Thursday, December 17, 2009

Most Popular Books at PCHS

I've been librarian at PCHS for five years and sometimes like to look at interesting statistics. It's the former math major in me! Today I ran the Popular Titles report, and look what I found! I'm just thrilled that the Meyer titles don't rule the roost--and you can really tell what books I push on the kids--Colasanti, Dessen, Leitch, Runyon, Green. I'll be honest and say that I never blogged about the Meyer or Cast books. But the rest of them I've read and enjoyed and earn me the title book pusher....

Most Checkouts and Renewals
1. Crank by Ellen Hopkins
2. Eclipse by Stephanie Meyer
3. Marked: a House of Night by P.C. Cast
4. When It Happens by Susanne Colasanti
5. The Glass Castle: a Memoir by Jeanette Walls
6. Catch by Will Leitch
7. The Burn Journals by Brent Runyon
8. New Moon by Stephanie Meyer
9. Twilight by Stephanie Meyer
10. Looking for Alaska by John Green
11. Peeps by Scott Westerfeld
12. Raiders Night by Robert Lipsyte
13. The Truth about Forever by Sarah Dessen
14. Cut by Patricia McCormick
15. Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult

Thursday, December 10, 2009

The Imposter's Daughter by Laurie Sandell

This colorful adult graphic novel surprised me because it isn't a cute and fluffy read like the bright colors suggest. It's a memoir, describing Sandell's relationship with her father. Growing up, she idolized him because his stories were larger than life. He met celebrities and heads of state. He was a hero in Vietnam and graduated from NYU and Columbia and had taught at Stanford. But he also had bad days--grumpy, mean, and depressed. Sandell's world revolved around his father and his moods. As a result, she had negative relationships with men in college and as an adult, even as she became a successful writer.

Eventually she decides to interview her father for a feature story and her doubt grows. She checks her sources and finds inconsistencies and people angry with her father for stealing their money. Hence the title of the book (so I'm not giving away any plot by revealing what the title does). Her world falls apart as her father drops off his pedestal.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Along for the Ride by Sarah Dessen, Narrated by Rachel Botchman

I always read Sarah Dessen's books and recommend her quite often to high school girls looking for a dramatic or romantic read. This YA novel kind of disappointed me though, mainly because of the slow pace and the constant referral to bikes. Um, I'm not into bicycles.

Auden is seventeen and raised mainly by her mother, an uptight and overbearing professor. Her father has been mainly absent from her life since the divorce a few years ago, but Auden decides to go live with him and his new wife and baby for the summer at the beach. While she plans on studying for her college classes to get a head start, she ends up finding herself a better life. She ends up socializing for the first time in her life, finding some good girlfriends and a boy to love.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Wishin' and Hopin': A Christmas Story by Wally Lamb

Need a Christmas gift for your grandma? Buy her this book! Wally Lamb has already produced two of Oprah's book club books, so he's already popular with the ladies. In this holiday tale, it's 1964 and Felix Funicello is attending Catholic school. Think A Christmas Story and Chris Crutcher's autobiography all rolled into one. I laughed and giggled while reading this book and think that anyone who lived in the '60's would appreciate it. And, no, kids, I didn't live in the 1960's. This is a great stocking stuffer!

The Local News by Miriam Gershow

Teenager Lydia Pasternak is torn. Her parents ignore her so she can stay out late and drive without a driver's license. The popular kids at school are starting to pay attention to her. She's getting invited to parties and the dance team captain wants to be-friend her. But in this case, popularity has its price. Lydia's older brother is missing. Lydia's mother is organizing searches and the football players wear black bands on their jerseys. Lydia is torn. She's trying to help find her brother, but a little voice in the back of her head wonders if she's glad he's missing. After all, he bullied and teased her. His friends called her flat-chested and hazed her in the hallways when Danny was present. But now that he's missing, everything has changed.

In a quiet way, this adult novel tells a sad tale. What happened to Danny? What will happen to Lydia? Her parents? The private investigator? I had to read this in two sittings to find out.