Love comics?

Then you’ll love the two programs that are happening at the Des Plaines Library this weekend! Ready, Set, Draw! is happening from 1-2  for grades 6-12 on Saturday in the storytime room. In this program teams will be pitted again each other to draw people, places, and things from comic books and action movies. Played Pictionary? Well it’s just like that! Click here to register for the program.

The second program is Blam! Let’s Make Comics! It’s on Saturday from 2:30-3:30 for grades 5-8 and is also in the storytime room. Have you ever wanted to make your own comics? Come to this program and get started! Using rulers, paper, and basic drawing materials you’ll be able to learn how to make your own awesome comic book. Click here to register for this program.

Russell Lissau is a comic book writer who has written for The Batman Strikes series and he’ll be hosting both programs! So you’ll get to learn lots from a person who knows his comics.

So if you love comics or if you want to try something new and get creative, come to the Des Plaines Library this Saturday!

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Looking Forward

When I was in high school, I was always looking forward: to graduation (read: getting out of high school), to college, to life after college, or sometimes just to summer vacation.

Here at the library,  we’re looking forward, too. To summer reading. We’ve already started to plan for Teen Summer Reading, including programs. Which of course led me to look even farther ahead,  past summer reading and summer programs, and I thought it might be a good time to ask you guys:

What programs would you like to see in the future? (Like an appearance by a favorite author or a mehndi tattoo program.)

What would you like to see on this blog? (Like more information about new CDs available at the library.)

What would you like to see on the teen pages of this website? (Like a web page where you could post your poems, short stories, essays, etc?)

Believe it or not, there is more teen stuff on the website than the Blog of Awesome (awesome as it is)! Click on the virtual Teen Lounge, where you’ll find links to pages created just for you, including the Stuff to Listen To page  and the Express Yourself page.

So please, let us know what you’d like to see here, on the rest of our website, and at the library! Granted, we won’t be able to offer everything you’d like. A personal appearance by Robert Pattinson?  Dream on. A performance by Lil Wayne? Only after I first book Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band to play Metropolitan Square.

But DO let us know what you’d like to see  on the library website and at the library. Post a comment or come to the next Teen Advisory Board meeting on Thursday, March 25th from 4 to 5. (In the Teen Lounge on the 3rd floor of the library.)

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Teen Bling!

TAB’s first program of the year will be happening this Monday at the library from 11-12:30. They decided on a jewelry program, so we’ll be making a pair of earrings or a bracelet and a necklace. Registration is required, which you can do by going online to the library’s website or calling 847.376.2839.

The great part of the jewelry is it’s all stuff that can be made by stealing materials from your parent’s toolbox!

Check out these pictures of TAB members modeling what we’ll be making.

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Just Dandy

Something COOL is coming to the library.

Can I use that word? Sounds a bit old fashioned. I think I used that word when I was in high school, and that was a long time ago.  Pardon me while I digress and look up synonyms.

The Thesaurus. Reference.com site suggests boss, dandy, divine, glorious, hunky-dory, keen, marvelous, neat, nifty, sensational, swell. None of those sound cool to me. Synonym.com did not have ANY appropriate alternatives. Merriam-Webster’s dictionary said “excellent” and “very good” were two alternative ways to say COOL.  (…and to digress further Merriam-Webster’s, interestingly, has been in the news this week as being banned from some school classes which is definitely not cool.)

Now , what’s COOl at the library?  Texting.  Text a librarian is coming soon. Look for a widget on the library home page and more information soon with instructions.  We are looking forward to your questions, your book requests, your suggestions for new ways to say COOL.

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Michael L. Printz Award

The Michael L. Printz Award was announced today in Boston. This award is for excellence in young adult books. Previous winners include American Born Chinese and Looking For Alaska.

This year the winning books is  “Going Bovine” by Libba Bray.

There were four Printz Honor books:
“Charles and Emma: The Darwins’ Leap of Faith” by Deborah Heiligman
“The Monstrumologist” by Rick Yancey
“Punkzilla” by Adam Rapp
“Tales of the Madman Underground: An Historical Romance, 1973” by John Barnes

I’m really curious about “Going Bovine” especially since it’s from the author of A Great and Terrible Beauty. I also like the sound of  “The Monstrumologist” because I like monster books.

Have you read any of these? What do you think about them? Was there a book that you thought should have won?

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And the winners are…

Best Teen Books of 2009

The American Library Association has released its choices for the 2009 top ten best books for Young Adults.

It’s no surprise that The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins is on the list. Collins creates a fantasy world called Panem which we learn is really the ruins of a continent called North America. The government is now ruled by the Capitol, a cruel regime which forces teens from the outlying districts to participate in annual Hunger Games. And what are the Hunger Games? – a fight to the death on live television. This novel is dark but compelling as well. Could our civilization ever devolve into such a place?  (It sounds like an episode of The Biggest Loser gone terribly, terribly wrong!)   By the way, Suzanne Collins has now written a sequel called Catching Fire which is sure to end up on next year’s top ten list.

The graphic novel Skim by cousins Mariko and Jillian Tamiko also made the honor roll. The setting is a girls’ academy in Toronto and tells the story of Kimberly Keiko Cameron, aka, “Skim”, a Goth wannabe. Skim makes friends, falls in love, sees teen depression, gets rejected by the cool kids, encounters kids who are very different and ultimately makes new friends. The illustrations might be beautiful, but Skim’s passage through teenage hood is mostly tough. Hmmm, kind of like real life sometimes.

The only non-fiction book to make the list is It’s Complicated: The American Teenager by Robin Bowman. Here, Bowman spent five years talking to and photographing teenagers. The portraits – both visual and written are searing and  insightful about the complexities of being a teen in today’s world.   Hey, are Meryl Streep and Alec Baldwin in this?

The other winners are:

Waiting for Normal by Leslie Connor
Mexican Whiteboy by Matt de la Pena
Bog Child by Siobhan Dowd
Ten Cents a Dance by Christine Fletcher
Baby by Joseph Monninger
Nation by Terry Pratchett
The Brothers Torres by Coert Voorhees

So what are your favorite books of 2009?  Did the American Library Association get it right or are they way off base?

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resolutely resolved?

anybody make any new year’s resolutions for 2010? I haven’t even had time to think about it, really. I always think I am going to get more exercise, get more organized at work, and really focus on a hobby, like playing the guitar or learning how to speak Irish. I definitely want to do some traveling this year – but I think that every year! What about you? Got something specific in mind? College plans, a new job, a bad habit you want to kick? Maybe the Library can help. Might sound weird, but we have tons of books, databases and videos that can help you dream big and learn something new. If you feel like it, tell us what your new year’s resolutions are here. Have a great 2010.

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