New to Me: Flowers in the Attic

A forbidden classic, Flowers in the Attic is the story of four siblings subjected to years of abuse by their mother and grandmother.’  It was the Twilight of the 1980s: wildly popular and passed around by teens, with the added bonus of being “dirty.”‘  But with today’s teens eagerly reading the chaste romance between a girl and a vampire, how does Flowers in the Attic compare?

Flowers in the Attic
V.C. Andrews
Published 1979

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YALSA Board Update

Even though Midwinter Meeting ended over a week ago, the YALSA Board continues to actively work on Association decision-making and projects. Some of what the Board has worked on in the past week includes:

  • Discussing the 2015 ALA Strategic Plan. These discussions are taking place on the YALSA Board’s ALA Connect space and Board members are conversing about questions they have about the plan, how the new plan supports the work of YALSA, and how YALSA can support the work of the ALA plan. ALA is asking for Division feedback on the draft plan by February 15, YALSA will submit their comments to ALA by that deadline.
  • Answering questions about YALSA’s selected lists. Last week Frequently Asked Questions related to these lists were posted on the YALSA web site. Over the past several days YALSA Board members have continued to answer questions about the lists. The FAQs have now been updated to reflect the conversations Board members are having. To read an updated version of the FAQs visit the YALSA web site. Continue reading

ALA from far away

My first ALA conference was last year’s annual in Chicago and I was hooked.’  I wish I could attend every ALA conference, but for this year’s Midwinter in Boston attendance just wasn’t possible.’  Luckily technology helped me experience’ Midwinter vicariously through those who were there.’ 

I’ve never been a big fan of Twitter, but after Midwinter, I think I’m addicted.’  I couldn’t get enough of following Midwinter attendees and reading their tweets about sessions they’d attended and what ARCs everyone was eager to get their hands on.’  I even woke up early (and on my day off!) to watch the live Twitter feed of the ALA Youth Media Awards.’  Reading everyone’s reactions and being able to chime in my own at the same time was the next best thing to being there.’ 

I kept up with the YALSA blog and was incredibly grateful for the video and Twitter feed from the BBYA session.’  I was still able to get the teen’s feedback and added many books to my library order list as well as my own “to be read” pile.’ 

I also read many blogs from librarians that were in attendance and made a giant wish list for the library’ from their Midwinter ARC posts.’  I’ might be a little sad I didn’t get my hands on some of those’ ARCs, but seeing their lists gave me a great heads up of what I need to be on the lookout for.’  ‘ 

Even though I would have loved to be there in Boston, keeping up with the events via Twitter and various blogs helped me feel like I wasn’t missing out.

Mail those bookmarks!

WrestleMania has come to a close. It’s time to mail your bookmark entries.

The bookmark must include a slogan that promotes reading (in either English or Spanish). Select one winner from each grade category: grades 5-6, grades 7-8 and grades 9-12. If you don’t have entries for all grade categories, that’s fine–just pick winners for the categories represented at your library. Bookmark entries (originals from your three winners only; use the bookmark entry form in the WrestleMania Reading Challenge Toolkit [PDF]) must be physically mailed or shipped to the YALSA office, 50 E. Huron St., Chicago, IL 60610, no later than January 31.

Before sending any entries, make sure that all entry forms are complete and legible, including contact information for the teen or tween entering the contest and the library. Each winner on the local level will receive a DVD and a certificate, provided the entry is received by the deadline.

Get Ready for the 2010 Elections

As the Outgoing chairperson of the YALSA Nominating Committee, I wanted to remind everyone that the 2010 ALA and YALSA election season is just around the corner.’  Online voting begins in less than two months on March 16th and ends April 23rd.’  Members who wish to vote in the upcoming 2010 election must have their membership current as of January 31st, 2010 – just 10 days from today.’ ‘  If you are planning to renew your membership, doing so before the January 31st deadline will ensure that you are eligible to vote in the 2010 election. Continue reading

FAQ on YALSA’s Selected Lists

If you have questions about the changes coming to YALSA’s selected lists, this new FAQ is for you. You’ll find answers to the questions that are most commonly asked of YALSA staff and Board members including:

  • Why were the changes made?
  • What is Best of the Best for Young Adults?
  • Will nominations for the Excellence in Young Adult Fiction and Alex Awards be published?
  • Will teens be involved in the Best Fiction for Young Adults selection process?
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YALSA’s Selected Lists: Now Available!

YALSA’s 2010 Selected Lists are now available online! To see the best recommended materials for teen reading, viewing, and listening, visit the following lists:

You can learn more about all of YALSA’s selected lists, as well as our literary awards, at

Thank you to all our hard-working committees for creating this year’s lists.

Happy reading!

Everything I Needed to Know about Twitter I Learned at Midwinter

After a whirlwind weekend of meetings, awards and live blogging, it’s a wonder my thumbs are intact. Like many ALA members, I spent Friday through Monday largely on Twitter, hashtagging with the best of them.

Whether or not teens tweet, it’s clear that librarians do. And from last year’s ALA “secrets” to this year’s Newbery leak, it seems that library conferences are the impetus for both the best and worst in crowdsourcing.

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