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Posts by Andrea Lipinski

Kingsbridge Teens Recommend: Favorite Music from 2010

After discussing 2010's music CD releases with the members of the Kingsbridge Library's Teen Advisory Group, I learned a few things about popular music. I learned that just because a performer was popular with teens all over the country didn't mean that this performer was popular with MY teens (like Taylor Swift, for example). I learned how to pronounce Ke$ha's name correctly (excuse me for not knowing how to pronounce something with a DOLLAR SIGN in it!)  I learned that many teens are of the opinion that "only old people buy music from 

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RIP BFF: Teen Novels About Death and Friendship

There are many novels about death in the young adult section of most libraries.  Some of them deal with the death of the teen narrator, or with the death of a parent or another family member.  But today I'm going to focus on stories where death and friendship are intertwined.  Many of these stories are especially poignant because (let's face it) we choose our friends, not our families, so often our friends are closer to us than family members could ever be. 

When we read realistic fiction we're looking for a real-life experience, with all of 

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Kingsbridge Teens Recommend: Our Favorite DVDs of 2010

To jumpstart our brainstorming session of DVDs that were released in 2010, I printed out a list from amazon.com of their top-selling DVDs and brought it to my last Teen Advisory Group meeting.  My kids agreed with some of titles on that list, violently disagreed with others, and used the titles on that list as starting points to remember even more of their favorite films and TV shows that were released this year.  Their favorite DVDs of the year were filled with plenty of action, special effects, humor, and horror.

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Reading Recommendations From the Kingsbridge Library's Teen Advisory Group

Lucia is a fan of Turtle in Paradise by Jennifer L. Holm.  In this story, an 11-year-old girl named Turtle is sent to Key West, Florida to live with her aunt and cousins.  And while she's there, she finds a long-lost treasure map.  This is a funny and dramatic story that takes place during the mid 1930s.

Solen recommends Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Ugly Truth by Jeff Kinney.  Greg Heffley has always been in a rush to get 

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New Teen Novels About Fake Vampires, Dark Prophesies, and Other Unusual Subjects

Finbar Frame has a lot of things going against him.  He's not a popular star athlete like his brother, he's allergic to the sun, and... oh yes, his name is Finbar.  When a girl on the train sees Finbar's pale skin and bandaged arms, she has a suspicion about what he really is.  When she asks what happened to his arms and Finbar answers, "Too much sun," she's not repulsed or confused as most people would be.  Instead, she's delighted. 

That's because she thinks that this strange boy must be a vampire like the one in the 

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Kingsbridge TAG Reader's Choice: Some of My Favorite Books From 2010

Right now, the teens in our Teen Advisory Group are reading a boatload of books so that they can recommend their personal favorites.  Solen, our top reader of the year (so far!) wanted to share some of his favorite books from 2010, and here they are:

Gods of Manhattan: The Sorcerer's Secret by Scott Mebus

This book is about a boy named Rory and his friends who go on an adventure to stop a war between the gods.  All of this is taking place in New York City, near the George 

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Why You Should be Reading Teen Novels by Suzanne Supplee

A few years ago I picked up Suzanne Supplee's novel Artichoke's Heart, which caught my eye because the unique title seemed at odds with the box of chocolates on the cover.  But the more I read this story, about an overweight girl named Rosemary who gets diet books, a treadmill, and tickets to a conference called "Healing the Fat Girl Within" for Christmas, the more I was hooked.

Rosemary is a great narrator.  She's funny and sarcastic and angry and smart all at the same time.  Yes, she wants to 

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The Vampire Academy Series Continues, in Spirit Bound

Will Rose be able to protect her best friend Lissa, with whom she shares an unusual psychic bond?  Will Lissa and Rose be able to help Victor Dashkov break out of prison in order to save Dimitri, who loves Rose but also wants to kill her?  How will Rose's new boyfriend react when he learns that she wants to save her old boyfriend?  And is the love between Rose and Dimitri doomed to fail because he's an evil undead vampire?

Hmmm.  Perhaps we should rewind this story a little bit.

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Novels In Verse For Teens: Glimpse by Carol Lynch Williams

Hope and Lizzie are sisters who are just one year apart.  They've been close for many years, but one day when Hope comes in and sees her sister Lizzie holding a shotgun, she realizes that their lives are very different now.  And that Lizzie has been keeping secrets.  After Lizzie is taken away from the family, Hope is left behind with their mother and with a lot of questions.  Why was Lizzie so quiet and depressed lately?  What secrets was she keeping?  And why would she want to kill herself?

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Hot Off the Presses: Exciting New Graphic Novels For Teens

Revolver by Matt Kindt

Imagine if the film Groundhog Day was put into a blender with a parallel universe and a generous dose of darkness.  If you drank the smoothie that was made from these strange ingredients, then you might have the first inkling of an idea of what Revolver was all about. 

Sam goes to bed after another day of his boring, dead-end life.  But when he wakes up the next morning the world has changed, and it's anything but 

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The Geeks Shall Inherit the Earth: Into the Wild Nerd Yonder by Julie Halpern

As her sophomore year of high school begins, Jess is suddenly having trouble fitting in to the school scene.  She never had problems like this before, but her best friends Bizza and Char have turned into too-cool punk wannabes overnight and now Jess feels completely and utterly alone.  It's time to reinvent herself and join a new group of friends.  But will she choose the math crowd, the band crowd, or even the Dungeons & Dragons crowd?  Which of these cliques will accept her?  Where will Jess really fit in?  And can Jess hang out with 

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Great Graphic Novels For Teens: Fiction Inspired by A True Survival Story

How I Made It to Eighteen: A Mostly True Story by Tracy White is so moving and so painful that it will inspire readers to track down the author just so that they can talk to her and look deeply into her eyes to see if she's really okay now.  But this isn't the story of Tracy White.  It's the story of Stacy Black.  Sort of. 

In the introduction to this book, Tracy explains that she took dramatic license with the story of her life while she was creating this 

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Other Worlds and Alternate Realities in Teen Fiction

Imagine living in a world where young people compete in televised games.  The winner earns the right to live, plenty of food for his or her family, and prosperity for the entire district.  But each game has only one winner, and all of the losers die. Imagine if the moon was hit by a meteor and shifted out of its orbit. Imagine living in a world where plants can kill you and butterflies can explode. Imagine if the world was so dark that nobody could see without electricity and light bulbs—and the only generator in the city was breaking down.  ... Read More ›

Revenge is Sweet: Highlight From the STA 2010 List

Three things jumped out at me when I first saw the cover of this book:

- The author: (Todd Strasser? I LOVE his stuff!)

- The title: (Wish You Were Dead?  I am SO there!)

- The picture: (Is that a hand reaching out to kill me?  Or a hand reaching out for help?)

We librarians like to think that we are above judging a book by its cover.  But sometimes we do, and with Wish You Were Dead by Todd Strasser it definitely paid off.

Wish You Were Dead begins with a 

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Great Graphic Novels For Teens: The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

Some of you might think that you already know the story of the Wizard of Oz.  But if you're basing that assumption on your memories of the 1939 movie starring Judy Garland, then some of you are wrong.  However, it's not too late to catch up with the REAL story of what happened in the land of Oz.  Eric Shanower's graphic novel version of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is incredibly faithful to L. Frank Baum's original story ... which means that it demonstrates all the ways in which the land of Oz was wonderful, 

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Teen Fiction Recommendation: The Unconsecrated Return in The Dead-Tossed Waves

One of the coolest and creepiest books of 2009 was The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan.  Now in 2010 Ryan brings us The Dead-Tossed Waves, which isn't a sequel but a "companion" book.  That means that we don't learn exactly what happened after the end of The Forest of Hands and Teeth but it's set in the same eerie world.  And what a world it is! 

After the Return, society collapsed and had to be 

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STA 2010 Highlight - Outlaw: The Legend of Robin Hood

The story of Robin Hood has been told and retold many times over the years.  Many versions of the story focus on the "robbing the rich and helping the poor" aspect of Robin's life, with varying levels of emphasis on the romantic subplot.  But it wasn't until I read the graphic novel Outlaw: The Legend of Robin Hood that I really got to enjoy a well-rounded treatment of Robin's story that explored how and why he became that legendary outlaw. 

This version of the classic story 

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Tearjerker Highlight From the Stuff For the Teen Age 2010 List: If I Stay

When I first became a librarian, I had no idea how many teens would ask me the question, "Can you find me a book that will make me cry?"  So now I always keep that request in the back of my mind, and If I Stay by Gayle Forman is definitely a strong contender.

At the very beginning of this book (so this is just an itty-bitty spoiler), a family of four people gets involved in a terrible car accident.  Most of the story is told by Mia, who is physically in a coma but her mind is 

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Highlight From the Stuff For the Teen Age 2010 List: I Can't Keep My Own Secrets

I Can't Keep My Own Secrets: Six-Word Memoirs by Teens Famous and Obscure is one of the most popular books I’ve ever shared at a Teen Advisory Group meeting.  All of my kids were passing it around, reading their favorites out loud to each other, and trying to come up with their own six-word memoirs.  What is a six-word memoir, you ask?  Try to summarize something important about your life in just six words; it might be harder than you think!

Here are some of our favorite examples of 

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Graphic Picks from the Stuff for the Teen Age 2010 List

Some of the best graphic novel titles from the Stuff for the Teen Age 2010 List:

Color of Earth Trilogy

We had a lot of trouble trying to categorize these books.  Yes, they're manhwa (Korean manga).  Yes, they're realistic fiction, inspired by the true story of the author's family.  Yes, they're 

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