2015 Young Adult Services Symposium: Book Blitz!

On the Schedule at a Glance in the Symposium’s program, Saturday’s list of events included a “Book Blitz” from 5:00-7:00 p.m. The only information about this event were a few pages in the program dedicated to Book Blitz Author Bios and a small box that stated: Each attendee will receive 6 tickets to exchange with these authors for free signed books!

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Symposium veterans knew what to expect from the Blitz, but newcomers could be heard Friday evening and Saturday afternoon pondering, “What is this Book Blitz all about?”

This tweet from attendee Lauren Regenhardt sums up the experience pretty well:

https://twitter.com/PagelaurenPage/status/663164489366290432

Continue reading 2015 Young Adult Services Symposium: Book Blitz!

Bingewatching YA Read- Alikes

With all the ways to watch TV today including; on demand, DVR, and instant streaming it is possible to watch an entire series’ episodes back to back rather than in a serialized week to week format.  This kind of watching has been dubbed “binge-watching.”  Maybe when you hear this term, an image comes to mind of someone mindlessly watching hour after hour of TV whilst eating chips.   As fun as that sounds, “binge-watching” can also mean focusing on just one show over the course of many days or weeks.  As a reader the way I become immersed in the characters and world of a good book are a familiar, comforting feeling, and binge-watching a quality show can offer a similar (on-screen) experience.  Here are some great YA read-alikes inspired by some of my binge-worthy favorites.

Orange Is The New Black

Orange is the New Black – One of Netflix’s original binge-worthy series. This is the story of a Piper, a privileged woman who has to serve prison time for a crime committed in her 20s.

Read-alikes:

monster-walter-dean-myers

* Monster by Walter Dean Myers (2000 Printz Award Winner, 2000 Quick Pick for Reluctant Readers , 2000 Best Book for Young Adults) A story told in the form of a screenplay by a young man incarcerated in a juvenile detention center.

* Hole in my Life by Jack Gantos (2003 Printz Honor BookPopular Paperback for Young Adult 2006 , 2003 Best Books for Young Adults). When Gantos was a young man with heavy debt and a promising writing career he agrees to help sail a ship packed with drugs from the Virgin Islands to New York City.   This memoir describes this well known author’s short-lived criminal career and his incarceration.

* Orange is the New Black: My Year in a Women’s Prison by Piper Kerman. The book that inspired the show; Kerman tells the tale of how she spent a year in prison the humiliations she endured, and the relationships she forged.

Continue reading Bingewatching YA Read- Alikes

Celebrate Valentine’s Day with Some Recent YA Contemporary Romances

Since tomorrow is Valentine’s Day, here are some recent romances that I loved. I hope you enjoy them too. What I love about these books is that they’re not just about romance, they’re so much more. They talk about guilt, death, dreams, business plans, friendship, loyalty, family, photography, running, fitting in, being in the spotlight, and learning about yourself.

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Art of Lainey by Paula Stokes
When Lainey’s boyfriend of two years breaks up with her, she’s devastated. She’s determined to win him back. Lainey and her BFF pour over the  Art of War looking for a battle plan. Lainey and her co-worker agree to fake-date each other to woo back their exes with jealousy.  As the summer progresses, she learns a little more about herself and who she wants to be.

Blind Spot for Boys by Justina Chen
Shana’s officially on a boy moratorium since the last one broke her heart. She’s hoping to create one last picture for her photography portfolio when she meets Quattro.  She keeps seeing him wherever she goes – including her family’s trip to Machu Picchu. Could the universe be trying to tell her something?

Breathe Annie Breathe by Miranda
Annie’s ex-boyfriend died while in the middle of training for a marathon. Annie’s consumed with guilt since they hung out the night he died. She decides to train for the marathon – running in his honor.  Annie hires a trainer; Matt has all sorts of helpful hints besides just a running plan. But even he can’t get rid of the guilt or her stomach problems. Matt’s brother runs with them occasionally and he makes Annie feel, something she hasn’t been able to do since Kyle’s death.  Continue reading Celebrate Valentine’s Day with Some Recent YA Contemporary Romances

Are You Ready for Some Football?

It’s that time of year again– pull up a chair and get ready for football. Football season started already. If you can’t get enough football, here are some books for you. Of course, there are more football books than those below, so add your favorites in the comments.

football display

The Bridge from Me to You by Lisa Schroeder
Lauren’s new to town and she’s trying to put her past behind her and move on. Colby lives in the same small town, but has visions of escaping somewhere where he isn’t known for his football skills.  Can the two of the find a way to belong in this small town?

Catching Jordan by Miranda Kenneally
Jordan’s the quarterback for her high school football team. She’s awesome at her job, loves being in charge of the team and being one of the guys. When another QB comes to town, could her position be on the line? Continue reading Are You Ready for Some Football?

Is This the Real Life? Coffee Edition

Coffee photo by Allison TranThere was a time when I was unaware of how awesome coffee and coffee shops were. I like to recall that time as the “dark years.”  Now I can start a work day without my morning coffee, although I do miss going into Starbucks every morning and seeing the dynamic that happens there.

This led me to think of all the YA books taking place in or featuring coffee shops. There are a lot of books out there, but I can’t remember the one book that inspired this list. I can recall all the details, but the title, author, or any of the character’s names. It’s driving me crazy. While I rack my brain trying to remember, here are some of books that feature coffee, coffee shops, or those amazing people who make our coffee, baristas.

confessions_triple_shot_bettyConfessions of a Triple Shot Betty by Jody Gehrman (2010 Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults)

In this retelling of Much Ado About Nothing, Geena is looking forward to a summer of working at the local coffee shop with her cousin Hero and best friend Amber.  But as soon as Geena arrives home from boarding school, she falls in love and realizes her friendship with Amber might be over.

Continue reading Is This the Real Life? Coffee Edition