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Friday Finds: October 13, 2017

fridayfindsThis Week at TLT

MakerSpace Mondays: The Silhouette Cameo – a review

MakerSpace Mondays: The Silhouette Cameo – Vinyl 101

Book Review: Echo After Echo by Amy Rose Capetta

Book Review: Cucumber Quest: The Doughnut Kingdom by Gigi D.G.

View from the Director’s Chair Part II: Narrative Filmmaking by Lynette Pitrak

October #ARCParty

Book Review: Sparrow by Sarah Moon

Around the Web

A High School Student Suspended For Not Standing During Pledge Of Allegiance Has Sued The Principal

USPS Honors Beloved Children’s Book With New ‘Snowy Day’ Stamps

Trump’s ‘spiteful’ decision to end key ObamaCare payments

Librarians Should Guide Readers by Interest, Not Level



Friday Finds: October 6, 2017

fridayfindsThis Week at TLT

Sunday Reflections: When You’re a Teen and a Friend Threatens Suicide

Blog Tour: The War I Finally Won by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley

Take 5: A YA Puerto Rico Booklist and the #PubforPR Auction

Book Review: That Inevitable Victorian Thing by E.K. Johnston

New and forthcoming YA and MG to have on your radar

Book Review: A Long Way Down by Jason Reynolds

TPiB: Ollie Robot Challenges for Teens by Michelle Biwer

Book Review: Cast No Shadow by Nick Tapalansky and Anissa Espinosa

Around the Web

140+ YA Books For Your October to December 2017 TBR

Must-Read Young Adult Books of Fall 2017

Program that provides low-cost health care to 9M children set to expire

Don’t say teenagers aren’t ready for dark fiction.

Trump Administration Set to Roll Back Birth Control Mandate

Nominate NOW!

Who Gets to Choose Which Childhood Experiences Are ‘Appropriate’?

“The past was erased, the erasure was forgotten, the lie became the truth.” – George Orwell, 1984

Lambda Literary Opens Submissions for 30th Annual Lambda Literary Awards


Blog Tour: The War I Finally Won by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley

unnamed-2I am so pleased to be a part of this blog tour celebrating the marvelous The War I Finally Won. It is everything I could have hoped for and more in a sequel to The War That Saved My Life.

From the publisher:

One of the most anticipated middle grade novels of the year is finally here. The one that answers the question that the wildly popular novel The War That Saved My Life posed: what happens to Ada now? THE WAR I FINALLY WON by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley (on sale October 3) is the sequel to the New York Timesbestselling and Newbery Honor winning The War That Saved My Life and rave reviews are pouring in already.
When Ada’s clubfoot is surgically fixed at last, she knows for certain that she’s not what her mother said she was–damaged, deranged, crippled mentally as well as physically. She’s not a daughter anymore either. What is she? World War II continues, and Ada and her brother, Jamie, are living with their loving legal guardian, Susan, in a borrowed “cottage” on the estate of the formidable Lady Thorton–along with Lady Thorton herself and her daughter, Maggie. Life in the crowded cottage is tense enough, and then, quite suddenly, Ruth, a Jewish girl from Germany, moves in. A German? The occupants of the house are horrified. But other impacts of war are far more intrusive and frightening. As death creeps closer to their door, life and morality during wartime grow more complex. Who is Ada now? How can she keep fighting? And who will she struggle to save?
My thoughts:
As with The War That Saved My Life, I learned so much from this novel. Up until these books, I had no idea how the war affected the average person in Great Britain. The food shortages, the bombings, the daily sacrifices that all were called on to make are clearly apparent from these books. I also had no idea that they would have viewed all Germans, even Jewish ones, with mistrust. The thread of the story involving Ruth is fascinating. But more than all of these things, I am just so pleased to see a story that deals positively and humanly with Ada’s post traumatic stress. None of the characters are perfect, but they all genuinely try and grow in their humanity. The way Susan deals with Ada is so lovely, even when she makes mistakes. This will be an incredibly helpful novel to build empathy in its readers for those who are dealing with similar issues. It is an absorbing read and I highly recommend it to all collections serving middle grade readers.
Kimberly Brubaker Bradley lives on a forty-two-acre farm in Bristol, Tennessee, with her husband and two children. She is the author of several middle grade novels, including the widely acclaimed Jefferson’s Sons and the Newbery Honor- and Schneider Award-winning New York Times bestseller The War that Saved My Life.

Friday Finds: September 29, 2017

fridayfindsThis Week at TLT

Blog Tour: Jane, Unlimited by Kristin Cashore

Workman and Algonquin Showcase and Giveaway

Book Review: Starfish by Akemi Dawn Bowman

C2: Collecting Comics for September and October 2017 with Ally Watkins

Book Review: There’s Someone Inside Your House by Stephanie Perkins

What’s New in LGBTQIA+ YA September 2017

The 2018 TLT Project: YA A to Z

Around the Web

Malala Continues Advocating For Education

Middle Schoolers Help Transcribe, Digitize Rare Historical Newspapers

Kwame Alexander: Take a knee

Can Teaching Civics Save Democracy?

Unaccompanied In Pain: Gaps In Ohio Law Hurt Teen Moms

How to Help Puerto Rico After Hurricane Maria

Unnatural Selection: More Librarians Are Self-Censoring

Jason Reynolds on Langston Hughes, Writing Spider-Man, and Putting Respeck on YA Writers’ Name


Blog Tour: Jane, Unlimited by Kristin Cashore

Special prize raffle at the end!

From the publisher:


The highly anticipated standalone from the award-winning, New York Times bestselling author of the Graceling Realm series—a kaleidoscopic novel about grief, adventure, storytelling, and finding yourself in a world of seemingly infinite choices.

Jane has lived an ordinary life, raised by her aunt Magnolia—an adjunct professor and deep sea photographer. Jane counted on Magnolia to make the world feel expansive and to turn life into an adventure. But Aunt Magnolia was lost a few months ago in Antarctica on one of her expeditions.

Now, with no direction, a year out of high school, and obsessed with making umbrellas that look like her own dreams (but mostly just mourning her aunt), she is easily swept away by Kiran Thrash—a glamorous, capricious acquaintance who shows up and asks Jane to accompany her to a gala at her family’s island mansion called Tu Reviens.

Jane remembers her aunt telling her: “If anyone ever invites to you to Tu Reviens, promise me that you’ll go.” With nothing but a trunkful of umbrella parts to her name, Jane ventures out to the Thrash estate. Then her story takes a turn, or rather, five turns. What Jane doesn’t know is that Tu Reviens will offer her choices that can ultimately determine the course of her untethered life. But at Tu Reviens, every choice comes with a reward, or a price.

My quibbles with the publisher’s description:
Jane has led anything but a normal life. Her parents died in a plane crash when she was quite small, and she was raised by her Aunt Magnolia, a college professor/nature photographer who regularly left her in the care of elderly neighbors while she traveled the world. In Jane’s first year of college, Aunt Magnolia left on one of these trips and never came back (she froze to death.) Now Jane is unanchored. She’s dropped out of college and is working in the campus bookstore when Kiran Thrash, her former tutor, invites her out to Tu Reviens. Jane drops everything because of the promise she made to her Aunt Magnolia, packs up her entire life, and moves out to Tu Reviens, where she immediately begins to work on her umbrellas.
Tu Reviens is a mansion on an island filled with priceless works of art – some honestly obtained, some not so honestly. In fact, even major parts of the house’s structure were transported there from other places, works of architectural wonder all cobbled together to make a new ‘Frankenstein’s monster’ of a house. The mystery begins when some of the works of art go missing. No one in the house, residents or guests, are quite what they appear to be, and Jane is swept up in the mystery.
My thoughts:
This is a beautifully atmospheric story told mostly through the characters, rather than the plot. Or rather, the plot is there to serve the characters’ development. True confession: I am not yet finished with the novel – but I am OBSESSED with it. The characters are so realistic as to be people who could walk straight off the page and into real life. The setting is gorgeously drawn. The mystery is absorbing, not because of the art theft, but because of the characters involved. I would highly recommend this for any collection serving high school students.
thumbnail-2Kristin Cashore grew up in the northeast Pennsylvania countryside as the second of four daughters. She received a bachelor’s degree from Williams College and a master’s from the Center for the Study of Children’s Literature at Simmons College, and she has worked as a dog runner, a packer in a candy factory, an editorial assistant, a legal assistant, and a freelance writer. She has lived in many places (including Sydney, New York City, Boston, London, Austin, and Jacksonville, Florida), and she currently lives in the Boston area. Her epic fantasy novels set in the Graceling Realm–GracelingFire, and Bitterblue–have won many awards and much high praise, including picks as ALA Best Books for Young Adults, School Library Journal Best Book of the Year, Booklist Editors Choice, and Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year. In addition, Graceling was shortlisted for the William C. Morris Debut Award and Fire is an Amelia Elizabeth Walden Book Award Winner.
*Enter a Rafflecopter giveaway  for a chance to be one (1) of three (3) winners to receive a hardcover copy of Jane, Unlimited by Kristin Cashore. (ARV: $18.99 each).
NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Enter between 12:00 AM Eastern Time on September 11, 2017 and 12:00 AM on October 9, 2017.  Open to residents of the fifty United States and the District of Columbia who are 13 and older. Winners will be selected at random on or about October 11, 2017. Odds of winning depend on number of eligible entries received. Void where prohibited or restricted by law.


Friday Finds: September 22, 2017

fridayfindsThis Week at TLT

Book Review: The Nowhere Girls by Amy Reed and What You Need to Know About MRAs

Take 5: Some of the Best Feminist YA on Rape Culture in Quotes

Book Review: Kaleidoscope Song by Fox Benwell

Post-it Note Reviews of Elementary and Middle Grade Books

Things I Never Learned in Library School: Menstruation is a Biological Function and the De-stigmatizing of the Female Body

#BacklistYA – What are the books you just hate weeding?

Book Review: A Line in the Dark by Malinda Lo

Around the Web

Linda Sue Park being smart on the internet

Books. Internet. Life-Saving Shelter? Libraries, You’ve Done It Again.

Almost two dozen kids are shot every day in the U.S.

Homeless And In College. Then Harvey Struck

The Department Of Education Cuts Off A Student Loan Watchdog

DeVos rescinds Obama-era school sexual assault policy

Friday Finds: September 15, 2017

fridayfindsThis Week at TLT

Sunday Reflections: Reconnecting with My Teens as Adults to Help Houston

Librarian Humor: Regional Picture Books You Never See in the Library, but Maybe Should

MakerSpace: DIY Iron On Patches

Book Review: Slider by Pete Hautman

Book Review: Night Shift by Debi Gliori

SLJTeenLive: Building a Teen MakerSpace on a Budget

Take 5: Time Travel and Teens, featuring INVICTUS by Ryan Graudin

Book Review: Bold Women of Medicine: 21 Stories of Astounding Discoveries, Daring Surgeries, and Healing Breakthroughs by Susan M. Latta

Breaking Barriers: Wonder Woman and the Bold Women of Medicine, a guest post by Susan M. Latta

Around the Web

Librarians Reach Out to Dreamers

USPS to Issue ‘The Snowy Day’ Forever Stamps

The Resegregation of Jefferson County

Is the Cat in the Hat Racist?

The National Book Awards Longlist: Young People’s Literature

The top 20 blockbuster books of fall, according to Amazon

Friday Finds: September 8, 2017

fridayfindsThis Week at TLT

Sunday Reflections: On Having a Growth Mindset

Book Review: They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera

Book Review: All’s Faire in Middle School by Victoria Jamieson

Around the Web

Americans Have Given Up on Public Schools. That’s a Mistake.

Letting teens sleep in would save the country roughly $9 billion a year

Betsy DeVos Reportedly May Announce Plan to Roll Back Title IX Enforcement This Week

Raising Social Justice Warriors

Chance The Rapper is starting a new awards show for teachers

The Diviners author Libba Bray has some thoughts on this all-female Lord of the Flies remake

What one Alabama town’s attempt to secede from its school district tells us about the fragile progress of racial integration in America.

It’s a long but important read.

Sunday Reflections: On Having a Growth Mindset

tltbutton5If you follow me on Twitter, you may already know that I have recently acquired a ukulele.

Screen Shot 2017-09-03 at 1.30.51 PM


This marks a rather startling change in my life. Well, actually, attending a workshop titled Ukuleles in Storytime was probably when the change occurred. I’m not entirely sure why I signed up for that pre conference session, except that it sounded like it could be fun. You see, for most of my life I’ve had a very fixed mindset about playing an instrument. I can’t do it. I can sing, but I can’t read music or play an instrument. I’ve tried a couple of times, without much success. Of course, before now I lacked any motivation. There’s nothing like an adoring audience of 3 to 5 year olds to motivate you to learn new things. So I’ve decided I can do it. I can learn to play the ukulele, at least well enough to entertain my group of storytime regulars. I

The last few years I spent in the school library I heard a lot about having a growth mindset, and how important it is for children to have one. You can read more about it here. A fixed mindset – the belief that you can’t do something – limits your potential. It’s an easy trap to fall into. How many of us know someone who will willingly state “I can’t do math.”

But it’s not just a problem for children. It’s a problem for us, too. How many things, really worthwhile things, do you regularly avoid because you honestly believe you’re no good at them? And what will it take to motivate you to overcome that belief? I look forward to hearing your stories. Anyway…back to the Hokey Pokey.

Friday Finds: September 1, 2017

fridayfindsThis Week at TLT

Sunday Reflections: How to Help those affected by Hurricane Harvey

Recently in Book Mail

Book Review: Boy Seeking Band by Steve Brezenoff

Blog Tour Book Review: The First Rule of Punk by Celia C. Pérez

#MHYALit: Seven Responses for Those Left Behind, a guest post by author Kat Colmer

Book Review: Project Semicolon: Your Story Isn’t Over by Amy Bleuel

Around the Web

West Chicago library votes to keep LGBT book

How to get kids to look away from their screens and take pleasure in books

Why labeling books by reading level disempowers young readers

KidLit Cares: Our Hurricane Harvey Relief Effort