Monday, April 30, 2012

Librarian's Pick of the Week: Divergent

Title: Divergent
Author: Veronica Roth
Genre: Science Fiction, Dystopian
Published: 2011
Age: 13+

Synopsis: In Beatrice Prior's dystopian Chicago, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue-Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is - she can't have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself. During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles to determine who her friends really are - and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes infuriating boy fits into the life she's chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she's kept hidden from everyone because she's been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers a growing conflict that threatens to unravel her seemingly perfect society, she also learns that her secret might help her save those she loves... or it might destroy her.

Review: In a future Chicago, the population is divided into five factions-Abnegation, Candor, Dauntless, Erudite, and Amity-each of which believes its opposite is the root of human evil. Sixteen-year-olds are tested for aptitude and must choose whether to remain in their birth faction or select another. They are aided in this selection by a simulation in which their decisions indicate which faction best suits them. Occasionally, though, the simulation indicates multiple choices. These individuals, known as Divergents, are perceived as threats by leaders who want members to behave and think in specific ways. Beatrice Prior is a Divergent, born into the selfless Abnegation faction but fascinated by the outrageous Dauntless. She chooses to become an initiate there and leaves her family behind, little knowing the challenges she will face. Despite her slight build and her meek upbringing, she must demonstrate her courage in physical combat and in simulations designed to present her with her deepest fears. Only 10 initiates will be accepted, and there are those willing to let cruelty take the place of courage. Beatrice comes to realize that another faction plots against Abnegation and that it may take a Divergent to save them. Roth paints her canvas with the same brush as Suzanne Collins. The plot, scenes, and characters are different but the colors are the same and just as rich. Fans of Collins, dystopias, and strong female characters will love this novel. - School Library Journal

If you're intrigued, don't forget to check our library's catalog for this book!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Roald Dahl's Letter

In 1989, a seven-year-old named Amy wrote to the famous writer Roald Dahl. With her letter she also sent a one of her dreams contained in a bottle made from oil, coloured water, and glitter. The above is Roald Dahl's amazing response. What a guy! Did you ever read The BFG? Have you ever written to your favorite author? And also, did they ever write back?

Friday, April 27, 2012

DIY Project: Floating Cloud Lights

DIY Project:  Floating cloud lights

How fun! For all the girls out there, what a great, creative way to light your bedroom huh? I can't imagine it would be very hard to create either. Do any of you have any interesting lighting schemes in your rooms?

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

New Arrivals!!

April 1st - April 17th

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Librarian's Pick of the Week: The Naming

Title: The Naming
Author: Allison Croggan
Genre: Fantasy
Published: 2005
Age: 13+

Synopsis: In the classic spirit of epic fantasy comes this glittering saga of a young girl who learns she possesses an uncanny gift - and is destined to use it to save her world from a terrifying evil. Maerad is a slave in a desperate and unforgiving settlement, taken there as a child when her family is destroyed in war. She doesn't yet know she has inherited a powerful gift, one that marks her as a member of the noble School of Pellinor and enables her to see the world as no other can. It is only when she is discovered by Cadvan, one of the great Bards of Lirigon, that her true identity and extraordinary destiny unfold. Now, she and her mysterious teacher must embark on a treacherous, uncertain journey through a time and place where the forces of darkness wield an otherworldly terror. The first book in a projected quartet, Alison Croggon's epic about Maerad and her remarkable yet dangerous gift is a beautiful, unforgettable tale. Presented as a new translation of an ancient text, The Naming evokes the rich and complex landscape of Annar, a legendary world just waiting to be discovered. Sequels are The Riddle, The Crow, and The Singing.

Review: A mysterious stranger comes to the miserable mountain outpost where Maerad is a slave and offers to help her escape. She leaves and finds herself in great peril. The adventures that follow revolve around Maerad's true name and her extraordinary magical powers; prophetic signs point to Maerad as the one who will defeat the Nameless One. As Maerad travels, finding allies and confronting enemies, she discovers her heritage, recovers certain memories, and endeavors to use her powers to help her newfound friends. Most writers of high fantasy are indebted to Tolkien in one way or another, but few incorporate so many elements of his writing and his secondary world into their own: verse within the story; invented history as back matter; and the Nameless One or Dark power, long ago defeated, who rises again to threaten civilization. There are, of course, differences in Croggon's handling of these elements, as well as her choice of a female protagonist. An Australian poet, she makes good use of imagery in her writing. Despite the derivative elements, many fantasy fans will look forward to following Maerad's adventures in the next volumes of this fantasy quartet. -Booklist

If you're intrigued, don't forget to check our library's catalog for this book!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Movie: The Perks of Being a Wallflower

Emma Watson on the set of "The Perks of Being a Wallflower"

So tell me, is it weird seeing our beloved Harry Potter actors in other movies? Do you just keep thinking, "Hermoine!" when you watch trailers for the upcoming "The Perks of Being a Wallflower"? Well, I do.. Though I am excited to watch the movie. Have any of you read the book? 

Monday, April 16, 2012

Librarian's Pick of the Week: The Seeing Stone

Title: The Seeing Stone
Author: Kevin Crossley-Holland
Genre: Historical Fiction, Fantasy
Published: 2001
Age: 13+

Synopsis:Arthurian legend comes to life in the first novel in this remarkable, award-winning saga Thirteen-year-old Arthur de Caldicot lives on a manor, desperately waiting for the moment he can become a knight. One day his father's friend Merlin gives him a shining black stone - a seeing stone - that shows him visions of his namesake, King Arthur. The legendary dragons, battles, and swordplay that young Arthur witnesses seem a world away from his own life. And yet there is something definitely joining the Arthurs together. It will be Arthur de Caldicot's destiny to discover how his path is intertwined with a king's . . . for the past is not the only thing the seeing stone can see. The sequels to this book are At the Crossing Places and King of the Middlemarch.

Review: Thirteen-year-old Arthur fervently hopes that his father wants him to become a squire, not a "schoolman," though his prowess with sword and lance is eclipsed by his skill with quill and ink. His friend Merlin gives the boy a strange secret stone; Arthur finds that he can look into the polished obsidian and see visions of another Arthur, whose life rather parallels his own. Narrated by Arthur, the novel unfolds in short, lucid chapters, vividly describing events, personalities, and life on a medieval manor. Crossley-Holland achieves a great deal here, from the fresh, engaging voice of Arthur to the ongoing mystery of how his life relates to the story in the stone that emerges in a series of vignettes. Knowledge of Arthurian legend heightens the sense of layered meanings; however, untutored readers will not be lost, but rather richer for discovering the tale here. Few historical novels achieve such a convincing sense of the medieval ages, and few first-person novels can boast such a convincing and sympathetic young narrator. The ending will leave readers eager for the next in this trilogy. As the book closes, Arthur is to become a squire and accompany his father on a Crusade to Jerusalem. Merlin says, "You'll take your stone with you." Carolyn Phelan- Booklist

If you're intrigued, don't forget to check our library's catalog for this book!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

100th Anniversary of the Titanic

Here are some very rare photographs of the Titanic for the 100th anniversary of her sinking on April 14, 1912. The last picture was the last one ever taken of her before she was discovered on the bottom of the ocean in the 80's.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Henri 2, Paw de Deux

Meet Henri. A cat with a terrible case of ennui.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

New Arrivals!!

March 17th - March 31st

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Librarian's Pick of the Week: Ingo

Title: Ingo
Author: Helen Dunmore
Genre:Fantasy, Romantic
Age: 12+

Synopsis: In a novel full of longing, mystery, and magic, Sapphire hears the call of the sea on the Cornwall coast where she lives with her family.

Review: Why does Dad get a dreamy look when he croons the old song about the magical sea world called Ingo? Then one misty morning Dad vanishes, and Sapphire and her brother, Conor, believe that the Mer people of Ingo have something to do with his disappearance. Legend has it that a young man with Mer sensibilities fell in love with a mermaid and abandoned his pregnant fiancee, paving the way for Mer traits to be passed down to others. If the legend explains Dad's disappearance, then the kids have some of the Mer traits themselves. Drawn almost irresistibly to the sea, they encounter Mer people and find themselves struggling to balance life on land with the secret delights and wonders offered in the water. Dunmore's narrative skims expertly across the pages as it chronicles the kids' thrilling adventures (the dolphin-riding scenes are grand) and deftly weaves in an ecological message about protecting the sea. Readers will eagerly await the next title in the planned trilogy from this talented British writer, who is as adept at writing books for children as she is at writing adult fiction and poetry. - Booklist

If you're intrigued, don't forget to check our library's catalog for this book!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Book Trailer: Legend

Have any of you guys ever read Legend by Marie Lu? I know that a lot of teens really love the series, but this trailer reeeeally makes me want to skip it. Thoughts?

For those of you who missed it as well, here's the synopsis: "In a dark future, when North America has split into two warring nations, fifteen-year-olds Day, a famous criminal, and prodigy June, the brilliant soldier hired to capture him, discover that they have a common enemy."

Did you know they are making a movie based on the book? Jonathan Levine will be directing it. He is the person who directed the Seth Rogan movie 50/50.
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