Monday Musings: National Library Week

Happy Monday!

Okay, let’s be real- Monday’s suck.

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BUT! This is National Library Week, so I’m partially biased towards trying to make this a fun week either way it goes.

As a high school librarian, there isn’t much that I love more than promoting libraries and reading!

Plus, Gene Luen Yang is the honorary chair that’s to his spot as children’s lit ambassador. I love him! I saw him at last year’s children’s book festival here in MS and he’s awesome and GREAT advocate to have representing reaching out to our young readers!

Whitley over at Reading With a Vengeance has a good NLW theme going this week that you should all go check out with different ideas for the week and got me thinking more about how I could participate in the week.

***AND she has a giveaway going on for it, so go give her a visit!***

She intended for the daily topics to be on Twitter, and I’ll tweet about them too, but be on the lookout for a post tomorrow about MY library! I think I’ve shared a couple pictures before, but nothing much. I’m in such a beautiful library that I’ve been trying to spruce up this year. It’s an old building, so it needs a little TLC, but it is beautiful nonetheless!

Also coming this week will be updates from the Children’s Book Festival that I attended last week. I got to see and meet some amazing authors that I’m excited to brag about, plus show off a couple books that I got.

There’s tons going on and I can’t wait to share more!

So let’s get national library week started off right!

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Waiting on Wednesday: The Way I Used to Be

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Summary:

In the tradition of Speak, this extraordinary debut novel shares the unforgettable story of a young woman as she struggles to find strength in the aftermath of an assault.

Eden was always good at being good. Starting high school didn’t change who she was. But the night her brother’s best friend rapes her, Eden’s world capsizes.

What was once simple, is now complex. What Eden once loved—who she once loved—she now hates. What she thought she knew to be true, is now lies. Nothing makes sense anymore, and she knows she’s supposed to tell someone what happened but she can’t. So she buries it instead. And she buries the way she used to be.

Told in four parts—freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior year—this provocative debut reveals the deep cuts of trauma. But it also demonstrates one young woman’s strength as she navigates the disappointment and unbearable pains of adolescence, of first love and first heartbreak, of friendships broken and rebuilt, and while learning to embrace a power of survival she never knew she had hidden within her heart.

Why am I excited though?

This book instantly grabbed me by being compared to Laurie Halse Anderson’s Speak. That is one of my all-time favorite books and I’ve been waiting for another book of that level for years. In fact, I’ve taught Speak before, and, while difficult in content matter, it never loses its importance.

That said, I’m so excited for this one! I’ve heard only good things, so I’m hoping that it will live up to the excitement that I have for it. I have an ARC and am hoping to read it soon, but I already am anticipating getting it for school next year and sharing it with students who will love its message of speaking out.

-Melanie

 

 

Monday Musings!

So many things to talk about, so let’s jump into it…

First things first…

….I’m the realest?

No, that’s not right.

It’s Bookmail!!

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I requested this awesome ARC at the beginning of the month from Simon & Schuster and was excited to find it in my mail Friday! It. Sounds. Awesome. Sad! …but awesome.

Check it out:

In the tradition of Speak, this extraordinary debut novel shares the unforgettable story of a young woman as she struggles to find strength in the aftermath of an assault.

Eden was always good at being good. Starting high school didn’t change who she was. But the night her brother’s best friend rapes her, Eden’s world capsizes.

What was once simple, is now complex. What Eden once loved—who she once loved—she now hates. What she thought she knew to be true, is now lies. Nothing makes sense anymore, and she knows she’s supposed to tell someone what happened but she can’t. So she buries it instead. And she buries the way she used to be.

Told in four parts—freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior year—this provocative debut reveals the deep cuts of trauma. But it also demonstrates one young woman’s strength as she navigates the disappointment and unbearable pains of adolescence, of first love and first heartbreak, of friendships broken and rebuilt, and while learning to embrace a power of survival she never knew she had hidden within her heart.

In the tradition of SPEAK??? Don’t mind if I do! That’s one of my all-time favorites!


Second things…second?

CURRENTLY READING!

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Okay so maybe I’m too lazy to add the actual cover without the “first two chapters free!” at the top…oops?

Anyways!

My copy of Winter came on Wednesday and I immediately started it Wednesday, but I haven’t done much reading to make good progress on it. I think it’s almost like I’m scared to read it. This is honestly one of (if not THE) my favorite series, so I’m sad to see it end even thought I’m ecstatic to see how it all plays out. Hopefully I’ll be done this week and if not I’ll take it with me on vacation like I originally planned.


Speaking of vacation!

I know that Saturday I spoke of two bookstores that I plan to visit while in Nashville next week, but TOMORROW I’ll have a post about my vacation TBR!

Y’all.

A whole WEEK of no schedule!

I won’t have a 5 am alarm set so that I can leave by 6:30 to be at work by 7:15.

I love my job, but I’m SO READY for a break!


one last thing…

I have a book order coming in today at work and I’m so excited for it!

Some books are series additions that kids are ready for and some awesome series that I’m ready to get them hooked on. Either way, my kids at work are PUMPED to get some new books. I don’t know how their last librarians ordered, but I tried to genuinely choose things that I knew that they would love.

What? That’s what a librarian is supposed to do? I know that, but it shocks my kids when I give them recommendations and think SPECIFICALLY of them. It breaks my heart that they weren’t already used to that from previous librarians!


Until tomorrow with the TBR post…

-Melanie 🙂

Drama with substance! + HELP!

The ever (not to ME…) intriguing “drama” books.

WHY?

I get the appeal. Really, I do.

They’re meant for high interest-low level. I get it.

BUT WHY?

Here’s my main issue….wait!

I am NOT judging students by what they like to read. I promise I’m not. I’m happy they’re reading!

Okay now back to my point…I get that “drama” books, as my students call them, are close to reality for many of today’s teens. I understand. However, I also don’t really want them to think the rough lifestyles and poor choices found in those books are okay. I’m GLAD that they think they can relate to the characters in those books, but…I wish they’d aim higher? Is that terrible?

Here’s my aim…there is realistic fiction (oh, hey…look, y’all…that genre has a NAME!) that is both well-written AND still relatable. Personally, I also don’t want to read realistic or contemporary fiction that doesn’t seem, well….realistic. This is why we NEED diversity, y’all. I want these kids to have characters that they can relate to, but that aren’t miles beneath them in style and content. I love me some contemporary romance, but I need those stories to also have a broader range of characters at time that the average high school teenager can relate to.

Is that too much to ask?

What are some of your favorite contemporaries that I can get students hooked on?

-M

Random Update!

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Currently Reading:

In this asylum, your mind plays tricks on you all the time …

Delia’s new house isn’t just a house. Long ago, it was the Piven Institute for the Care and Correction of Troubled Females — an insane asylum nicknamed “Hysteria Hall.” However, many of the inmates were not insane, just defiant and strong willed. Kind of like Delia herself.

But the house still wants to keep “troubled” girls locked away. So, in the most horrifying way, Delia becomes trapped. And that’s when she learns that the house is also haunted.

Ghost girls wander the hallways in their old-fashioned nightgowns. A handsome ghost boy named Theo roams the grounds. Delia learns that all the spirits are unsettled and full of dark secrets. The house, too, harbors shocking truths within its walls — truths that only Delia can uncover, and that may set her free.

And she’ll need to act quickly — before the house’s power overtakes everything she loves.

Katie Alender brings heart-pounding suspense, gorgeous writing, and a feminist twist to this tale of memories and madness.

Updates:

I got Dead Girls of Hysteria Hall from Scholastic and am LOVING it so far. I’ve read a few of Katie Alender’s books before and always enjoy them. However…this one is my favorite of hers so far! Full review to come when I finish.

That said, I haven’t done much lately because I’ve been working on my first paper for Grad school. My class last fall didn’t require a paper and I didn’t take anything in the spring, so this is my first time to write a graduate level paper and it is kicking my butt.

Side note: Never read a Katie Alender book while also writing a paper on a Poe story…talk about creepy dreams!

ALSO!! I have a new library this year! I went one day last week for a brief while before a new employee orientation and I love my space, but I have a LOT of work to do. The school hadn’t had a librarian since around November, so tons of things were in the wrong spot on the shelves. I’m not OCD by any means except for when it comes to my shelving.

Which brings me to another point…I’m thinking of taking on the task of organizing my fiction by genre. I’ve searched pinterest and found several articles on it, but it still seems like a HUGE undertaking. If anyone has any tips on what to do then feel free to share because it seems like a huge idea.

I also have some crafting in mind for book ends and what not. I’m not crafty, so that should be interesting, for sure.

Well, back to Poe for now. I’ll be glad to finish this paper and get it turned in Thursday!

-M