Books

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

We are joining the blog trend of Monday posts about what we have read during the last week (5/18/20-5/24/20).

Annamarie’s Reading

Picture Books & Readers:

Graphic Novels:

Everything Else:

Note: Some part of my brain decided that this was the perfect weekend for cleaning, creating real storage solutions (instead of hodgepodge-ing what I own), and going through my Disney pin collection. About twelve hours into all of that, my brain wanted to know why I thought this was a good idea. Too late now.

Reading Highlights:

  • So You Want to Be an Owl – Great non-fiction picture book that sneakily teaches fun facts about birds with a great approach. I hope this becomes a series.
  • Slow Samson – I’m always up for a sloth picture book, even if I’m not as obsessed as Michala, and this is a solid read with a good plot about friendship and embracing differences.
  • The Weirn Books – This is my second stand-out fantasy graphic novel in the last two weeks (Beetle & the Hollowbones was last week’s). There are going to be a ton of great titles out there by the end of the year for fans of Amulet and Snapdragon.
  • Sasha & Puck (Elixir Fixers) – I love this first chapter series, and I really hope more books are published. It is a great mixture of a spunky and intelligent female main character, a sprinkle of scientific thinking, and a touch of magic. Plus diverse main character. I want more.
  • **Note about Iggy Peck and the Mysterious Mansion – I feel bad for this title–if it had been published in an alternate universe, I wouldn’t feel like I would need to write something. However, we are living in a pandemic-filled world. The book digs into a mystery connected to the Spanish Flu, specifically the (dead) daughter of a mansion owner. There is a part, small as it is, that essentially says (not exact words, I was listening to the audio)–“The Spanish Flu was scary and millions of people died, but don’t worry, we have doctors and great medicine now, so that will never happen again.” This may not be the best title to hand to a child at the current moment.

Michala’s Reading

Note: Happy Memorial Day! Plant some geraniums, thank a veteran, wear your masks, and wash your hands!

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

We are joining the blog trend of Monday posts about what we have read during the last week (5/11/20-5/17/20).

Annamarie’s Reading

Picture Books & Readers:

Everything Else:

Note: More books! Much of this reading is happening because I don’t have a commute anymore–I imagine my reading will have to decrease once I have to wake up earlier than 10 minutes before I want to start work.

This week’s highlights:

  • History Comics – This series will fill a much-needed Nathan Hale’s Hazardous Tales readalike void.
  • Beetle & the Hollowbones – Gorgeous illustrations mixed with a great fantasy-adventure story with a touch of LGBT romance–this is a definite winner, perfect for fans of Snapdragon.
  • Arlo Pips: King of the Birds – Why have I read two upcoming graphic novel releases about crows? And how are both books actually engaging, good reads?
  • Some Pigtails – Cute first chapter book about a young girl and her fight for the right to have crazy pigtails. I hope this becomes a series.

Michala’s Reading

Note: I channeled my best Annamarie this week and read the last of all the things I had in the house. Because apparently I go

I’m gonna need to grab a brain candy for teen reads next week cause this week was way too heavy on the angst for the times we are in right now. #Ineedfluff

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

We are joining the blog trend of Monday posts about what we have read during the last week (5/4/20-5/10/20).

Annamarie’s Reading

Picture Books & Readers:

Everything Else:

Note: And my reading picked up again. It may keep increase for a bit as many of my favorite TV shows are wrapping up. I think I got a bit caught up in eARCs, and I’m not sure that trend is over yet. I want to try to focus more on books that I’m more personally engaged in than the “all the books” mentality I’ve been in lately.

This week’s highlights:

  • Party Problems (Emma Every Day) – Everyday-adventures reader series starring a young deaf girl. Her and her friends use sign language throughout.
  • Act – This is a great graphic novel series, and you see more of the main character’s character development here. Hoping the end of the real book is less abrupt than where the eARC ends.
  • Fox & Rabbit – This is a great beginning reader graphic novel series that will appeal to fans of Elephant & Piggie or Narwhal.

Michala’s Reading

Note: I am feeling the people isolation very very hard this week. Most of my reading focused on graphic novels this week, because it was the only stuff really keeping me engaged.

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

We are joining the blog trend of Monday posts about what we have read during the last week (4/27/20-5/3/20).

Annamarie’s Reading

Note: As I expected, my reading slowed down this week. Even having back my normal two hours commuting a day, I can’t keep up that reading pace. I had a couple great ones this week–Once Upon an Eid and June’s Wild Flight. I also really enjoyed Science Comics: Crows–this series is really touch and go on readability of particular titles, but I flew right through this one.

Michala’s Reading

Note: I had my first Virtual Quaran-teen Advisory Board this week and might actually pull my act together and make a blog post about the awesome awkwardness that is teenagers on GoToMeeting!

Virtual Book Talks

Reader’s Advisory is a major part of any youth librarian’s job–you need to be familiar with popular titles as well as be ready for those more obscure reader’s advisory questions (“I want books about REAL unicorns. None of that pink glittery nonsense. The REAL ones that eat people.”).

In the library, we provide this service regularly through all kinds of resources–in-person reader’s advisory, displays, booklists, librarian-curated posters and bookmarks of recommended titles and popular genres, and more. My library also sends us into classrooms to talk directly to kids about some great books they might be interested in.

I read a lot. I also love booktalking in classrooms. But I am now working from home, schools in Ohio are not going back this year, and, honestly, I don’t really expect public librarians (or anyone really) to be allowed into classrooms next fall.

So how do we keep reaching those kids? The same ways we have been doing everything lately…virtually.

Video Book Talks

Someday, when we are in a better routine and know what to expect out of life again, I would love to make video book talks. At the moment, I am just getting my feet under me with weekly virtual storytimes and starting monthly virtual school-age programs, and with the constant uncertainty of when and how we will reopen, I don’t want to start something like this at the moment.

Feel free to watch this, uh, interesting creation circa 2017 (that has over 700 views?!?!?!).

I think there are ways to make virtual video book talks much more engaging than the above video, even after eliminating the obvious issues like what-color-is-that-wall and better sound (And, um, pronouncing the title and main character’s name correctly. I’m sorry Hena Khan.).

Some of my dream video book talks include a lot more engaging cuts, edits, and images to be more visually exciting, but I think I may have to settle for a notch under that if I am able to start filming these in the next few months, just due to the time required to make those edits. I’m storyboarding our summer reading video at the moment, and while I think it is going to be pretty awesome, I also recognize the time involved.

Audio Book Talks

One of my coworkers started making audio-only book talks uploaded to SoundCloud, which is a new format for me. I really miss the visual element of video, but I will be the first to admit that it is much easier to read a script into a microphone than babble into a camera and worry about lighting and camera placement and my hands endlessly moving.

I have not put in the time on these that my coworker has (listen to Lisa’s great work here), but some of my files are linked below.

For any of you with an ear for audiobooks–I know some of you are reading this blog–please ignore my mouth sounds. And breathing. And spit. And dry mouth. And p-pops. I’ve been trying to edit all of that out, but it is exhausting, and there is only so much time in the work day. I can’t spend three hours or more editing a three-minute audio file, as much as ALL I HEAR is spit when these play.

Note: I watched a webinar yesterday on disability access and virtual programming. One of the key points they mentioned was making audio files accessible with a script to read for folks who are deaf. I hadn’t considered that before but am planning to edit descriptions for the files below and include text for future audio book talks.

2nd-3rd Grade:

Desmond Cole Ghost Patrol by Andres Miedoso

Mia Mayhem by Kara West

Zoey & Sassafras by Asia Citro

3rd-4th Grade:

Poop Detectives by Ginger Wadsworth (non-fiction)

Klawde: Evil Alien Warlord Cat by Johnny Marciano

4th-5th Grade:

Small Spaces by Katherine Arden

Do you have plans for new ways to look at reader’s advisory in a world where we may not be encouraging patrons to hang out in our building and may not be going into new locations for in-person outreach?

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

We are joining the blog trend of Monday posts about what we have read during the last week (4/20/20-4/26/20).

Annamarie’s Reading

Picture Books

Graphic Novels

Everything Else

Note: Books, books, books, books, books. My particular favorite titles this week included Beast Boy, Ways to Make Sunshine, and Dung for Dinner.

Michala’s Reading

Note: I will never be up to Annamarie’s amount of reading and I am learning to make peace with that. I will not make peace with the fact that people aren’t wearing masks outside. #washyourhands #wearyourmasks I’ve had the plague trust me you don’t want it.