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What We've Been Reading

What We Read Last Week, Part 8: The Final Week

August 23, 2010 | Alan H.

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It's the final week of Word Out (already?) and I was fortunate enough to read some great books last week to prepare for my final "What We Read" post this summer.

First off, and my favourite of all the YA I've read this summer: The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness.  Great YA science fiction, set in an offworld colony where a plague has killed all the women and made all the men into uncontrolled broadcast telepaths (they continuously spam everyone around them with their thoughts).  Of course, it turns out things aren't exactly as they seem, and the viewpoint character is forced to flee with his dog... highly recommended.  Looking forward to reading the sequel, The Ask and the Answer, this week.

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What We Read Last Week, Part 7:

August 16, 2010 | Alan H.

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I finally finished Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan - fabulous book about love and friendship, starring two teenagers both named Will Grayson, and Tiny Cooper, "the world's largest person who is really, really gay, and also the world's gayest person who is really, really large".  I think this is probably the best YA novel I've read this summer.

Also read volume 12 of Robert Kirkman's Invincible--still the best "teen superheroes" comic going, in my opinion.

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What We Read Last Week, Part 6: Alan H. & The Infinite Procastination

August 9, 2010 | Alan H.

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I am 1/3rd of the way through Will Grayson, Will Grayson and wishing I'd started reading it earlier so I could be finished it by now.

I've been reading a lot Jim Butcher lately.  His books aren't classed as "young adult" but I think older teens into fantasy might enjoy either of his two series:

  • The Dresden Files, a long-running series about a wizard / private detective in modern-day Chicago.  Storm Front is the first of them. 
  • The Codex Alera, a somewhat more conventional epic fantasy series, but very good and with an interesting setting.  Furies of Calderon starts the series.

So--in addition to the usual "what did everyone else read last week?" question, I'll ask another from you "young adults": do you read non-YA books as well?  When did you start?  What are some non-YA books that you think teens would enjoy?

Alan H. is a web librarian at Toronto Public Library.  He hasn't qualified as a young adult for quite some time now.

Zombies are infecting the Vampires

August 5, 2010 | Tatted Librarian

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I’m a huge zombie fan.  One of my fellow Word Out bloggers spend many a night watching zombie flicks and talking about other undead literature.  In fact, I love zombies to such a degree that not only do I help organize the annual Toronto Zombie Walk, but I've also adopted the habit of typing in horror-speak to most of my fellow fiends (friends).  Examples:

Fiend - friend
Ghoul Day- Good Day
Meating - Meeting
Sin-searly - Sincerly
and on and on and on. 

Typing in horror relies a lot on puns. Campy?  Absolutely, but I love that stuff. 

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What We Read Last Week, Part 5 : The Halfway Mark

August 3, 2010 | Alan H.

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I have the final exam for the course I'm taking this summer on Saturday, so most of my reading time last week was spent reviewing the BABOK (Business Analysis Body of Knowledge).  This is nearly as much fun as it sounds!

I did at least manage to borrow Will Grayson, Will Grayson with some intent of reading it.  Maybe by next week, if my brain hasn't totally dissolved from staring at UML diagrams and remembering the difference between user stories and use cases.

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What Did We Read Last Week : Part 4 - The Readening

July 26, 2010 | Alan H.

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Last week I read:

  • Scott Pilgrim Volume 6!  Yay!  TPL already has copies available to borrow / place holds on--I got mine at the midnight release party at The Beguiling, where I had the same thought I usually do going to these kind of events these days: "My gosh, almost everyone else here is younger than me." (IT WILL HAPPEN TO YOU TOO).  Anyway, I've read it through twice now and am still making up my mind about how I feel, but in general I thought it was a wonderful ending.  No more spoilers than that!
  • A ton of Hellboy and B.P.R.D graphic novels.  I haven't kept up with this series in the last couple of years, but man is it good.
  • Soulless by Gail Carriger.  Recommended to me by staff members at the Merril Collection, who've never steered me wrong--this is a fun mix of steampunk, supernatural and Jane Austen-ish romance.  Looking forward to reading the others in the series!

What did everyone else read last week?

Alan H. is a web librarian at Toronto Public Library.  He is getting a little too old to stay up past midnight, even for Scott Pilgrim Volume 6.

What We Read Last Week

July 19, 2010 | Alan H.

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My main read last week was Canadian writer Emily Schultz's incredible Joyland, set in small-town Ontario in 1984 and framed by the first generation of video games.  I'm slightly too young to have been a part of that scene (I'm a child of the original 8-bit Nintendo & the Sega Master System), but so much of this novel's depiction of adolescent video game fixation rang true for my own experiences.  An amazing, dark, powerful novel.  Highly recommended!

I've also been rereading volumes 1-5 of Scott Pilgrim in anticipation of the sixth and final volume's launch this week.  Yay!  Here is my sweet Scott Pilgrim avatar I made after Tatted Librarian's post about the avatar creator:

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What Did We Read Last Week? (2.0)

July 13, 2010 | Alan H.

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I will now interview myself to explain why this wasn't posted on Monday!

AH: Why wasn't this posted on Monday?

AH: For the last week and a bit I've been on vacation in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

AH: Did you have a good time?

AH: Yes!  I went to my cousin's wedding and received roughly 10,000 mosquito bites.

AH: Read anything good while you were there?

AH: Why yes--here it is in convenient point form!

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What Did We Read Last Week?

July 5, 2010 | Alan H.

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I read Inventory from our booklist for a post that will come out later this week.  I've been a long-time reader of The Onion, of which A.V. Club (where most of the lists originally appeared) is a part.  More on the book (in easy-to-read list form) in my post on Wednesday.

Other books I read last week:

Continuing to read Invincible by Robert Kirkman.  The only superhero series I actively keep up with these days--a fresh, somewhat revisionist take on the "teen superhero" genre.  I also read the first volume of the Twin Spica manga (which we don't currently have in our catalogue, but I hope we'll get--it's excellent). 

Finally reading The Judging Eye by R. Scott Bakker, the first book in the second trilogy of his tough, brutal, philosophical fantasy epic.  Start with The Darkness That Comes Before if this sounds like it appeals to you (I'd recommend this for older teens, not the younger crowd--it's pretty brutal in places).

Reread some old Clive Barker horror novels.  His YA series starting with Abarat is excellent--fantasy with a lot of horrific elements.

What have the rest of you been reading?

Alan H. is a web librarian at Toronto Public Library.  He thanks his lengthy commute to work for the amount of reading he gets done.

Favourite Canadian books

June 30, 2010 | Alan H.

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Canadaflag Tomorrow is Canada Day, so let's talk about Canadian books!  They don't have to be young adult (I'm assuming since most of the people talking about them will be teens or youth services librarians that they'll end up being of teen interest even if they're not technically "young adult").

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