Teen Librarian Toolbox
Inside Teen Librarian Toolbox

Little, Brown Books for Young Readers Showcase and Giveaway

Beyond the people I work with and the people this blog has led me to get to know, by far the best aspect of blogging for TLT is the constant influx of books. All of the books I get end up going back out the door in some fashion—to teen readers I know, to classroom libraries of friends, or in giveaways. I can’t read/review every book I get, but it’s fun to be able to sift through boxes and see what grabs my attention, and to see what books will find loving new homes with the right reader.


Today I’m sharing with you a few titles from Little, Brown Books for Young Readers’ Fall 2016 and Winter 2017 list. All annotations are from the publisher. They have kindly offered to do a giveaway with us. They are offering 5 copies of Dreamland Burning to our readers. Enter via the Rafflecopter between now and September 26th. Winners will be notified via email. US entries only, please.



treesAnd the Trees Crept in by Dawn Kurtagich (ISBN-13: 9780316298704 Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers Publication date: 09/06/2016)

A stunning, terrifying novel about a house the color of blood and the two sisters who are trapped there, by The Dead House author Dawn Kurtagich
When Silla and Nori arrive at their aunt’s home, it’s immediately clear that the “blood manor” is cursed. The creaking of the house and the stillness of the woods surrounding them would be enough of a sign, but there are secrets too–the questions that Silla can’t ignore: Who is the beautiful boy that’s appeared from the woods? Who is the man that her little sister sees, but no one else? And why does it seem that, ever since they arrived, the trees have been creeping closer?

Filled with just as many twists and turns as The Dead House, and with achingly beautiful, chilling language that delivers haunting scenes, AND THE TREES CREPT IN is the perfect follow-up novel for master horror writer Dawn Kurtagich.



cloudwishCloudwish by Fiona Wood (ISBN-13: 9780316242127 Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers Publication date: 10/18/2016)

Award-winning author Fiona Wood delivers a thought-provoking story of self-discovery and first love-one that will resonate with anyone who has ever realized that the things that make you different are the things that make you…you.

For Vân Uoc, fantasies fall into two categories: nourishing or pointless. Daydreaming about attending her own art opening? Nourishing. Daydreaming about Billy Gardiner, star of the rowing team who doesn’t even know she’s alive? Pointless.

So Vân Uoc tries to stick to her reality-keeping a low profile as a scholarship student at her prestigious Melbourne private school, managing her mother’s PTSD from a traumatic emigration from Vietnam, and admiring Billy from afar. Until she makes a wish that inexplicably (possibly magically) comes true. Billy actually notices her. In fact, he seems to genuinely like her. But as they try to fit each other into their very different lives, confounding parents and confusing friends, Vân Uoc can’t help but wonder why Billy has suddenly fallen for her. Is it the magic of first love, or is it magic from a well-timed wish that will eventually, inevitably, come to an end?


blood for bloodBlood for Blood by Ryan Graudin (ISBN-13: 9780316405157 Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers Publication date: 11/01/2016 Series: Wolf by Wolf Series)

The action-packed, thrilling sequel to Ryan Graudin’s Wolf by Wolf.

There would be blood.
Blood for blood.
Blood to pay.
An entire world of it.

For the resistance in 1950s Germany, the war may be over, but the fight has just begun.

Death camp survivor Yael, who has the power to skinshift, is on the run: the world has just seen her shoot and kill Hitler. But the truth of what happened is far more complicated, and its consequences are deadly. Yael and her unlikely comrades dive into enemy territory to try to turn the tide against the New Order, and there is no alternative but to see their mission through to the end, whatever the cost.

But dark secrets reveal dark truths, and one question hangs over them all: how far can you go for the ones you love?

This gripping, thought-provoking sequel to Wolf by Wolf will grab readers by the throat with its cinematic writing, fast-paced action, and relentless twists.


love andLove and First Sight by Josh Sundquist
(ISBN-13: 9780316305358 Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers Publication date: 01/03/2017)

In his debut novel, YouTube personality and author of We Should Hang Out Sometime Josh Sundquist explores the nature of love, trust, and romantic attraction.
On his first day at a new school, blind sixteen-year-old Will Porter accidentally groped a girl on the stairs, sat on another student in the cafeteria, and somehow drove a classmate to tears. High school can only go up from here, right?

As Will starts to find his footing, he develops a crush on a charming, quiet girl named Cecily. Then an unprecedented opportunity arises: an experimental surgery that could give Will eyesight for the first time in his life. But learning to see is more difficult than Will ever imagined, and he soon discovers that the sighted world has been keeping secrets. It turns out Cecily doesn’t meet traditional definitions of beauty—in fact, everything he’d heard about her appearance was a lie engineered by their so-called friends to get the two of them together. Does it matter what Cecily looks like? No, not really. But then why does Will feel so betrayed?

Told with humor and breathtaking poignancy, Love and First Sight is a story about how we related to each other and the world around us.



frostbloodFrostblood by Elly Blake (ISBN-13: 9780316273251 Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers Publication date: 01/17/2017)

The first in a page-turning young adult series about a world where flame and ice are mortal enemies—but together create a power that could change everything.

Seventeen-year-old Ruby is a fireblood who must hide her powers of heat and flame from the cruel frostblood ruling class that wants to destroy all that are left of her kind. So when her mother is killed for protecting her and rebel frostbloods demand her help to kill their rampaging king, she agrees. But Ruby’s powers are unpredictable, and she’s not sure she’s willing to let the rebels and an infuriating (yet irresistible) young man called Arcus use her as their weapon. All she wants is revenge, but before they can take action, Ruby is captured and forced to fight for her life in tournaments that pit fireblood prisoners against frostblood champions. Now she has only one chance to destroy the maniacal ruler who has taken everything from her and from the icy young man she has come to love.



tragicA Tragic Kind of Wonderful by Eric Lindstrom (ISBN-13: 9780316260060 Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers Publication date: 02/07/2017)

In the vein of It’s Kind of a Funny Story and All the Bright Places, comes a captivating, immersive exploration of life with mental illness.
For sixteen-year-old Mel Hannigan, bipolar disorder makes life unpredictable. Her latest struggle is balancing her growing feelings in a new relationship with her instinct to conceal her diagnosis by keeping everyone at arm’s length. But when a former friend confronts Mel with the truth about the way their relationship ended, deeply buried secrets threaten to come out and upend her shaky equilibrium.

As the walls of Mel’s compartmentalized world crumble, she fears the worst-that no one will accept her if they discover what she’s been hiding. But would her friends really abandon her if they learned the truth? More importantly, can Mel bring herself to risk everything to find out?

In A Tragic Kind of Wonderful, Eric Lindstrom, author of the critically acclaimed Not If I See You First, examines the fear that keeps us from exposing our true selves, and the courage it takes to be loved for who we really are.



dreamlandDreamland Burning by Jennifer Latham (ISBN-13: 9780316384933 Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers Publication date: 02/21/2017)

Some bodies won’t stay buried.
Some stories need to be told.

When seventeen-year-old Rowan Chase finds a skeleton on her family’s property, she has no idea that investigating the brutal century-old murder will lead to a summer of painful discoveries about the past… and the present.

Nearly one hundred years earlier, a misguided violent encounter propels seventeen-year-old Will Tillman into a racial firestorm. In a country rife with violence against blacks and a hometown segregated by Jim Crow, Will must make hard choices on a painful journey towards self discovery and face his inner demons in order to do what’s right the night Tulsa burns.

Through intricately interwoven alternating perspectives, Jennifer Latham’s lightning-paced page-turner brings the Tulsa race riot of 1921 to blazing life and raises important question about the complex state of US race relations – both yesterday and today.


seven daysSeven Days of You by Cecilia Vinesse (ISBN-13: 9780316391115 Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers Publication date: 03/07/2017)

Anna and the French Kiss meets Before Sunrise in this smart and swoony debut.

Sophia has seven days left in Tokyo before she moves back to the States. Seven Days to say good-bye to the electric city, her wild best friend, and the boy she’s harbored a semi-secret crush on for years. Seven perfect days….Until Jamie Foster-Collins moves back to Japan and ruins everything.

Jamie and Sophia have a history of heartbreak, and the last thing Sophia wants is for him to steal her leaving thunder with his stupid arriving thunder. Yet as the week counts down, the relationships she thought were stable begin to explode around her. And Jamie is the one who helps her pick up the pieces. Sophia is forced to admit she may have misjudged Jamie, but can their seven short days of Tokyo adventures end in anything but good-bye?

A Kirstin Cronn-Mills Book Giveaway for Teachers, Librarians, and Students

Today we are helping awesome YA author and friend of the blog with her back-to-school giveaway. You can pop on over to her blog to see and/or comment on the post there. Comments here are fine, too. Follow Kirstin on Twitter @kirstincm


KCM booksAll this wordiness could be yours!


Like it or not, summer is over. Some school folks are YAAAAAAAAAAAY, some folks are BOOOOOOOOOOO, and some folks are, “Well, my favorite parts of school are students, reading books, and listening to music in my office.” Or maybe that’s just me.


To recognize the momentous beginning of another school year, it’s time for a book giveaway. How do you enter? First, you have to be a student, a teacher, or a librarian. Second, follow the instructions below. Different instructions for different school peeps.



Be a teacher or librarian.


Comment below with your most significant, most embarrassing, most amazing, or most memorable moment of your school career, and please include the school or library where you work.


Wait to see who’s randomly chosen to win ALL FIVE BOOKS IN THE PHOTO. Yes! All 5!





Be a student (at any level–middle school, high school, college)


Comment below with your most significant, most embarrassing, most amazing, or most memorable moment of your school career, and please include your school/grade level.


Wait to see who’s randomly chosen to win a copy of Original Fake!


Entries can be posted today (September 6) through September 11 (Sunday) at 11:59 CST. International entries are fine for either giveaway.


Winner will be randomly chosen, so please share anything big or small. Your memory/moment doesn’t determine your eligibility. You are awesome just for commenting.


And please share the link, if you feel so inclined. The more entries, the merrier or tearier (hopefully happy tears) or sillier it gets. And I need merriment and silliness at the beginning of a school year.


Let the remembering begin! 

Quarto Publishing Week Giveaway

This week is Quarto Publishing Group week. Every day we are highlighting a different book from the Quarto Publishing Group, chosen by yours truly. In exchange for hosting this week, I got to choose 5 of my favorite titles to give to YOU, our readers, as a giveaway. So I did my research and chose 5 titles that I thought YA librarians could use in their collections, in their programs, or for themselves personally. I hope that you enjoy them. It was really hard choosing just 5 because they had a lot of interesting titles to choose from including a biography on John Hughes, his movies defined my early adolescence, some cool picture books, and a great picture book called Dreams of Freedom. They also have a book called Cats in Sweaters that I can’t help but thing TLTer Robin Willis would love. See, such hard decisions.

To enter the giveaway, just do this Rafflecopter thingy here. This giveaway is open to U.S. residents only, sorry. One random winner will be selected by Rafflecopter and then the Quarto Publishing Group will send the 5 titles selected out to that winner. There are multiple free entries because we wanted to make it as easy as possible for you to enter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

About Quarto Publishing Group

The Quarto Publishing Group (formerly Quayside Publishing Group) books have earned a reputation for style and quality in the fields of art, crafts, hobbies, food and drink, nature, lifestyle, reference and children’s. The children’s program just launched in 2014 with the creation of Walter Foster Jr., but expanded dramatically with the “coming home” of our Quarto UK imprints Frances Lincoln Children’s Books and QEB Publishing, now formally published through Quarto USA. In addition, a number of our general and specialty book imprints, such as Quarry Books, Motorbooks, and Race Point, publish books on history, craft, art, and other topics of interest to teen readers. Visit us know at www.quartous.com and beginning this June at www.QuartoKnows.com.

And Here are the 5 Books We Chose for You:

How to Make a Movie in 10 Easy Lessons by Robert Blofield

Featured in my 5 resources/tools for helping teens create movies in your MakerSpace post, I love this book so much I just ordered 3 copies for my library’s MakerSpace. It’s a good resource. There is also a learn guitar title in this series which I highly recommend as well.

Origami City: Fold More Than 30 Global Landmarks by Shuki Kato & Jordan Langerak

There is a lot you can do with this for a road trip themed book discussion group, display or program.

Playing with Surface Design: Modern Techniques for Painting, Stamping, Printing and More by Courtney Cerruti

Again, a ton of great arts and craft ideas that can easily be incorporated into a teen program on any theme.

Duct Tape: 101 Adventerous Ideas for Art, Jewelry, Flowers, Wallets and More by Forest Walker Davis

Duct tape crafts continue to be popular with my teens and Davis does some truly fabulous things with tape. Check out my fave duct tape books and crafts here and read more about this book.

Color Me Calm and Color Me Happy by Lacy Mucklow

On Friday we’re going to talk about adult coloring books and some tips for staying stress free during Summer Reading, a very busy time of year of YS and YA librarians. This book has some amazing coloring pages that are sure to help you relax during the SRC.


Book Review: The Shadow Cabinet by Maureen Johnson

Look, it’s no secret that I’m a huge fan of Maureen Johnson. You didn’t know? Do you live under a rock? I follow her everywhere – Tumblr, Twitter, etc. She has a fantastically skewed sense of humor that I find appealing, and I love how much she cares about the young people for whom she writes and the issues that affect their daily lives. But more than her online persona, I love her novels. And her Shades of London series is well written, inventive, tightly paced, and gripping.  The most recent installment, book three of four in the series, more than lives up to expectations set in the first two.

Closely following the events of Madness Underneath, book three, The Shadow Cabinet, details the events of the days following Stephen’s untimely accident. Also BE DO BE DO BE DO! *spoiler alert* if you haven’t read books one and two, please stop here. You should scroll down to the bottom of this post, enter the Rafflecopter giveaway for The Shadow Cabinet, then proceed directly to your local bookseller, library, or best friend with discriminating taste in YA literature to obtain copies of the first two books in the series.


Okay, so if you’ve read the first two books, you know that book three starts with Rory, Callum, and Boo searching for Stephen’s ghost. Unfortunately, he is nowhere to be found. They are also working closely with Thorpe, their government agent/supervisor/babysitter to locate Rory’s classmate, Charlotte, who has been abducted by the same cult that attempted to abduct Rory. Thorpe is doing his best to keep Rory safe from the cult – and she is doing her best to put herself in harm’s way. And, in the midst of all of this, Stephen’s body is taken by an unknown agency.

There are so many twists and turns in this novel, I’m reluctant to get into too much detail for fear of spoiling the book for those who haven’t read it. I do want to say, though, that those of you who missed Rory’s friends from school will be pleased to find that Jerome plays a much larger role in book three than he did in book two. Also, if you were worried about how the series would proceed without Stephen…um…never fear? I suppose that’s all I can say?

Finally, there is an entirely new character, named Freddie, who plays a large part in the book. Often introducing a new character at this juncture might be seen in a ‘cousin Oliver’ light. This one, however, is my favorite insertion of a new character since Dawn. And, for those of you who understand both of those references, *fistbump* you are my people.

This series hits so many interest points for my students that I have a difficult time keeping copies in stock in the library. I think it’s the mix of the ghosts, cults, and mythology of the series and the quirky characters and sense of humor that combine to make it so appealing. I also enjoy giving my book talk for it that includes detailing the near-death experience Rory has that causes her ability to see ghosts. What can I say, middle schoolers love gross stuff.

Want a chance to win your very own copy of The Shadow Cabinet? Enter our Rafflecopter giveaway! Giveaway is open to residents of the United States.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway: Sink your teeth into book 1 in the Vampire Academy series by Richelle Mead (before you see the movie)

This year there a ton of YA books being made into movies and I’m not going to lie, one of the ones I am looking forward to is Vampire Academy.  In fact, just Saturday I took my youngest to see The Nut Job (let me save you the trouble, don’t go) and once again saw the big, full size promo standee and thought . . . soon.  It helped get me through yet another horrible animated kids movie.

Vampire Academy is a vampire movie, obviously.  But this is not Twilight.  Rose is a half vampire/half human girl who is strong, sometimes out of control, and a huge defender of her best friend, Lissa.  In fact, one of the things I love about this series is that it contains a strong female friendship.

According to the press release, “The director of  Mean Girls and the writer of Heathers  are the force behind this adaptation of book 1 of author Richelle Mead’s #1 international bestselling series. The books are published in over 30 countries and have sold 8 million copies in the US alone.”  Mean Girls and Heathers, that right there makes me want to see it.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D-_TxtG1CVw?rel=0]

Today I have a chance for you to win book 1 in the Vampire Academy series so you can read it before the movie comes out.

Publisher’s Synopsis: 

St. Vladimir’s Academy isn’t just any boarding school—it’s a hidden place where vampires are educated in the ways of magic and half-human teens train to protect them. Rose Hathaway is a Dhampir, a bodyguard for her best friend Lissa, a Moroi Vampire Princess. They’ve been on the run, but now they’re being dragged back to St. Vladimir’s—the very place where they’re most in danger. . . .

Rose and Lissa become enmeshed in forbidden romance, the Academy’s ruthless social scene, and unspeakable nighttime rituals. But they must be careful lest the Strigoi—the world’s fiercest and most dangerous vampires—make Lissa one of them forever.

The movie was originally set to be released on February 14th, but the date has been moved up to February 7th.  I can tell you that teens still come in regularly and check out these books.  So here’s your chance to win a copy of book 1 in the series before the movie comes out.  Simply enter the Rafflecopter below between now and Friday, January 24th.  I will contact the winner for their mailing address and the publisher will send the book out to you.  Open to U.S. residents.  And on February 7th Christie and I will be taking the Tween to see this movie.

In Which I Say Thanks and We Give Away Books

Sometime last week, I realized that this week we would reach over 1 million page views.  And because you have to have goals in life, it suddenly became mine.  I don’t know why, but you know, you have to have something to obsess about.  Late last Tuesday night, we did it!

I felt like I had just walked onto a spaceship.  Full of dinosaurs.  It was epic. (Yes, that was a gratuitous Doctor Who reference.)

Here’s the thing.  I started TLT at a very scary time in my life.  Our old town had just flooded and we had lost almost everything. Well, a lot.  But more importantly, we learned the true horror that life can throw at you.  At the same time, we were getting ready to move because of The Mr.’s job & well, we all know what is happening in the library world, I didn’t know how easy it would be to find a job.  So I started TLT because this is what I am: a librarian.  This is my passion, my calling, my love.  And I needed to find a way to keep doing it, even if I couldn’t find a job in this scary new land we were moving to.

Karen and Her Favorite 5-year-old.

It has been a little over 2 years now.  I do have a part-time teen librarian job.  But TLT has turned out to be such a major blessing.  You see, because of TLT I have met an amazing number of passionate librarians, authors and teens and it has been epic. Truly, amazingly, life-changingly epic.  Plus, I now have Christie, Heather and Robin in my life. (I miss Stephanie, sniff.)

Christie and My Favorite Pre-Teen

So we have over 1 million page views, and we could not have done it without you.  So many of you have shared your passion, often in guest posts. You have shared your stories and your favorite books, your heart and your dedication.  I have found my people – and you rock.

So thank you.  Thank you for reading, thank you for writing, and thank you for demonstrating time and time again the basic goodness that can be found in this world.  And thank you for joining me in the fight for reading, libraries and teen advocacy.

Sincerely, Karen

So let’s give stuff away . . . 

As a thank you, we are giving away books.  Christie, Heather, Robin and I are each giving away 1 small box of books/ARCs that we have accumulated (probably around 5 books in each box).  So that means we’ll have 4 boxes, so 4 winners.  Do the Rafflecopter thing.  We’ll choose 4 winners and each of us will send a box in the mail.  Sadly, because of the cost of shipping, we are asking for U.S. residents only and I am sorry. We’re taking entries until Friday, December 6th.

We really do appreciate your sharing this journey with us.

Doctor Who Giveaways

As part of our Doctor Who events, Maria Selke from Maria’s Melange and Teen Librarian Toolbox will be hosting a couple of awesome giveaways.

Maria’s Melange already has two up:
Giveaway 1: U.S. Giveaway for Geeky Soaps
Giveaway 2: An International Giveaway for a cool Doctor Who inspired bag

Win Paperback Copies of Human.4 by Mike A. Lancaster and The Summer I Became a Nerd by Leah Rae Miller

Win paperback copies of books by two of our Doctor Who Week guest post authors, Mike A. Lancaster and Leah Rae Miller.  Mike A. Lancaster is the author of Human.4, a most excellent read for Doctor Who fans of all ages.  Leah Rae Miller is the author of The Summer I Became a Nerd.  This giveaway ends Monday, November 25th. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Win Paperback Copies of Hourglass and Timepiece by Myra McEntire

I am giving away paperback copies of books 1 and 2 in the Hourglass trilogy by Myra McEntire, one of today’s guest post authors.  Book 1 is Hourglass, how it all begins.  Book 2 is Timepiece, where we further see the effects of what happens when you keep stepping back in forth in time and try and change both your past and the world’s future.  This is a great series for Doctor Who fans.  Follow the Rafflecopter instructions.  One random person will be chosen by Rafflecopter and I will ship those books out to you.  You have until Saturday, the BIG day, to enter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

You can also enter to win in our Audio Book of the Month Giveaway from BOT/Listening Library

Keep watch because later this week we will have book giveaways from authors Leah Rae Miller and Mike A. Lancaster, who all are writing guest posts this week

This post is part of TWO marvelous blogging events!

Sci-Fi Month is brought to you by Rinn Reads. Check out the full schedule of Sci-Fi Month posts! There are reviews, discussions, giveaways, and more!

Doctor Who Week is a joint venture between  Maria’s Melange and Teen Librarian Toolbox. We have a full week of fun posts to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who.