The bi-annual Scholastic Book Fair will be at the Orangeburg Holiday Inn Monday and Tuesday December 11th and 12th. Normally prices are 50% off. This time it is a ‘Buy One Get One Free Sale.’ Great for presents for friends and family, the selection includes mostly children’s titles with a table or two of adult selections and cookbooks. I have gone every year for about 20 years. They have a lot of new titles, hardcovers and paperbacks. Hope to see you there!
Libraries Without Borders, a non-profit organization formed to ensure free access to libraries for everyone, hosted a program in Detroit this past summer called “Wash & Learn.” Taking advantage of the fact that kids and parents have lots of free time while waiting for their laundry, LWB’s goal was to provide literacy corners in laundromats. They partnered with a branch of the Detroit Public Library, among others, with librarians and facilitators bringing computers and age appropriate books to offer literacy programs to those who don’t have the option of attending literacy programs at the library branch. What an amazing idea, and LWB’s aim is to expand laundromat literacy corners in cities across the U.S. You can listen to the webcast here.
A captivating story of a wealthy “happily married” wife and a woman who longs to replace her and take over her life….. until she does. Amber Patterson plots to ‘accidentally’ meet wealthy socialite, Daphne Parrish. Daphne has and is everything Amber wants to be: pampered, adored, living the good life in Connecticut with her handsome husband and two children. The first half of the story is told from Amber’s point of view as she sets up an accidental meeting with Daphne and then becomes her friend. Amber and Daphne become close and soon Amber has infiltrated herself into Daphne’s life. Daphne tells the story in the second half of the novel and reveals another side to the story of her happily married, perfect life. Unexpected twists and turns make this a page-turner. Also available on audio.
Jeffrey Archer has written a collection of 14 short stories, set mostly in Europe, that are rife with crime, the ironies of life, and coincidences. Many of them were inspired by real life events, as indicated by the author. I found the stories to be quite unique, very entertaining and a fast read. The book ends with the first four chapters of Archer’s next book, Heads You Win, due out November 2018, about two young men taking very different paths.
I feel like I say things like this a lot but: This book is one of the most powerful books that I have read this year. The Female of the Species by Mindy McGinnis is told from the point of view from three teens living in a small rural town and uncovers many serious, intense, and disturbing issues that plague our society.
“Three years ago, when her older sister, Anna, was murdered and the killer walked free, Alex uncaged the language she knows best—the language of violence. While her own crime goes unpunished, Alex knows she can’t be trusted among other people. Not with Jack, the star athlete who wants to really know her but still feels guilty over the role he played the night Anna’s body was discovered. And not with Peekay, the preacher’s kid with a defiant streak who befriends Alex while they volunteer at an animal shelter. Not anyone.
As their senior year unfolds, Alex’s darker nature breaks out, setting these three teens on a collision course that will change their lives forever.”
Alex’s point of view is a departure from the normal “YA” voice that we hear from. She is obviously damaged from her sister’s sexual assault and murder and her matter-of-fact view of the world borderlines on sociopathic. Jack and Peekay help to humanize her and help her relate to the small-town world that she is stuck in. Her moral code is slightly disturbing but also righteous in a society where sexual abuse, assault, and gender bias are rampant.
The writing is frank and there are some troubling descriptions of touchy topics that we would all rather look away from, but I will say this: every teen should read this book.