Archive for What I’m Reading

In Praise of Judy Blume

I love this article singing the praises of one of my favorite childhood authors, Judy Blume. It was written by Diablo Cody, screenwriter of the much-adored movie Juno. Check it out here!

My top three Judy Blume books (with the covers as they were when I read them!):

Are You There God, It’s Me Margaret

Of course this is my favorite! I read this one like 10 times during my tumultuous adolescence. And yes, I tried the exercise (to no avail.)

Tiger Eyes

I first read this in fifth grade, and couldn’t stop crying!

Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing

I actually loved all five of the Fudge books, but just picked the first to represent the rest. This one served as my introduction to the great Ms. Blume!


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The Sisters Grimm

What fun! The Fairy-Tale Detectives kicks off The Sisters Grimm series by Michael Buckley, and it is certainly a treat for fairy-tale enthusiasts of all ages.

I just finished reading it and wanted to share some cool links that the author included in the extensive guide at the end of the book.

Brother’s Grimm: Fairy Tales, History, Facts, and More from National Geographic

The SurLaLune Fairy-Tale Site by Heidi Anne Heiner, a very kick butt librarian!

Can’t wait to do some exploring!

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Gearing up for the SRP

Ahhh, the Summer Reading Program. It happens once a year, during those hot-as-heck months when it seems that everyone but you is enjoying countless hours of leisure. Librarians all over the country are frantically gearing up for the SRP just about now.

The Frisco Public Library finds itself in the fortunate position of attracting hoards of children, tweens, teens, and parents—and that’s during the dead of winter. Come summer, the crowds get so thick you can barely see the (quickly vanishing) shelf of Junie B. Jones books from the reference desk just ten feet away. Yes, this is a good thing. Yes, it means we are indeed a kick-butt library. But it’s also enough to make me tremble slightly in my sensible(ish) shoes.

Check out what FPL’s got going on:

Kids’ ProgramsTeen Program

To really kick things off this summer, I’m having two wisdom teeth pulled and eight cavities filled tomorrow morning. I took off tomorrow and Friday, and I don’t have to work the weekend, so I brought home plenty of reading. On my coffee table:

Art Fraud Detective by Anna Nilsen (David the librarian raved about this one!)

The Fairy Tale Detectives by Michael Buckle (First in the Sisters Grimm series)

Gregor the Overlander by Suzanne Collins (I keep meaning to pick this one up.)

Junie B. Jones and the Smelly Bus by Barbara Park (What is all the fuss, people? It’s my job to find out.)

Miss Daisy is Crazy by Dan Gutman (First in the My Weird School series)

Hopefully I’ll be able to read despite all the painkillers, and hopefully I’ll be able to function again normally come Monday. God knows I need to be in tip-top form to survive the SRP!

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Giving Up on “Ender’s Game”

I’m by no means proud, but enough is enough. There are too many other books out there that I’d rather spend my time with. I know many readers—librarians, critics, teachers, and teens among them—will wholeheartedly disagree with my decision to quit. This is a Nebula and Hugo award winning book, after all! But it’s just not my cup of tea. (Serious, dry science fiction rarely is.)

I usually pride myself on having a wide interest range when it comes to the genre and style of my reading material; I also rarely quit a book midway through. Well, shame on me, I guess. At least I can say I’ve read enough of it to get a decent idea of which patrons I should or should not recommend Ender’s Game to.

Here are a few sci-fi books for young adults that I actually enjoyed reading:

Artemis Fowl and Artemis Fowl: The Arctic Incident by Eoin Colfer

The Ear, the Eye, and the Arm by Nancy Farmer

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle

Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

1984 by George Orwell

I’m also a huge fan of the late television series Firefly, as well as the old-school Star Wars trilogy. So I don’t despise all things science fiction—just, well, certain things!

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Eight YA Books I Really Want to Read

I’m inspired by a lively book discussion the youth staff had about the Texas Lonestar Reading List this morning.  The following books aren’t necessarily on any Lonestar list, and many of them are several years old, but the meeting got me thinking about all the books out there that I still really want to read!  Too bad I’m such a slow poke.  Here they are, in no particular order…

 Zen and the Art of Faking It by Jordan Sonnenblick

Peter and the Starcatchers by Dave Barry

The Lightening Thief by Rick Riordan

The Night Dance by Suzanne Weyn

The Wednesday Wars by Gary D. Schmidt

Dark Water Rising by Marian Hale

Daughter of Venice by Donna Jo Napoli

The House of the Scorpion by Nancy Farmer

By the way, I highly recommend Goodreads to organize and track all the books you’ve ever read and ever want to read!

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I’d Rather be Reading

So, Ryan and I finally decided to join the gym. Frisco just built this insane new facility, the Frisco Athletic Center, and membership is free for city employees if you go 10 times per month, an enticing deal for penny-pinchers like us. After shooting hoops for a while, I got on my favorite workout apparatus—the elliptical machine. Of course, as I’m sweating and panting and my heart rate is soaring well past the healthy range (it was literally off the charts!) I’m thinking the usual. That’s right—I’d rather be reading.

At one point I glanced to my right, and a few machines down I spotted this dude somehow balancing a book in both hands and running like a madman. I’ve seen this feat performed before, when I belonged to a gym during my brief stint in Richmond, VA, but I’m always stunned when I witness it. I can barely adjust the volume on my headset while walking at a snail’s pace without falling off the machine, and here’s this guy gracefully reading and flipping pages while sprinting. Forget losing weight or toning muscles. My goal is to one day master the beautiful balancing act of working out to a good read!

Now that I’m in bed—and about to lie relatively still—I can’t wait to get back to Trenton Lee Stewart’s The Mysterious Benedict Society. It’s a young adult novel that made the Texas Library Association’s 2008-2009 Lone Star Reading List, and I am enjoying it immensely!

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Goodbye, Harry Potter!

For now, at least. I milked it for as long as I could. I think it took me a good three months to read the final installment of the series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, partly because I’m a slow reader, and partly because I just didn’t want it to come to an end. The mere fact that I knew my journey with Harry, Hermione, Ron, and gang was about to be over moved me to tears—it certainly didn’t help matters that the end was so intense and emotional!

I won’t give any spoilers, but I will point you to an article that does! I just read n exclusive Today Show interview with J.K. Rowling. In it, she elaborates on the somewhat vague epilogue she left us with in the Deathly Hallows. I also read that Rowling is planning on writing a Harry Potter Encyclopedia, promising even more details on your favorite characters. Read about it here!

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