Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The Book Thief

I recently finished reading The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. It was a wonderful novel and I strongly recommend that people of all ages read it. Although it is a young adult novel, it has very dark and cruel themes. The Book Thief is about a young girl's life in Nazi Germany, and how she deals with life's challenges. This book asks, what do you do when you feel something is wrong? Do you comply with society and their rules or do you stand up for what you believe in? Also, you see how Leisal, the main character, deals with the death and loss of many people that she loved and held dear to her heart. It's a powerful story that will without a doubt pAdd Imagerovoke emotion from the reader.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Flash 5 Contest!

Flash 5 Contest!
New website I discovered while reading my morning NYTimes online...FIGMENT. Devoted to YA authors and writers, it is a mash up of library review site and writing site and a whole lot more. It was just launched this week, so there is not a ton of content, but based on the NYTimes article they have plans that sound truely exicitng. Teens love to write, and ths is a great place to do so.. and possibly have a publsher pick up your work and take it to the next level. The link above is for a poetry contest. Check it out as well as the site and let me know what you think.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Best Books 2010: Fiction

Best Books 2010: Fiction
School Library journal published their list of Best Books for 2010 in the fiction category. How many have you read? What would you add to the list?

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Will Grayson Will Grayson

The book is about two boys who happen to have the same exact name and bump into each other in a store. The book alternates chapters between the two, with each character being written by a different author. The book dealt with friendship and relationships, hetero and homosexual.
This book was really great. I absolutely loved it. And I think the reason why was the
believability. The characters really seemed like real people to me and talked like real teenagers. The story line was great- I loved that the book kind of revolved around Tiny even though Will Grayson and Will Grayson narrated.I was a little worried that the different styles of the two authors wouldn't mesh well, but it just made it feel more like they were actually two different people. I definitely recommend this book to all young adult readers.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

I had one weekend to read The Compound because I knew that the upcoming week was going to be hectic. I sat down thinking I'd read a few pages and when I got bored I would put it down and would continue it later. To my surprise, I didn't get to the point where I wanted to put it down. I really enjoyed the whole concept of the book and really liked the evolution of the characters, the psycological and physical. Eli, is the eldest son of famous, filthy rich software designer. With his billions of dollars, Eli's father builds an underground compund in order to save his family in case there is a nuclear attack. Well when the warning comes, Eli's twin Eddy and Grandmother don't make it. The rest of the world is destroyed, or so we think...
This book kept me on the edge of my seat and had me thinking about the final result until the very end. Completely enjoyable and an overall great read!

Book Club first of the season!

The B.A.A. (that is Book Addicts Anonymous for those uninitiated about our acronym)selected The Compound as our first book of the season. Our President, Natasha< came to me after she had read it in one sitting and said "WOW!". Well, I could not agree more. A page turner, set in the very near future, will keep you guessing from the get go! Essentially, a family is forced to live in an underground compound that was designed to sustain them for 15 years in case of a nuclear attack. Our hero, Eli, begins to have suspicions about his overzealous father- why is he so controlling? Why can Eli sometimes get Internet access if the world has been destroyed? What secrets does his father really have? Read The Compound if you want to get totally absorbed in a psychological thriller.

Monday, October 18, 2010

The Compound

The current BAA bookclub selection is getting great reviews from out members.. our President, Natasha had one one for it "WOW". She sat down and read it in ONE SITTING! I can't wait to read what all the buzz is about! Want to check out a copy? See Mrs. Roberts.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

It's A Book - By Lane Smith

Some things are just that simple!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Kansas City Library's Epic Parking Garage_What book would you pick?

Kansas City Library's Epic Parking Garage
"Check out" (pun intended) this cool parking garage in Kansas City. What would your pick be for a giant book spine to adorn our school? I probably would select Of Mice and Men. Comments?

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Teens' Top Ten

The American Library Associations'(ALA) teen advisory group sponsors a Teens' Top Ten contest every year. The voting begins August 23rd and ends September 17th. Check out this list of this years nominations, read as many as you can and then vote. I will post a link to the voting as soon as it is opened so check back here! Happy reading!

Friday, July 16, 2010


As you know from previous blog posts, July marks the 50th anniversary of To Kill A Mockingbird. I entered the contest to win an audio book from Recorded Books K-12 and I just got the email that The Wheatley School WON! As many of you know, I am a HUGE audio book fan, listen to about one a week. I have listened to To Kill A Mockingbird, narrated by Sissy Spacek and it is FANTASTIC. She is such an accomplished actress and she brings a level of warmth and charm to this classic book, which I hope you will enjoy as much I did. Email me and let me know if you want to check out this audio book.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Zombies-How very nice!


This is the short version of Charlie Higson's The Enemy
Here is the long version.

Totally unsettling- and a testament to how far book marketing has come. After viewing the video and I am certainly going to put this on my MUST BUY list,as well as it's sequel,The Dead, which is due out this September. True creepiness is my cup of tea. If you liked Rick Yancey's The Monstronomolist,( I LOVED IT) I imagine this is a great read for you.
Which trailer do you prefer?

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Public Libraries and Mom's Apple Pie!

What does a great public library mean? Apparently a lot! East Williston Public Library is featured in this Fox 5 piece. Go Libraries!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

50 Years of To Kill A Mockingbird

A classic book, a classic film. Celebrate 50 years of a literary icon. To Kill A Mockingbird was Harper Lee's only published book. Read more about her life in the YA book I am Scout by Charles J. Shields, or his book for the adult audience, Mockingbird. Both are excellent reads and give the reader insight into the world of Harper Lee and the world of her memorable characters.
A website has been established with videos, sweepstakes, and information.

Saturday, June 5, 2010


What is SYNC?
• SYNC is an online community that seeks to build the audience for audiobooks among readers 13 and up.

• Each week, SYNC will give away 2 FREE downloads--a popular Young Adult title paired with a Classic title that appears on Summer Reading lists--starting July 1 through September 1, 2010.

• SYNC is hosted by Audiobook Community, a new social networking site for the discovery of audiobooks.

• Listeners can choose to join a conversation about these titles with authors, narrators, publishers, librarians, and other listeners. (Listeners are not required to join Audiobook Community to follow the conversation on SYNC nor to download FREE titles from SYNC.)

SYNC Titles
Audiobook downloads available as MP3s
Summer 2010
Available July 1 - July 7
The Angel Experiment by James Patterson
Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
Available July 8 - July 14
Over the End Line by Alfred C. Martino
The Power of One by Bryce Courtenay
Available July 15 - July 21
Bloody Jack by L.A. Meyer
Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson
Available July 22 - July 28
The Looking Glass Wars by Frank Beddor
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
Available July 29 - August 4
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
Available August 5 - August 11
Does My Head Look Big in This? by Randa Abdel-Fattah
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith
Available August 12 - August 18
Coming Soon...
Available August 19 - August 25
Wondrous Strange by Lesley Livingston
A Midsummer Night's Dream by William Shakespeare
Available August 26 - September 1
Handbook for Boys by Walter Dean Myers
Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens
Click HERE for additional information

Friday, May 28, 2010

Books Expo America- Cornelia Funke, Vlad Todd and MORE!

Well, Book Expo America 2010 was exhilarating and exhausting. Day One-School Library Journal Day of Dialogue. Imagine a roomful of librarians and authors and lots and lots of - well, BOOKS and you have a clear picture of the set up. What did we discuss? STEAMPUNK! On the panel, Scott Westerfeld, one of Wheatley students fave's, Cherie Priest, with her blue hair, Cory Doctorow, another Wheatley fave, and Karen Grenke, who billed herself as Library manager NYPL and fan girl ( you should have seen her hat!) We discussed what exactly Steam punk is- think Victorian age meets science fiction witha mantra of reuse, recycle, re purpose. Basically, what would the 19th century have been like with technology?Another way to look at it "home made machines" or "technology should be beautiful". Very cool. What are the benefits to students? Well, since there is an historical aspect to it- it makes history fun- and can lead to a reader doing research on what the era was like. There is a whole steampunk movement- parties, art, poetry, books and a way of dressing. Want to get a taste of it in literature? Try Westerfelds Leviathan,Uglies, or Boneshaker by Cherie Priest.
In the afternoon we got to preview a TON of new titles and we got Advanced Reader Copies to boot- so come on into the IMC and check them out.We learned the 12th and final installment in the Vlad Tod series will be published shortly- many Wheatley students will vie for the right to be the first to read it- but Daniel C. gets it first... and I WON an autographed Cornelia Funke copy of her newest soon to be published book, Reckless.. That is her at the podium. She read the beginning aloud and the audience was mesmerized. All in all a great two days.
Can't wait until BEA 2011!

Friday, March 19, 2010

My favorite search engine

Doing a research project is not easy. The easy availability of information on the internet has made it easy to access content, however, the quality of the content in not necessarily reliable. And quality of course, is what separates a good research project from a great one. If you have not yet tried Finding Dulcinea I highly reccommend it. They market themselves as the Librarians of the Internet- essentially, they have scoured the web for the highest quality content that you can rely on for your research. While I too, love Google, I know I have to be meticulous in investigating the creator of the information. With Finding Dulcinea, I can focus more on the content and not worry about who wrote it. Check it out- it can only help. Here is a blog posting about how Finding dulcinea works, vs. Bing and Google. I can also highl recommend their hints on how to best approach a research project.

Friday, March 12, 2010

School Library Journal: Battle of the Books

March is known for March Madness but for those that want a more cerebral challenge School Library Journal sponsors a Kids Battle of the Books. . Last year the winner was a Wheatley School fave, The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. This year, who knows. One of our Book club picks, Marcelo In the Real World is in the running, but also Fire, the prequel to another Wheatley fave, Graceling. You can participate in the process- there is a new feature -"The Undead", in which YOU can select one book, that IF axed by a celebrity judge , will be resurrected in the final round. Sort of an American Idol for the bookish set. Check it out and post your comments here!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Gotta Keep Reading

Love this video... enjoy!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Jodi Picoult Fans

Jodi Picoult, the author we all know and love is coming to Huntington HS. Here are the details:
Best-selling Author to Visit Huntington
Jodi Picoult is coming to the Huntington High School auditorium. The
best-selling author will speak about and sign copies of her new book,
"House Rules" on Friday, March 5 at 7 p.m. Tickets are required and a
crowd of more than 1,000 is expected to attend.

Ms. Picoult is from Long Island and has written many popular books on
social issues. "House Rules," which hits bookstores on March 2, is
about a teenager with Asperger's syndrome, who has an obsession for
forensic analysis and becomes suspected of a crime because people
misunderstand his behavior.

A member of her profession's elite circle, Ms. Picoult's work has
reached No. 1 on The New York Times' best-selling list. Her writing
has received rave reviews. Financial Times said "It's hard to
exaggerate how well Picoult writes." Stephen King, himself a
best-selling author said "Picoult writes with unassuming brilliance."
Entertainment Weekly said "Picoult is a rare writer who delivers book
after book, a winning combination of the literary and the commercial."

The visit to Huntington is being coordinated by Book Revue and
sponsored by Bethpage Federal Credit Union in partnership with the
Organization of Music Parents of Huntington (OOMPAH) for the
district's arts-in-education committee.

Tickets to the event are available at Book Revue for $30.42, which
includes a copy of "House Rules." Those 18 years old and younger, or
those with special needs, can purchase tickets for $5 at Book Revue,
which is located at 313 New York Avenue in Huntington Village. The
$5 fee can be redeemed the night of the event for $5 off a copy of any
of Ms. Picoult's books, which will be available in the auditorium.
(Tickets may be ordered over the phone with a credit card.)

For more information call Book Revue at 271-1442 or the Huntington
High School Music Office: 631-673-2053.

Monday, January 18, 2010

ALA Award Winners and more

This weekend, the ALA ( American Library Association) held their mid-year conference in Boston. Here is a link to twitter updates of the teen session, discussing the best books for teens from the past year.Here is a link to the complete list of winners.
Some of my favorite books of the year won awards, including Going Bovine by Libba Bray, Charles and Emma by Deborah Heiligman, and The Rock and The River by Keekla Magoon. I am going to read The Rock and the River next- after I finish reading last years Printz award winner, Jellico Road by Melina Marchetta. Look for the list of award winners in the IMC and start reading!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Truly, Madly

Heather Weber's first book in the Lucy Valentine series is the best chick-lit book I've ever read. She's created the perfect mix of adventure, mystery, romance, comedy, and magic. Lucy Valentine comes from a long line of aura-readers, people who can see the color of the energy surrounding people. By matching people's aura colors, they've become very wealthy in the matchmaking business, but Lucy has denounced her family's trust fund for her and decided to make it on her own. She lost the aura-reading gift when she got electrocuted at 14 and can now only found lost objects and feels she doesn't deserve the money. The plot twists and turns and it's definitely a quick-read. In one word the book was adorable.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

The Prince of Tides - Pat Conroy

A few months ago, I noticed a mistreated book on my nightstand. In the beginning of the summer, my sister had thrown this ratty, torn book into my room. She said it was fantastic and that I should give it a try. I glanced at the title, The Prince of Tides, by Pat Conroy. It seemed interesting enough. I began to read the massive book, and instantly fell in love.
The Prince of Tides chronicles the ups and downs of the turbulent Wingo family, a southern born and bred clan living on an island in South Carolina, through Tom Wingo's eyes as he fights to save his suicidal sister, who is a poet living in New York. Tom travels to New York to meet with Savannah's therapist, Susan Lowenstein, and figure out where she went wrong and how to help her. Through the stories of their childhood, we are exposed to the painful memories Savannah is plagued with - the abuse from her father, the denial of such abuse, and the wonderful yet frightening life lived on Melrose Island. The plot thickens as we hear of their late-brother Luke and their ambitious and quixotic mother.
As a New Yorker, reading Pat Conroy is like a breath of fresh, southern air. I've never been to the south, and frankly, before reading this book, I had never even thought about traveling there. But the south Pat Conroy describes seems entirely appealing. It is so foreign from what I'm used to, and for that matter, what you are probably used to as well. Interestingly enough, I think that putting Tom and Savannah in New York perhaps enhances the view of the south. This forsaken place needs to be reevaluated, and I believe Pat Conroy does just that.
My next book, The Great Santini, has a lot of the same features - southern family, abusive father, struggling children - but with an entirely new twist. The Marine Corps. I'm half way through with it and let me just say that I am not at all displeased. Reading Pat Conroy has made this New Yorker quite open-minded about the south. I hope to post about The Great Santini soon.

Tender Morsels

Tender Morsels was a great book but some of the parts were so explicit, that I had to skim over them. The first few chapters did not do the book justice, and I found that I wanted to put it down. But I stuck with it, and I am happy that I did. The characters and scenes were described so wonderfully, that I felt as though they were being acted out. I only had one problem, these sex scenes completely creeeped me out. I couldn't stand them and was actually surprised that this was a young adults book. I am glad that I read it, but I don't know if I would recommend it to just anyone.