2013 Reading Challenge

2013 Reading Challenge
Susan has read 52 books toward her goal of 130 books.
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2012 Reading Challenge

2012 Reading Challenge
Susan has read 1 book toward her goal of 100 books.
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18th July 2013

Photo with 17 notes

I just devoured After Iris by Natasha Farrant and oh my goodness it was lovely. Twelve year old Bluebell (her parents named all their children after plants as an homage to their forgotten hippie days) is one of 5 kids. She and her twin sister Iris were inseparable until 3 years ago when Iris was killed. Now her family seems to be falling apart - both of her parents have jobs that keep them away for weeks at a time, her older sister suddenly has pink dreads, and her younger two siblings need more. Zoran, their au pair, is wonderful but everything seems to be spiraling out of Blue’s control.
Can I just say that there is nothing that drives me battier than bad parenting. I wanted to sit these two parents down and remind them that while they are dealing with Ivy’s death SO ARE THEIR CHILDREN. THEIR FOUR LIVING CHILDREN WHO LOVE THEM AND NEED THEM AROUND. But that’s part of what makes this book so great - I cared so much and so deeply about all these people and can’t wait for the copies that I ordered for my library to arrive so I can start giving it to patrons.
This book will be great for fans of Reel Life Starring Us (both main characters are aspiring directors who are dealing with big family and social issues), Looking for Red by Angela Johnson (both main characters are dealing with the death of a beloved sibling) (also oh my goodness I love that new cover! So much better than the dated cover I’ve got here at my library. Maybe that one would circ more - hmmm), orEach Little Bird that Sings by Deborah Wiles (both have that sort of intense, poignant feel that pulls you through and leaves you crying in the break room at work even though nothing especially traumatizing has happened yet).
(Many thanks to Netgalley for the ARC)

I just devoured After Iris by Natasha Farrant and oh my goodness it was lovely. Twelve year old Bluebell (her parents named all their children after plants as an homage to their forgotten hippie days) is one of 5 kids. She and her twin sister Iris were inseparable until 3 years ago when Iris was killed. Now her family seems to be falling apart - both of her parents have jobs that keep them away for weeks at a time, her older sister suddenly has pink dreads, and her younger two siblings need more. Zoran, their au pair, is wonderful but everything seems to be spiraling out of Blue’s control.

Can I just say that there is nothing that drives me battier than bad parenting. I wanted to sit these two parents down and remind them that while they are dealing with Ivy’s death SO ARE THEIR CHILDREN. THEIR FOUR LIVING CHILDREN WHO LOVE THEM AND NEED THEM AROUND. But that’s part of what makes this book so great - I cared so much and so deeply about all these people and can’t wait for the copies that I ordered for my library to arrive so I can start giving it to patrons.

This book will be great for fans of Reel Life Starring Us (both main characters are aspiring directors who are dealing with big family and social issues), Looking for Red by Angela Johnson (both main characters are dealing with the death of a beloved sibling) (also oh my goodness I love that new cover! So much better than the dated cover I’ve got here at my library. Maybe that one would circ more - hmmm), orEach Little Bird that Sings by Deborah Wiles (both have that sort of intense, poignant feel that pulls you through and leaves you crying in the break room at work even though nothing especially traumatizing has happened yet).

(Many thanks to Netgalley for the ARC)

Tagged: tumblarianstumblarianrealistic fictionmiddle gradebook reviews

22nd May 2013

Post with 12 notes

Digital story time, you say? Do tell.

OHMIGOSH it was the best ever.  Our normal storytimes are half an hour but this one was 45 minutes to add in a bit of teaching.  For the most part it was a regular storytime but the catch was that everything was digital.  We hooked our laptop up to the digital projector thingie which projected onto the big screen on the wall.  Our music was from Overdrive as well as one of the books.  We did two books through tumblebooks, and a handful of fingerplays through youtube.  Before every element I gave a short lesson what I was doing (long enough to hopefully make sense but short enough that I didn’t lose the kids), “This next book we’re going to read through Tumblebooks!  Tumblebooks is a database the library subscribes to so you can find these right on our website under resources then it’s all alphabetical so if you scroll down to T you can click on Tumblebooks!”  Then the next time I used that same resource I expanded a little on that explanation.  “We’re reading this book in English but Tumblebooks has a great Spanish selection as well as some super fun nonfiction books that you can sort by reading level and they even have Accelerated Reader information for all their titles!”

After the storytime was over I invited anyone with questions to stay behind and I would run them through anything they wanted.  My coworker brought in a basket of big trucks and dinosaurs to keep kids happy while I showed the parents exactly how to find tumblebooks and showed 2 families how Overdrive works with their devices (everyone was already good on how to use Youtube).  It was awesome.

Tagged: phantasypunktumblariansstorytime

10th May 2013

Photo with 3 notes

I work this weekend and I’m trying to figure out which of these stylish ensembles to emulate Saturday and which to emulate Sunday. Any advice?

I work this weekend and I’m trying to figure out which of these stylish ensembles to emulate Saturday and which to emulate Sunday. Any advice?

Tagged: adventures in weeding

19th April 2013

Link with 91 notes

Bostonites! Are you stuck in your house today? →

May I recommend the Boston Public Library’s Online collection?  Because they have a lot of cool stuff up there at that link from Children’s Books from the Jordan Collection - “Over 500 historical series, tracts, and Mother Goose collections are available via the International Children’s Digital Library” to Anti-slavery Manuscripts Collection at the Internet Archive - “The papers of William Lloyd Garrison and other historical figures central to the Boston anti-slavery movement can be viewed and downloaded for free.”

Boston also has a pretty extensive Overdrive collection.  Overdrive is the program that many libraries use to download books (both print and audio) and it’s fast and easy and works with pretty much all ereaders (I can’t think of any that it doesn’t work with) or with your computer.  It’s full of current popular best sellers.  You do need to get yourself an adobe digital id but the overdrive website walks you right through that (and if overdrive’s help page isn’t working for you, send me an ask and I’ll walk you through it).

Tagged: bostonoverdrivetumblarians

17th April 2013

Photo with 6 notes

Word of advice - if you are making pool noodle light sabers for May the forth, use black electrical tape instead of black making tape because the making tape will peel right up and you’ll have to rep your art.

Word of advice - if you are making pool noodle light sabers for May the forth, use black electrical tape instead of black making tape because the making tape will peel right up and you’ll have to rep your art.

Tagged: May the forthStar wars dayLight sabers

15th April 2013

Post with 33 notes

Tumblarian question

I’m weeding today and as I weed I’ve been thinking about all those little things I do when I weed that I think makes weeding more effective/more efficient/more fun - these tips are the reason that I can make weeding an ongoing constant thing and I don’t have to do a huge once a year weed.

If I typed them all up with pictures and examples, would y’all think that was helpful or would it be dry boring school stuff that y’all know already?  (Side note: I probably wouldn’t get around to typing this up until Friday, my day off, so if the answer is yes, it’ll be a few)

Tagged: tumblarianlibrarianstumblarians

12th April 2013

Photo reblogged from Darien Library with 9 notes

darienlibrary:

Appy Hour: Felt Board
Price: $2.99
This app is based on actual felt boards. Choose your character, setting, and props and then the only limit is your imagination. And the pieces will never get lost because it’s all in an app. This could be adapted for storytime too.
More information can be found here.
Every Thursday afternoon, we feature an app handpicked by our staff.

Oh, I love this!  I might just have to play around with this.

darienlibrary:

Appy Hour: Felt Board

Price: $2.99

This app is based on actual felt boards. Choose your character, setting, and props and then the only limit is your imagination. And the pieces will never get lost because it’s all in an app. This could be adapted for storytime too.

More information can be found here.

Every Thursday afternoon, we feature an app handpicked by our staff.

Oh, I love this!  I might just have to play around with this.

Tagged: flannel friday

11th April 2013

Post with 1 note

Obviously Dewey will snark until the heat death of the universe, but all he’s really doing is communicating policy.

I know, and I want to give him a lot of leeway because he is a fictional character and not how a real person would act but when a patron has a problem - an honestly rather serious problem - that is caused by a library policy, snarking at her isn’t funny, it’s painful to read. 

Tagged: billbatumblariantumblarianslibrary

11th April 2013

Photo with 23 notes


This week’s Unshelved has been annoying the snot out of me.  The plot up till now: A Woman put a book on hold called “30 days to a better husband” or something like that.  Her husband comes in to pick up his holds, sees her holds shelved next to his (I’m assuming in this library holds are filed alphabetically) and Dewey (the librarian’s) attitude is basically “sucks to be you!”  He kinda flippantly throws off a solution (which is a good solution but not the way he presents it!) and I just want to shake him and remind him to help the patron!  The lack of patron privacy in the way they do holds has caused a serious rift in her marriage!  She has every reason to want to look for a better way to do holds.  In my library your holds are filed under the last 4 digits of your library card number for privacy reasons but anyone who wishes to can change that if they want to.  An old library I worked at had them under your phone number (not as private but at least nobody would know at a glance whose hold is whose).
So anyway - I know Dewey is in a comic strip and therefore a caricature but was anyone else annoyed with this strip?  Also how do y’all deal with holds?  Does anyone have a more private way?

This week’s Unshelved has been annoying the snot out of me.  The plot up till now: A Woman put a book on hold called “30 days to a better husband” or something like that.  Her husband comes in to pick up his holds, sees her holds shelved next to his (I’m assuming in this library holds are filed alphabetically) and Dewey (the librarian’s) attitude is basically “sucks to be you!”  He kinda flippantly throws off a solution (which is a good solution but not the way he presents it!) and I just want to shake him and remind him to help the patron!  The lack of patron privacy in the way they do holds has caused a serious rift in her marriage!  She has every reason to want to look for a better way to do holds.  In my library your holds are filed under the last 4 digits of your library card number for privacy reasons but anyone who wishes to can change that if they want to.  An old library I worked at had them under your phone number (not as private but at least nobody would know at a glance whose hold is whose).

So anyway - I know Dewey is in a comic strip and therefore a caricature but was anyone else annoyed with this strip?  Also how do y’all deal with holds?  Does anyone have a more private way?

Tagged: tumblariantumblarianslibrarians

7th April 2013

Photo

Just Finished: Hiding Out at the Pancake Palace by Nan Marino.
I’ve been meaning to read Neil Armstrong is My Uncle and Other Lies Muscle Man McGinty Told Me for ages and ages but it just hasn’t happened yet so I jumped at the chance to read an ARC of Nan Marino’s newest and let me tell you I absolutely loved it!
Elvis Ruby is the hottest tween star! He’s the favorite to win the reality show Tween Star when he freezes up on stage and drops out of the competition - and out of public life. His father takes him to hide out at the Pancake Palace with a friend from his childhood while he takes stock of his life.
Cecilia was born in the forest just outside town (while her parents were on a camping trip) and when she did the forests sang. Cecilia, however, is completely tone deaf and wonders why music seems to move everybody but her. She’s been searching for the song the forest sang at her birth for her whole life.
A lyrical exploration of what it means to be a tween (and how ridiculous a word “tween” even is), America’s cult of celebrity, and the effect music and friendship and love can have on our lives. I can’t wait for this book to be published (April 16th!) so I can start handing it to kid after kid.
Gotta go - my hold on Neil Armstrong is My Uncle and Other Lies Muscle Man McGinty Told Me just came in and after reading Hiding Out at the Pancake Palace, I’m not going to put off reading this one any longer.

Just Finished: Hiding Out at the Pancake Palace by Nan Marino.

I’ve been meaning to read Neil Armstrong is My Uncle and Other Lies Muscle Man McGinty Told Me for ages and ages but it just hasn’t happened yet so I jumped at the chance to read an ARC of Nan Marino’s newest and let me tell you I absolutely loved it!

Elvis Ruby is the hottest tween star! He’s the favorite to win the reality show Tween Star when he freezes up on stage and drops out of the competition - and out of public life. His father takes him to hide out at the Pancake Palace with a friend from his childhood while he takes stock of his life.

Cecilia was born in the forest just outside town (while her parents were on a camping trip) and when she did the forests sang. Cecilia, however, is completely tone deaf and wonders why music seems to move everybody but her. She’s been searching for the song the forest sang at her birth for her whole life.

A lyrical exploration of what it means to be a tween (and how ridiculous a word “tween” even is), America’s cult of celebrity, and the effect music and friendship and love can have on our lives. I can’t wait for this book to be published (April 16th!) so I can start handing it to kid after kid.

Gotta go - my hold on Neil Armstrong is My Uncle and Other Lies Muscle Man McGinty Told Me just came in and after reading Hiding Out at the Pancake Palace, I’m not going to put off reading this one any longer.

Tagged: realistic fictionmiddle gradejust a hint of magical realism