25 Classic Albums Teens Still Love

The decades may be gone, but many of today’s teens still have an affinity for the albums that for generations have carried a cult following in America’s high schools. Here are 25 time-tested albums that you can share with the teens you serve, culled by teens at the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh.

The Beatles
Abbey Road (1969)

You can’t pick just one, but The Beatles’ last album to be recorded vies for Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band for the most iconic cover. It also contains a nice array of songwriting contributions from all four members of the band, whether in Lennon and McCartney’s moody “Come Together” or George Harrison’s “Here Comes the Sun.” Mak Delaney’s Pepperland is a touching teen novel you can use to follow up with any Beatles-loving teen.
Continue reading 25 Classic Albums Teens Still Love

Genre Preconference Features Authors, Program Ideas and Readers Advisory

Do you work on readers advisory or programming with teens?’  Don’t forget to sign up for the full day YALSA preconference Genre Galaxy:’  Explore the Universe of Teen Reading, on Friday, July 10 from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. at the Annual conference in Chicago.

Listen to many popular young adult authors including Holly Black, Cecil Castellucci, David Lubar and Dom Testa. Enjoy hearing teens tell you what they really like to read and how you can reach them. Experience firsthand mini programs on mystery and un-romance themes. Continue reading Genre Preconference Features Authors, Program Ideas and Readers Advisory

The “Accidental” Teen Book (vol. 1)

Every year the Alex Awards committee does a bang-up job selecting 10 outstanding books published for adults with appeal for teens.’  But y’know – there’s a heck of a lot more than 10!’  Every so often in my non-YA reading (and for the record, i read a lot of SF, fantasy, horror and comix…) i pause and think “hmm…I wonder if this author realized they were writing an excellent teen book?!”‘  Admit it – you do the same thing.’  I call ’em “Accidental Teen Books (ATB)”‘ ‘  Well, why not share these gems?’  Let’s get to it:

My first ATB comes to us from Scotland bearing claws, pop-tarts and fab ensembles; it’s Martin Millar’s’ grungy comic romp through the lycan underground entitled “Lonely Werewolf Girl.Continue reading The “Accidental” Teen Book (vol. 1)

Book Buzz in Denver

Particular titles dominated people’s conversations here in the Mile High City, so I headed out to the exhibit hall to see for myself. ‘ Here’s some buzz on forthcoming YA books for 2009:

Chasing Lincoln’s Killer‘ by James L. Swanson is the youth version of Swanson’s’ Manhunt: The 12-Day Chase for Lincoln’s Killer. ‘ The author was heard assuring librarians that the gory details were neither gratuitous nor excised from this adaptation for younger readers. Continue reading Book Buzz in Denver

To Be, or Not To Be ‘Appropriate’: Why Do We Self-Censor?

One of my esteemed IF Committee colleagues touched on this point a couple of posts back, but I find a need to bring it up again. There have been a couple of intellectual freedom related issues that have cropped up in my library and community as of late; The debates were centered around two books: Elizabeth Scott’s ‘Living Dead Girl’ and Susanna Kaysen’s ‘Girl, Interrupted’ and their suitability for a teen audience. This has had me pondering the meaning of the word “appropriate” and the way it sometimes gets tossed about in our line of work. Continue reading To Be, or Not To Be ‘Appropriate’: Why Do We Self-Censor?

In Short, Read These

This year, we’ve seen a lot of quality novels, but we’ve also seen some notable short story collections and anthologies.’  Short story collections might not sell huge numbers, but they do provide for worthy discussions and make a great choice for both teens and librarians who are short on time but want an enjoyable, complete story.’  I’ve been a big fan of short stories all my life, from fairy tales to Shirley Jackson to Margo Lanagan.’ ‘  Here are some books that will both complete and diversify your collection.

Continue reading In Short, Read These

Looking for Some Book Ideas for Gift Giving?

Whether you prefer the printed or the spoken word, here are a few books that would make excellent gifts for readers and perhaps even some reluctant readers as well.

For Tweens:

THE 39 CLUES by Rick Riordan (and other authors for subsequent volumes in the series)
This new series from Scholastic is filled with action and adventure and espionageEach book will be penned by a different authorLook for the web site that supports the series and offers a treasure hunt for readers, too. Continue reading Looking for Some Book Ideas for Gift Giving?

Why Defend Freedom of Icky Speech?

Neil Gaiman responding to a question on why defending free speech you don’t like is necessary’  made me realize how important it is to remind ourselves as young adult librarians to push our comfort levels when buying potentially controversial materials.’  In thinking about graphic novels, I wonder if larger systems with three different sections of GN might be more willing to start something in YA knowing they can always move to A if needed.’  10 years ago when it was harder to find enough Children’s GN to fill up a shelf, there was more danger of having Tintin next to Watchman, but now it seems easier. Continue reading Why Defend Freedom of Icky Speech?

Web 2.0 and Selecting Materials for YAs

Reading news items and YALSA-Bk listserv postings during this past month, I noticed two recurring intellectual freedom themes…determining the suitability/appropriateness of materials for teens and balancing that suitability/appropriateness within the current definition of YA literature. “Appropriateness” concerns have been raised recently about a whole gamut of materials from DVD TV movies (Freedom Song) to manga titles (Alice 19 and Treasure), popular fiction (Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Succession), and L. Ron Hubbard audio books. Most of the postings asked for guidance in evaluating these titles for suitability for a YA audience.

It struck me that we librarians depend more and more on the opinions of blog and listserv posters and less on our own familiarity with the material in question. Are we in danger of basing our decisions on incomplete information then? Do we prefer postings because we don’t have enough time to read, view, and/or listen to new acquisitions or to become more familiar with our collections? Is it because we fear challenges and it’s simply easier, this way, to avoid them? Continue reading Web 2.0 and Selecting Materials for YAs

Street Lit in the New York Times

This morning’s New York Times has a very positive article about street lit and libraries. The article mostly focuses on adult readers, but there is also a mention of the Widener Street branch of the Philadelphia Free Library, where librarians and teens began a teen street lit book club, and subsequently library circulation increased and the teens expanded their reading interests to science fiction and biography.

My favorite point is about the appeal of street lit: Continue reading Street Lit in the New York Times