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guess where I am?

I'm attending the Gaming, Learning & Libraries Symposium in Chicago right now, which just rocks. If you're interested, I'm posting reports on the conference at Pop Goes the Library. Check 'em out!

listen to me!

If you were ever curious about what I sound like when I talk, you've got the opportunity. I'm included in the YALSA Annual Podcast #2, where I get to babble on about Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults.

Gosh, I sound different than I thought I did. And I was rather distressed by how many 'ums' crept in. I'll have to work on that.


a pick and a pan

Gotten via library_grrls: A Hipper Crowd of Shushers

Okay, I'm going to get up on a soapbox for a moment.

free yourself from the stereotypes!Collapse )

So, this article did not make my day. But what does, you ask? del.icio.us. I had heard about it at the YALSA preconference during Midwinter 2007, and meant to look into then, but I never got to it. But recently, with moving and having only one of my two computers with me, I decided to check it out as a way to manage bookmarks. And oh my goodness, it's so great! I know there's the whole social networking aspect to it, and it can be interesting to see how many other people have bookmarked something that you have. But what I love is that I can have access to all my bookmarks, from any computer. It's fantastic. So I highly recommend del.icio.us; I'm already thinking of setting up another account as a way to manage links on MPOW's teen site.

Fall 2007/Winter 2008 ARC Roundup

This ARC Roundup is about books that will be published this fall and winter. I'll update this post as I read, including modifying the date of the entry. There are no spoilers, beyond my personal rating. ARCs are listed in alphabetical order by author. Rating is 1-5 stars, with one being the lowest. If you're interested in any of these ARCs, just drop me a comment and I'll be happy to send the ARC to you. You can also check for more ARCs at YoungAdultARCs.

Book of a Thousand Days
Shannon Hale
Publication Date: October 2007
Blurb: When Dashti, a maid, and her mistress, Lady Saren, are shut in a tower for seven years after Saren refuses to marry a man she despises, the two prepare for a very long and dark time. As food runs low and the days go from broiling hot to freezing cold, it is all Dashti can do to keep them fed and semi-comfortable. But the arrive outside the tower of Saren's two suitors--one welcome, the other decidedly less so--brings the girls both hope and great danger.
Rating: 4 stars

The Luxe
Anna Godbersen
Publication Date: November 20, 2007
Blurb: Anna Godbersen's delicious first novel follows five compelling teens in 1899 Manhattan, where appearance matters over everything and breaking the social code means running the risk of being ostracized forever. From star-crossed lovers and backstabbing best friends to a bad girl doing things bad girls do and a good girl doing things bad girls do, this trip to the age of innocence is anything but. Gossip Girl meets the Gilded Age in this season's most sensational debut.
Rating: 2 1/2 stars

Heaven Looks a Lot Like the Mall
Wendy Mass
Publication Date: September 2007
Blurb: Written in witty, accessible verse, Wendy Mass's novel tells the story of sixteen-year-old Tessa and what happens in the moments after a shocking gym class accident. Tessa finds herself in heaven, which bears a striking resemblence to her hometown mall, and in the tradition of It's a Wonderful Life and A Christmas Carol, she stars reliving her life up until that moment. Tessa sees some things she's rather forget, learns some things about herself she'd rather not know, and ultimately she must find the answer to one burning question--if only she knew what the question was.
Rating: 3 1/2 stars

Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac
Gabrielle Zevin
Publication Date: September 18, 2007
Blurb: If Naomi had picked tails, she would have won the coin toss. She wouldn't have had to go back for the yearbook camera, and she wouldn't have hit her head on the steps. She wouldn't have woken up in an ambulance with amnesia.
Rating: 4 1/2 stars

just a general fyi sort of post

You know, I really should try and at least blog once a week. It's amazing, considering how much I love a) blogging b) reading and c) talking about books, that I can't manage to keep this LJ going. But hopefully, now that I've got a new job, I'll be able to be better about blogging.

And, yes, new job! I'm a teen librarian at the main branch of a county library system in Maryland. Things are going very well, and I'm looking forward to working on lots of different projects here.

As a small recap:
--BookExpo was fantastic. Lots of books, lots of good discussions with lizzb and cedarlibrarian. Highlights include Shannon Hale recognizing me on the exhibits floor and asking me how I was doing and having David Levithan note in my copy of Naomi and Ely's No Kiss List that it was the first time he and Rachel Cohn had signed that book.
--ALA was equally fantastic but in different ways. Very very few books, but lots of good hard work with Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults, hanging out with cedarlibrarian, lizzb, and princess_poddy. Oh, and the Printz reception! John Green was funny and self-deferential as always, Markus Zusak was hot and witty, Sonya Hartnett was very very funny, M.T. Anderson was wonderfully reflective, and Gene Yang was funny and smart and brought visual aids, as you'd expect.

I read Life As We Knew It last night and was completely blown away. I should do a fuller review at some point, but since it's unlikely that will happen, let me just say that it was completely and totally amazing.

And now, I need to get to work on fall programming. Yay!

when a picture is worth a thousand words

So I was poking around on Amazon, doing some work for PPYA, when I came across this book cover. Let me just say, the addition of Amazon's "Search Inside" logo gave this cover a new meaning . . .

Am I the only one who's giggling like a twelve-year-old about that? :-)

In other news: many congratulations on the winners in the recent ALA elections! I'm particularly thrilled about some of the YALSA results: I know Michele Gorman will do a great job on the YALSA Board of Directors. But even more happy-making for me is that Liz Burns was elected to the Printz, as well as my fellow PPYAers Marin Yonker and Alison Hendon. Yay!!!! [tosses confetti]

movie news!

Hamri to Direct Sisterhood Sequel
Yay!!! Oh, I so hope all the original actresses come back--I thought The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants was one of the better book-to-movie adaptations, and a lot of that was because of the cast. Plus, I'm excited that it's getting a sequel, and that it'll be going right to the fourth book, so that you'll have that growth in the characters.

Sam Raimi Confirms Spidey 4, 5, and 6
This is slightly less exciting, since we don't know anything about who's gonna direct, whether Tobey Maguire and Kirsten Dunst will come back, etc. Since it's frankly unlikely, IMHO, that any of those three will return, I'm waiting to see whether I should look forward to this or not.

ARC Roundup

I'll be listing info about ARCs I received at ALA Midwinter and have read. I'll update this post as I read, including modifying the date of the entry. There are no spoilers, beyond my personal rating. ARCs are listed in alphabetical order by author. Rating is 1-5 stars, with one being the lowest. If you're interested in any of these ARCs, just drop me a comment and I'll be happy to send the ARC to you. You can also check for more ARCs at YoungAdultARCs.

Open Court
Carol Clippinger
Publication Date: June 12, 2007
Blurb: Hall Braxton is a warrior on the tennis court, who routinely obliterates her competition. Her parents and coach want her to enroll at a prestigious tennis academy in Florida so that she can take her game to the next level, but Hall isn't so sure she wants to leave her friends and family in Colorado behind. When her doubles partner suffers a breakdown at a tournament and her coach's voice suddenly disappears from her game, Hall questions if it's possible to be a tennis phenomenon and a regular teenager at the same time.
Rating: 2 1/2 stars

The Black Sheep
Yvonne Collins & Sandy Rideout
Publication Date: May 2007
Blurb: Fed up with her parents and all their ridiculous rules (they keep a binder full of them), fifteen-year-old Kendra Bishop writes away to The Black Sheep, a reality TV show that offers the chance to swap families with another teen. But when the camera crew, led by brash TV producer Judy Greenberg, shows up at her Manhattan apartment, Kendra starts to have second thoughts.
Rating: 3 1/2 stars

Masquerade (A Blue Bloods Novel)
Melissa de la Cruz
Publication Date: May 1, 2007
Blurb: Schuyler Van Alen wants an explanation for the mysterious deaths of young vampires. With her best friend, Oliver, Schuyler travels to Italy in the hope of finding the one man that can help--her grandfather. Meanwhile, back in New York, preparations are feverishly under way for the Four Hundred Ball, an exclusive gala hosted by the city's wealthy, powerful, and unhuman--a true Blue Blood affair. But it's at the after-party, a masquerade ball thrown by the cunning Mimi Force, that the real danger lurks. Hidden behind the masks is a revelation that will change the course of a young vampire's destiny.
Rating: 2 1/2 stars

Top Ten Uses for an Unworn Prom Dress
Tina Ferraro
Publication Date: February 13, 2007
Blurb: Sophomore year, Nicolette Antonovich was dumped two days before prom by the hottest guy at school--Rod "Rascal" Pasqual. As a result, she became the proud owner of one unworn, perfectly magical pink vintage dress. And she got to stare at it all evening long as a reminder.
But Nic is determined to put that night behind her for good. She's a junior now--older, wiser, and completely overwhelmed by a new set of problems.
Rating: 4 stars

Nobody's Princess
Esther Friesner
Publication Date: April 24, 2007
Blurb: She is beautiful, she is a princess, and Aphrodite is her favorite goddess, but something in Helen of Spart just itches for more out of life. Unlike her sister, Clytemnestra, she takes no pleasure in weaving and embroidery. And despite what her mother says, she's not even close to being interested in getting married. Instead, she wants to do combat training with her older brothers, go on heroic adventures, and be free to do what she wishes and find out who she is.
Rating: 3 stars

A.M. Jenkins
Publication Date: May 29, 2007
Blurb: When a curious demon takes a break from hell, vacationing in the body of a seventeen-year-old named Shaun, readers are in for a devilishly funny look at the complexities and perplexities of modern teen life.
Rating: 5 stars

The Breakup Bible
Melissa Kantor
Publication Date: May 1, 2007
Blurb: Jennifer thinks she and Max are the perfect couple . . . right up until he tells her they'd be better off as "just friends." Jennifer's sure there must be some mistake--everyone knows that soul mates don't break up, they live happily ever after. How is she supposed to face the rest of her life (starting with school on Monday) if she's not Max Brown's girlfriend anymore?
Rating: 3 1/2 stars

E. Lockhart
Publication Date: May 2007
Blurb: Two theater-mad, self-invented, fabulositon Ohio teenagers. One boy, one girl. One gay, one straight. One black, one white. And SUMMER DRAMA CAMP. It's a season of hormones, gold lame, hissy fits, jazz hands, song and dance, true love, and unitards that will determine their future--and test their friendship.
Rating: 4 stars

The Off Season
Catherine Gilbert Murdock
Publication Date: June 4, 2007
Blurb: Life is looking up for D.J. Schwenk, star of Dairy Queen. She's made it to eleventh grade, finally. She's reconnecting with her best friend. She's got kind of a thing going with Brian Nelson, who's cute and popular and smart and seems to like her anyway. Plus she's playing for the Red Bend High School football team--as the first female linebacker in northern Wisconsin. But then the season goes suddenly, horribly wrong. As her life and her family are turned upside down, D.J. is forced to dig deeper than she ever had to on the field.
Rating: 4 stars

Call Me Hope
Gretchen Olson
Publication Date: April 2007
Blurb: Eleven-year-old Hope has friends, is doing well at school, just started a part-time job that she loves, and is looking forward to the end-of-sixth-grade "rite of passage"--Outdoor School. But all of this starts to unravel as she struggles to live under the pressure of her verbally abusive mother. But instead of running away, she chooses resilience, and ultimately, Hope is finally able to confront her mother about her hurtful words and help her begin to change. This engaging, satisfying novel about an important issue will touch and inspire readers.
Rating: 2 1/2 stars

Cures for Heartbreak
Margo Rabb
Publication Date: February 13, 2007
Blurb: "Cures for Heartbreak is full of sadness, humor, and quirky details that ring completely true. I thoroughly enjoyed it." --Curtis Sittenfeld, author of Prep
Rating: 3 stars

The Titan's Curse (Book Three, Percy Jackson and the Olympians)
Rick Riordan
Publication Date: May 2007
Blurb: When Percy Jackson receives an urgent distress call from his friend Grover, he immediately prepares for battle. He knows he'll need his powerful demigod allies, Annabeth and Thalia, at his side; his trusty bronze sword, Riptide; and . . . a ride from his mom.
The demigods race to the rescue, to find that Grover has made an important discovery: two new powerful half-bloods whose parentage is unknown. But that's not all that awaits them. The Titan Lord Kronos has set up his most devious trap yet, and the young heroes have just fallen prey.
Rating: 4 1/2 stars

the sisterhood forever?

Although I was lucky enough to get an ARC of Forever in Blue: The Fourth Summer of the Sisterhood at a Random House Children's Books preview, it took me a while to sit down and read it. I had so loved what happened in Girls in Pants that I think I put off reading Forever in Blue. It seems that instinct was spot-on.

discussion: spoilers are presentCollapse )

a thank you is in order

Victoria and all the folks at Hachette/Little, Brown, rock. I went to their preview last week, and it was an excellent time, and not just because I was with cedarlibrarian and L.

I've already read Don't You Forget About Me, the eleventh Gossip Girl book. And, in breaking news, it's the last one! Thanks to the Gossip Girl series that will be appearing on the CW this fall, the Gossip Girl books are going on hiatus for a while. In October, a hardcover prequel, It Had to Be You, will be published. Then, next year I believe, the Gossip Girl series will be relaunched with a new cast of characters. So, yay!

I've just started Heaven Looks A Lot Like The Mall, a novel in verse by Wendy Mass, and I'm really enjoying it. Stay tuned for more info . . .

yay, books!

Many thanks to Random House Children's Books for inviting me to the Summer Preview that was held today. Heard about some great books that are forthcoming from RH, and got lots of nice ARCs and swag. Yay! Reports to follow on the books themselves.

Now I'm off to read The Titan's Curse, the third book in the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series.
Laurie Halse Anderson
Publication Date: March 15, 2007
Blurb: High-school senior Tyler Miller used to be the kind of guy who faded into the background--average student, average looks, average dysfunctional family. But since he got busted for doing graffiti on the school, and spent the summer doing outdoor work to pay for it, he stands out like you wouldn't believe. His new physique attracts the attention of queen bee Bethany Milbury, who just so happens to be his father's boss's daughter, the sister of his biggest enemy--and Tyler's secret crush. That sets off a roller coaster ride that has Tyler questioning his place in the school, in his family, and in the world.
Rating: 4 1/2 stars
Commentary: spoilersCollapse )

The Princess and the Hound
Mette Ivie Harrison
Publication Date: May 1, 2007
Blurb: "Princess Beatrice," he said with a nod. How could it have taken him so long to recognize her?
She was as tall as George, long and lean and muscular, with a regal neck and calloused tapering fingers. Her skin was badly freckled, but it complemented her flame-red hair perfectly, and her hazel eyes shoen up at him.
She spoke baldly. "You are not what I expected."
Though they think they have little in common, both Beatrice and George possess a secret that must be hidden at all costs. Proud, stubborn, bound to marry for the good of their kingdoms, this prince and princess will steal your heart, but will they fall in love?
Rating: 4 stars
Commentary: spoilersCollapse )

Angus movie news

Gurinder Chadha Helming Angus

I liked the first Angus, Thongs . . . book when I read it, but like other series, the later books are too much of a semi-good thing. I am curious to see how they adapt the book: are they going to be faithful, or veer off a bit to make it more kid-friendly, as opposed to teen-friendly?

what kind of reader am I?

Snagged this from medwriter. I think this captures my reading habits . . .

What Kind of Reader Are You?
Your Result: Dedicated Reader

You are always trying to find the time to get back to your book. You are convinced that the world would be a much better place if only everyone read more.

Obsessive-Compulsive Bookworm
Literate Good Citizen
Book Snob
Fad Reader
What Kind of Reader Are You?
Create Your Own Quiz

Virtual chocolate to the first person to figure out what my icon refers to.


thoughts on ALA

Had a wondeful time at ALA, including spending time with my buddies like cedarlibrarian, Liz from A Chair, a Fireplace, and a Tea Cozy, and Sophie from Pop Goes the Library!.

But the best time, as always, is going to the Youth Media Press Conference and hearing the winners of all the book awards, especially the Printz. I loved how, when both The Book Thief and Octavian Nothing had been named honor books, you could almost hear the whole room asking, "So who won????"

What was even better was going to PPYA and seeing John Green's reaction to winning the Printz Honor for An Abundance of Katherines. I didn't know how he'd top last year's post about winning the Printz for Looking for Alaska, but he did. So, yay!

A post will be coming shortly with the first round-up of ARCs I've read, but I did want to mention an adult book that I hope will be a big success: Austenland by Shannon Hale.

spoilers!Collapse )

Coming before the end of the week: posts that talk about the forthcoming books The Princess and the Hound, The Black Sheep, Plain Janes and Beige.


Resume Supplement


“Almost Famous” booklist. The Big Book of Teen Reading Lists by Nancy J. Keane. 2006: Libraries Unlimited. Publisher website

Clash of the Titans.” The Edge of the Forest. June/July 2006 issue.

Wait, I Never Wanted To Be A Manager!Info Career Trends. September 2005 issue.

Discussion Guides for the books of Lara M. Zeises, featured on author's and publisher's websites.
Anyone But You
Author, Publisher

Bringing Up the Bones
Author, Publisher

Contents Under Pressure
Author, Publisher

Oracle,” a blog specializing in book reviews and discussion.

Pop Goes the Library!” a blog specializing in popular culture and libraries.

Quoted In

"Finding Your Niche as a Youth Services Librarian" by Sophie Brookover. LIScareer.com.

"The Anime-mated Library" by Kristin Fletcher-Spear and Kat Kan. Voice of Youth Advocates.


King Dork optioned

Paramount Vantage scoops up King Dork

I read King Dork recently, and I enjoyed it. As someone who doesn't like Catcher in the Rye at all, but has been told "Well, it's a boy book," I liked the fact that the male narrator of King Dork didn't like Catcher either. Because, after all, saying that something is a "boy book" or a "girl book", as a way of explaining its appeal, is actually a bad way of doing that. Why do we feel the need to gender pigeonhole books? I admit, I've done the same kind of thing, with working on Popular Paperbacks and such, but I don't think I've ever said, "I didn't like this book, but it's because it's a boy book."

busy busy busy!

I've been rushing around a lot lately, it feels like, thanks to different things I have going on in my life right now. But I have found time for reading amongst all the hustle and bustle.

The Rules of Survival
Nancy Werlin
Amazon link
I checked this out from the library before the announcement that it was nominated for a National Book Award, and I finally got a chance to read it. Wow--what a powerful, compelling book. I loved the characterization of the kids, how Matthew and Callie worked so hard to protect Emmy and how that shaped each of their characters. Nikki was a complex character, as well--very believable, which makes her all the more chilling. And I liked how there were no easy answers, and that it took several adults learning how to take a stand to help get the kids out of Nikki's control. Plus, the cover is just fantastic.

Powder Monkey
Paul Dowswell
Amazon link
I'm a sucker for historical fiction, and this one was really good. I liked how I felt like I was part of this world, but at the same time, I wasn't getting clobbered over the head with historical details. There was lots of adventure and action, so this would be a great choice for teen boys looking for an historical fiction. The main character of Sam gave you a perfect viewpoint on this world, and what it was like to be a boy in the middle of a war. And another great cover, too!

The Secret Under My Skin
Janet McNaughton
Amazon link
I really enjoyed Janet McNaughton's previous book, An Earthly Knight, and I really liked the sound of this book. Sadly, this one didn't really work for me. It reminded me a bit of Scott Westerfield's Uglies Trilogy, in that both works deal with a future world that have gone through an environmental disaster of epic proportions, and both are now facing a pivotal moment for change. But while in Westerfield's books, you get a full sense of the history and the present, you don't get that in McNaughton's book. Now, obviously, there's a difference between three books and one, but still, I felt confused. There is much to like in The Secret Under My Skin, though: a well-created main character, an interesting look at a world where technology is bad, and an emphasis on learning what your gifts are and putting them to use.

Gotta rush off right now--hopefully, more soon!

comics for sale!

[please skip if you object to blatant commercialism] [grin]

I've been fortunate enough to amass a large collection of comics and graphic novels. It's so large, in fact, that there's no way I'll ever read everything. So, I'm eBaying several lots of graphic novels, in order to share the joy.

If you're interested, my eBay name is dettiot3k7u; you can see my auctions here.



interesting movie news

The Game of Sunken Places set to become a movie

I haven't read Game of Sunken Places, but it's by M.T. Anderson, so you know that it's a good book. Hopefully, if the movie gets made, you'll be able to recognize the book in the movie.

Warner Bros. options The Au Pairs

Drew Barrymore's Flower Films is set to adapt and produce.


Review: Dear Miss Breed, Joanne Oppenheim

Dear Miss Breed
Joanne Oppenheim
Publication Date: February 1, 2006
Amazon link || B&N link

Spoilers are present in this review.

Summary and CommentaryCollapse )
Just a few things that I wanted to get cleaned off the computer/mental desktop:

Thanks to castellucci, I found blackholly's column on Why All Good Writing Advice is Bad. Definitely something I needed to see right about now.

lizzb, over at A Chair, a Fireplace, and a Tea Cozy posted her catalog card. The almost-cataloger in me thought this was the coolest thing ever, so of course I have to include mine:

Thanks to the folks over at Catalog Card Generator for thinking this up!

Finally, I'm not sure where I found this--perhaps from halseanderson--but here's a way you can generate your own On Notice board, a la Stephen Colbert. Here's mine, with explanationsCollapse )


books by sarkastic

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