Friday, August 29, 2008

Best Prank at the Library

Ladies and Gents:

Libraries are quiet places of study, where librarians shush you.... right? Not always. And to demonstrate this fact, please view a hilarious clip of a harmless prank pulled at my alma mater's library, the University of Michigan's undergraduate library. Who knew the Pac-Man liked to get his study on too?!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Pets -- Teaching Your Dog Manners

Do any of you have pets? What kind? Cats, dogs, fish, or something more exotic? I never had pets growing up, but my boyfriend and I recently bought a puppy. His name is Winston and he's a Bullmastiff. Currently, he weighs 33 pounds, but he will weigh close to 130 pounds when he's fully grown. Since we didn't know much about raising a puppy, we checked out a few books including The Puppy Owner's Manual and The Complete Idiot's Guide to Positive Dog Training.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Check out the NEW Teen Events!

We've just added the new teen events to the online calendar, and they are going to be great! To kick off the start to our fall programs, we'll be hosting a video game night on Thursday Sept 11 from 6:30-8:30pm.

Our weekly Thursday night programs continues with Tie-Dye and a TAB meeting on the 18th at 6:30pm. Make sure to bring a white article of clothing that you want to tie-dye: tee-shirt, socks, pillowcase... you name it! We'll also be hosting monthly movie nights, with great flicks such as Speedracer and Prom Night.

Take a moment to visit our online calendar and register for the teen programs you want to attend. Looking forward to seeing you soon!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Off to College: Are you Ready?

It seems like the summer just started, but school is already around the corner... which means it's time to get prepared! Although college is an exciting time, it can be nervewracking if you don't know what to expect. To get ready for the atmosphere of college, try checking out a few books from the library.

One of my favorites is The Naked Roommate: And 107 Other Issues You Might Run Into in College. This upfront book discusses issues from alcohol, dating, cheap eats, greek life, and how to survive living in a residence hall. This book truly is a necessity for anyone entering college, and can be fondly referred to as the "big brother/sister" you never had! :)

Another worthwhile book is How to Survive Your Freshman Year. This book is great because it includes submissions by hundreds of college students, instead of being written by someone old enough to be your parent. This book includes tips on what to bring to college, the pros and cons of social networking, how to choose your extracurriculars, and more.

Good luck to all of the new freshmen, and I hope you enjoy your college experience as much as I did!

Monday, August 25, 2008

Angus, Thongs, and Full-Frontal Snogging - Featured Title

Angus, Thongs, and Full-Frontal Snogging by Louise Rennison - For 14-year-old Georgia Nicholson, life is anything but bearable. This quick-witted British teenager deals with hopelessly prudish parents and a bed-wetting baby sister, along with the usual teenage tribulations of boys and school. Publishers Weekly states that "teens will discover that nothing is sacred here (e.g., "Talking of breasts, I'm worried that I may end up like the rest of the women in my family, with just the one bust, like a sort of shelf affair"). Rennison exquisitely captures the fine art of the adolescent ability to turn chaos into stand-up comedy".

This hilarious series of stories has been compared to Bridget Jones for the younger set. Don't know what nuddy pants and romper suits are? Make use of "Georgia's Glossary" in the back of the book, which will provide you with the definitions to the many British slang words used in this book.

Personally, I enjoyed this book the most when listening to the audiobook version. The British accent and humorous lamentations were SO much better when I heard them out loud! If you've got a sense of humor, you'll love this book. Recommended for grades 9 and up.

Friday, August 22, 2008

The Secret Language of Birthdays - Featured Title

The Secret Language of Birthdays: Personology Profiles for Each Day of the Year by Gary Goldschneider - This book provides an in-depth look at your personality, with much more intuition than a simple reading of astrological signs. Readers can look up personality profiles according to the day they were born rather than by year or astrology sign. The reading even includes a list of one's weaknesses and strengths.

This is a great entertainment book that is guaranteed to spark some conversations on whether or not the readings are accurate. In my case, the descriptions of people born on March 29 seemed to fit me pretty well! Recommended for grades 6 & up.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

The Penderwicks - Featured Title

The Penderwicks: A Summer Tale of Four Sisters, Two Rabbits, and a Very Interesting Boy by Jeanne Birdsall - Meet the Penderwicks, four sisters with different personalities and a botany professor for their father. Rosalind, 12, is a gentle motherly figure. Skye, 11, is stubborn and sharp-tongued. Jane, 10, is a dreamer and a hopeful author. And the youngest of all Batty, 4, is a sprightly young girl who always wears butterfly wings.

The Penderwick's adventure begins when the family finds a cottage to vacation in during three weeks of summer. At the Arendel cottage, the girls encounter Mrs. Tifton, the snooty owner of the cottage and her friendly pianist son, Jeffrey. Rosalind spends her days pining for Cagney, teenage gardener. This Newberry Honor book is a humorous family tale, full of adventure and loveable characters that will win the attention of many readers. Recommended for grades 4 and up. And if you like this book, make sure to check out the sequel, The Penderwicks on Gardam Street.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist - Featured Title

Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan - When Nick asks Norah to be his five-minute girlfriend at a underground punk club, she is tempted to say no to this ludicrous request. But she agrees (mainly because she is looking for a ride home), and what results is a chaotic and fun-filled night that just might fix their broken hearts. Told in alternating chapters, these two Jersey teens experience the thrill of New York City into the late-night hours through an ever-changing scene of live performances, parks, and 24-hour eateries.

Nick, the "nonqueer bassist in a queercore band", only becomes acquainted with Norah because he is trying to make his ex-girlfriend, Tris, jealous. Norah is known by her friends and relatives as having a "potty mouth", and that's no overexaggeration. While the book is applauded for its honest portrayal of teenage nightlife, it does contain explicit language and some sexual scenes. It's also worth mentioning that Nick and Norah are straight-edge, meaning they don't engage in drugs or drinking. Anyone looking for a gritty and captivating read should check out this book, which is set to be made into a movie. Also try reading its companion novel, Naomi and Ely's No Kiss List. Recommended for grades 9 and up.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Draw Your Own Manga - Featured Title

Draw Your Own Manga: All the Basics by Haruno Nagatomo - If you like reading and watching anime like Fruits Basket and Bleach, then the next course of action is to learn how to draw manga! This book includes interviews with professionals, as well as step-by-step details of how to create your own manga characters. Did You Know? -- Manga, literally translated, means "whimsical words".

P.S. Stay tuned for fall programming, when we have a upcoming manga-drawing workshop for teens!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Al Capone Does My Shirts - Featured Title

Al Capone Does My Shirts by Gennifer Choldenko - Set in 1935, 12-year-old Moose Flanagan and his family move to Alcatraz. The family moves to this prison just outside of San Francisco in search of professional help for Moose's autistic sister, Natalie. With Moose's dad as a prison guard at a prison with some of the country's most hardened criminals (including Al Capone and Machine Gun Kelly), you can bet he won't stay out of trouble for long.

Juggling the responsibility of caring for his sister and the overwhelming dread that accompanies a new school, Moose's choices in life aren't always cut and dried. But when Moose meets Piper, the warden's daughter, and joins an after-school baseball team, things start to look up... for now at least.

Those who enjoy comedic stories as well as historical fiction should read this novel. Recommended for grades 9 & up.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Face Your Manga

Go to and create your own manga character!

Librarian Stephanie is on the left, and Librarian Rachel is on the right.... do you think it looks like us?

Friday, August 15, 2008

Hardy Boys: The Ocean of Osyria - Featured Title

Hardy Boys: The Ocean of Osyria by Scott Lobdell - Sure, everyone's heard of the Hardy Boys, but what makes this series new and exciting is that it's written in graphic novel format. The titles and plots are completely different too, with a fresh spin on the boy detectives.
The Ocean of Osyria is the first book in this series, and the Hardy boys are determined to learn who framed their friend in the robbery of an expensive Middle Eastern treasure. The manga-influenced art is fantastic and kept me turning the pages of this pocket-sized book. If you like mysteries and manga, take a look at these Hardy Boy graphic novels. Recommended for grades 4 and up.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Beijing Olympics Coverage

The talk has been nonstop about this year's Summer Olympics being hosted in China. Worries ranging from China's relationship with Tibet to the lack of freedom for Chinese residents keeps the Chinese government's every action closely scrutinized. In the latest news, Chinese authorities have admitted to using previously-taped footage to enhance to fireworks display during the opening games.

In a similar and controversial instance, the Chinese replaced a 7-year-old singing the National Anthem, because they said she was not pretty enough for TV. The girl who was scheduled to sing onstage instead had to sing behind the stage, and a different girl who was thought to be prettier lip-synched the music.

If you're looking for a constant update of gold metal counts, this website offers a real-time update of the number of medals earned by each country.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Perseids Meteor Shower

Here's an excuse to stay up late tonight: starting at 9pm, the Perseids meteor shower will light the skies and increase in intensity as the night goes on. According to FactMonster, many meteor showers happen annually, with an average of 5-10 meteors shooting through the sky per hour.

So what are meteors?Meteor showers are associated with comets, and the Perseids comes from the constellation Perseus. And what do meteors look like? To the naked eye, they look like a long streak of color across the sky.

The best place to witness meteor showers is in a rural spot, away from any light which makes the showers hard to see. If you're in a very remote location away from light, you should also be able to see Mars, a bright red light underneath Perseus. Enjoy, and make sure to bring a blanket to keep warm!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Teen Ink - Get your Writing Published!

Are you looking to publish your writing or artwork? Check out Teen Ink, a nationally-recognized online and print magazine which publishes artwork, photography, and writing by teens only since 1989. This magazine is run entirely by teens, and no topic is taboo. They also have articles about TV shows, colleges, and sports. Don't know where to get started? Read one of my favorite poems so far, Forget Gingko by Arthur in Chicago, IL. What do you think?

Want to get your hands on a print copy? At the Library's Teen Scene we've got the most recent issue as well as past issues for you to read. Have you submitted something to the TeenInk magazine? Tell us by leaving a comment, and we'll try to post your writing in the Royal Oak Public Library! :)

Monday, August 11, 2008

13 Little Blue Envelopes - Featured Title

13 Little Blue Envelopes by Maureen Johnson - When Ginny's aunt passes away, she is sent on a mysterious adventure throughout Europe, akin to a scavenger hunt. Armed only with 13 blue envelopes from her aunt and a travel bag, Ginny must attempt to discover what her aunt left for her. Following these directions, Ginny stays with friends of her Aunt Peg's and sometimes in hostels. The trips she takes through Italy, England, Greece, and the Netherlands leads Ginny to a blossoming romance and some interesting clues about her Aunt.
This book is an easy summer read, and is recommended for grades 8 and up.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Mistaken Identity - Featured Title

Mistaken Identity: Two Families, One Survivor, Unwavering Hope by Don & Susie Van Ryn, and Newell, Colleen, & Whitney Cerak - This piece of nonfiction is a true account of an astonishing tragedy which struck a small community in Michigan. A van of college students from an evangelical Indiana university were returning home on the freeway when their van was struck by a truck that crossed the median.

Only one college student survived the horrific accident, but the wrong family was mistakenly told that their daughter was the survivor. Only after five weeks of mistaken identity was it realized that the girl who survived was actually Whitney, not Laura. If you enjoy reading tearjerkers or wish to read a piece of nonfiction, this is the book for you. The unwavering faith of both families was the cornerstone that kept the family strong and is powerful to read of. Recommended for grades 9 & up.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Summer Reading FINALE! 7-8:30pm

I know it seems like summer just started, but in fact it's already August and the end to summer reading. A game night is planned to end the summer with a bang. Pizza, pop, prizes! Board games galore. Bring your own board games to share, too. Make sure to register.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Video Games TONIGHT @ 7pm

Come and play video games and hang out with friends and meet new ones. Try your hand at our newest editions of Guitar Hero III and Rock Band, or just enjoy old favorites. Take a moment to register here. This is the last video game event for the month, so make sure to visit us!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Rumors - Featured Title

Rumors: A Luxe Novel by Anna Godbersen - This book is actually the sequel to Luxe, but the plot doesn't leave you feeling confused if you start with this book. Socialites in Manhattan always have the spotlight on them, and it's no different in 1899. As the Holland family is nursing the heartache from their eldest daughter's disappearance, the rumors continue to swirl about the mystery of Elizabeth, their dearly departed and newly betrothed. Elizabeth's fiance, Henry Schoonmaker, faces scrutiny from the public about whether he is truly mourning her disappearance. Meanwhile, the Holland family learns the importance of keeping one's friends close and one's enemies even closer, as their maid Lina becomes willing to sacrifice any and all secrets regarding the Holland family as she begins her ascent into high-class.

Although it's over 400 pages, the fast-moving plot and constant action will make it hard to set this book down. Recommended for grades 9 & up.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules - Featured Title

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules by Jeff Kinney - This sequel is just as good as the first book! Kinney's portrayal of Greg Heffley is undeniably hilarious and worth reading.

Greg's summer has been painfully boring and uneventful. Worst of all, Rodrick knows a totally embarrassing secret about him and if Greg isn't nice to his big brother, Rodrick will tell everyone! And when Greg returns to school, he remembers that he still has the cheese touch, which means that NO ONE will even get near him. Read the continuation of this story to see how Greg continues to navigate the hardships of middle school and avoid the revelation of his secret.

Recommended for grades 6 & up, especially those who enjoy humor and comics. Also, check out our synopsis of the first book, Diary of a Wimpy Kid.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

'Breaking Dawn' Release Party TODAY @4pm

Can't get enough of Stephenie Meyer's Twilight series? Then join us at 4:00 pm for the release party of her latest book, Breaking Dawn. Activities include a mummy wrapping contest, trivia, snacks, as well as other games and prizes. We'll also be showing clips of some of our favorite vampire movies. This is guaranteed to be fun for everyone, whether or not you're a fan of these books. ALSO: Dressing up (as, well.... anything!) is welcome. Vampire or not, costumes always add to the sense of excitement. :) Registration requested.

Friday, August 1, 2008

The Dangerous Book for Boys - Featured Title

The Dangerous Book for Boys by Conn Iggulden - Looking for something to fill your summer days? Try out the activities and adventures listed in this book. From tips on how to build your own treehouse, secret inks, and how to play stickball, this book is sure to cure any boredom.

And of course there's a companion book made for girls! Though the activities in both books can be completed by anyone interested, girls who are looking for their own book should check out The Daring Book for Girls by Andrea J. Buchanan. Activities in this handbook include how to make a stink bomb, how to administer CPR, and how to press flowers. These books are guaranteed to make your summer memorable and are a great way to impress your friends!

Recommended for all ages, though some activities may require adult supervision.