Staff Picks: Top Reads of 2014

CHPL's Youth Services librarians are taking a look back at their favorite YA reads of 2014.  Judge these books by their covers, and click on the titles for more information!

Fan Art by Sarah Tregay
We Were Liars by E. Lockhart
Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins

If You Could Be Mine by Sara Farizan

The 100 by Kass Morgan
Every Day by David Levithan

Grasshopper Jungle by Andrew Smith

The Impossible Knife of Memory by Laurie Halse Anderson

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
Popular: Vintage Wisdom for a Modern Geek by Maya Van Wagenen
Midwinterblood by Marcus Sedgwick


YA Book Club: If I Stay

"Choices. Seventeen-year-old Mia is faced with some tough ones: Stay true to her first love—music—even if it means losing her boyfriend and leaving her family and friends behind?

Then one February morning Mia goes for a drive with her family, and in an instant, everything changes. Suddenly, all the choices are gone, except one. And it's the only one that matters.

If I Stay is a heartachingly beautiful book about the power of love, the true meaning of family, and the choices we all make." - goodreads.com.

Join us for the debut of our YA Book Club! Teens and adults are invited to discuss If I Stay by Gayle Forman. Light refreshments will be served. 

Saturday, January 10, 2 - 3 p.m.
Joyce Alexander Walker Multicultural Room, Lower Level
Open to ages 13 and up.


Staff Pick: Adventure Time, Vol 1 by Ryan North, illustrated by Braden Lamb and Shelli Paroline

 Adventure Time, Vol 1 by Ryan North, illustrated by Braden Lamb and Shelli Paroline
Adventure Time, Vol 1 by Ryan North, illustrated by Braden Lamb and Shelli Paroline

From goodreads.com:
It's ADVENTURE TIME! Join Finn the Human, Jake the Dog, and Princess Bubblegum for all-new adventures through The Land of Ooo.

The totally algebraic adventures of Finn and Jake have come to the comic book page! The Lich, a super-lame, SUPER-SCARY skeleton dude, has returned to the the Land of Ooo, and he's bent on total destruction! Luckily, Finn and Jake are on the case...but can they succeed against their most destructive foe yet? Featuring fan-favorite characters Marceline the Vampire Queen, Princess Bubblegum, Lumpy Space Princess and the Ice King!

Pick it: if oh my glob, watching Adventure Time on TV just isn't enough! The graphic novel stays true to the Adventure Time tone in sense of humor, fantastic quests, and eye-popping artwork. 

Pair with: Volumes 2 and 3. If you like Ryan North's sense of humor, check out his webcomic, Dinosaur Comics.

Reviewed by: Deena


YA Movies to Watch in 2015

2015 is just around the corner, and it's bringing a bunch of YA books to the big screen. Which movie are you most excited to see on opening night?

March 20: The Divergent Series: Insurgent

From Lionsgate: Insurgent raises the stakes for Tris as she searches for allies and answers in the dystopian ruins of a futuristic Chicago. Tris (Shailene Woodley) and Four (Theo James) are now fugitives on the run, hunted by Jeanine (Kate Winslet), the leader of the power-hungry Erudite elite. Racing against time, they must find out what Tris's family sacrificed their lives to protect, and why the Erudite leaders will do anything to stop them. Haunted by her past choices but desperate to protect the ones she loves, Tris, with Four at her side, faces one impossible challenge after another as they unlock the truth about the past and ultimately the future of their world.

Get caught up! Watch the Divergent movie, and read (or re-read) Divergent, Insurgent, and Allegiant

June 5: Paper Towns

From MovieInsider.com: High schooler Quentin is drafted by the school's queen of cool, Margo, to be her accomplice in an all-night spree of revenge against her superjock ex-boyfriend. After a lifetime of loving Margo from afar, Quentin makes the most of the opportunity for unrivaled proximity to his dream girl.

Get caught up! Check out Paper Towns and the rest of John Green's titles

September 18: The Maze Runner: Scorch Trials

The Scorch Trials

From hollywoodreporter.com: The story picks up — spoiler alert — after our teen heroes escape the deadly maze called The Glade and are now in the run on an Earth that is a wasteland and ravaged by solar flares.

Get caught up! Watch the first Maze Runner movie, and read the Maze Runner tetralogy (a word I learned while writing this post): The Maze Runner, The Scorch Trials, The Death Cure, and The Kill Order

November 20: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2

From hollywoodreporter.com: Follows Katniss Everdeen as she leads the districts of Panem in a rebellion against the tyrannical and corrupt Capitol. As the war that will determine the fate of Panem escalates, Katniss must decipher for herself who she can trust and what needs to be done, with everything she cares for in the balance.

Get caught up! Hunker down and get prepped with all of our Hunger Games books and movies.


Staff Pick: The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, Book 1) by Maggie Stiefvater

The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, Book 1) by Maggie Stiefvater
The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, Book 1) by Maggie Stiefvater

From goodreads.com:
“There are only two reasons a non-seer would see a spirit on St. Mark’s Eve,” Neeve said. “Either you’re his true love . . . or you killed him.”

It is freezing in the churchyard, even before the dead arrive.

Every year, Blue Sargent stands next to her clairvoyant mother as the soon-to-be dead walk past. Blue herself never sees them—not until this year, when a boy emerges from the dark and speaks directly to her.

His name is Gansey, and Blue soon discovers that he is a rich student at Aglionby, the local private school. Blue has a policy of staying away from Aglionby boys. Known as Raven Boys, they can only mean trouble.

But Blue is drawn to Gansey, in a way she can’t entirely explain. He has it all—family money, good looks, devoted friends—but he’s looking for much more than that. He is on a quest that has encompassed three other Raven Boys: Adam, the scholarship student who resents all the privilege around him; Ronan, the fierce soul who ranges from anger to despair; and Noah, the taciturn watcher of the four, who notices many things but says very little.

For as long as she can remember, Blue has been warned that she will cause her true love to die. She never thought this would be a problem. But now, as her life becomes caught up in the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys, she’s not so sure anymore.

From Maggie Stiefvater, the bestselling and acclaimed author of the Shiver trilogy and The Scorpio Races, comes a spellbinding new series where the inevitability of death and the nature of love lead us to a place we’ve never been before.

Pick it: if you are a lover of paranormal YA in search of your next series. I have to admit, I glazed over a lot of the romance. I'm here for the tarot cards, the scrying, the weird Latin jokes, and (of course) the ghosts. The Raven Boys is a little slow to start, but Stiefvater builds a compelling world. 

Pair with: the rest of the series - Book 3 in the Cycle just came out, and Book 4 will be here to wrap things up in 2015.


Game Changer: Citations in Google Docs

The reference/works cited page - in my opinion, the worst part of writing a paper. Thanks to Google Drive, the stress of citations is a thing of the past. With Google Drive and Google Docs, you can access a research sidebar that will do (most of) the work for you.

Once you have your document open, click on "Research" in the Tools menu bar. Click the images to see them in a larger version.

The research sidebar will pop up 

You can search in the sidebar the same way you search in Google, looking at the web, images, quotes, and Google Scholar, and preview the site before you click through.

The best part? Google will automatically insert a link and citation footnote for you. Simply click the "insert link" or "cite" options from the sidebar.

You can even change the citation format - they offer MLA, APA, and Chicago Style. Looking for a properly sourced and licensed image? Google has you covered there too. Just select the image filter for images that are free to use, share, or modify to access results with Creative Commons licensing.

Then all you need to do is gather all your footnotes, alphabetize them, and title your works cited page.  

Like the post title says: game changer. 

Thanks to librarian Lindsey for sharing this great tip!


Harry Potter Yule Ball

"The Making of Harry Potter 29-05-2012" by Karen Roe, licensed under CC BY 2.0.

You’re invited to a very Potter holiday party! Enjoy themed activities and the dance the night away! Dress robes (or costumes) are encouraged - you are guaranteed to look better than Ron.

Thursday, December 18, 6 - 8 p.m.
Conference Center, Lower Level
Open to grades 6- 12.

No registration required!


Staff Pick: We Were Liars by E. Lockhart

We Were Liars by E. Lockhart
We Were Liars by E. Lockhart

A beautiful and distinguished family.
A private island.
A brilliant, damaged girl; a passionate, political boy.
A group of four friends—the Liars—whose friendship turns destructive.
A revolution. An accident. A secret.
Lies upon lies.
True love.
The truth.

We Were Liars is a modern, sophisticated suspense novel from National Book Award finalist and Printz Award honoree E. Lockhart. 

Read it.
And if anyone asks you how it ends, just LIE. 

Pick it: for a book that keeps you guessing. I went into this book as unspoiled as possible, and loved the feeling of tension that builds as Cadence questions more of what is happening within her family and in her own past.

Pair with: F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby - there are a lot of parallels between the two books in both plot and style. 

Reviewed by: Deena


Guardians of the Galaxy Viewing Party

"Groot" by Newandalice, licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

Teen Movie Zone meets Crafternoon! We’ll watch the newly released Guardians of the Galaxy (PG-13) while decorating Groot cookies and making Perler bead art! 
Saturday, December 13, 2 - 4:15 p.m.
Children's Story & Craft Room, Upper Level
Open to grades  7 - 12.


YALSA Teens' Top Ten for 2014

The Teens' Top Ten is a "teen choice" list, where teens nominate and choose their favorite books of the previous year! Nominators are members of teen book groups in sixteen school and public libraries around the country. Nominations are posted on Celebrate Teen Literature Day, the Thursday of National Library Week, and teens across the country vote on their favorite titles each year. 

Get ready for your holiday breaks from school and take a look at some of these teen-approved titles! What are your picks for the best books of 2014?
  1. Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell (Macmillan/St. Martin's Griffin) 
  2. Splintered by A.G. Howard (ABRAMS/Amulet Books)
  3. The Rithmatist by Brandon Sanderson (Tor Teen)
  4. The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey (Penguin/Putnam Juvenile) 
  5. Monument 14: Sky on Fire by Emmy Laybourne (Macmillan/Feiwel & Friends)
  6. Earth Girl by Janet Edwards (Prometheus Books /Pyr)
  7. The Testing by Joelle Charbonneau (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)
  8. Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson (Random House/Delacorte Press)
  9. Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo (Macmillan/Henry Holt Books for Young Readers)
  10. The Eye of Minds by James Dashner (Random House/Delacorte Press)