Archive for the ‘Authors’ Category

Read them while they’re hot! (And before May 8th)

In two short weeks, Shorewood will host four YA authors. Kiera Cass, Elizabeth Norris, Aprilynne Pike and Amy Tintera will be here to discuss their work including their brand new books, which are mostly hitting the shelves this week and next week. We’re getting so excited to meet all of these authors. Why not pick up some of their books before they’re here so you have lots of questions for them?!?!

the elite

4/23: The Elite by Kiera Cass – this is the sequel to last year’s The Selection. There’s a long waiting list for this one, so if you don’t get to read it before meeting Kiera Cass, you could always just buy it from Boswell Books on the night of the author visit.

In The Elite, the competition for the heart of Prince Maxon is still fierce. There are only six young ladies left in the running, and America finds herself more and more swept up in Maxon’s romantic ways. But she sees her old friend Aspen standing guard around the palace and can’t help but be overcome with memories of their time together. If she’s going to choose between the two, time is running out. Her decision gets all the more crucial as the violent rebels increase their fight and unexpected secrets come to light.

Is there going to be a third book? We’ll have to ask Kiera Cass when she’s here!

4/23: Unbreakable by Elizabeth Norris – sequel to last year’s Unraveling, which we also just got in hardcover format!

Distracted by a moment with her crush, Janelleunbreakable is killed instantly when she doesn’t see a car coming. Mysterious Ben brings her back to life, unharmed. Driven by her own involvement in strange activities – and her FBI father’s possible involvement investigating a series of gruesome deaths that may be linked to Janelle’s experience – Janelle begins to pursue answers. What she finds is bigger than anything she could have imagined and will tie her to her mysterious savior across time and space. In Unbreakable, Ben has returned to his home and Janelle has no time to dwell on their lost love. When an Interverse agent shows up unexpectedly and fills Janelle in on a human trafficking plot in which Ben is the key suspect, she is forced to face her past and her future.

4/30: Life After Theft by Aprilynne Pike – this is a stand-alone title, very different from Pike’s previous, more fantasy-driven work.

Jeff is the new kid in his school, which has it’s problems. It doesn’t really help that he’s the only one who can see the ghost of Kimberlee, a former classmate who died and can’t move forward into the afterlife until she has righted some wrongs from her life. Klepto Kimberlee must return everything she stole, and Ben agrees to help her. However, turning up unannounced and unexplained with stolen goods isn’t exactly good for a guy’s reputation and things go hilariously awry.

And coming soon: the debut title from debut author Amy Tintera that is sure to skyrocket her to popularity!

5/7: Reboot by Amy Tintera – this is a great sci fi novel with a serious kick that will definitely have us all eagerly anticipating Tintera’s next book.

Wren is one of many young people who died from a mysterious disease and were then “rebooted.” Reboots, as they’re known, come back stronger, better-looking, almost like genetically perfected humans. Because they also come back with less empathy and more aggression – depending on how long they were dead – they are confined to a special camp where they are trained to be ruthless soldiers. Wren commands respect from her fellow Reboots because of how long she was dead, but when Wren becomes inexplicably drawn to a new Reboot she begins to learn about the terrible fates of those who were dead for less time than her. She must use her position of power to uncover the truth and forge an escape for those she has come to trust and rely on.


Bestselling Author Wes Moore in Milwaukee Thursday

Wes Moore, activist and author of The Other Wes Moore and Discovering Wes Moore both about his experience as a privileged person encountering someone who shared his name but for whom life had not gone so well – is in Milwaukee tomorrow (Thursday, March 14) to speak at MATC. Discovering Wes Moore is a recent YA title, which you can read more about in an earlier blog post.discovering

He’ll speak from 6-7pm on “Empowering Our Youth” in Cooley Auditorium (Room M203) at the downtown MATC campus, and will sign his books from 7:30-9 in room 605 of the central building of MATC Downtown. Find out more about the visit here!

If you’re a reader of this blog, you’re the (probably) the youth about which Moore will be speaking, but you’re also possibly luckier than some of the kids he’ll talk about. Why not check out this great learning experience and chance to meet a best-selling author!

Author Spotlight: Benjamin Alire Saenz

This year saw a remarkable achievement by Hispanic author Benjamin Alire Saenz: he and his 2012 YA novel Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe were honored with multiple awards!

aristotle and dante

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe is a story that embodies multiple perspectives at once – Hispanic-American, LGBTQ, teenage loner – which is why I think it was honored with so many awards. Dante is an upper class Hispanic gay teen who becomes fast, but unexpected, friends with Aristotle (Ari) Mendoza, a lower class kid who’s a loner with a brother in prison, and a family who won’t talk about it. Both discover, as the title implies, much about their families, their home, and themselves through their friendship.

Saenz was name the 2013 Pura Belpre Author Award winner for Aristotle and Dante. The Pura Belpre Author Award is given each year to an outstanding author of Latino/a descent whose work best portrays, affirms, and celebrates the Latino cultural experience in an excellent work of fiction or nonfiction written for children or teens.

Aristotle and Dante was also given the Stonewall Book Award, which was the first award for LGBTQ literature, and has become one of the most important awards in literature for young people as more and more books and authors embrace the LGBTQ experience freely and beautifully. The Stonewall Book Award is the title of a series of awards for adult fiction, adult nonfiction, and children’s and young adult literature (fiction/nonfiction). The children’s/YA award is called the Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children’s and Young Adult Literature Award and has been given each year since 2010 to a children’s or young adult book of exceptional merit relating to the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender experience. The name Stonewall is taken from the Stonewall Riots, a series of violent demonstrations that took place in New York City in 1970s in response to a police raid of a well-known gay club. It is considered one of the most important events in the gay liberation movement, so the award for LGBTQ lit is aptly named. (Information from,, and

And, finally, Aristotle and Dante (and Saenz) was named to the list of Printz Award Honors! The Printz award is the foremost award for books for young adults. Though it did not take the prize, getting an honor for such a prestigious award is a huge deal.

Benjamin Alire Saenz is a prolific writer of picture books, YA fiction, and novels, poetry and short stories for adults. He was born in New Mexico and resides in El Paso, Texas, and writes mostly about that area of the country, in particular the Mexican-American experience. (“Benjamin Alire Saenz.” Contemporary Authors Online. Detroit: Gale, 2010. Gale Biography In Context. 7 Feb. 2013.)

Author Visit: Lisa McMann

At 6:30 on Monday, February 11, New York Times Bestselling YA and youth author Lisa McMann will grace Shorewood Library with her presence!

McMann is the author of the Wake trilogy (Wake, Fade and Gone), along with other YA titles Dead To You and Cryer’s Cross. Her latest YA offering, Crash, comes out this month. Check out some of her books before she arrives, plan to get some signed, and most of all, enjoy hearing this big-name author speak this February!

Haven’t read the Wake trilogy? Pick it up ASAP!

Wake tells the story of Janie Hannigan whose rare, if not exactly wonderful, gift of being uncontrollably drawn into other people’s dreams has meant her life is a little different from that of  the average high school student. When Janie starts visiting the dreams of mysterious loner Cabel,  she begins to realize the full extent of her power. In Fade, Janie uses her power for good: to unravel a mystery involving a possible sexual predator who is plaguing her high school. Janie also becomes privy to some information which may tell her more about her fate, but she might not want to know. In Gone, we delve more deeply into Janie’s personal life and the ways that her dream catching power has helped and hurt her.

Dead To You is a starkly realistic – even tragic – story of 16-year-old Ethan De Wilde, who was abducted when he was young but lost the memory of his life before then.  When Ethan seeks, and finds, his real name and story, he is reunited with his torn-up family – but nothing is that easy. There is mystery and more in this gripping psychological story.

Her newest book, Crash, out now, is similarly dark, supernatural and psychological. Jules Demarco is suddenly plagued by the same vision repeated everywhere – of an accident involving a snow plow crashing into a building and killing nine people. Why is she the only one who sees this? Has it already happened, or is it something yet to come? As she realizes what she is seeing, she knows it is her mission to try to stop it from happening.

McMann’s offerings for a slightly younger audience, The Unwanteds series, show how skilled of an author she is. The Unwanteds is a fun, fantastical adventure story – completely devoid of the supernatural and psychological details that make her YA books so riveting. In Quill, a sort of dystopian land where 13-year-olds who show any creativity are sent away, twin brothers Alex and Aaron are abruptly separated when Alex is proven to be a creative Unwanted and Aaron is named a Wanted. While Aaron gets to continue to live his life in Quill, distinguishing himself in university, Alex is sentenced to death. But when he meets the man who is supposed to take him to his death, he learns what really happens to Unwanteds – and takes us to the wondrous and magical land of Artime.


It has come to my attention that there is an awesome live stream event happening on January 15th with author John Green to celebrate one year since the publication of arguably his most famous book, The Fault in Our Stars.

7pm Eastern, 6pm Central.

7pm Eastern, 6pm Central.

Learn slightly more here:

Shorewood High School student Nerdfighters have requested we (the library) help host the live-stream event by providing a venue.


Tuesday, January 15, 5:45 p.m.

Village Center Meeting Room

Live stream w.John Green begins at 6:00 SHARP.

Bring your friends, your food, your awesomeness.

Nerdfighters: you have been notified!

Reminder: John Flanagan is here TOMORROW

Just a reminder that John Flanagan will be at Shorewood Library at 6:30 pm tomorrow, Thursday, November 8th. Read more about Flanagan here.

Come get a book (or two) signed, hear all about his writing, stories, and newest book, and possibly win a free autographed book!

It’s going to be a lot of fun, and it’s going to be busy so get here early to get a great seat. It’s in the Village Center meeting room on the lower level of the library building.

Hope to see you there!

What I’m Reading Now

What I’m reading now are several books all at once, that you will love. The problem is, not all of these books are located in the Teen section here at Shorewood Library, so you might not find them if I don’t tell you about them. So I will!

The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne M. Valente (Children’s fiction) and the sequel which just came out, The Girl Who Fell Beneath Fairyland and Led the Revels There

This is Valente’s first book for children and it shows because this book is most definitely suitable for a much wider audience than just the under-12 set. The Girl series (as I will call it because those are some long titles), follows September, a wild-haired girl from middle-of-nowhere Nebraska whose dad is off fighting in what I think is supposed to be World War II, and whose mom works at an airplane-building factory. September is consequently often alone and often wishes she could be whisked off to Fairyland. And one day, she is. What she finds there, though, is a Fairyland where no one is allowed to fly or drink cocoa or do anything silly or fun or fairy-like. September makes a few friends and uses her marvelous courage to release Fairyland from its all-powerful Marquess and restore it to its former glory. She thinks. In the sequel, September returns to Fairyland and all is not quite as she thought it might be. Her own shadow is now perpetrating awful acts of magic-stealing in Fairyland-Below and September must once again right the wrongs. Valente’s writing is completely magical and every character is one you wish you had known sooner and hope to know for the rest of your life.

Deathless by Catherynne M. Valente (Adult fiction)

Being inspired by Valente’s Fairyland tales, I decided to check out her most recent offering for adults. This is another one, though, that teens should flock to. It’s a weird re-imagining of a character from Russian folklore, Koschei the Deathless, who comes out of myth and messes things up in modern-day Russia. It’s a magical take on actual history, which certainly makes the history of Russia – as exciting as it has been in real life, with those Czars and revolutions and spies and such – really thrilling to read about. In this book, Valente uses largely the same writing style and language as in the Girl series, but the subject matter makes it more appropriate for teens and adults.

If you’re looking for some really great fiction and you’re a fan of magic and fantasy, books like Alice in Wonderland, Garth Nix’s Keys to the Kingdom series, and re-imagined fairy tales, these books are for you!



All Hallow’s Read

Looking for something a little different to do this Halloween? Even if you’re still into trick-or-treating and dressing up (and who wouldn’t be!), why not instate your own All Hallow’s Read celebration this year. What is All Hallow’s Read, you say? Read on to find out!

Official All Hallow’s Read poster!

All Hallow’s Read is a new Halloween tradition thought up just two years ago by the great author Neil Gaiman and written about on his blog. The idea is that we all give out scary books for Halloween either instead of candy or alongside candy. So basically, the idea is just to share great books – it’s that simple!

Wondering what to share? There’s a collection of lists of recommended scar/creepy/freaky Halloween books here, on the official All Hallow’s Read site. Think classic Edgar Allen Poe, old school R.L. Stine, or new favorites Holly Black, Melissa Marr, oh, and Neil Gaiman (The Graveyard Book, Coraline), of course. You could also check out the scary books at Shorewood Library and lend them to (very trustworthy) friends if you can’t afford to buy a book to give away!

Teen Happenings this Fall

Have you seen the Fall 2012 Events page on our website? Check it out to learn more about what’s going on at the library for teens this Fall! There have been updates in the last week, with more fun planned for the month of October. Here are some highlights:

Next Thursday, October 18th, TAB members and myself, the teen librarian, will host an informational meeting for people interested in seeing what TAB is all about. From 6-7:00pm, we’ll answer your TAB questions and let you voice some ideas for making the library a better place!

Book pumpkin making, October 20 at the library.

Stop by the library on Saturday, October 20th to make a pumpkin out of an old book (that we promise is no longer being used), a stick and some glue. No wonderful books will be harmed. And many wonderful pumpkins will be made. From noon to 1:30 pm on Saturday, October 20th, teens in grades 7-12 are welcome to come get crafty at the library.

And finally, on Thursday, November 8 author John Flanagan will be at Shorewood Library! Fans of the Brotherband Chronicles and the Ranger’s Apprentice series will not want to miss out on a chance to meet Flanagan.

Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins

Lola has an awesome life as an aspiring costume designer in San Francisco with her two loving dads and her rocker boyfriend.  But when the Bell twins move back in next door, Lola’s life is turned upside down.  For years Lola had a crush on Cricket, but he broke her heart.  Now he’s back living next door and Lola wonders if she ever got over him.

If you’re looking for a sweet romance about fun and quirky characters with a fantastic setting, try Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins.  Wait, actually, if you haven’t read Stephanie’s first book, Anna and the French Kiss, go and read that (it’s also amazing), then read Lola.  And watch for her third novel, Isla and the Happily Ever After coming Fall 2012.