Saturday, August 14, 2010

Next On The List: Bookends Edition

So there are a couple books on my list from below and above the age ranges I've already shared, so I thought I'd throw them together and appropriately call this edition, Bookends. First, a couple books from the 6-8 age range, the section I know the least in the kids department.

Frankly, Frannie - AJ Stern
Sometimes I find characters in kids books to be...bratty. The author tries to pass them off as cute and curious and the kids think they're hilarious but to everyone else, they're just bratty. So it's always nice to find a character that's precocious but not disrespectful. Based on the few pages I've read of Frankly, Frannie, she fits the bill perfectly!

Sophie the Awesome - Lara Bergen
This is one that I haven't even the read the back of but the title draws me in. Bergen's also written, 'Sophie the Hero'. It seems like it'd be a fun story for a little girl just getting into reading.

And now for the few adult fiction titles that made the list:

My Name is Memory - Ann Brashares
Brashares is the author of 'The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants', which is a teen series that I enjoyed a few years ago. It's basically for that reason alone that I am curious about this one.

The Sudden Disappearance of Seetha - Andrea Gunraj
This book was on display at the store and every time I walked past it, I would have the urge to leaf through it's pages. I read the back of the book and it only made me want to read it more. Maybe one day it will actually happen. :)

Friday, August 13, 2010

Next On The List: Covers and Titles Edition

Some books catch my eye based on their cover or title alone. I will say, based on this list, and knowing that it definitely influenced my other lists, not judging books by their covers is a near impossible task for me.

The Girl Who Could Fly - Victoria Forester
This is the first of many books whose new cover greatly outshines its original. The vivid new cover on the left makes me want to pick up the book and start reading. The older cover on the right just makes me wonder what year it was printed in.

Heroes of the Valley - Jonathan Stroud
When this book(on the left) came into the store, a co-worker and I assumed it was a new book and thought it looked like it would be good. Then our manager told us that it was a reprint of an older book(the one on the right). Both my friend and I had seen the older version and had never given it a second thought. Seriously, if I ever write a book, I'm definitely getting a great cover. It makes all the difference in the world.

The Higher Power of Lucky & Lucky Breaks - Susan Patron
These two books by Susan Patron caught my eye with their simple covers and matte finish. The first one, The Higher Power of Lucky won a Newbery Medal. They look charming to me.

An Abundance of Katherines - John Green
This book made my 'Teen Edition' list because I think it would be a great book but I wanted to include it on this list as well, to show the two different covers. Surprisingly, I like the original cover(on the left) better than the newer version(on the right). I think it sets the book apart from the masses of teen books with girls faces on the front. It also gives you clues(the equation artwork) as to the content of the book.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Next On The List: Preteen Edition

Continuing the tour through all the books next on my list of books to read! Here they are in no particular order!

Mister Monday - Garth Nix
This is the first book in The Keys to the Kingdom series. A set of grandparents said that these were great and that their grand-kids loved them. I can never give their synopsis justice but they sounded fantastically interesting!

Dark Life - Kat Falls
This is one whose cover caught me eye as soon as it came into the store. It was unlike any other book I had seen and after hearing a bit about the book(there are people that live above the water, but the majority of the book takes place in an underwater world), I can't help but be curious to crack this one open!

Frindle - Andrew Clements
Clements has written many preteen books but I've heard great things about this one in particular. According to the Frindle wikipedia page,'Clements describes the idea(for the book) as having come to him in the form of the thought, "What would happen if a kid started using a new word, and other kids really liked it, but his teacher didn't?" ' Nick decides to call a pen a frindle. It catches on and while his schoolmates spread it like wild fire, his teachers are determined to stop the spread of 'frindle'. It sounds like the type of fun book preteens would gobble up!

The Capture - Kathryn Lasky
This is the first in a series called 'Guardians of Ga'Hoole'. I've been curious about this series for a while because it has a number of books(15) in the series but there's only a customer here and there asking for them. When that happens it always makes me wonder if it's a terrible series or if it's actually an unknown treasure. When I found out that a movie was coming out based on the series, it made me want to read them all the more. When a book-based movie is coming out, I always tell customers to read the book first. That's so much easier to do when I've taken that advice and read it myself.

Holes - Louis Sachar
This is another book, like 'The Hunger Games', that it seems everyone has read. It is on the Indigo Recommends list for this age range, but at this point it's on my list not because I have a burning desire to read it, it's on the list just so I can say it's done.

Little House on the Prairie - Laura Ingalls Wilder
This is one of the rare, multi-generational series we have in the kids section. By that I mean, parents and grandparents can come in and say "I read these when I was little and I would love my kids to read them too!" Personally, I know I've read a couple of them but it was so long ago that I've forgotten them completely. I'd love to make my way through them all.

The Red Pyramid - Rick Riordan
I'm half way through Riordan's first series, Percy Jackson and the Olympians, and though I've enjoyed it, I feel like I'm playing catch up with everyone who's already read them all. I'd love to get in on the ground floor of his new series.

The Dragonfly Pool - Eva Ibbotson
This is a book that my Grade 5/6 practicum class was just beginning to read when I left. I remember being intrigued and disappointed that I couldn't stay and keep reading it with them. I've had co-workers tell me great things about other Ibbotson titles and I think this one would be no exception. The fact that Ibbotson isn't overly popular is another draw. Authors like her are great for suggesting to kids who have 'read it all'.

Among The Hidden - Margaret Peterson Haddix
This, again, is the first in a series called Shadow Children. Set in a world where there are population laws restricting families to a maximum of 2 childrenm Luke is the third child in a family and therefore has lived his entire life in hiding. I think I've read one of these books before, perhaps when I was younger but it's completely escaped my memory now. This is another lesser known series I would love to suggest to customers.

Fablehaven - Brandon Mull
I would never have picked these(yes, it's a series again) books off the shelf if it weren't for a co-worker. She raves about them! A brother and sister become caretakers of a place called Fablehaven that is a sanctuary for mystical creatures.

The Last Invisible Boy - Evan Kuhlman
I initially picked this book up because of the look of it. Then I read the back and discovered it's premise. This is what the publisher has to say about Kuhlman's book:

'The Last Invisible Boy is an unusual and unique tale of love and loss as a boy who slowly begins to disappear after his father's death.'

I read the first dozen or so pages on one of my breaks and although I wanted to keep reading, I wasn't in the right frame of mind to read this sad tale. From what I read, it seemed like it would be a touching book. I can't think of a scenario that I would suggest this book though. I'm not sure I've ever had a customer looking for a sad book for their 10 year old. Even with that, I feel like it would be a good book to read on the off chance a customer comes in looking for a book for their invisible boy.

Monday, August 2, 2010

2010 Rolling Roadshow Trailer

I think this is such a cool idea. I also love drive-in movies and movies in the park. Basically, I can get on board with anything that lets you watch a movie outside. :)

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Next On The List: Teen Edition

It seems that every book I see is next on the list of books I want to read. The only thing is that I'm adding books much faster than I can read them, resulting in a rapidly growing list and the increasing feeling that I'm just fooling myself. I thought I would share some of the books that are 'next on the list'. Here's the teen books:

The Hunger Games trilogy - Suzanne Collins
Everybody and their dog has read these books(The Hunger Games, Catching Fire with Mocking Jay releasing on Aug 24) and at this point I'm just getting annoyed. I want to read them partly because I hear great things about them and partly because I just want to be educated when all my friends start talking about them!
**Update: I have read 'The Hunger Games'(in two days) and have just started Catching Fire. I'm really enjoying them!
**Update: Finished Catching Fire in two days as well! Mockingjay, here I come!

- Jerry Spinelli
Spinelli has written many pre-teen and teen books, with a few of them ending up on our 'Indigo Recommends' list, Stargirl included. However, I only picked up one of his books when a teen in our youth group starting raving them. This one is her favorite and she strongly suggested I read it.
**Update: This is definitely one of my favorite books now! A must read!

An Abundance of Katherines
- John Green
When I see Green's books in the store I always notice that 99% of them have great covers. This one is no exception. But this one has a fun sounding premise as well-Former child prodigy, Colin has dated and been dumped by 19 different girls all named Katherine. Colin and his buddy set off after graduation to figure out why he's had such a rocky history with the ladies. It sounds quirky and fun.

Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac - Gabrielle Zevin
Zevin wrote 'Elsewhere' as well, but Memoirs makes my list for completely different reasons. It looks cool and the title makes me curious. This book proves that it doesn't always take a lot to make my list. :)

Alanna:The First Adventure - Tamora Pierce
Had no one suggested this book to me, I would never would have picked it up but so many of my co-workers have said what a great series this is-it made my list. Here's what the wikipedia page on Alanna says about the plot:

Alanna is a tomboy who dreams of being a knight, and Thom(her twin brother) wishes to become a sorcerer. Unfortunately, Alanna is shortly to be dispatched by her father to a temple in the City of the Gods, to learn to become a young lady- whilst Thom is similarly destined for the royal palace, where he will train as a knight; his worst nightmare.

To avoid their respective fates, Alanna and Thom hatch a plan; Alanna will disguise herself as a boy, call herself Alan, and take Thom's place as a knight. Thom will go to the City of the Gods, where he will hopefully be able to train as a sorcerer.

The Alchemyst - Michael Scott
This is the first of four books put out by author Michael Scott. I'm not going to lie, the authors name is part of the reason I love these books. :) However, I also love the look of them. I don't know much about them but I know they're really popular and they don't have vampires in them. That alone makes me want to check it out.

The Forest of Hands and Teeth - Carrie Ryan
The title alone intrigues me but then you read the back of the book:
n Mary's world, there are simple truths.
The Sisterhood always knows best.

The Guardians will protect and serve.

The Unconsecrated will never relent.

And you must always mind the fence that surrounds the village. The fence that protects the village from the Forest of Hands and Teeth.

It kind of reminds me of M. Night Shyamalan's 'The Village', which I thoroughly enjoyed. It's the first in a series.

The Juvie Three - Gordon Korman
I'm always on the look out for teen books that boys might enjoy and this one caught my eye. The premise:
Gecko, Arjay and Terence are all serving time in juvenile detention when Douglas Healy, a former juvie resident himself, comes and gives them a second chance. Healy runs a half way house and when he tries to break up a fight between the boys he's knocked unconscious. Frightened of the consequences, the boys drop him off at the hospital and run. Then Healy wakes up with no memory of the boys or the half way house. Scared they'll be sent back to juvie they plan to carry on as if Healy is still there. But things keep happening that make it more and more difficult.
Korman has written many preteen and teen books and this sounds like it would be perfect for a boy(or girl) who has no interest in the variety of vampire/werewolf/undead books the teen section offers.

Customer Recommends

There are a couple books that customers have recommended to me to check out. It happens so rarely that I definitely take note when it does!

Jerk California - Jonathan Friesen
*This one's about a boy with Turrets. Reco
mmended by a teenage boy that was looking for something else by the same author. Said he LOVED it! High praise from a teen boy.

Elsewhere - Gabrielle Zevin
*More than one teenage girl has suggested that I check this one out. It makes me curious. It's about a 16 year old girl who is killed by hit and run driver and wakes up in the afterlife.