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Notes from a Teens’ Top Ten Book Club Book Group Participant: Series That Deliver

2014 October 27
by Guest Blogger
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Teens across the nation have voted for this year’s Teens’ Top Ten list, and the winners have been announced- but did you know how the books are nominated for this list in the first place?

Books are nominated by members of Teens’ Top Ten book groups in school and public libraries around the country. To give you a glimpse of what it’s like to be part of the process, we’re featuring posts from these teens here on The Hub.

Splintered by A.G. Howard is an amazing Teen’s Top Ten nominee. The series begins with an interesting twist to the Alice in Wonderland story; it puts it to a new light. A.G. Howard manages to avoid two typical problems in trilogies. The trilogy is absolutely amazing through the entire thing and it has an incredible ending that ties up all loose threads and still leaves you happy and satisfied. Most books have parts where they slow down– the plotline drags a little, and you get bored. This series is a different story. The books are consistently great, and are extremely enjoyable to read.

Most trilogies start really well, and the second book slows down a bit, and then the third either falls flat, makes you angry due to the loss of an important character (or multiple), or just doesn’t end well. This is shown in almost anyone who read the Divergent trilogy by Veronica Roth. The second book was a little of a let-down compared to the first, and the third’s ending was torture for the reader. However, the third book in the Splintered trilogy, Ensnared, defies the system and manages to have an ending that completes the series in an incredible way. Anyone looking for a book to read who is into the fantasy genre will have a BLAST with this trilogy, beginning with the novel Splintered. Personally, this book has inspired me with its hidden messages, and entertained me for hours. I simply could NOT put it down once I picked it up. It now has a permanent home on my re-readable shelf, and has wormed its way into my favorite book list- which is a massive accomplishment, due to my insatiable hunger for the written words. I have read a LOT, and this made its way up to be my all-time favorite. I HIGHLY suggest it! read more…

What Would They Read?: Monster Edition!

2014 October 27
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Little_Monsters_by_Merlin2525I know some of you are patiently waiting for the conclusion of my Firefly post in September.  Unfortunately you will have to wait a little bit more as I am interrupting my own series of posts to bring you this Halloween Monster Edition of “What Would They Read.”  I promise I will finish Firefly next month.  As I see it, we Firefly fans are used to things we love and look forward to being abruptly ended.  It’s sad, but true.

OK, back to monsters…

There were two ways I considered approaching this blog post.  I could go the easy way and match various monsters with books that include characters from the same species.  For example, Dracula would just love to read The Twilight Saga because of all the vampires.  Sure, I’ll throw in a few of those.  The real challenge lies in finding books for these monster archetypes that more reflect their personality types.  It’s a bit more difficult, but I’m up for the challenge.  Go big or go home, right?

Dracula – Before vampires became a standard villainous character is several movies, shows, and books, Bram Stoker brought us the original vampire story.  Some may say that there’s a historical connection to the evil ruler, Vlad Vampirethe Impaler.  I’m not going to debate for or against that idea, but I will say that guy was fairly creepy.

Those who have read the original novel,  Dracula, know that while the vampire was super spooky, he was also very lonely.  He used his vampire ways to try to get friends and girlfriend.  True, he didn’t go about this search in the conventional way by simply introducing himself to new people.  Instead, he charmed the mentally unstable Renfield and made him his somewhat friend, although I think the term is closer to minion than friend.  Once he decided he wanted a woman in his life, he did not go about courting her in a traditional manner.  After a few midnight visits full of blood drinking, Dracula had Lucy right where he wanted her; in a coffin. read more…

The Monday Poll: Your Favorite Zombie Book

2014 October 27
by Allison Tran
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monday_pollGood morning, Hub readers!

Last week, we kicked off the Halloween celebrations early by asking about your favorite YA book featuring witches. The top choice, with 33% of the vote, was Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins. This was closely followed by Born Wicked by Jessica Spotswood, with 25% of the vote. Write-in suggestions included Joseph Delaney’s Last Apprentice series and, of course, J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter books. Check the comments on last week’s poll for all the suggestions, and see detailed results for all of our previous polls in the Polls Archive. Thanks to all of you who voted!

This week, we’re continuing with the Halloween theme– we want to know your favorite YA zombie novel! Vote in the poll below, or add your choice in the comments.

What's your favorite YA zombie novel?

View Results

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YA Trends Throughout The Years

2014 October 26
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October is an exciting month for any YA lit fan, because it includes Teen Read Week! In honor of this annual celebration of young adult literature, YALSA invited book-loving teens all over the world to apply to share their enthusiasm for reading in a guest post for The Hub. Thirty-one talented young writers were chosen, and we’ll be featuring posts from these unique voices all month long. Here’s Saraya Flaig from Idaho.


read more…

Books as Palate Cleansers

2014 October 26
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teen_blogging_contest_winner

October is an exciting month for any YA lit fan, because it includes Teen Read Week! In honor of this annual celebration of young adult literature, YALSA invited book-loving teens all over the world to apply to share their enthusiasm for reading in a guest post for The Hub. Thirty-one talented young writers were chosen, and we’ll be featuring posts from these unique voices all month long. Here’s Becca Holladay, who lives in Yokota, Japan.

My mom knows what it means when I collapse onto her bed crying. It means I have finished yet another series.

As a voracious reader, I am always with a book. And there is a pattern among those books, and that is that they are all fantasy/sci-fi/romance books! I usually refuse to read anything else.

But after I finish a particularly heart-wrenching series (Laini Taylor’s Daughter of Smoke and Bone series, anyone?), and I end up completely heartbroken, I just need to take a break. And by break, I don’t mean from reading, heaven forbid! I just take a break from reading addicting series. read more…

Diving Deeper into Divergent

2014 October 25
by Guest Blogger
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teen_blogging_contest_winner

October is an exciting month for any YA lit fan, because it includes Teen Read Week! In honor of this annual celebration of young adult literature, YALSA invited book-loving teens all over the world to apply to share their enthusiasm for reading in a guest post for The Hub. Thirty-one talented young writers were chosen, and we’ll be featuring posts from these unique voices all month long. Here’s Nedda Bozorgmehri from California.

On the surface, Divergent can be viewed as a popular young adult action-packed novel about bravery, love, and perseverance. The book has captured the attention of many young adults for its thrilling plot line and stimulating characters. DivergentHowever, there is one aspect of this captivating book that most people probably have not taken into consideration: connecting Divergent to history. Divergent is quite the modern book with its utopian world of faction systems created to prevent war. By diving deeper into the depths of Divergent and closely analyzing the ideas in text, one can discover that Divergent also has a historical significance as it can be related to the revolutionary ideas of communism and capitalism.

The factions were created with the hopes of eliminating future war and violence. It was believed that if each person selects their faction and focuses only on their faction’s morals everyone will be equal and there will be no conflict. This idea of creating a world in which all people are equal with the hopes of eliminating war, can be related to communism. A communist society is one in which resources are created and distributed equally among all members. On the other hand, capitalism promotes free enterprise; in this society individuals benefit and prosper based on their own innovation and productivity. Selfishness arises in a capitalist government as people compete to sell the ideas they think are best. Whereas in a communist government, selfishness fails to exist due to the encompassing sense of equality and selflessness. Abnegation, the faction where all members are required to be selfless in all the actions they endeavor, can be related to communism. Erudite, the highly intelligent “bookworm” faction, can be connected with the capitalist ideals, as they want to obtain more control of the government, sell their own ideas, and reject the “communist ideals” of Abnegation. In Divergent, Abnegation is the faction that has control over the government; Erudite opposes this and believes that the “intelligent” faction ought to have control over the government. The idea of capitalism falls under the members in the Erudite faction because in a sense they are being selfish and wanting to take over the government since they want to promote their ideas and technologies. Most people believe that Tris is a threat to this society because the fact that she is divergent means she cannot fall under the spell of manipulative Erudite serums and trackers. Within historical context, Tris is divergent because she can be both a capitalist (Erudite) and act selfishly, or she can be a communist (Divergent) and act selflessly. Because of her mixed personality, she puts the faction system in jeopardy. read more…

Tweets of the Week: October 24

2014 October 24
by Traci Glass
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Happy Friday, Hub Readers!  Isn’t October the best month ever?  Horror movies, changing leaves, and best of all – Halloween!  Check out these tweets of the week with lots of Lorde, hoards of Hunger Games info & of course, Batman!  In case you missed it…I’m here to compile it all for you!

tweets of the week | the hub

Books & Reading

read more…

eBooks? No Thanks.

2014 October 24
by Guest Blogger
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teen_blogging_contest_winner

October is an exciting month for any YA lit fan, because it includes Teen Read Week! In honor of this annual celebration of young adult literature, YALSA invited book-loving teens all over the world to apply to share their enthusiasm for reading in a guest post for The Hub. Thirty-one talented young writers were chosen, and we’ll be featuring posts from these unique voices all month long. Here’s Courtney Kilroy from Nebraska.

ereader_picI… am not a fan of ebooks. Never have been, possibly never will be. Why?

If you’re reading this, you must be a dedicated reader. Of anything. Newspapers, magazines, novels, chapter books, graphic novels, manga, et cetera. Why else would you be reading a blog about books?? And if you’re a dedicated reader, you know how exciting it is when your favorite author releases a new book, or when the next issue of your favorite magazine hits the shelves. And the build-up that makes it exciting.

  • The cliffhanger left at the end of the last book.
  • The nine months you waited until the title and sneak peek were released.
  • The additional month you waited until the book actually was available in stores.
  • The drive to the bookstore.
  • The speed-walk to the young-adult fiction aisle.
  • Then… you see it. You hold it in your hands, and you flip through the pages.
  • You have the thing you’ve been waiting for what seems like forever.
  • You check out, and read in the car (unless, of course, you’re driving, in which case you should
    be watching the road).

Does that sound familiar? It does for me. It’s like that with all the books I read, right now. Or
replace the bookstore with a library. Anyway, I feel like you don’t get that with an ebook.

  • The cliffhanger at the end of the last book.
  • The nine months you waited for the title and sneak peek to be released.
  • The additional month you waited until the book was actually available in the iTunes Store.
  • The opening of the iTunes app.
  • The typing of the name of the book into the search bar.
  • The clicking on the book’s icon.
  • The downloading of the book. 1%…2%…3%…

Kind of anticlimactic, don’t you think? read more…

Books that Spooked Us!

2014 October 24
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It’s that spooky time of year when ghoulies and ghosties are everywhere you look, so I thought it might be fun to see which books and stories memorably freaked out the Hub bloggers. Below are some of the stories that stuck with us because of the sheer terror they evoked when we read them. Some of them are straight up horror, some of them purely psychological, but all of them memorable! While Stephen King naturally gets mentioned a lot, it’s Lois Duncan’s Stranger with My Face and Daniel Kraus’ 2012 Odyssey Award winner, Rotters, that got the most mentions.  Many thanks to the Hub Bloggers who shared their scares! Read them this Halloween if you dare!

 

rot ruinLibby Gorman

I read Rot & Ruin by Jonathan Maberry for a course, and while I loved it, I also made my husband take out the trash for a few weeks afterward in case of zombie attack (because, of course, zombies can get you in the backyard when it’s dark, but they can’t make their way into a lighted house!). I also remember that Roald Dahl’s The Witches freaked me out quite a bit as a kid.

 

read more…

Teen Romance in YA Lit

2014 October 23
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teen_blogging_contest_winner

October is an exciting month for any YA lit fan, because it includes Teen Read Week! In honor of this annual celebration of young adult literature, YALSA invited book-loving teens all over the world to apply to share their enthusiasm for reading in a guest post for The Hub. Thirty-one talented young writers were chosen, and we’ll be featuring posts from these unique voices all month long. Here’s Karina Hernandez from New Jersey.

Young adult books with teen romance are the stories that take you on a roller coaster of emotion. It’s the moment when the two characters meet. It’s the love that grows between the two of them. It’s the introduction of a good love triangle. It’s the struggle when the couple refuses to accept their love for each other. It’s the tears shed, the pillows punched in frustration, the smile released when they finally kiss.

The many emotions of YA lit

The many emotions of YA lit

Everyone has their favorite couple from a YA- Hazel and Augustus, Anna and Étienne, Tris and Tobias, Sophie and Archer, Hermione and Ron, Samantha and Jase, Willem and Allyson, Eleanor and Park. Everyone also has their favorite love triangle – Katniss/Peeta/Gale, Bella/Edward/Jacob, America/Maxon/Aspen, Clara/Tucker/Christian, Juliette/Adam/Warner (Why does it seem like all the love triangles are two boys and a girl, anyway?).

These are the stories that leave us either sobbing at the end or just closing the book and letting out the biggest smile. These stories make us fall in love and just feel happy from head to toe. They take us on a crazy adventure from start from finish, leaving us rapidly turning the pages, thirsty for more.

Now I’ll quickly take you through some of my favorite teen romances in young adult lit and describe the story, the feels, and the love. read more…