Notes from the Tween Book Club

As some of you know, in addition to managing the library’s blog, I also co-moderate our tween book club with my coworker Mary-Esther, which means we’re responsible for picking books, leading discussions about those books, and directing a related craft or activity for a group of 8-12 year olds.

This month marks my one year anniversary of working with the book club, and the experience has been a valuable one for me, not only because it’s fun but also because it’s given me some much-needed knowledge about the current scene of children’s books.

Confession: Before I started working with the tween book club, I always secretly dreaded when someone asked me to help them find books for kids this age. Not because I’m a monster but because I was so out of touch with what was current.

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Books in Bloom Preview–Career Reflections

Here at the Berryville Library we’re looking forward to the 11th annual Books in Bloom Literary Festival on May 15th. You’ll get to mingle with famous authors and fellow book lovers. To prepare for Books in Bloom, we’ll be running teasers about the authors who will be giving talks.  We also have works by all of this year’s Books in Bloom authors on display at the library. Read them now–meet them on the 15th!

Last week, we looked at Books in Bloom authors who will be focusing on individual books they have written, but have you ever wanted to hear an author talk about their career as a whole, especially if they’ve written multiple books? What’s it like to be an author for a living? What do they really think about the characters they’ve created? You’ll have a chance to hear them do just that too!

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2016 Library Challenge: A Book From Your Childhood

Next week kicks off the Children’s Book Council’s annual Children’s Book Week, which champions the benefits and pleasures of reading for kids. That got me to reflecting on some of my favorite books as a child. Perhaps not too surprisingly, I loved reading from an early age–relatives say that as a toddler I could be bribed out of giving people frosty silent treatments with the promise of being read to. However, as difficult as it was for me to pick what books to take to a deserted island, I came up with a list of my 3 favorite books as a child pretty quickly.

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2016 Library Challenge: A Book That Might Make You Cry

Last week, we looked at books that make you laugh, so this time, I figured we might as well look at the exact opposite–a book that might make you cry.

Now, depending on how given you are to crying while reading, this challenge could be really hard or really easy.

I don’t usually cry when reading (or watching movies or actually much in general), even if the scene is very sad, and when I do cry , it’s usually at some odd scene that’s probably not supposed to be the one that makes you cry. So, it’s probably just as well that, rather than crying, I am more likely to respond to sad books by just feeling incredibly hollow and depressed for days afterward. But every now and then, a book will make me sob uncontrollably.

And so to honor sad books, here’s a round-up of books that might make you cry. As always, be sure to check our online catalog for more details.

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2016 Library Challenge: A Book Over 500 Pages Long

When it comes to recommending 500+ page books, I decided to avoid what is perhaps the most obvious solution to the problem—19th century classics, which regularly top out at well over 500 pages. Instead, I decided to focus on much more recent books that qualify for this category, simply because I’m assuming many readers will already be familiar with a lot of those classics, even ones they’ve never personally read.

In conducting my research, I learned that many contemporary books that are this long fall into one of two categories—literary fiction or fantasy. And, sometimes, they’re literary fiction with fantastical elements or fantasy with literary elements. In any event, I tried to find a little bit of something to appeal to everyone.

As always, follow this link to our online catalog to learn more about any of these books or to place them on hold.

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