Archive for the ‘Hunger Games’ Tag

New Books Highlight: Seek the Unknown

Next week is Teen READ Week! The theme this year is Seek the Unknown, so think about that when you visit the library in the coming days.Here are some new books that ask you to seek the unknown, too!

Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson

Sanderson is a reliable author of really cool books. He’s always taking us to unexpected worlds. In Steelheart, it is a world populated by superhumans known as Epics who became that way after a mysterious event everyone calls the Calamity. The most powerful Epic of all, Steelheart, brutally murdered David’s father when he was eight. Now, ten years later, he has joined  group called the Reckoners, bent on destroying Steelheart. Action-packed, mysterious, thrilling sci fi at its best!

All the Truth That’s in Me by Julie Berry

Set in an anonymous town, in an unknown time, with a mute narrator, calling this book a mystery is an understatement. The setting is a village, a close-knit community, but in an undefined place and time. Judith is mute – her tongue was cut out by a madman who held her prisoner for two years. Just to complicate matters, this madman happens to be the father of the boy she pines for from afar. Another girl went missing around the time Judith was being held hostage, and she may know the truth behind her disappearance – if only she can find a way to get it out.

The Hunt by Andrew Fukuda

Pick this up if you loved the Maze Runner series by James Dashner, the Blood of Eden series by Julie Kagawa and/or the Gone series by Michael Grant. It’s the same kind of fast-paced, gritty storytelling. A great take on both the vampire genre and the dystopian genre. Gene is a human in a world where humans are food. But Gene has not let the vampires know the truth about him, carefully keeping it secret through a web of lies. When Gene is chosen to go on the hunt to kill the last remaining humans, the web begins to unwind and Gene must find a way to protect his very humanity without succumbing to the merciless vampires.

Sneak Peek! “There used to be more of us. I’m certain of this. Not enough to fill a sports stadium or even a movie theater, but certainly more than what’s left today. Truth is, I don’t think there’s any of us left. Except me. It’s what happens when you’re a delicacy. When you’re craved. you go extinct.” (Text copyright 2012 ©by Andrew Fukuda)


So…Many…YA Blockbusters!

Summer is progressing and by now you’ve all read all the hot books that came out during the school year when you were too busy to do any fun reading. Now is the perfect time to get excited about all the new hot books and book-based movies that are coming out this fall! There’s an incredible number of them, you guys. It’s hard not to be a little overwhelmed…

Cover image of Allegiant. From

This is the blockbuster I am obsessing over. (Cover image of Allegiant by Veronica Roth from

Your super-awesome month-by-month guide to fall’s monumental books and movies:


Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan – If you have not already heard a ton of buzz about this book, you have not been part of the internet world for the last two months. The cover reveal generated news story after news story. Why? Because it shows exactly what the title says: two boys kissing. This is not weird for those of us who have gay friends, but it is pretty monumental for a book cover. It’s part of increasing diversity of characters being shown on YA book covers that more truly reflect the characters in the books and also real life. Levithan is such an amazing writer of beautiful, heartfelt, loving stories. This one is sure not to disappoint.

The Bitter Kingdom by Rae Carson – the FINALE in the fantastic Fire and Thorns trilogy.  We can’t wait to see what happens to Elisa! Expect a wait to get your hands on this title.

The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones – the MOVIE! August 21, 2013. ‘Nuff said.


Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell – You loved Eleanor and Park (if you’re a realistic fiction fan and you haven’t read it: go, now, drop everything else and just go get it) and Rowell is back with a whole new addiction in Fangirl. Expect the same quirk, the same singular characters, the same powerful writing style. Oh yeah, and another awesome cover design. LOVE!

The Lord of Opium by Nancy Farmer – It has been over ten years since Farmer’s breathtaking The House of the Scorpion (Printz Honor Book, Newbery Honor Book, National Book Award Winner) came out. So it’s time for a sequel, right? Yes!


Allegiant by Veronica Roth – Who else is going to completely jump up and down as soon as they get their hands on this book? It’s the end of the story of Tris, Four, and their world and WHAT WILL HAPPEN?!?!?!? Once we recover from finishing this epic trilogy, we can reread all the books and start looking forward to the Divergent movie.

The Iron Traitor by Julie Kagawa – Kagawa has fast become one of the most celebrated YA authors of fantasty and sci fi. The Iron Fey series takes place in a pretty big world – and the books reflect that, with novellas and a spin-off companion series, that is sort of also part of the main series, with the fifth book The Lost Prince. So worth the wait for this one.


Catching Fire – the MOVIE! November 22, 2013. Again, what is there really to say except that it’s gonna be awesome.

(And I have to stop there because if I get into December it will just be too much excitement for one day (one word: hobbits).)

Like I said, so many blockbusters and exciting books and movies happening all at once! What fun!

Are You Ready For The Apocalypse?!

…in fiction, that is.  According to the Mayan calendar, the world is supposed to end on December 21, 2012. The end-date idea has been pretty much debunked. One debunking theory says that since the Mayan calendar did not contain Leap Years, which add one day to our calendar every four years to account for the fact that our trip around the sun actually takes 365.25 days, the end-date that they predicted has already passed. And we didn’t even notice!

But it’s interesting to imagine what our world could be after it stops being the world we currently know, and plenty of YA writers do just that!  The genre called “Apocalyptic Fiction” has become super popular these days. Books in this genre are also sometimes called “post-apocalyptic” and/or “dystopian.” Now you’re wondering, is there a difference between apocalyptic, post-apocalyptic and dystopian fiction, or are these all the same thing? If you’re looking for a new book that is like something else you’ve loved, it kind of helps to know what genre you really like. How are you supposed to know when all these great books are so confusingly classified within several different genres at once, all of which have confusing names?! Here’s a look:

Apocalyptic Fiction:robo

Books in this genre encompass a lot of different story lines, like zombie apocalypse or a disease outbreak or a huge war. In apocalyptic fiction, we generally witness the actual apocalyptic event unfolding, and then follow our characters as they deal with the aftermath. But plenty of books that show us just the aftermath – technically the post-apocalyptic world – are also just called apocalyptic fiction. Sigh, it’s so confusing!

Dystopian Fiction:delirium

In dystopian fiction, there has sometimes been an apocalyptic event which lead to the re-creation of the world as a utopia. However, sometimes there has not been an apocalypse at all, the world has just changed completely in an imagined future. Lois Lowry’s The Giver and Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 are two very famous examples of dystopian fiction. In dystopian fiction, the author imagines a world that is designed to be perfect – a utopia – but is actually far from it. Dystopian books differ quite a bit from apocalyptic books, even if there was an apocalyptic event that spurred the creation of the “utopia” in which they are set, because they focus on how problematic the so-called utopia is. Think of books like Lauren Oliver’s Delirium series which imagines a new world governed by logic, and therefore supposedly perfect because that troublesome emotion of “love” is eradicated.

Post-Apocalyptic Fiction:divergent

Books that fall into this category, like The Hunger Games, are trickier to define because they sometimes have elements of dystopia about them as well. But unlike what we call dystopian fiction they are not focused on the idea that the world in which the characters live is supposed to be perfect. Instead, the world is just barely hanging on after a serious event caused it to fall apart. We know that the Districts in The Hunger Games are badly planned out, and that the Capital is totally corrupt – they were not set up to be utopian, but to be repressive. The citizens are not supposed to feel lucky and special as they are in a utopia. Other examples of this genre include M.T. Anderson’s Feed, in which the world has all-but ended due to serious environmental collapse.

Come check out all the apocalyptic/post-apocalyptic/dystopian fiction you can before the end-date arrives! (Or, you know, just to keep you occupied during the long days of winter break which is very quickly approaching…)

What’s the Deal with Banned Books Week?

Every year, libraries, teachers,  book stores and more, take one week to speak up about the practice of challenging and banning books and celebrate our freedom to read what we want to read. It’s called Banned Books Week and it is happening right now, September 30-October 6.

Reprinted by permission of the American Library Association.

What exactly does it mean to ban or challenge a book? Books can be challenged by anyone who finds something wrong with them, based on the perceived values represented in the book.  People can challenge the use of a book in a class, the existence of a book in a book store or library, or the very publication of a book. Challenges to books are based on their content, often content that is deemed inappropriate by whomever is bringing the challenge. School libraries and public libraries are both susceptible to people challenging materials that they own and/or make available for reading.

Up until the early part of the 20th century, the government was allowed to ban books and other materials from being distributed. Banning or challenging books is a form of censorship: someone (other than your own parents or guardian, who typically do have some control over your lives) telling you what you can or cannot read based on their beliefs, not yours. One formerly banned book, perhaps the most famous book ban in American history, is one you might read in high school: Ulysses by James Joyce. Thankfully, these days books are not often banned outright.

In most cases, the books that are challenged are those written for teenagers. The Top 10 Most Challenged Books of 2011 include titles you might recognize: The Hunger Games, Lauren Myracle’s series ttyl, ttfn, and l8r g8r , The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie and Cecily Von Ziegesar’s Gossip Girl series. Find the full list here and on the display board in the teen area.

You can follow Banned Books Week on Twitter with the hashtag #bannedbooksweek.

Celebrate your freedom to read!

Hunger Games Movie Party

The Hunger Games Movie Party last night was amazing!  We had 45 enthusiastic tributes who got Capital makeovers, designed t-shirts, dressed in costume, and won amazing prizes!  Check out the pictures to see all the fun.

Hunger Games Movie Release Party

Join us March 22 from 7-9 p.m. for our Hunger Games Movie Release Party!  Test your knowledge with Hunger Games trivia, show your love for the book by designing a t-shirt, come dressed as your favorite character for the costume contest, and prepare for the games with a Capital makeover.  All this plus food and prizes!  The library closes at 8 p.m., so make sure you’re here by 7 p.m.  This event is recommended for students in 6th-12th grade.

For more info check out the Events page.

Hunger Games Movie

Entertainment Weekly has a feature article (with pics) about The Hunger Games movie! Check out a sneak peak.

What do you think of the casting?  Are you excited for the movie?

Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

Thanks to my friends over at the West Allis Public Library I heard that the title and cover of the third Hunger Games book has been announced! And check out what David Levithan, the editor, has to say about what won’t happen in Mockingjay. Only a few more months to wait for the amazing conclusion…Mockingjay will be released on August 24, 2010!