Archive for the ‘science fiction’ Tag

Science + Fiction

There’s a new display in the Teen Space at the library – all about science and science fiction. If you’re into sci fi, you will know that while it is fiction and thus “made up” most of it has as its basis real science. Cold, hard science. Usually, even if the sci fi is based in a far future (which much sci fi is) and thus the author must rely on their imaginations to present the science that will be prevalent at that future time, what happens is not  too different from things we see today. Climate change, natural disasters, pandemics, genetic engineering, computer hacking, cyber-terrorism, and more: sounds like sci fi. And these are things you can hear, see and read in the news every day.

Delve into the science behind science fiction with these lists of non-fiction about real science, coupled with fiction which explores that real science in a made-up world. Whether you’re a bio geek, a hacker, an engineer or just a fan of a good story, you’ll find a book on this list to suit you.

Natural Disasters & Climate Change


 Genetic Engineering




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)

New Books Highlight: Forget-me-not

It looks like it’s going to be another gloomy weekend, and I know you’re in the middle of AP exams, all kinds of final projects, and the general mania of the last few weeks of school. You’re stressed to the max with everything you have to remember, so I propose you let go and dive into a book or three that deals with forgetting – whether accidental or forced.

Slated by Teri Terrycover image of Slated by Teri Terry

Kyla has been marked as a teen terrorist, and dealt with in the horrible fashion her government deems fit. She’s been slated, as in, clean slate: her memory has been wiped clean. She must start from the beginning, relearning how to walk, talk, and be. This is Kyla’s last chance to reform so she’s instructed to be grateful. Fitted with a bracelet that monitors her every thought – and will kill her if she gets angry or violent – she finds she just can’t adjust to life as a Slated. She is different from the others – plagued by what she thinks are memories, memories that should have been erased. Meanwhile, innocent people are disappearing and it’s becoming harder to believe that only the dangerous get Slated.

Sneak Peek! “Weird. All right, I haven’t got much experience on which to base this judgment. I may be sixteen and I’m not slow or backward and haven’t been locked in a closet since birth – as far as I know – but Slating does that to you. makes you lacking in experience.” (Text copyright © 2012 Teri Terry)

What We Saw at Night by Jacquelyn Mitchardcover image of What We Saw At Night by Jacquelyn Mitchard

Allie and her two best friends, Robbie and Kim, all suffer from a rare disease that makes them allergic to sunlight. They find their strength at night – the only time of day they can be outside and feel free. Rebelling against their confinement, the three start to practice the stunt sport of Parkour, bounding, climbing, jumping and scaling buildings and structures. They push each other harder, each longing to feel the danger of what they are doing. But one night they see something that Allie thinks is murder. Instead of forgetting like she should if she wants to stay out of harm’s way, she takes it upon herself to investigate what she saw. One of those thrilling books that will make you shout at the characters, “Don’t go in there!,” as you frantically turn pages.

Sneak Peek! “‘Don’t move and don’t scream too loud, no matter what you see,’ Juliet told Rob and me. ‘Promise? On pain of death?’ ‘I promise,’ I said readily. Rob shot me a furious glance. I forced myself to shrug with a chilly deadpan. What else was I supposed to do? Juliet was a force of nature.” (Text copyright © 2013 by Jacquelyn Mitchard)

Unremembered by Jessica Brodycover image of Unremembered by Jessica Brody

Seraphina finds herself in a world she does not recognize. A world that is supposed to be her own. The lone – and unharmed – survivor of a massive plane crash, sixteen-year-old Seraphina has no idea who she is, where she came from, or how she survived what should have killed her. The only thread that seems to connect her to a life she was supposed to have lived is a boy who claims they were in love before she disappeared. How can she trust him when she has no memories? How can she forget him when he might be the only who can save her from those who want her to forget?

Sneak Peek! “The water is cold and ruthless, lapping against my cheek. Slapping me awake. Filling my mouth with the taste of salty solitude. I cough violently and open my eyes, taking in the world around me. Seeing it for the first time.” (Text copyright © 2013 by Jessica Brody Entertainment, LLC)

TAB Book Review: The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adamshitchhiker

The World has ended. Arthur Dent, the only human left, has been rescued by an alien who goes by the name Ford Perfect. To escape being killed in the Earth’s destruction, Ford and Arthur sneak on the Vogon alien’s spaceship. The Vogons find them and, after reading some of their poetry to Arthur and Ford (a painful method of torture because Vogon poetry is the third worst in the Universe), they throw them out into space. Just before they suffocate, Ford and Arthur are picked up by the Infinite Improbability Drive – a valuable spaceship stolen by the President of the Imperial Galactic Government. Ford and Arthur meet smart, levelheaded Trillian; Zaphod, the crazy President of the Imperial Galactic Government and Marvin, the depressed robot. Together they go on an exciting adventure to discover a planet and the meaning of life, the universe and everything.

This hilarious story is full of coincidence, randomness and adventure. The unique characters and unpredictable plot will take you on a journey through the universe.

–  Written by TAB member Sabine P.

New Books Highlight: More Apocalypse, Please

Whew! It’s been a busy week. You might have noticed that last week I took a break from the New Books Highlight feature. Just to keep things super fresh, I thought I’d let it lie for a week and then come back full force!

SO many apocalypses and dystopias are happening in YA books, it’s super hard to keep up. But I’m not one to ignore a trend. And I happen to really like this trend! Authors keep doing super awesome, unheard of things with the whole apocalypse – and what comes after – thing. From disease to environmental degradation to techno warfare, there are many, and many hauntingly realistic, ways for the world to end according to YA lit. Here are three new books to check out immediately if you’re a fan of the genre, too!

The Lives We Lost by Megan Crewelives

This one is actually a sequel to The Way We Fall which came out last year. After the deadly virus killed off hundreds in Kaelyn’s island town, spreading beyond the quarantine to send a wave of terror washing over the rest of the world, Kaelyn knows she must do something to stop the destruction. She finds a vaccine for the virus in the remains of her father’s lab and sets out on a quest to the mainland to find someone who can help her by reproducing it.  People on the mainland, though, are dying in droves, and killing for the very vaccine Kaelyn carries. All the thrills of a dystopian/post-apocalyptic story!

Sneak Peek! “This is how the world ends: with the boy who used to be my best friend stepping off the ferry, hair shaggy and tangled, face too thin, looking at me like he isn’t sure who I am. Like he isn’t sure of anything.” (Text copyright © 2013 Megan Crewe)

Doomed by Tracy Deebsdoomed

A dystopian take on the classic Greek myth of Pandora and her infamous box? Yes! In this techno-apocalypse, Pandora is a normal teen who, when her long-lost father sends her some heartwarming childhood photos via email, unwittingly unleashes a super-virus on the world that takes down the grid. Internet, cell phones, everything is gone in the click of Pandora’s mouse. All that is left, once all power in the world is gone and people are plunged into mania, is a game that Pandora’s father created. Pandora’s Box. She must beat the game, with the help of some good friends of course, to save the world. High stakes technology thriller at its best.

Sneak Peek! “My seventeenth birthday starts with betrayal. Lies. Mayhem. Fear. It ends the same way, but that’s a different part of the story. At least for now.” (Text copyright © 2013 Tracy Deebs)

Maggot Moon by Sally Gardnermaggot moon

This is a slightly different take on apocalypse and dystopia. It’s more similar to books that were written closer to the time period in which this story is set, 1956, than to other brand new dystopian novels. In an unnamed country, simply referred to as “the Motherland,” impure and different people are squashed into ghettos, living in poverty, with the threat of torture looming. Standish is unique among the “impure” different people in Zone 7, where he lives. When he gets expelled after witnessing the killing of a student in his school, Standish knows the scary camps are next for him. But Standish knows a very important secret about the Motherland that may end up saving him from the totalitarian empire. Another very unique, and literary, look at dystopia.

Sneak Peek! “I’m wondering what if. What if the football hadn’t gone over the wall. What if Hector had never gone looking for it. What if he hadn’t kept the dark secret to himself. What if…Then I suppose I would be telling myself another story. You see, the what ifs are as boundless as stars.” (Text copyright © Sally Gardner)




New Books Highlight: An Out of YA Experience

There are still plenty of new books in the YA section, but this week I want to take a little walk over to a different New Books bookshelf in the library, the  one for general fiction (or “Adult Fiction”). Many of you are reading books for adults anyway, so why not get a sense of some extra-specially awesome ones that have come out recently?! Here they are:


Blasphemy by Sherman Alexie

Yes, I know, Alexie is also a YA author. But his latest offering was published for a general/adult audience, and is shelved over with the adult fiction. These are short stories by the author famous for The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian. And they are just as awesome as that book.dare me

Dare Me by Megan Abbott

For those of you who like a thriller, check out this one about a high school cheerleading squad who find themselves at the center of a suspicious tale. Mysterious deaths, a little in-fighting, and you’ve got yourself a great read. You’ll find it in the adult mystery section.


2313 by Kim Stanley Robinson

Science fiction to the max, 2312 takes place on Mercury at a time when disagreement in the solar system threatens its population and that of other near-Earth colonies. This book is a must for sci-fi fans!

Remember, all of these books are found in the adult fiction, mystery or sci-fi sections of Shorewood Library, but all of them are highly recommended for teens!

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…)

Teen Book Talk: Fall 2010

Art thieves and the Hunger Games finale are coming this fall!

September 29: Heist Society by Ally Carter
All Kat wanted was a normal life, but when her father’s life is in danger, she’s back to the family business as an art thief.  Along with a few friends, Kat must steal a priceless painting if she hopes to save her father.

October 27: Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
The final book in the Hunger Games trilogy!  Katniss is rescued by District 13, rebels are fighting the Capital, and Peeta is under the control of President Snow.  Can Katniss be the Mockingjay and save Peeta’s life?

Teen Book Talk meets from 7-8 p.m. in the lower level meeting.  Bring a friend and enjoy tasty treats while talking about these great books!

Exciting Reads

Here are four great new books that offer lots of excitement and range from fantasy, to sci-fi, to realistic fiction.

Ship Breaker by Paolo Bacigalupi
Nailer lives in poverty in a world of scavengers where old oil tankers are stripped for parts to be recycled.  When he discovers a beautiful, modern boat crashed on the beach he has to decide whether to scavenge it for a chance at a better life or save the girl trapped in the ship who may have him killed or could be an even bigger “lucky strike.”

The Grimm Legacy by Polly Shulman
When Elizabeth gets an after school job at a library, she has no idea what she’s getting in to.  Not just any library, the New York Circulating Material Repository has a magical collection of objects from fairy tales.  And when those magic mirrors and glass slippers start to disappear Elizabeth gets pulled into a mystery to find the thief.

Sisters Red by Jackson Pearce
Rosie and Scarlett March protect the world from Fenris, werewolves who lure girls to their deaths.  It all started when their grandmother was killed and Scarlett saved Rosie’s life.  Now the two put on their red cloaks and hunt these killer werewolves.  But Rosie isn’t sure this is the life she wants and when Silas, a friend and hunting partner, returns to town Rosie begins to wonder about a life away from werewolf hunting.

For the Win by Cory Doctorow
In the world of online gaming there are high stakes to win.  For Mala, in India, it’s a way to get her family out of poverty.  For Leonard, in California, it’s a way to connect with friends around the world.  And for Matthew, in China, it’s a way to make money playing the games that he loves.  When these three find their lives intersecting in various ways with other big gamers, they have to decide which side they’re on.  Are they with the players or do they side with the big corporations who own the games?

Upcoming Books!

Linger by Maggie Stiefvater
Dark Flame by Alyson Noel
Kiss Me Deadly: 13 Tales of Paranormal Love by Maggie Steifvater, Rachel Vincent, Carrie Ryan and many more
Daniel X: Demons and Druids by James Patterson and Adam Sadler
Sleepless by Cyn Balog

Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
The Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare
The Thin Executioner by Darren Shan
The Extraordinary Secrets of April, May and June by Robin Benway
Hothouse by Chris Lynch

Torment by Lauren Kate (sequel to Fallen)
Extraordinary by Nancy Werlin
Payback Time by Carl Deuker
Paranormalcy by Kiersten White
Beautiful Darkness by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl (sequel to Beautiful Creatures)
Grace by Elizabeth Scott
The Dark Deeps by Arthur Slade
Twelfth Grade Kills by Heather Brewer
The Genius Wars by Catherine Jinks
Monsters of Men by Patrick Ness
Blood on My Hands by Todd Strasser

The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan
Bright Young Things by Anna Godbersen
StarCrossed by Elizabeth C. Bunce
Misguided Angel by Melissa de la Cruz (Blue Bloods series)
The Mermaid’s Mirror by L.K. Madigan
Behemoth by Scott Westerfeld (sequel to Leviathan)
Ranger’s Apprentice: Halt’s Peril by John Flanagan
The Scorch Trials by James Dashner
Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan