Friday, May 29, 2015

The TI Bookfest is coming!

It's starting to look like summer, and that means the Thousand Islands Book Festival! (It also means ice cream dinners and my endless quest for sunblock that doesn't leave my skin greasy, but that's a post for another day. And, probably, a different blog.)

This marks the third year that local librarians (school and public, active and retired) have banded together to bring children's authors to the North Country for classroom-style presentations and book signings. Last year was my first time at the festival, and it was such a good time. This year's festival will be held on Saturday, June 6, at Cape Vincent Elementary School . Here's the lineup:

Joseph Bruchac

Rachel Guido DeVries

Marsha Hayles

Kate Messner

James Preller 

Robin Pulver

Charles R. Smith, Jr.

Aaron Starmer

Vivian Vande Velde

Beauty and the Beast Storytellers

Local authors Hope Marston, Scott Keen, and Joseph Orobona will also be in attendance. 

The event is free of charge and open to all ages. Books will be sold onsite, though you'll want to bring cash, because we're not set up for credit cards yet. We'll be kicking things off around 9:30am and will run until 3:30pm. Come out and celebrate reading!

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

On the subject of not blogging.

If you're a faithful reader of this blog, you might have noticed that these last few weeks or so haven't been very exciting.

Well, there have been new e-books, and that's always exciting. But I haven't really written about anything else, because I've barely been in the office at all.*

It's a pretty busy time of year for our consulting staff, and a lot of that has to do with how reliably good the roads are from May through October in this area. Don't get me wrong, the roads can be not entirely bad good during those other months, and it's not like we don't go places in the winter, but still. It's the North Country. If we have the choice to do our driving in June versus January, we're gonna pick June every time.

Every. Single. Time.

So that a stretch during a Good Driving Month like May can look a little like the one I had not too long ago:

Thursday: County Library Council meeting.
Friday: Library board meeting.
Monday: Library site visit / automation meeting.
Tuesday: School Library System meeting.
Wednesday: Library site visit.
Thursday: Another totally different School Library System meeting.
Friday: Off-site NCLS program.

That's seven consecutive workdays of  hitting the road, which equals me not writing a whole lot down.

However, there's so much going on in our libraries this summer that I'm really going to make a point of blogging as much of it as I can.

Promise.

*And, no, I won't blog from home. Home is for pie-making. And reading. And embroidery. And - lest you suspect my house is a wormhole to the 19th century - Netflix, also.

New children's and YA e-books added to NCLS!

The Cage (The Cage #1), by Megan Shepherd.

The Maze Runner meets Scott Westerfeld in this gripping new series about teens held captive in a human zoo by an otherworldly race. From Megan Shepherd, the acclaimed author of The Madman's Daughter trilogy.

When Cora Mason wakes in a desert, she doesn't know where she is or who put her there. As she explores, she finds an impossible mix of environments—tundra next to desert, farm next to jungle, and a strangely empty town cobbled together from different cultures—all watched over by eerie black windows. And she isn't alone.

Four other teenagers have also been taken: a beautiful model, a tattooed smuggler, a secretive genius, and an army brat who seems to know too much about Cora's past. None of them have a clue as to what happened, and all of them have secrets. As the unlikely group struggles for leadership, they slowly start to trust each other. But when their mysterious jailer—a handsome young guard called Cassian—appears, they realize that their captivity is more terrifying than they could ever imagine: Their captors aren't from Earth. And they have taken the five teenagers for an otherworldly zoo—where the exhibits are humans.

As a forbidden attraction develops between Cora and Cassian, she realizes that her best chance of escape might be in the arms of her own jailer—though that would mean leaving the others behind. Can Cora manage to save herself and her companions? And if so . . . what world lies beyond the walls of their cage?

The Fog Diver, by Joel Ross.

Joel Ross debuts a thrilling adventure series in which living in the sky is the new reality and a few determined slum kids just might become heroes. Perfect for fans of Rick Riordan and Brandon Mull, this fantasy is filled with daring and hope and a wonderfully imaginative world.

Once the Fog started rising, the earth was covered with a deadly white mist until nothing remained but the mountaintops. Now humanity clings to its highest peaks, called the Rooftop, where the wealthy Five Families rule over the lower slopes and floating junkyards.

Thirteen-year-old Chess and his friends Hazel, Bea, and Swedish sail their rickety air raft over the deadly Fog, scavenging the ruins for anything they can sell to survive. But now survival isn't enough. They must risk everything to get to the miraculous city of Port Oro, the only place where their beloved Mrs. E can be cured of fogsickness. Yet the ruthless Lord Kodoc is hot on their trail, for Chess has a precious secret, one that Kodoc is desperate to use against him. Now Chess will face any danger to protect his friends, even if it means confronting what he fears the most.

The Forget-Me-Not Summer, by Leila Howland.

This charming story about the summer three California sisters spend on Cape Cod is perfect for fans of The Penderwicks and The Mother-Daughter Book Club. Full of moments both humorous and reflective, The Forget-Me-Not Summer is a story about three girls facing their fears, adjusting to change, and learning how to band together as the strongest version of themselves: sisters.

Though Marigold, Zinnia, and Lily Silver couldn't be more different, they're all excited about their various plans for summer vacation. Twelve-year-old Marigold is hoping to get her first kiss from her big crush, while Zinnia, eleven, will most likely spend her time in Marigold's shadow. And little five-year-old Lily, though angelic, has a knack for stirring up mischief wherever she goes.

But any expectation of summer fun comes crashing down when the sisters' parents send them to Cape Cod to visit their aunt Sunny. Small-town life is not what these L.A. girls had in mind. They must adjust, however, to things like sharing a room and living without a TV. With the help of Aunt Sunny's zany disposition and yummy brownies, though, the girls are quickly won over, and before Marigold, Zinnie, and Lily know it, they're cracking lobster shells at clambakes, making new friends, and even organizing a local talent show.

Fort, by Cynthia DeFelice.

In this boys-will-be-boys summer story about friendship and revenge, eleven-year-old Wyatt and his friend Augie aren't looking for a fight. They're having the best summer of their lives hanging out in the fort they built in the woods, fishing and hunting, cooking over a campfire, and sleeping out. But when two older boys mess with the fort—and with another kid who can't fight back—the friends are forced to launch Operation Doom, with unexpected results for all concerned, in this novel about two funny and very real young heroes.

Kissing in America, by Margo Rabb.

In the two years since her father died, sixteen-year-old Eva has found comfort in reading romance novels—118 of them, to be exact—to dull the pain of her loss that's still so present. Her romantic fantasies become a reality when she meets Will, who understands Eva's grief.

Unfortunately, after Eva falls head over heels for him, he picks up and moves to California without any warning. Not wanting to lose the only person who has been able to pull her out of sadness—and, perhaps, her shot at real love—Eva and her best friend, Annie, concoct a plan to travel to the West Coast to see Will again. As they road trip across America, Eva and Annie confront the complex truth about love.

In this honest and emotional journey that National Book Award finalist Sara Zarr calls "gorgeous, funny, and joyous," readers will experience the highs of infatuation and the lows of heartache as Eva contends with love in all its forms.


Lost in the Sun, by Lisa Graff.

From the author of A Tangle of Knots and Absolutely Almost, a touching story about a boy who won't let one tragic accident define him.

Everyone says that middle school is awful, but Trent knows nothing could be worse than the year he had in fifth grade, when a freak accident on Cedar Lake left one kid dead, and Trent with a brain full of terrible thoughts he can't get rid of. Trent's pretty positive the entire disaster was his fault, so for him middle school feels like a fresh start, a chance to prove to everyone that he's not the horrible screw-up they seem to think he is.

If only Trent could make that fresh start happen.

It isn't until Trent gets caught up in the whirlwind that is Fallon Little—the girl with the mysterious scar across her face—that things begin to change. Because fresh starts aren't always easy. Even in baseball, when a fly ball gets lost in the sun, you have to remember to shift your position to find it.

Off the Page, by Jodi Picoult and Samantha Van Leer.

Meet Oliver, a prince literally taken from the pages of a fairy tale and transported into the real world. Meet Delilah, the girl who wished Oliver into being. It's a miracle that seems perfect at first. Sure, Oliver doesn't know that you shouldn't try to open your locker with a dagger or that there's no such thing as "the ruler" of the local mall. But he also looks at Delilah as if she's the only girl in the world--the only girl in any world--and Delilah can't help feeling that being with him is a dream come to life.

But not every story can have a happy ending. Because the book wants Oliver back. And it will turn both worlds upside down to get him.

Oliver and Delilah will have to decide what--and who--they're willing to risk for love and what it really means for a fairy tale to come true.

Full of humor and witty commentary about life, OFF THE PAGE is a stand-alone novel as well as the companion to the authors' #1 bestseller Between the Lines. Fans of Sarah Dessen and Meg Cabot are sure to appreciate this novel about love, romance, and happily-ever-afters.

P.S. I Still Love You (To All the Boys I've Loved Before #2), by Jenny Han.

Given the way love turned her heart in the New York Times bestselling To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before, which SLJ called a “lovely, lighthearted romance,” it’s no surprise that Laura Jean still has letters to write.

Lara Jean didn’t expect to really fall for Peter.

She and Peter were just pretending. Except suddenly they weren’t. Now Lara Jean is more confused than ever.

When another boy from her past returns to her life, Lara Jean’s feelings for him return too. Can a girl be in love with two boys at once?

In this charming and heartfelt sequel to the New York Times bestseller To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, we see first love through the eyes of the unforgettable Lara Jean. Love is never easy, but maybe that’s part of makes it so amazing.

Tiny Pretty Things, by  Sona Charaipotra & Dhonielle Clayton.

Black Swan meets Pretty Little Liars in this soapy, drama-packed novel featuring diverse characters who will do anything to be the prima at their elite ballet school.

Gigi, Bette, and June, three top students at an exclusive Manhattan ballet school, have seen their fair share of drama. Free-spirited new girl Gigi just wants to dance—but the very act might kill her. Privileged New Yorker Bette's desire to escape the shadow of her ballet star sister brings out a dangerous edge in her. And perfectionist June needs to land a lead role this year or her controlling mother will put an end to her dancing dreams forever. When every dancer is both friend and foe, the girls will sacrifice, manipulate, and backstab to be the best of the best.

The Underground Abductor: An Abolitionist Tale (Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales #5), by Nathan Hale.

Araminta Ross was born a slave in Delaware in the early 19th century. Slavery meant that her family could be ripped apart at any time, and that she could be put to work in dangerous places and for abusive people. But north of the Mason-Dixon line, slavery was illegal. If she could run away and make it north without being caught or killed, she'd be free. Facing enormous danger, Araminta made it, and once free, she changed her name to Harriet Tubman. Tubman spent the rest of her life helping slaves run away like she did, every time taking her life in her hands. Nathan Hale tells her incredible true-life story with the humor and sensitivity he's shown in every one of the Hazardous Tales—perfect for reluctant readers and classroom discussions. 

(All descriptions from OverDrive.)

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

New children's and YA e-books added to NCLS!

Dangerous Deception (Dangerous Creatures #2), by Kami Garcia.

From the world of Beautiful Creatures—a dangerous new tale of love and magic continues in the sequel to Dangerous Creatures.

After a disastrous car crash outside New York City, Ridley Duchannes-Dark Caster, Siren, and bona fide bad girl-has gone missing. Her wannabe rocker and quarter Incubus boyfriend, Wesley "Link" Lincoln, was driving, and when he comes to, Ridley is nowhere to be found. The only clue is the giant raven emblazoned on the hood of the truck that hit them, which can mean only one thing: Silas Ravenwood is back. And he has Ridley.

Determined to find her, Link reunites with old friends John Breed and Liv Durand, his New York bandmates, and the mysterious Lennox Gates-who has his own reasons for tracking down Ridley. Together they travel through the Caster Tunnels and the Deep South to New Orleans, where they uncover the truth about the infamous Ravenwood labs and exactly what Silas has been doing within those walls. By the time Link and his friends reach Ridley, she is no longer the Siren they know and love. She's something new. This time, love might not be enough to save them.

In this sequel to Dangerous Creatures, the bestselling spin-off of the #1 New York Times bestselling Beautiful Creatures novels, coauthors Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl deliver an intoxicating blend of magic, suspense, and danger.

The Haunting of Sunshine Girl, by Paige McKenzie.

Shortly after her sixteenth birthday, Sunshine Griffith and her mother Kat move from sunny Austin, Texas, to the rain-drenched town of Ridgemont, Washington. Though Sunshine is adopted, she and her mother have always been close, sharing a special bond filled with laughter and inside jokes. But from the moment they arrive, Sunshine feels her world darken with an eeriness she cannot place. And even if Kat doesn't recognize it, Sunshine knows that something about their new house is just ... creepy.

In the days that follow, things only get stranger. Sunshine is followed around the house by an icy breeze, phantom wind slams her bedroom door shut, and eventually, the laughter Sunshine hears on her first night evolves into sobs. She can hardly believe it, but as the spirits haunting her house become more frightening—and it becomes clear that Kat is in danger—Sunshine must accept what she is, pass the test before her, and save her mother from a fate worse than death.

The Orphan Army (Nightsiders #1), by Jonathan Maberry. (Also available in audio, narrated by Kirby Heyborne.)

In a world filled with Bugs—monsters that ceaselessly ravage the Earth—Milo Silk has a hard time keeping his dreams separate from reality. So he keeps them locked up in his dream journal and hopes they’ll never come to pass. But too often, they do—like when his father disappeared three years ago.

Lately, the Witch of the World has been haunting his dreams, saying he is destined to be the hero who saves everyone. But all Milo can think about is how he fears the Bugs will attack his own camp, and bring something even more terrible than ever before.

What Milo doesn’t know is that the Earth is already fighting back with its own natural power in the form of Nightsiders, magical creatures who prefer shadows to sunlight and who reside in trees, caves, and rivers. And the Nightsiders are ready to find an ally in Milo…

Scarlett Undercover, by Jennifer Latham.

Meet Scarlett, a smart, sarcastic fifteen-year-old, ready to take on crime in her hometown. When Scarlett agrees to investigate a local boy's suicide, she figures she's in for an easy case and a quick buck. But it doesn't take long for suicide to start looking a lot like murder.

As Scarlett finds herself deep in a world of cults, curses, and the seemingly supernatural, she discovers that her own family secrets may have more to do with the situation than she thinks...and that cracking the case could lead to solving her father's murder.

Jennifer Latham delivers a compelling story and a character to remember in this one-of-a-kind debut novel.

Three Day Summer, by Sarvenaz Tash.

In this summer romance, two teens find unexpected harmony amid the crowd at a legendary music festival.

Michael is unsure about most things. Go to college? Enlist in the military? Break up with his girlfriend? All big question marks. He is living for the moment, and all he wants I a few days at the biggest concert of the summer.

Cora lives in the town hosting the music festival. She’s volunteering in the medical tent. She’s like that, always the good girl. But there is something in the air at this concert, and suddenly Cora finds herself wanting to push her own boundaries.

When Michael and Cora meet, sparks fly, hearts race, and all the things songs are written about come true. And they’ve got three days of the most epic summer ahead of them…

Unusual Chicken for the Exceptional Poultry Farmer, by Kelly Jones. Illustrated by Katie Kath.

Fans of Polly Horvath or Roald Dahl will love this quirky story of a determined girl, and some extraordinary chickens.

Twelve-year-old Sophie Brown feels like a fish out of water when she and her parents move from Los Angeles to the farm they've inherited from a great-uncle. But farm life gets more interesting when a cranky chicken appears and Sophie discovers the hen can move objects with the power of her little chicken brain: jam jars, the latch to her henhouse, the entire henhouse....

And then more of her great-uncle's unusual chickens come home to roost. Determined, resourceful Sophie learns to care for her flock, earning money for chicken feed, collecting eggs. But when a respected local farmer tries to steal them, Sophie must find a way to keep them (and their superpowers) safe.

Told in letters to Sophie's abuela, quizzes, a chicken-care correspondence course, to-do lists, and more, Unusual Chickens is a quirky, clucky classic in the making.

(All description from OverDrive.) 

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

New children's and YA e-books added to NCLS!

The Boys Who Challenged Hitler: Knud Pedersen and the Churchill Club, by Phillip Hoose.

At the outset of World War II, Denmark did not resist German occupation. Deeply ashamed of his nation's leaders, fifteen-year-old Knud Pedersen resolved with his brother and a handful of schoolmates to take action against the Nazis if the adults would not. Naming their secret club after the fiery British leader, the young patriots in the Churchill Club committed countless acts of sabotage, infuriating the Germans, who eventually had the boys tracked down and arrested. But their efforts were not in vain: the boys' exploits and eventual imprisonment helped spark a full-blown Danish resistance.

Interweaving his own narrative with the recollections of Knud himself, here is Phil Hoose's inspiring story of these young war heroes.

Cuckoo Song, by Frances Hardinge.

When Triss wakes up after an accident, she knows something is very wrong. She is insatiably hungry, her sister seems scared of her, and her parents whisper behind closed doors. She looks through her diary to try to remember, but the pages have been ripped out. Soon Triss discovers that what happened to her is more strange and terrible than she could ever have imagined, and that she is quite literally not herself. In a quest to find the truth she must travel into the terrifying underbelly of the city to meet a twisted architect who has dark designs on her family—before it's too late...

Set in England after World War I, this is a brilliantly creepy but ultimately loving story of the relationship between two sisters who have to band together against a world where nothing is as it seems.

Denton Little's Deathdate, by Lance Rubin.

Fans of John Green and Matthew Quick: Get ready to die laughing.

Denton Little's Deathdate takes place in a world exactly like our own except that everyone knows the day on which they will die. For Denton, that's in just two days--the day of his senior prom.

Despite his early deathdate, Denton has always wanted to live a normal life, but his final days are filled with dramatic firsts. First hangover. First sex. First love triangle--as the first sex seems to have happened not with his adoring girlfriend, but with his best friend's hostile sister. (Though he's not totally sure--see, first hangover.) His anxiety builds when he discovers a strange purple rash making its way up his body. Is this what will kill him? And then a strange man shows up at his funeral, claiming to have known Denton's long-deceased mother, and warning him to beware of suspicious government characters... Suddenly Denton's life is filled with mysterious questions and precious little time to find the answers.

Debut author Lance Rubin takes us on a fast, furious, and outrageously funny ride through the last hours of a teenager's life as he searches for love, meaning, answers, and (just maybe) a way to live on.

The Eternity Key (Into the Dark #2) by Bree Despain. 

Fan-favorite author Bree Despain continues her modern-day romance trilogy inspired by the Greek myth of Persephone and Hades with this second book in her Into the Dark series.

Haden Lord, the disgraced Prince of the Underrealm, has chosen love over honor and will do everything in his power to protect Daphne Raines, the human girl he was supposed to bring to the Underrealm. Haden's choice is put to the test as the Skylords and a figure from his past arrive in Olympus Hills with a plan that could destroy all of the realms.

Embracing her destiny as the Cypher, Daphne begins to understand the immense power of her musical ability to control the elements, but she must come to terms with her feelings for Haden and what she must sacrifice in order to protect him and her friends.

Believing the Key of Hades is the only thing that can stop the Underrealm Court from releasing the monstrous Keres on the mortal world, Haden, Daphne, and their friends set out to find the Key before Persephone's Gate opens again on the spring equinox.

The Heir (Selection #4), by Kiera Cass. (Also available in audio, narrated by Brittany Pressley.)

Kiera Cass's #1 New York Times bestselling Selection series has enchanted readers from the very first page. In this fourth romantic novel, follow IllĂ©a's royal family into a whole new Selection—and find out what happens after happily ever after.

Twenty years ago, America Singer entered the Selection and won Prince Maxon's heart. Now the time has come for Princess Eadlyn to hold a Selection of her own. Eadlyn doesn't expect her Selection to be anything like her parents' fairy-tale love story...but as the competition begins, she may discover that finding her own happily ever after isn't as impossible as she's always thought.

A new generation of swoonworthy characters and captivating romance awaits in the fourth book of the Selection series!

Interstellar Cinderella, by Deborah Underwood. Illustrated by Meg Hunt.

Once upon a planetoid, amid her tools and sprockets, a girl named Cinderella dreamed of fixing fancy rockets.

With a little help from her fairy godrobot, Cinderella is going to the ball. But when the prince's ship has mechanical trouble, someone will have to zoom to the rescue! Readers will thank their lucky stars for this irrepressible fairy tale retelling, its independent heroine, and its stellar happy ending. 

Murder is Bad Manners (Wells and Wong #1), by Robin Stevens.

Two friends form a detective agency—and must solve their first murder case—in this start to a middle grade mystery series at a 1930s boarding school.

Daisy Wells and Hazel Wong are best friends at Deepdean School for Girls, and they both have a penchant for solving mysteries. In fact, outspoken Daisy is a self-described Sherlock Holmes, and she appoints wallflower Hazel as her own personal Watson when they form their own (secret!) detective agency. The only problem? They have nothing to investigate.

But that changes once Hazel discovers the body of their science teacher, Miss Bell—and the body subsequently disappears. She and Daisy are certain a murder must have taken place, and they can think of more than one person with a motive.

Determined to get to the bottom of the crime—and to prove that it happened—before the killer strikes again, Hazel and Daisy must hunt for evidence, spy on their suspects, and use all the cunning, scheming, and intuition they can muster. But will they succeed? And can their friendship stand the test?
Pluto: A Wonder Story, by  R.J. Palacio. 

Christopher was Auggie's best friend from the time they were babies until his family moved away; he was there through all of Auggie's surgeries and heartbreaks, through bad times and good--like Star Wars marathons and dreams of traveling to Pluto together. 

Alternating between childhood flashbacks and the present day, an especially bad day for Christopher, Pluto is the story of two boys grown apart learning that good friendships are worth a little extra effort. 

(All descriptions from OverDrive.)

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

New children's and YA e-books added to NCLS!

A Court of Thorns and Roses, by Sarah J. Maas.

When nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre kills a wolf in the woods, a beast-like creature arrives to demand retribution for it. Dragged to a treacherous magical land she only knows about from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal, but Tamlin—one of the lethal, immortal faeries who once ruled their world.

As she dwells on his estate, her feelings for Tamlin transform from icy hostility into a fiery passion that burns through every lie and warning she's been told about the beautiful, dangerous world of the Fae. But an ancient, wicked shadow over the faerie lands is growing, and Feyre must find a way to stop it...or doom Tamlin-and his world-forever.

Perfect for fans of Kristen Cashore and George R. R. Martin, this first book in a sexy and action-packed new series is impossible to put down!

The Jumbies, by Tracey Baptiste.

Corinne La Mer isn't afraid of anything. Not scorpions, not the boys who tease her, and certainly not jumbies. She knows that jumbies aren't real; they're just creatures parents make up to frighten their children. But on All Hallows' Eve, Corinne chases an agouti all the way into the forbidden woods. Those shining yellow eyes that follow her to the edge of the trees, they couldn't belong to a jumbie. Or could they?

Corinne begins to notice odd occurrences after that night. First she spots a beautiful stranger speaking to the town witch at the market. Then this same beauty, called Severine, turns up at Corinne's house, cooking dinner for her father. Danger is in the air. Sure enough, bewitching Corinne's father is the first step in Severine's plan to claim the entire island for the jumbies. Corinne must call on her courage and her friends and ancient magic to stop Severine and to save her island home.

Pip Bartlett's Guide to Magical Creatures, by Maggie Stiefvater and Jackson Pearce. (Also available in audio, narrated by Cassandra Morris and Peter McGowan.)

Here's a list of things Pip Bartlett can talk to:
  • Unicorns
  • Miniature Silky Griffins
  • Bitterflunks
  • Basically, all magical creatures

Here's a list of things she can't talk to (at least, not very well):
  • Parents
  • Teachers
  • Basically, all people
Because of a Unicorn Incident at her school (it was an accident!), Pip is spending the summer with her Aunt Emma at the Cloverton Clinic for Magical Creatures. At first, it's all fun, games, and chatting with Hobgrackles, but when Fuzzles appear and start bursting into flame at the worst possible places, Pip and her new friend Tomas must take action. Because if the mystery of the Fuzzles isn't solved soon, both magical and unmagical creatures are going to be in a lot of trouble.

The Prom Goer's Interstellar Excursion, by Chris McCoy.

Just a few days before prom, Bennett pulls off something he never imagined possible: his dream girl, Sophie, agrees to be his date. Moments afterward, however, he watches Sophie get abducted by aliens in the middle of the New Mexico desert.

Faced with a dateless prom (and likely kidnapping charges), Bennett does the only thing he can think of: he catches a ride into outer space with a band of extraterrestrial musicians to bring her back.

Can he navigate alien concert venues, an extraterrestrial reality show, and the band's outlandish egos to rescue his date in time for the big dance? Fans of King Dork and Winger won't want to miss this!

Saint Anything, by Sarah Dessen.

Sydney has always felt invisible. She's grown accustomed to her brother, Peyton, being the focus of the family's attention and, lately, concern. Peyton is handsome and charismatic, but seems bent on self-destruction. Now, after a drunk-driving accident that crippled a boy, Peyton's serving some serious jail time, and Sydney is on her own, questioning her place in the family and the world.

Then she meets the Chatham family. Drawn into their warm, chaotic circle, Sydney experiences unquestioning acceptance for the first time. There's effervescent Layla, who constantly falls for the wrong guy, Rosie, who's had her own fall from grace, and Mrs. Chatham, who even though ailing is the heart of the family. But it's with older brother Mac—quiet, watchful, and protective—that Sydney finally feels seen, really seen, at last.

Saint Anything is Sarah Dessen's deepest and most psychologically probing novel yet, telling an engrossing story of a girl discovering friendship, love, and herself.

Stella Brings the Family, by Miriam B. Schiffer. Illustrated by Holly Clifton-Brown.

Stella's class is having a Mother's Day celebration, but what's a girl with two daddies to do? It's not that she doesn't have someone who helps her with her homework, or tucks her in at night. Stella has her Papa and Daddy who take care of her, and a whole gaggle of other loved ones who make her feel special and supported every day. She just doesn't have a mom to invite to the party. Fortunately, Stella finds a unique solution to her party problem in this sweet story about love, acceptance, and the true meaning of family.

(All descriptions from OverDrive.) 

Friday, May 1, 2015

NCLS now offering magazines through OverDrive!

I'm not much of a magazine reader myself; I get one subscription as a Christmas gift from my mother. Apart from that, I'll grab something from an airport newsstand for a flight only if I'm too nauseated to read the book I brought.*

That being said, I appreciate that magazines are kind of a big deal in libraries and that being able to offer them in an electronic format is super cool. Our system just started offering e-magazines last spring through Zinio, but based on a bunch of factors, we decided to switch to OverDrive. That change is effective today, May 1.

For more details on this change, or to listen to Matt Corey and me crack ourselves up (or both!), check out our latest podcast.

*Yes, I have a media hierarchy based on just how airsick I am. In descending order: light novel > comic essays > magazine > podcast > soothing music > the sound of my own moaning. Flying with me is an absolute treat.