Tuesday, July 29, 2014

The Impossible Knife of Memory review

What have I been reading this summer? Well....
The Impossible Knife of Memory - Laurie Halse Anderson
For a long time, Hayley has felt more like a parent than a daughter. Constantly on the move with her war vet father who suffers from serious PTSD, she has built impenetrable walls around herself to keep out the hurt, fear and feelings of helplessness. But now Dad says it's time to settle down in the town she knew in a younger, happier time. He also says she is going to finish high school. He doesn't mention how she's supposed to accomplish that between protecting him from himself, fending off nosy adults, and surviving on peanut butter and banana sandwiches. Danger rears up everywhere - her father's creepy "friend"/dealer, failing grades at school, and a possibly evil ex-stepmother who already left Hayley high and dry once. And then there's Finn. A nice boy, a star swimmer, and the first one Hayley is tempted to let through her defenses. But will he be able to handle the glass-shard-filled chaos that is her world?

A riveting portrayal from Anderson of the other dark side of PTSD - the typhoon of craziness it can bring to family members and dependents. Hayley is an incredibly strong girl - because she has to be. It's the only way she'll survive. She's always trying to anticipate her father's next move, and analyzing his present condition. Is he high, drunk, angry, weeping, screaming, armed, comatose, suicidal? Every second with her dad is a roller coaster ride with all these possibilities. She supports and protects him to the best of her ability, but she can't help remembering a time when things weren't so. There's a constant feeling of Hayley being on the knife's edge in this story - which is appropriate given the title. She has things under control, but barely. Any second it could go haywire. The intense ending doesn't leave room for shiny rainbows, but it does give a glimmer of hope in the all-encompassing power of love.

This is a serious book with a serious subject, but you won't be able to put it down. I call Anderson the Jodi Picoult of YA because she tackles the issues that nobody else wants in a heartbreaking and totally believable way. Well done!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Ace those tests!

Thinking about the SAT, PSAT, ACT, GED or any of those other nerve-wracking tests? Don't be scared...we're here to help. SLPL is now offering access to the Testing and Education Reference Center (powered by Gale)
Take on-line practice tests and use test prep eBooks to obtain your education goals. Browse by "High School Tools",  "College Prep Tools", or even "Career Tools"
  • Over 300 practice tests and courses
  • Dozens of ebooks containing valuable study material and practice tests
  • Information on over 4,000 accredited schools
  • Scholarship search featuring $8 billion in available scholarships
  • Resume builder with over 1,000 brainstorming phrases to get you started
  • Career modules covering subjects from career change to salary negotiations
It's a big world out there. Get busy.

P.S. For those of you who prefer test prep you can hold in your hands, we have book copies in our YA room.  

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

What's New?

Here are some great titles jumping onto our YA shelves any day now:

17 & Gone - Nova Ren Suma
Seventeen-year-old Lauren has visions of girls her own age who are gone without a trace, but while she tries to understand why they are speaking to her and whether she is next, Lauren has a brush with death and a shocking truth emerges, changing everything.
The End Games - T. Michael Martin
In the rural mountains of West Virginia, seventeen-year-old Michael Faris tries to protect his fragile younger brother from the horrors of the zombie apocalypse.
The Dream Thieves - Maggie Stiefvater (Raven Cycle, bk. 2)
Now that the ley lines around Cabeswater are awake, magic is swirling around Blue and The Raven boys and Ronan Lynch's ability to pull objects from his dreams is almost out of control but worst of all, the mysterious Gray Man is stalking the Lynch family, looking for something called the Greywaren.
The Finisher - David Baldacci
When Quentin Herms is chased from his village into the Quag, a dark forest filled with terrifying beasts and murderous Outliers, Vega uses her skills as a talented decoder to uncover dangerous secrets.
Champion - Marie Lu (Legend novel, 3)
June and Day's hopes for peace are shattered by a plague outbreak that renews warfare throughout the panicked Colonies, a situation that forces the Republic to consider a means of defense that threatens everything Day has worked for.
Also Known As Elvis - James Howe (Misfits, 4)
While his friends Bobby, Joe, and Addie are spending the summer on exciting adventures, thirteen-year-old Skeezie Tookis must get a job and help around the house, and things only get worse when his long-lost father appears
Spirit and Dust - Rosemary Clement-Moore
Raised in a family of psychics and witches, teen Daisy Goodnight is happy to help local police solve cold cases but when the FBI seeks her talents, she becomes involved in a mess that even has the spirits terrified.

All images and book blurbs attributed to Novelist K-8 Plus.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Spark a Reaction YA Special Display

Hopefully by now you've figured out that the motto for the 2014 Teen Summer Reading Club is:
In keeping with the themes of science and technology, I have pulled together a special display of books for July & August.

Mad scientists? Yes, please.
Technology gone wrong? Always.
Robotic mind control?!!!! Maybe.

You'll just have to take a look and see. You can check out 2 books from the special display at a time, and they check-out for 2 weeks.

Two of my favorites are:
Fever Crumb - Philip Reeve
Fever Crumb is raised by The Order of Engineers, even though they believe girls are incapable of rational thought. Hah!
Erebos - Ursula Poznanski
Video game gone horribly wrong.

Science is everywhere. Embrace it...or run quickly in the other direction.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

This Is One Great Tale of Adventure...

Great news! Exciting news! Astounding news! New news!

I posted recently about the Teen Summer Reading Club and how you should join it. Now there is an even cooler reason for you to jump on that bandwagon.
Tales of Adventure Comics and Games, a great new shop in Coopersburg on Rt. 309 (check out their Facebook here) has generously partnered with the Southern Lehigh Public Library to offer some stellar prizes for our Teen Reading Club. All you graphic novel fans will be soooo happy!

So, here's the deal:

Join up, start reading, log your books and you can win:

*$5 voucher for Tales of Adventure Comics and Games (must attain prize level #1)
*Free comics for a year! from Tales of Adventure Comics and Games (must attain all 10 prize levels)
     (Fine print: 1 comic per month for 12 months)
See, even this strange little box is excited. So you should be too.

Register online here

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Bungee, Bungee, Here We Go, Bungee!

It's a chair. It's a bungee. It's a chair-gee! Bounce around with this super cool addition to your room. Everyone needs a bungee chair! (including me)

Just one of our fabulous summer reading club raffle prizes...and there's a lot more where that came from. Notice the prize pack in front of the chair - Mockingjay audiobook playaway with earbuds, speaker, outlet adapter w/ nightlight and more!
Sweet, sweet romance bundle - I will laugh so hard if some little boy wins this just for the candy.
Be a serious fan - Spiderman "museum" book, graphic novel, Avengers T-shirt, Transformers T-shirt
Get it BEFORE it's hot! - Advanced Reader Copies of books not even published yet and mini golf passes

Trust me, this club ain't just for kids.

GREAT BIG THANK YOU to the sponsors who make this possible:
Crayola
Putt U
Friends of the Southern Lehigh Public Library

Friday, June 13, 2014

Book N' Bake Sale

Saturday, June 10th @ SLPL from 10 AM - 4 PM.
Get a whole stack of books...
Children's/Teen books are 3 for $1! (or 35 cents each)
Adult paperbacks are 50 cents!
Adult hardcovers are $1!
Specially priced items are 1/2 off!
Magazines are $1 per bundle!

**$5 bag sale from 2:30 PM to 4 PM
        - specially priced items not included
        - paper grocery bags only
Don't forget to stop by the bake sale table. YUM!

All proceeds benefit the Friends of the Southern Lehigh Public Library