Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Overdrive Audiobooks

Has anyone taken advantage of the Overdrive downloadable audiobooks that the Westchester Library System offers? It's (sometimes) an alternative to waiting for the book you put on hold ages ago. You can download to your iPod. MP3 player, or just to your computer. Listening to books puts a whole new spin on the story. If you're lucky enough to get a good narrator, the story comes alive. You learn how certain names are pronounced. I grew up reading Elizabeth Peter's Amelia Peabody books. Little did I know that Amelia's last name was not pronounced "Pea-body," but "Pibiddy." Likewise for certain vocabulary words that qualify for the verbal part of the SAT. I listened to the entire Odd Thomas series by Dean Koontz on cd. As far as I was concerned, the narrator, David Alan Baker was Odd Thomas. Overdrive is cool because it also allows you to listen to a preview of the audiobook you're interested in. And some companies allow you to burn their books to a cd. There are current titles like Prism by Faye and Aliza Kellerman, The Luxe by Anna Godbersen, and I am a Genius of Unspeakable Evil and I Want to Be Your Class President by Josh Lieb. You can get Night by Elie Wiesel and A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens. All you need is a library card, download the "console" and you're ready to go: www.westchesterlibraries.org/node/1663

For those of you who are in the midst of SAT frenzy, or you decided that college isn't your thing, try LearningExpress. It's a subscription database available through the Westchester Library Systems "Online Resources" webpage. Not only do you get to practice for the SAT and the ACT, but there's plenty of civil service tests also. There's information on job searching and skills, GED, citizenship tests, and Recursos para Hispanohablantes! Your little brothers and sisters need help with math? There are resources for elelmentary and middle school students. Hey, it's all free! You just need that library card to register to use the site: www.westchesterlibraries.org/node/297

Monday, November 23, 2009

New Books!

New titles ordered:

Hate List - Jennifer Brown
Going Bovine - Libba Bray
After - Amy Efaw
Intertwined - Gena Showalter
Charmed and Dangerous: The Rise of the Pretty Committee - Lisi Harrison
Splendor - Anna Godbersen
Crocodile Tears: an Alex Rider Adventure - Anthony Horowitz
Liar - Justine Larbalestier
Leviathan - Scott Westerfeld
Riot - Walter Dean Myers
The Van Alen Legacy (Blue Bloods) - Melissa de la Cruz
Dark Visions - L. J. Smith
Take Me There - Susane Colasanti
Waiting for You - Susane Colasanti
When It Happens - Susane Colasanti
Angry Management - Chris Crutcher
No Such Thing as the Real World: stories about growing up and getting a life - An Na, et. al.
Lament: the faerie queen's deception - Maggie Stiefvater
Pop - Gordon Korman
Geektastic: stories from the nerd herd - Holly Black, ed.
After the Moment - Garret Freymann-Weyr
Purple Heart - Patricia McCormick
Shooting Star - Fredrick McKissack

LOCAL AUTHOR: Everything Sucks: losing my mind and finding myself in a high school quest for cool - Hannah Friedman

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Local Author Alert!!!

Greg and Steve's families are going through some tough times. Greg's dad walked out on the family, and Steve's stepfather beats his mom and slaps Steve around. Through some supernatural occurence, the teens change places. Here's the catch: Greg is black and Steve is white. This turns out to be a big eye-opener for both as they face stereotypical thinking, racism (theirs and others), and manage to help each other's situations. The story moves along at a fast "What happens next?" pace. Ms. Peart is a writer to watch out for. "Linked" is her first book for teens. According to the publisher's website, www.demarchepublishing.com Ms. Peart's next book "The Intruders" is coming out in February 2010. "The Intruders" involves teens fron The Bronx and time travel. Exciting stuff!

Monday, November 9, 2009

New Books I've Read

I started listening to the audio of Andromeda Klein by Frank Portman. His first book is King Dork, which got some really good reviews. Andromeda is a less-than-perfect teen girl with bad hearing, bad hair, bad skin, and no body to speak of. Andromeda is a serious scholar of the occult. No New Age or "wicker" for her. There's lots of references to the Tarot, the Order of the Golden Dawn, and Aleister Crowley. The kind of stuff that drives well-meaning adults crazy. But Andromeda is no dilettante. She hopes to write her own multi-volume opus on magic and the occult. But first she has to deal with the death of her friend Daisy,the disappearance of her boyfriend, St. Steve, her crazy parents, her nonexistent popularity at school, and the evil plan of the Friends of the Library to weed the collection of her branch which includes an awful lot of the books Andromeda needs for her studies. It's just amazing how the author captured the essential high school girl experience. Portman is also a musician, so you can catch his work at http://www.frankportman.com/, http://www.doktorfrank.com/

Goth Girl Rising is the sequel to The Astonishing Adventures of Goth Girl and Fanboy by Barry Lyga. Kyra, aka Goth Girl, is released from the local psychiatric facility for trying to commit suicide. She's seething with anger, at her father, at school, and especially at Fanboy, who's gone on to become, if not the most popular kid, at least more respected. His graphic novel is released in installments in the school newspaper. Revenge is what Goth Girl wants. As she begins her plan to get back at Fanboy, however, she realizes that she doesn't hate him. She might just -- like him a little? Kyra jumps off the page like she's right there in front of you as you're reading. Reading this book was like holding a live wire. Check out the author at www.barrylyga.com