Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Rot & Ruin by Jonathan Maberry

In this apocalyptic world where zombies inhabit most of the area, Benny, who lives in a protected area, approaches his 15th birthday when he must find a job or forfeit half of his food rations. After losing half a dozen jobs, he reluctantly agrees to work as his brother’s apprentice in the “Family Business.” When the brothers travel beyond the fences into the Rot and Ruin, he witnesses things that change his opinion of his brother and forever alter his perception of the world.

Hold on tight! Rot & Ruin is a thriller with lots of action, zombies, and food for thought.


Lockdown by Walter Dean Myers

Walter Dean Myers’ Lockdown is an edgy, realistic story about Reese, a young man serving time at a juvenile detention facility for stealing prescription drug pads and selling them to a drug dealer. Reese tries to serve his time and stay out of trouble, but his inability to control his temper and his fights with other inmates keep making things worse for him. Despite these problems, Reese is allowed to participate in a work program at a nursing home where he meets an elderly resident named Mr. Hooft. Their relationship starts off on shaky ground but they eventually realize they have things to learn from each other. Lockdown is another gritty and engaging novel from the author of Monster and Fallen Angels.


Friday, December 10, 2010

Steampunk Favorites

Steampunk is a dark genre typically set in Victorian England with anachronistic machines that are not within historical or chronological order. The punk side of all of us rejects the Victorain straight-laced attitudes. See if you are part of the growing Steampunk generation.

Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

Airman by Eoin Colfer

Foundling by D. M. Cornish

Airborn by Kenneth Oppel

Boneshaker by Cherie Priest

Clockwork: Or all Wound Up by Philip Pullman

The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman

Fever Crumb by Philip Reeve

The Death Collector by Justin Richards

Leviathan and also Behemouth by Scott Westerfeld

For more about the Steampunk genre go to :

I am Number Four by Pittacus Lore

Ten years ago, nine children fled the war-torn planet Lorien and landed on Earth along with their adult teachers. The plan is to raise each child on earth until they develop their special powers called Legacies which help them fight the evil Mogadarians. The Nine children, protected and living on different continents can only be killed in order—and Number Three has just been murdered. That leaves Number Four: John Smith. At least, that's his latest alias, as he and his guardian, Henri, flee to another new town. John tries to lead a quiet life, but encounters bullies, falls in love, and begins to mature into his special powers.

If you like SciFi with an earthly spin, you'll like I am Number Four by Pittacus Lore.


Saturday, December 4, 2010

Ship Breaker by Paolo Bacigalupi

The near future looks pretty grim in Ship Breaker by Paolo Bacigalupi. Nailer, a teen who salvages scrap metal from shipwrecks along the Gulf of Mexico, finds a beached clipper ship with a girl in the wreckage. He has to decide if he should strip the ship for its wealth or rescue the girl.     

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Black Hole Sun by David Macinnis Gill

If you like classic Sci-fi, complete with life in space and fantastic machines, this book will intrigue you. Durango is sixteen and lives on the planet Mars where he is hired by the settlers of a mining community to protect their most valuable resource from marauders. What I didn't expect and was delighted to find was the quirky, sarcastic humor. Read Black Hole Sun by David Macinnis Gill for a good laugh. Don't take the voices in your head too seriously!


Thursday, November 18, 2010

It's Not Summer Without You by Jenny Han

 Love realistic fiction? Try It's Not Summer Without You by Jenny Han. Belly, now 16, loves spending summer at Cousins Beach. This year a family friend dies and spending the summer at the beach house may not be possible. Find out how Belly helps Jeremiah find Conrad and comes to terms with old relationships forged at Cousins Beach.

This is a sequel  to The Summer I Turned Pretty where the boys Belly has hung out with every summer since forever realize that she is a girl.

Hope you enjoy these!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

For the Win by Cory Doctorow

Virtual games gone global! The best-selling author, Cory Doctorow, describes a futuristic experience for readers as opposing forces protect their virtual power through blackmail, extortion and worse. Out-smarting the system, Big Sister's followers formulate a plan to crash the economy of the virtual world and their "brilliant hack" becomes the best part of the game.

Sci-Fi Lovers - This one's for you!
For the Win by Cory Doctorow

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Purple Heart by Patricia McCormick

Matt Duffy wakes up in a military hospital in Iraq after suffering a traumatic brain injury while he was on patrol. The brain injury has caused him to suffer from memory loss, particularly of the moments leading up to the blast. Matt can recall seeing Ali, a young Iraqi boy he befriended while with his unit, just before everything went blank. While in the hospital, he discovers that Ali has died. The tension tightens and Matt’s guilt increases as he tries to discover if he was responsible for Ali’s death. Purple Heart is another edgy and gripping book from the author of Cut and Sold.


Monday, October 25, 2010

Looking for Websites for Free Books for Your E-reader?

Here are a couple of locations where you can download pdf’s for the e-readers.

Good luck,

Al Ramirez
Information Technology Manager

As Simple as it Seems by Sarah Weeks

Verbena Ellen Colter is eleven years old the summer she finds out that her parents aren’t the people she thought they were—and it sure explains a lot. Her mean streak, for one thing, makes a lot more sense. When Pooch, a boy from the city, moves in next door for the summer, Verbie accidentally convinces him that she’s a ghost—and suddenly she has an opportunity to be someone else entirely. Verbie reinvents herself and discovers what it’s like to be the mischievous, brave, generous girl her mother has always loved. But is this the real Verbena? Find out in “As Simple as it Seems” by Sarah Weeks, author of So B. It and other popular novels.

As Simple as it Seems by Sarah Weeks


Tuesday, October 5, 2010

The Eternal Ones by Kirsten Miller

What if love refused to die?

Having experienced visions of past lives, Haven seeks the help of a mysterious society to help her unlock the mysteries of reincarnation and the secrets of her past lives.

Eternal Ones by Kirsten Miller


Thursday, September 23, 2010

Top Romance Fiction for Teens

We're always looking for good romance in books. Here is a list from Booklist, September 15, 2010.

A Brief History of Montmaray by Michelle Cooper
Crossing Stones by Helen Frost
Fire by Kristin Cashore
Flash Burnout by L. K. Madigan
Illyria by Elizabeth Hand
The Lighter Side of Life and Death by C.K. Kelly Martin
Lips Touch: Three Times by Laini Taylor
Rosie and Skate by Beth Ann Bauman
Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan

Gotta love these!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Along for the Ride by Sarah Dessen

Auden spends the summer before going to college with her father, stepmother and new baby sister. She makes new friends and learns new skills like dating and riding a bike while she revisits and works through the trauma of her parents divorce.

Also by Sarah Dessen: Along for the Ride, Lock and Key, Just Listen, This Lullaby, Dreamland,and The Truth about Forever.


Tuesday, September 14, 2010

House of Night by P.C. Cast

Books are often like food; you either love it or hate it. That includes the junk food we all love now and then. The House of Night Series is wonderful junk food if you like paranormal romance. Burned is the seventh book from the House of Night Series and look for Awakened to come out early in 2011.
1. Marked
2. Betrayed
3. Chosen
4. Untamed
5. Hunted
6. Tempted
7. Burned
8. Awakened


Max: A Maximum Ride Novel by James Patterson

Max is the fifth book in the Maximum Ride fantasy/thriller series by James Patterson. Fast-paced thrills await Max and her flock of genetically engineered human/bird hybrids as they help the Navy find out why fish are dying off in large numbers off the coast of Hawaii.

Maximum Ride fans will be happy to know that Internet Movie Database ( says there is a movie in development for possible release in 2013.


Looking for a Great Read?

Try one of these!
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Jane Austen and Seth Grahame-Smith
Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton
The Maze Runner by James Dashner
The Truth avbout Forever by Sarah Dessen

Happy Reading!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare, the first book in the Mortal Instrument prequels called Infernal Devices, just came out recently.

Basic premise of book: Tessa's brother disappears, and she is kidnapped by the Dark Sisters. The Dark Sisters try to get her to use a power that she did not know she possessed. When the sisters' home is raided by shadowhunters, Tessa learns about a world she did not know existed. The shadowhunters take her in and promise to help her find her brother. There are two possible love interests Will and Jem
- both harbor secrets.

The book is set in the Victorian era and is more steampunk than the other series. I enjoyed the story overall although the some of the characters were too much like characters from Mortal Instruments.
Will is very much like Jace.


Mockingjay the third Hunger Games book by Collins

This is a must have book this fall. The long-awaited end of the Hunger Games Trilogy will not disappoint teens! Whether you are cheering for Peeta or Gayle, you will be satisfied with Katniss' final choice.

Suzanne Collins addresses the proliferation of nuclear arms in Mockingjay giving teen readers an opportunity to develop their own opinions about the cost to our global society. Wouldn't a prequel be interesting to see how the Dark Days produced the dreaded Hunger Games?

The only negative comment I have is that the ending was told to us rather than showing us as it unfolded for Katniss, but it was very satisfying none-the-less.

Let us know what you thought about Mockingjay or any of the Hunger Games!

Fallen by Lauren Kate

Suspected in the death of her boyfriend, 17-year-old Luce is sent to a reform school where she meets two intriguing boys and learns the truth about the strange shadows that have always haunted her. Readers will feel for Luce's frustration in the last chapters, when she discovers the answers to some secrets, but is still left largely in the dark by those seeking to protect her. The long-awaited sequel, Torment, will be released the end of September 2010.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

The Devouring by Simon Holt

The existence of Vours, supernatural creatures who feast on fear and attack on the eve of the winter solstice, becomes a terrifying reality for fifteen-year-old Reggie when she begins to suspect that her timid younger brother might be one of their victims. The Devouring is packed with all your most disturbing nightmares come to life. Find more of the Vours in the sequel Soulstice.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Evernight Series by Claudia Gray

Sixteen-year-old Bianca, a new girl at the sinister Evernight boarding school, finds herself drawn to another outsider, Lucas, but dark forces threaten to tear them apart and destroy Bianca's entire world. The vampire-human war and Bianca and Lucas' romance only heat up in the novel's sequels, Stargazer and Hourglass.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Heroes of the Valley by Jonathan Stroud

Echoing Norse folktales, this humor-filled tale follows prankster Halli Sveinsson who longs to be a hero like his forefathers. To prove himself, he vows to avenge the murder of his uncle. Readers will not want for monsters and heroic challenges - there are plenty here!


Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Linger by Maggie Stiefvater

Those of you who have read Shiver by Stiefvater will want to read the continuing story of Grace and Sam. Many unanswered questions are addressed in Linger. Can Grace finally let the world know about her love for Sam? Will Sam be able to maintain his human form? See how Isabelle continues to influence future of the pack. Reserve a copy of Linger today!


Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

Whether you are remembering your high school years or in the midst of them, The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a classic. More intimate than a diary, Charlie's letters are unique, hilarious and devastating. Caught between trying to live his life and trying to run from it puts him on a strange course through uncharted territory.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Strange Angels by Lili St. Crow

Dru's psychic abilities helped her father battle zombies and other creatures, but now she must rely on herself, a werewolf-bitten friend, and a half-human vampire hunter to learn who murdered her parents, and why. This action-packed title has a butt-kicking yet relatable heroine in Dru. Sequels, Betrayals and Jealousy, can be reserved now.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Cures for Heartbreak by Margo Rabb

As she navigates adolescence, ninth-grader Mia must deal with her mother's recent death and her father's illness while she searches for friendship and love in the world around her. Cures for Heartbreak explores everyday life in the face of family tragedy, offering hope, humor and a light touch of romance along with sorrow and loss.

Gone by Michael Grant

Reminiscent of Lord of the Flies, Gone, by Michael Grant, shows a small town on the coast of California where everyone over the age of 14 suddenly disappears, setting up a battle between the remaining town residents and the students from a local private school, as well as those who have "The Power" and are able to perform supernatural feats and those who do not. Also in the series are Hunger and Lies.


Sunday, July 18, 2010

House of Night Series by P.C. Cast

Sixteen-year-old Zoey Redbird is Marked as a fledgling vampyre and joins the House of Night, where she will train to become an adult vampyre. This mixture of fantasy, horror and romance will leave readers with enough unanswered questions to keep them hungry for the next book in the series, Book seven, Burned, is now available.

Book 1 Marked
Book 2 Betrayed
Book 3 Chosen
Book 4 Untamed
Book 5 Tempted
Book 6 Hunted
Book 7 Burned

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Sweethearts by Sarah Zarr

After losing her soul mate, Cameron, when they were nine, Jennifer, now seventeen, transformed herself from the unpopular fat girl into the beautiful and popular Jenna. Cameron's unexpected return dredges up memories that cause both social and emotional turmoil. Sweethearts is a bittersweet story driven by Jenna's quests to reconcile past trauma, find self-acceptance, and rediscover a once-powerful relationship.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

Whether you are remembering your high school years or in the midst of them, The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a classic. More intimate than a diary, Charlie's letters are unique, hilarious and devastating. Caught between trying to live his life and trying to run from it puts Charlie on a strange course through uncharted territory.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Black Duck by Janet Taylor Lisle

There are two parallel stories in this book. The modern story serves as a segway for the legendary story of the rum running ship called the Black Duck. The story begins with David Peterson, a boy who wants to be a reporter; however he will be unsuccessful unless he can report on a good story. Determined, David sets off to find and interview, Ruben Hart, an elder man rumored to have been a rumrunner. This interview takes the reader back to Ruben’s youth when Ruben and his best friend Jeddy find a dead body on the Rhode Island shore. They are certain it has something to do with smuggling liquor. The timeline is set in the 1920s and Prohibition is in full swing, and almost everyone in the shore community is involved. The dead body turns out to be an important gang member, and as Reuben and Jeddy pursue answers, they are trapped in a web of deceitful activities, ending in a Coast Guard shooting. The author explores the historical subject of Prohibition as well as various underlying social themes. She shows the difficulty of staying honest when everyone else is breaking the law including the local authorities. The framing device of having the modern day boy listening to the story provides a surprise twist at the end. The characterization and suspenseful plot make this an entertaining, accessible historical mystery for middle school teens.

Recommended for Grades 6-8
Mary Beth

Thursday, July 8, 2010

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian

Teen books are traditionally angst-ridden, but Sherman Alexie combines it with humor in The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian. As an author of adult books, this fiction book for teens is semi autobiographical about a budding cartoonist who leaves his troubled school on the Spokane Indian Reservation to attend an all-white farm town school where the only other Indian is the school mascot. This book is a great example of humorous fiction that both teens and adults would enjoy reading.

Bonechiller by Graham McNamee

Four high school students face off against a soul-stealing beast that has been making young people disappear in their small Ontario Canada town for centuries. A creature feature with breakneck pacing, chilling atmosphere and an action-packed ending.

Hate List by Jennifer Brown

Val created the Hate List with her boyfriend, Nick, who used it as a hit list in a school shooting. Though Val had a hand in creating the list, she tried to stop Nick and was wounded in the process. This gut-wrenching, powerful novel explores Val's guilt and recovery from this horrific incident.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Fever Crumb by Philip Reeve

Fever Crumb is a most unusual member of the Order of Engineers. That her eyes are different colors is one thing, but the fact that she is female is exceptionally strange. In fact Fever is the only female member of the Order. When Kit Solent, an ex-Engineer, asks for help with his newest archeological find, the Order sends Fever, both because of her unusual nature and her promise as an excellent Engineer. But is it coincidence that she’s mistaken for a Scriven, one of London’s former mutant overlords, the first time she goes out into town? And what of the strange memories that surface once Fever begins working with Kit?
Whether you’ve already read the Hungry City Chronicles and want to know more of the history, or if you’re looking for a post-apocalyptic sci-fi novel, Fever Crumb by Philip Reeve is a great choice.


Monday, May 10, 2010

The Unwritten Rule by Elizabeth Scott

The Unwritten Rule by Elizabeth Scott
Everyone knows the unwritten rule: You don’t like your best friend’s boyfriend. Sarah knows that and she doesn’t want to like Ryan but she just can’t help it. She’s liked him forever. Except now Ryan is dating Sarah’s beautiful best friend Brianna and Sarah must accept their relationship and forget about him. But something happens one night that makes Sarah question everything from her loyalty and friendship with Brianna to the depths of her feelings for Ryan.


Once Was Lost by Sara Zarr

15-year-old Sam has always been defined as the pastor’s daughter. But not all is well behind closed doors. Under the pressure of being a pastor’s wife, Sam’s mother is an alcoholic who after one too many DUI’s is now in treatment. But it’s not a fact that Sam wants her friends (who often don’t invite her along to less questionable activities – you know – the whole being the pastor’s daughter thing) to know about nor is it something that Sam and her father openly talk about with each other.
It is during this crisis in her family that her community faces a crisis of its own. A young girl in the church has mysteriously gone missing and no one is free from suspicion including her own father and the girl’s older brother, whom Sam has always crushed on. This family and community crisis shakes Sam to her inner-core where she also experiences her own personal crisis – one that questions her faith, hope, and belief in something that is bigger than she is.

for a great rad, try Once Was Lost by Sara Zarr.


Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Incarceron by Catherine Fisher

No one from the Outside enters and no one from the Inside escapes. Incarceron is a living prison that controls the fate of its prisoners and, for the past three years, it is the only world Finn has known. With no recollection of his life before prison, Finn must rely on Claudia, a girl from the outside, to help him escape and discover his past, but Claudia has perils of her own to face, namely her father, the Warden of Incarceron, and an arranged marriage to the future king of the realms. Will Incarceron allow them to escape their destinies or will the mysteries of Incarceron destroy them both?


Monday, January 18, 2010

Printz Award Winners for 2010

2010 Printz Award winners 2010
The Michael L. Printz Award is an award for a book that exemplifies literary excellence in young adult literature. It is named for a Topeka, Kansas school librarian who was a long-time active member of the Young Adult Library Services Association. The award is sponsored by Booklist, a publication of the American Library Association.

Going Bovine
by Libba Bray

2010 Printz Honor Books
The committee also named four Printz Honor Books:

Charles and Emma: The Darwins’ Leap of Faith
by Deborah Heiligman
Once Charles Darwin sets his rational mind to marry the religious Emma Wedgeworth, they both must take a leap of faith in order to build a life together.

The Monstrumologist
by Rick Yancey
Will Henry, orphan and assistant to a monstrumologist, races against time to save his town (and himself) from the anthropophagi, a pod of monstrous creatures who prey on humans.

by Adam Rapp
Fourteen-year-old runaway Jamie, homeless and strung out, embarks on a harrowing journey to reach his dying brother.

Tales of the Madman Underground: An Historical Romance, 1973
by John Barnes
Karl Shoemaker wants to begin his senior year with a new identity separate from his counseling group, his alcoholic mother and the legacy of his dead father.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Sometimes the truth is a long way down.

As the book jacket states, "What really happened on the cliff that night? Three students went up to the cliff -- but only two came back alive." Find out what really happened to Russell and why Luke and Hayden have to come to terms with the decisions they made and the following consequences.
Freefall by Ariella Anhalt. 9th-12th grades. YA ANHALT