Saturday, June 1, 2013

Teens' Top Ten ballots are out!

Looking for some good summer reading? How about checking out a few of the proposed books for 2013's Teens' Top Ten list? Some of these books are on display in the teen sections at Central and Buena Vista, along with a ballot for you to use to keep track of your response to these titles. You can mark off the ones you read, and check a box underneath: "Loved it!" "Hated it!" or "Just so-so." Then, in August and September, you can go to the YALSA (Young Adult Library Services Association) website to VOTE for your favorites, and the ones with the most votes will be this year's top 10! Winners are announced in October, during Teen Read Week.

You can find an annotated list of the nominees here, and you can pick up a ballot at the library. Enjoy your summer reading! Don't forget to write these down in your READING LOG and get tickets to win prizes! Drawings once a week on Fridays during the Teen Summer Reading Program. (We will remind you when it's time to vote, and give you the link.)

Friday, May 31, 2013

What we're reading: Burning Blue

Burning Blue
by Paul Griffin
291 pages
Realistic fiction
14 and up

S U M M A R Y :
Nicole Castro was the most beautiful, the most popular, the most envied girl at Brandywine Hollows High School in New Jersey, until one day, as she was turning a corner in the hallway, hurrying to class, someone (she didn't see who) squirted her with acid, ruining one side of her face.

Jay Nazzaro knows what it's like to be gawked at and whispered about--he has his own issues. And when he and Nicole run into each other in the school counselor's office and he begins to discover who Nicole is beneath the popular-girl facade she has worn for so long, Jay decides he's going to find out who did this horrifying thing to her.

The problem is, everyone is a suspect, from Nicole's boyfriend, Dave, to a couple of schoolteachers and fellow students, to Nicole herself (although Jay can't bring himself to believe she's that twisted up inside). But using his hacker skills and his powers of observation, he keeps digging--only to become a target himself as he approaches closer and closer to the truth.

R E V I E W :
I liked the way the story played out in this book. It's told from Jay's point of view, but with periodic entries from Nicole's journal interspersed, so you get both sides of the story--to a point. The answer to the question of who committed the crime proves elusive, and there are a few red herrings (that means false directions) along the way to distract both Jay and the reader.

The book isn't what you expect when you first start reading: For one thing, Nicole isn't the stereotypical shallow beauty. For another, the book isn't focused on either Nicole's trauma and recovery or on the relationship with Jay--they're "just" friends, and the story is closer to a mystery than to anything else, and yet...the characters and their interactions are so genuine that it's also a relationship book--but not a love story. Paul Griffin really pulled off a nice tale here; it's emotional, it's hopeful, and it's also intriguing as you try along with Jay to figure out the trail to Nicole's attacker.

I give it 4 out of 5, which is to say "better than most," and (for once) I loved the cover. The disintegration of the face into "noise" on the left side (they even got the side of the face right!) and then transitioning into the title perfectly expressed the theme of the book. This one's on the NEW book shelves in YA--check it out!

Thursday, May 30, 2013


Or maybe the headline should just read "CLARIFICATION," since Melissa's head was definitely "beneath the surface" while thinking through what to put on our flyer: You can pick up your SWAG BAG just as soon as you have registered for Teen Summer Reading. You do NOT need to wait until June 10 to get the bag, you should get it asap after you sign up!

Why? Well, for one thing, there are a couple of activities in there on which you can get started NOW--like your secret postcard, your entry for the Self Portrait art contest, and oh, you can start READING so you have stuff to put in your reading log FOR June 10, as well as material about which you can write BOOK REVIEWS!

If you're confused because you don't know what I'm talking about, then all the more reason to go get your swag bag NOW. There's a brochure enclosed with all our activities.

ALSO...if you look right at the top of THIS BLOG (that's right, look UP), there are three additional PAGES that tell you more: Summer Book Reviews, Self Portrait Contest, and Secrets, so click on those and be enlightened!

Monday, May 27, 2013


For some of you school is out (yay!) while for others there are still a couple of weeks (and finals) to go, so that makes it time for Burbank Public Library’s TEEN SUMMER READING PROGRAM!

The program runs June 11-July 19 (six weeks), but you can REGISTER starting TOMORROW (Tuesday).

Registration is all ONLINE this year, so...
  • Click on “Register for Teen Summer Reading” at the top of the right column on this page. (Please note that if you click on it BEFORE Tuesday, it won't work--so don't assume it's broken, just register Tuesday or after!)
  • At the summer reading page, click on “TEENS: BENEATH THE SURFACE.”
  • Then click on “SIGN ME UP” on the registration page, fill out the form (which includes creating a user name and password) and you’re in!
You will receive an email confirming your user name and password—SAVE THIS EMAIL! You’ll need it later.

After you have registered, COME TO THE LIBRARY and go to the Reference Desk to receive your SWAG BAG.

Our program this year is called “BENEATH THE SURFACE,” and when you get your swag bag, you will discover (in the enclosed brochure) all the fun programs, movies, contests, crafts, and activities we have in store for you. Best of all, it’s FREE.

No, that’s not even the best. The best is, there are THREE WAYS TO WIN PRIZES!
  1. Show up to a program. That’s right, prize drawings at all programs. If you are a teen and you are signed up, you get a chance to win.
  2. Keep a reading log. Write down everything you read (book, manga, or graphic novel), and get a ticket for each item (at the Reference Desk). Tickets go in the jar, and once a week there’s a drawing when three lucky readers (at each library!) will win gift cards, movie tickets, and more! The more you read, the better your odds.
  3. Write book reviews. Remember when I said you’ll need your user name and password? If you go back to the online interface and log into YOUR page, you can write (short) book reviews, and you will be entered in a drawing for those, too. You can write as many as you like! There will be three drawings (June 21, July 5, July 19), so spread your reviews out over the six weeks to make it into all three drawings!
If you have any questions, click on all the pages across the top of this home page to find out more about summer book reviews, the summer art contest, and secret postcards. (Or, of course, come to the library and ASK YOUR TEEN LIBRARIAN!)

We look forward to seeing YOU this summer! Don’t forget to register! Any time May 28 or after.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

IOBE Rehearsal Schedule

All teens in our readers' theater production of The Importance of Being Earnest, please mark these dates on your calendar! (And all teens NOT in the production, please mark the PERFORMANCE dates on YOUR calendars!)

2-5 pm on Thursday, May 30, at the Central Library Auditorium
6-9 pm on Tuesday, June 4 at the BV Community Room
3-6 pm on Thursday, June 6 at Central Auditorium
PERFORMANCE at BUENA VISTA: Wednesday, June 12
3-6 pm on Thursday, June 27 at Central Auditorium