It Came...from the Adult Section!

YALSA's Alex Awards recognize ten books a year written for adults that have an appeal for young adult (12 - 18yo) readers as well. These books all have teen protagonists dealing with heavy issues - no fluffy reads here! 

Mother, Mother by Koren Zailckas

Mother, Mother by Koren Zailckas

I love books with multiple narrators and complicated mother figures, so Mother, Mother was right up my alley. Teenage siblings Violet and Will Hurst alternate chapters as they explore the recent events of their family. Eldest sister Rose has left the family in dramatic and mysterious fashion, Will has been recently diagnosed with autism and epilepsy, and Violet begins experimenting with Eastern philosophy, meditation, and fasting. When a violent incident at the home results in a visit to the hospital for Will and a stay in a psychiatric institution for Violet, the carefully constructed Hurst family begins to unravel. While you are never sure if Will or Violet is telling the true story, one thing becomes clear - everything seems to revolve around their mother, Josephine. A twisty, intense psychological thriller.

Brewster by Mark Slouka

Brewster by Mark Slouka

Sixteen-year-old Jon Mosher spends a lot of time running. Running for track, running away from his emotionally absent family, running towards anything that isn't his current life. Set in Brewster, NY in 1968, this book manages to be both a look at a changing America (Vietnam, race relations, women's liberation), and the story of someone growing up in a small town and looking for a way to break free. Jon, his best friend Ray, and Ray's girlfriend Karen make their way through their senior year and begin to look for a path out of Brewster and into a new life. This is a book that is so much bigger than its plot. I was drawn in by the characters - read this one on a chilly fall weekend.

The Death of Bees by Lisa O'Donnell

The Death of Bees by Lisa O'Donnell

"Today is Christmas Eve. Today is my birthday. Today I am 15. Today I buried my parents in the backyard. Neither of them were beloved."

That's how The Death of Bees opens, and readers, it is no spoiler alert to tell you that this book gets grim. Two Scottish sisters deal with their status as orphans after the deaths of their neglectful parents, trying to avoid the notice of the police, social services, and their neighbor's dog that keeps digging in their garden. Told from the perspective of multiple narrators, this book will keep you wondering when the truth will get out - and if we even know what the real truth is.

Learn more about the rest of the 2014 Alex Award winners at YALSA's website.

Why are they called the Alex Awards? 

From YALSA: "The award is sponsored by the Margaret A. Edwards Trust. Edwards pioneered young adult library services and worked for many years at the Enoch Pratt Library in Baltimore. Her work is described in her book Fair Garden and the Swarm of Beasts, and over the years she has served as an inspiration to many librarians who serve young adults. The Alex Awards are named after Edwards, who was called “Alex” by her friends."



Teen Morning Movie: The Fault in Our Stars

Bring your tissues....

Roll out of bed and join us for a good cry, because we're showing The Fault in Our Stars! We'll supply the donuts and drinks.

Saturday, October 4 from 11AM - 1PM
Multicultural Room, Lower Level
Open to grades 7 - 12.

No registration required.

After the movie, visit the Conference Center for a Maker Playground event!


Maker Playground

Let's get crafty!

CHPL is running another Maker Playground - come and play! This place has everything: MaKey MaKeys, giant Jenga, sewing machines, button makers, vinyl cutters, and a bunch of enthusiastic people ready to show you what they can do. We'll also have information on upcoming maker programs where you can go in-depth with specific items. 

Our Maker Playground equipment and materials were made possible by the awesome Friends of the Library. Thanks, Friends!

Saturday, October 4 from 1 - 3PM
Conference Center, Lower Level
All ages welcome!


Maker Mondays and Gamers' Lounge

"4/365 monday" by Robert Couse-Baker, licensed under CC BY 2.0.

What are you doing this Monday? Stop by the Youth Services craft room for some after school fun!

On September 22, October 6, and October 20, join us from 2:30 - 4:30PM for the Gamers' Lounge. Giant Jenga, ping pong, and video games await.

Feeling crafty? Then stop by on September 29 and October 27 from 3 - 4PM for Maker Monday. Crafts will include things like upcycled tshirts, marshmallow shooters, and duct tape creations.

No registration required!


Teen Sewing 101

C.S.I. Sewing
"C.S.I. Sewing" by Misato ♥ Leo COUTURE, licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

Interested in sewing but you don't know where to start? Is your favorite shirt missing buttons and ripped on the seam? We're here to help!

Bring in your too-long pants, ripped sleeves, buttonless shirts, and join us for

Teen Sewing 101

We'll teach you basic stitches, sewing on a button and how to thread a machine. You'll be sewing up a storm in no time.

Thursday, September 18, 7 - 8PM
Children's Story & Craft Room, Upper Level
Open to grades 8 - 12.

This could be you!


Tips and Tricks: Color Filtering Searches

"Have you ever wanted to look at that book you read last year, but you could not remember the title? If you remember is what it is about and what it looks like, good news: you might still be able to find it!"

Mind = blown.

Mind Blowing
"Mind Blowing" by Nicola Albertini. Licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

With a smart use of search engines and color filtering, you might be able to track down that book you've been dying to remember. Tasha Bergson-Michelson from the Castilleja School Library has all the details


Staff Pick: If You Could Be Mine by Sara Farizan

If You Could Be Mine by Sara Farizan
If You Could Be Mine by Sara Farizan
From goodreads.com:
In this stunning debut, a young Iranian American writer pulls back the curtain on one of the most hidden corners of a much-talked-about culture.

Seventeen-year-old Sahar has been in love with her best friend, Nasrin, since they were six. They’ve shared stolen kisses and romantic promises. But Iran is a dangerous place for two girls in love—Sahar and Nasrin could be beaten, imprisoned, even executed if their relationship came to light.

So they carry on in secret—until Nasrin’s parents announce that they’ve arranged for her marriage. Nasrin tries to persuade Sahar that they can go on as they have been, only now with new comforts provided by the decent, well-to-do doctor Nasrin will marry. But Sahar dreams of loving Nasrin exclusively—and openly.

Then Sahar discovers what seems like the perfect solution. In Iran, homosexuality may be a crime, but to be a man trapped in a woman’s body is seen as nature’s mistake, and sex reassignment is legal and accessible. As a man, Sahar could be the one to marry Nasrin. Sahar will never be able to love the one she wants, in the body she wants to be loved in, without risking her life. Is saving her love worth sacrificing her true self?

Pick it: if you are looking for a heart-wrenching coming-of-age story. I learned a lot about Iranian culture that I didn't know, particularly around LGBTQ issues. The story was unique, but the feelings were universal. Keep the tissues handy!

Pair with: Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan for another LGBTQ tearjerker. 

Reviewed by: Deena

Maker Mondays

Maker Playground

Stop by after school to make cool and useful stuff that you can take home. Crafts will include things like toothbrush robots, marshmallow shooters, up-cycled t-shirt fashion, duct tape crafts and more.

Monday, September 15 and Monday, September 29, 3 - 4PM
Children's Story & Craft Room, Upper Level
Open to grades 6 - 12

No registration required!


Teen Movie Zone: Captain America: Winter Soldier

Captain America Shield
"Captain America Shield" by Andrew Buckingham. Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.

From IMDB: "Steve Rogers struggles to embrace his role in the modern world and battles a new threat from old history: the Soviet agent known as the Winter Soldier."

Bring your friends and enjoy a free movie and some snacks. This month's movie is Captain America: Winter Soldier (PG-13).

Saturday, September 13, 2 - 4PM
Multicultural Room, Lower Level
Open to grades 7 - 12.

No registration required!


Gamers' Lounge

Playing Monopoly at Gordon's
"Playing Monopoly at Gordon's" by Colin Campbell. Licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

Need a break from homework? Stop by the Gamers' Lounge after school! Take a Just Dance break, play a round of Ping Pong, try your hand at Giant Jenga and more!

Monday, September 8 and Monday, September 22, 2:30 - 4:30PM
Children's Story & Craft Room, Upper Level
Open to grades 6 - 12.

No registration required!


Staff Pick: Drama by Raina Telgemeier

Drama by Raina Telgemeier
From goodreads.com:

Callie loves theater. And while she would totally try out for her middle school's production of Moon Over Mississippi, she can't really sing. Instead she's the set designer for the drama department stage crew, and this year she's determined to create a set worthy of Broadway on a middle-school budget. But how can she, when she doesn't know much about carpentry, ticket sales are down, and the crew members are having trouble working together? Not to mention the onstage AND offstage drama that occurs once the actors are chosen. And when two cute brothers enter the picture, things get even crazier!

Pick it: if you've spent any part of your teen years on stage or behind the scenes - you know the drama is not saved for when the curtain rises! 

Pair with: Smile for Raina Telgemeier's graphic novel braceface goodness or Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan for another story about high school theatre. 

Reviewed by: Deena