teenage boys who live in new Mexico and meet one summer at the swimming pool. Ari is on, what seems to be, a never ending mission  to understand himself, and the secrets his family are keeping from him. Although his relationship with his mother is, at times, that of friendship (their witty banter is always fantastic), Ari's relationship with his father borders on nonexistent. Ari's father was in Vietnam, his father never speaks of his times there, and in fact, rarely speaks at all. Ari has two sisters who are years older than he, so they don't have much of a relationship, and Ari has a brother who's been incarcerated since Ari was four but no one will tell him why. Aristotle is the narrator of the story and I think that was a great idea on the authors part. It allows us to see the change and growth not only in Ari as he makes his first friend in Dante, and builds a relationship with his father, and learns his family secrets, but we also see the growth in Ari's father. Both father and son are incredibly similar in action and manner, so it's great to see the person changes and growths in both of them.

Dante is Ari's total opposite. He knows who he is, although he too, keeps some of it hidden at times, for the most part, however, Dante isn't afraid to yell from the rooftops and defend what he believes (like his hatred of shoes). At one point in the story Aristotle says that on the outside he's like his father, silent and mysterious, but on the inside he wants to be like Dante. He wants to be able to walk up to his father and give him a kiss on the cheek hello, or tell people exactly what he's thinking. Because we as readers know that Ari wants to be more like Dante it's interesting to watch them both interact,

I don't want to give away the plot because I think everyone on the planet should read this book, but I will say the ending almost drove me to tears and it took me two days to organize enough of my thoughts to put all of this down on paper... well not exactly paper but close enough.

So everyone, go out and get this book and love it as much as I did :)

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Free Read Teen Book Club

Alright, so again I mention, we're trying to build this department, we need a higher attendance record for programs, so I thought of a new idea for the Teen Book Club, the kids read whatever books their choose, then discuss them with other members present at the club.

I came up with this idea because sometimes when I mentioned the group to some of the teens who came into the library, they didn't want to come to the book club because they didn't like the book choice, or they though it was below their reading level, or the genre didn't appeal to them. It was always something. So I though that if we did some type of free read, then we'd get more kids because they could read whatever they wanted. I tried this for the first time last week and it worked out pretty well.

I brought four book to talk about (why I read them, what I liked about them, brief synopsis) and the other kids who came each brought one. By the time we ended the meeting, I was asked to put three of the four books I'd presented on hold, and one teen wanted to start the book series that another teen had talked about. I really think something like this could turn our teen book club around.

Below are the books I presented. 


Tuesday, March 26, 2013

NY Times best sellers this week!

  1. Perks of Being a Wallflower by: Stephen Chbosky
  2. The Fault in our Stars by: John Green
  3. I Hunt Killers by: Barry Lyga
  4. Divergent by: Veronica Roth
  5. Looking for Alaska by: John Green
  6. The Prince by: Kiera Cass
  7. Insurgent by: Veronica Roth
  8. Paper Towns by: John Green
  9. The Book Thief by: Markus Zusak
  10. Prodigy- Marie Lu

So kudos to I Hunt Killers and The Prince for making it to the list amidst all these titles that we've seen before.

Straight from here are the summaries for the two new additions (even though they aren't new books exactly. I Hunt Killers was release April 2012, but The Prince is a novella from a The Selection series that was released on the 5th of this month).
I Hunt Killers (Jasper Dent, #1)
What if the world's worst serial killer...was your dad?

Jasper "Jazz" Dent is a likable teenager. A charmer, one might say.

But he's also the son of the world's most infamous serial killer, and for Dear Old Dad, Take Your Son to Work Day was year-round. Jazz has witnessed crime scenes the way cops wish they could—from the criminal's point of view.

And now bodies are piling up in Lobo's Nod.

In an effort to clear his name, Jazz joins the police in a hunt for a new serial killer. But Jazz has a secret—could he be more like his father than anyone knows? (

 The Prince (The Selection, #0.5)
Before thirty-five girls were chosen to compete in the Selection...

Before Aspen broke America's heart...

There was another girl in Prince Maxon's life...

Don't miss this thrilling 128-page original novella set in the world of the New York Times bestselling novel The Selection. Also features a teaser to The Elite, Kiera Cass's hotly anticipated sequel to The Selection. (

Monday, March 25, 2013

Poetry Month

So March is ending, and next month is National Poetry Month. What are my plans you ask? Well I plan on putting together a small poetry slam. I have a hard time getting the kids in the library to sign up for things so I think the best way to approach this is to get some help from teachers. There is a teacher who comes in every Friday with a different group of kids and he got in touch with some of the English teachers for me and even took some of the flyers to pass around the school.

I'm trying to figure out a way to know who's going to sign up since I don't have the ability to ask them. I was hoping that the teachers could bring it up as they were teaching Poetry next month but they were a month early and the poetry session is done.

Well I have high hopes. I want to get a few kids to read poems in front of parents and friends and then we'll present them with certificates when they're done. There will be low lighting and coffee and our community room already has a stage down there, this could be great, I just have to get them sign up.

Thursday, March 21, 2013


Okay so first, with regards to my last post about the anime club, I happen to have a friend who's an anime expert and she's going to send me a list of suggested anime that I can show children. One girl who comes every month also informed me that just about anything through Funimation will probably be okay to show. Thanks goodness.

Now, on to random things I've learned in school. On Sunday I have a paper due on the process of weeding materials. We're suppose to go to a library and using lectures and reading materials, we're suppose to weed a shelf then write about it. The paper will include everything from where the books we chose to weed are shelved, to the condition of the books, to how and why we chose to weed what we chose. I decided to weed the math section, there were about 30 to 40 books, and because I'm luck enough to work in a library I was able to access statistics such as amount of times the individual books circulated and when was the last time the book was checked out.

So it turns out that most of our math materials are not only over 10 years old but they don't circulate well. However there were a few books that were older than 10 years and had circulated like, 58 times, but the last time it had been checked out was like two years ago. What does that mean? What do you do? The book hasn't been checked out in a while, but it has circulated quite a bit. Do you keep it? Do you get rid of it? I tried looking the books up to see if there were updated copies and there were not. It's a tad bit confusing. I guess my though it to keep the book and try to flag it in some way. Go back to the book a year later and if it still hasn't been checked out then get rid of it. That's my suggestion but I wonder what other professionals would do?

Wednesday, March 20, 2013


Okay, so back in December I officially began an Anime Club at the library I work at. For quite some time there has been an issue with program attendance, it began before I got there but apparently no one would show up for any of the book clubs or movie viewings. I wasn't working there long before I realized that there were a ton of kids in the area were big into anime and manga. It only made sense that there should be an anime club, every other library seems to have one, so I asked for permission to try it out.

In December three girls and a parent showed up, last month there were 20 people crammed into the room. I was so shocked, we even had boys! So tonight I have another anime club meeting and I've noticed that I'd made a pretty big mistake. I'd chosen all the anime we were going to watch for five months, and they're all pretty girly. Tonight we're watching Air TV and next month is Clannad, then after that it's Honey and Clover. These are all very girly shows, but I'm finding it hard to find shows that don't have swear words, or too much nudity, or too many guns or whatever else might be present that a parent may find offensive.

I'm not sure how to rectify this issue, there's not much I can do about tonight, but I'm trying my hardest to watch more anime and research a bit more on what other clubs are watching and doing, but with all the homework I have right now, it's hard to find the time to sit around and essentially watch cartoons (even though I really really want to).

What's a girl to do???

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Playaway's also known as my new BFF

I'm trying to figure out why the whole world isn't obsessed with Playaway's like I am. At this very moment in time, I'm typing this while listening to Up Close and Dangerous by Linda Howard (an impulsive choice I made, 3 minutes before the library closed).

I drive an hour to and from work every day and I'm working my way through Janet Evanovich's Stephanie Plum series and I love them, but switching CD's while going 70mph down the highway in the dark is just slightly dangerous. With Playaway's all you do is sit and listen. If I ever decide to start going to the gym like I've been planning on for the last three years I'd love to listen to an audio book while walking (yes walking, none of this running business) on the treadmill, but who had a CD player these days?

I know that is a pretty big deal and I looked into it last night and from what I understand you only get one credit a month, which I think equals one book a month. I don't know about anyone else but I've already been through thee audio books this month and there's still another week to go, not to mention I don't want to pay for anything I don't have to. Apparently you can buy Playaway's on Amazon but they're a ridiculous amount of money.I'll stick to libraries, but I can't find a lot of libraries that offer them. My home town library has a small selection, but nothing great, and no YA books.

Looks like I'll be doing a bit more research today.

Monday, March 18, 2013

CT weather strikes again

First there was a hurricane, then winter storm Nemo, and now there's another storm that's canceled my CLC meeting tonight.

CLC stands for Connecticut Library Consortium and through this organization there are various roundtables, showcases, and offerings that are available to CT residents. There are also physical libraries that can pay to belong to the consortium that they get a good amount of perk too. The consortium is particularly helpful to new librarians because of roundtables like the one I co-chair (Newbie roundtable), and the fact that a large majority of job offerings are posted on this site. It actually helped me get the job I have now.

Tonight was suppose to be the YA library showcase and I had a whole list of questions and topics that I wanted brought up but it looks like we're going to have to reschedule and I'm going to have to eat the sugar cookies I made for tonight all by my self. Shucks *teeheehee*.

Well I'll be sure to update when we actually have the meeting  because I'm sure there's going to be a ton of info. that I'll want to ramble about :)

Thursday, March 14, 2013


So my program last night was a success. We had computer game night. I had six girls, which again, wasn't a lot but we're building these program from scratch. This department was not in the greatest of place and we would have NO attendance to the few program that this department provided.

I found a lot of games on and other websites like that one. I split the attendees up into two groups and plugged my computer up into the project that we have in the community room and had kids shout out the answers to the game on the screen. We had games like name that website icon, word jumble, top 100 commonly used words, finish the Disney quote and more. I was terrified that I wouldn't have enough games and things would get weird but I we didn't even have time to get through all the ones I had and everyone said they had fun so I declare last nights program a success!!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Let the planning begin

So I got kind of discouraged with the blog as school started to pile up on me so I shut it down temporarily, then after reading a post by another blogger who said that with the exception of her husband it took a few months before people started reading her blog I decided to get back in the races and start this thing up again.

So, first up on the agenda, I just got my copy of Prodigy in and I'm pumped to read it.

Second, it's teen tech week and I've got this punch card raffle going on, I borrowed the idea from Teen Library Toolbox ( kids have taken them and I even have two girls who brought them back. Tomorrow we're have relay game night. I found a ton of times games on sites like,, and I plan to split everyone who shows up into two groups and we'll play these games, add up the score and one team wins. I've got games planned like word ruffle, name that website icon, finish the Disney quote, and harry potter 200. I've just got to rope the kids into coming and it'll be a great night.

Last I'm planning in advance for Poetry month. I'm planning a poetry slam grades 8-12 and a blackout poetry program (you know where you have a news paper and black out all the words except for the ones that you want to keep to make a poem.

I've got high hopes for the next couple of weeks.