Category Archives: Book Awards

Mondays With Megan-YALSA 2012 Teen Top Ten Nominees and What Are You Reading?

Holy moly! Did the weekend fly by in a blur or is it just me? I did manage to squeeze in some reading and I am heading to the shelves today to get some fresh books for the week. But before I do, let’s talk about the 2012 Teen Top Ten list. YALSA announced the nominees last week-24 in all. Now it’s time to go forth and READ so we are ready to vote in August and September. The winners will be announced during Teen Read Week in October.  The TTT are chosen by teens, so all you adult YA lovers, you’ll just have to sit this one out. Here’s the list of nominees. I haven’t read them all, but I will check the titles I would pick, if I were allowed to vote.

And the nominees are…
All Good Children by Catherine Austen
Ashes by Isla Bick (TBR)
Abandon by Meg Cabot
Tempest by Julie Cross
What Happened to Goodbye by Sarah Dessen
Wither by Lauren DeStefano
Where She Went by Gayle Forman
Scarlet by A.C. Gaughen (TBR)
Eona:The Last Dragoneye by Alison Goodman
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
Page by Paige by Laura Lee Gulledge
Legend by Marie Lu
Hourglass by Myra McEntire
Cinder by Marissa Meyer
Shine by Lauren Myracle
A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness (TBR)
This Dark Endeavor by Kenneth Oppel
Across the Universe by Beth Revis (TBR)
Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Riggs Ransom
Divergent by Veronica Roth
Between Shades of Grey by Ruta Sepetys
The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater
How to Save a Life by Sara Zarr (TBR)
All These Things I’ve Done by Gabrielle Zevin

That’s only 8! I need to get reading! What your top ten picks be? Moving on.


It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is hosted by Book Journey  and a Children’s/YA edition can be found at Teach Mentor Text.

In my car: I am so close to finishing Okay For Now by Gary Schmidt. In fact, I am pretty sure my 10 minute drive home tonight will be enough. This one has been a real emotional roller coaster! I think I need some Stephanie Plum. I always know what I am going to get with her. So, up next High Five by Janet Evanovich.

My At Work Read: Today at lunch I finished Spell Bound by Rachel Hawkins. I really lingered over this one and I don’t want it to be over. I have enjoyed the Hex Hall series a lot and look forward to Ms. Hawkins’ future endeavors. My next book will be The Traitor and The Tunnel, book three in The Agency mystery series by Y. S. Lee.

At Home: An Irish Country Doctor by Patrick Taylor. This is my gentle read selection for book club. So far so good, as I had expected.

My new graphic novel series: Locke & Key by Joe Hill. I wrapped up Y: Last Man by Brain Vaughan this weekend and I’m still waiting for new Walking Dead and Fables, so it’s on to something new in the meantime.

I must be needing a little break from YA since I only have one on my list for the week. Once I am finished with Traitor I want to read either From Bad to Cursed by Katie Alender, The Power of Six by Pittacus Lore, or Monsters of Men by Patrick Ness. I am feeling the need to catch up on some series!

What are you all reading this week?

Happy Reading!



Monday’s With Megan-Topics Overload Edition

Happy Monday folks! I don’t even know where to begin. What are You Reading? ALA Media Awards? Chinese New Year? Downton Abbey? My super fun and relaxing three days off?  *sigh*

Ok, let’s just get started.

First, I wish you all a Happy Year of the Water Dragon. The Dragon symbolizes power, strength, and good luck. However, it is also an unpredictable sign, so really, who knows what could happen this year? Check out these gorgeous images of New Year festivities from The Daily Mail.

Next, It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? This meme is hosted by Book Journey. I am not entirely sure if I am doing this right, but my feeling is, you can’t go wrong with a book list.

Bedtime Book: Starting tonight I will be reading Bleeding Hearts by Alyxandra Harvey. This book 4 in the Drake Chronicles series, starring the super-dreamy Drake vampires.

E-Book: Unbreak My Heart by Melissa C. Walker an e-galley I have received for review from Netgalley. Expected publication is May, 2012.

BOCD in the carSorta Like a Rock Star by Matthew Quick is the story of Amber Appleton, a homeless teen with tiny dog, a big heart, and unending optimism. I know something bad is about to happen soon, and I really don’t want it to because I am really enjoying upbeat Amber. Word.

I am almost finished with my Playaway of Just Breathe by Susan Wiggs and then I will start listening to, interestingly enough, Bleeding Hearts by Ian Rankin. Weird. I also have Little Women and Clash of Kings going, but I am taking my time with them. No rush.

Finally, click here for a complete list of ALA Media Awards  winners that were announced today. I am excited to see that Susan Cooper won the Margaret A. Edwards Award for lifetime achievement. I love her Dark is Rising series.

Ok, wait. One last thing about Downton Abbey-BATES! 🙂

Happy Reading!


Mondays With Megan-Teen Top Ten Edition


The people have spoken, the votes have been counted, and the winners of the 2011 Teen Top Ten poll are in! These books (along with 15 others, see list here) were nominated by members of teen book groups in 16 school and public libraries. Teens between the ages of 12 and 18 voted for their favorites. And the winners are…

  1. The Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare
  2. Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
  3. Crescendo by Becca Fitzpatrick
  4. I Am Number Four by Pittacus Lore
  5. The Iron King by Julie Kagawa
  6. Matched by Ally Condie
  7. Angel: A Maximum Ride Novel by James Patterson
  8. Paranormalcy by Kiersten White
  9. Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver
  10. Nightshade by Andrea Cremer

There are some great titles on this list! I have read all of them except for I am Number Four, Angel, and Nightshade.

If it were up to me, which it is not, the list would look like this:

1. The Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare
2. Lies by Michael Grant
3. Paranormalcy by Kiersten White
4. Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins
5. Demonglass by Rachel Hawkins
6. Behemoth by Scott Westerfeld
7. Matched by Ally Condie
8. Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
9. Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver
10. The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson

So now that you know which books are totally awesome, get busy reading !

Happy Reading!


The Radleys

About a month ago a coworker recommended I read The Radleys by Matt Haig book. All she said was it was about vampires and it was different. Of course I was interested so I checked it out…promptly forgot about it. You know how TBR piles get, right? Well, when I found it won an Alex Award (the Alex Award is given to an adult book that has teen appeal) it moved to the top of the list. Now, as promised, I have a review for you today.

What it’s about:

Peter and Helen Radley live a quiet life in a small English village with their two teens, Rowan and Clara. They do perfectly ordinary things like attend book club and have dinner with the neighbors. Their boring life, however, is nothing but a disguise. The Radleys have a secret that even their children don’t know. They are vampires. For more than a decade the Radleys have been Abstainers, no longer feeding on human blood. Their true identity may have remained secret had Clara not been forced to defend herself against a classmate. In a panic Peter reaches out to his estranged brother, a practicing vampire, with devastating consequences.

What I thoughts:
My coworker was right, this was different. There was plenty of teen angst, but not from a poor girl pining over a dreamy vampire. Instead, the angst stems from the more traditional issue of struggling with one’s identity, establishing values that are different from one’s parents’, and trying to fit in at school. Rowan and Clara have very different reactions to the news that they are vampires, but I felt that both were reasonable and appropriate. I really liked that this was more a story about families and identity (both self and group identity) than about vampires. In fact, I started substituting other “afflictions” with vampirism, and the basic story remains the same. Pretty neat, I think. Teens will relate to Rowan and Clara, and adults will appreciate the older Radleys’ struggle with their marriage and mid-life crises. Overall, I really enjoyed this book and would recommend it to older teens. Also, I loved that the chapters are short.

That’s all for now. I’ll have a review for The Ruins of Gorlan soon. I really liked it and plan to read more in this 9 book series.

Happy Reading!


Five Flavors of Dumb

As promised, today I give you my thoughts on the book Five Flavors of Dumb by Antony John

The high school rock band Dumb is soaring after their big win at Seattle’s Battle of the Bands. Piper Vaughn is fuming over a family betrayal. Their usually separate worlds collide in the hall one afternoon. In a moment of outrage Piper manages to insult the band and land a job with them. As the new manager of Dumb Piper must get the band a paying gig within a month. It is immediately obvious that the five band members are going to be a handful. Juggling their personalities is a full-time job on its own. What is not immediately obvious to Piper is the band’s talent. The trickiest part of her job is to promote a band that she cannot hear.

 While her disability doesn’t stop her at school and with the band it has been causing tension at home ever since her parents used her college fund to pay for cochlear implants for her baby sister. Mourning the loss of the deaf connection with her sister, angry at a father who doesn’t sign, and missing her best friend, Piper throws herself into the band. It’s a rocky road to Dumb’s first paid performance, but along the way Piper discovers Kurt Cobain, Jimi Hendrix, and the real Piper Vaughn.

I LOVED this book. First of all the cover? Awesome:

Ok, on to the story. I wasn’t sure what to expect from a book about a deaf girl and a rock band, but it works. The author masterfully weaves multiple storylines into a compelling and cohesive whole. This is not just a book about being deaf or being in a rock band. It’s more than that. It is about rising to a challenge, overcoming obstacles, and coming out the other side with a better understanding of yourself. It’s the story of two music icons, Jimi Hendrix and Kurt Cobain. It’s the story of a family thrown off-balance, working to set things right again. It’s a story about personal histories, and friendship, and forgetting what you thought you knew about yourself and others. It’s the story of Dumb, five separate flavors, struggling to be whole. It’s the story of how Piper Vaughn, deaf girl, learns that you just have to feel the music to be a rock star. Five Flavors of Dumb by Antony John is an inspiring feel-good read and impossible to put down.

I loved Piper Vaughn. She is smart, determined, and hilarious. She makes mistakes, but she owns them and learns from them. She is a master at the art of sarcasm. Her transformation throughout the course of the book is subtle, but powerful. I also appreciated her family. It is refreshing to read about a normal family. And by normal I mean a family that has problems and arguments and even resentments, but still manages to find ways to show that they care. The five flavors of the Vaughn family blend beautifully. I wish there was more.

Finally, congratulations to Antony John and Five Flavors of Dumb for winning the 2011 Schneider Family Book Award. This award honors an author or illustrator whose work embodies an artistic expression of the disability experience for children and adolescent audiences.

Suggested read alikes: Marcelo in the Real World by Francisco X. Stork, Rocky Road by Rose Kent, The Dark Days of Hamburger Halpin by Josh Berk, Born to Rock by Gordon Korman, Audrey, Wait! by Robin Benway

Happy Reading!


Mondays with Megan…on Tuesday.

Well, my blogging streak is over already. That didn’t take long! But, I am not going to let it get me down. It was just not meant to be yesterday, even though there was plenty to write about. For instance, I wanted to talk about the YALSA book awards winners that  were announces yesterday. I also had a book review ready to go, I finished books over the weekend, started new ones and I was going to mention that a practicum student is joining us at the library (just in case you are wondering, a practicum is the interning portion of a Masters in Library and Information Science degree) But it was a busy and eventful day yesterday and I ran out of time. I started a list of award winners, but there are so many that it’s easier to just direct you to the complete list. I really have my work cut out for me this year because I have not read most of these books.

Here is the report I would have given yesterday:

I met all of my reading goals last week! I finished and reviewed Out for Blood by Alyxandra Harvey. I read Five Flavors of Dumb by Antony John, which was awesome!  I will have a review up this week.  I finished Out From Boneville by Jeff Smith. I am still not sure how I feel about the Bone cousins. I felt like is was just starting to get good at the end, so I will pick up the next in the series and see if I like it better. Finally, I started a new audiobook, Virals by Kathy Reichs.

Here’s the plan for this week:

1. Read The Poison Diaries by Maryrose Wood with the Duchess of Northumberland. This is  my first YA historical fiction of the year.
2. Finish listening to Virals by Kathy Reichs. I am half way through now and things are starting to get weird!
3. Start Black Bird, the manga series by Kanoko Sakurakoji
4. Finish Away, an adult historical fiction by Amy Bloom

That should keep me busy, and on track with the reading challenges.

That’s all for today, but stay tuned for pictures of amazing hand-made duct tape creations. The program is tonight and I am very excited!

Happy Reading!


Mondays with Megan: Youth Media Awards

Aaah, it’s Monday again, and I for one am happy that last week is over! I have finally won the battle against my cold and am looking forward to a productive week.

Since I spent a lot of time sleeping this weekend, I only have 1 book to report on. The Lonely Hearts Club by Elizabeth Eulburg.

Penny Lane (named for a Beatles song) is fed up with cheating, lying , scheming boys so she swears off dating and starts The Lonely Hearts Club (also named for a Beatles song). Membership:1, until the word gets out and suddenly it’s the most popular club in school! Things are great, except Penny is having a hard time ignoring her feelings for Ryan. Can Penny have it all-best girlfriends and a boyfriend who is actually a great guy?

I really enjoyed this book. It was quick and funny as well as empowering and inspirational. Penny and her friends are smart and confident and they stand up for themselves and each other. Throw in all the Beatles references and you have winner! I would recommend this to 1. any teenaged girl and 2. fans of Sarah Dessen, Meg Cabot, and Susane Colasanti.

Speaking of winners, the American Library Association announced the winners of their youth media awards. For the complete list click here, but here a few of the highlights:

 Michael L. Prinz Award winner, Going Bovine by Libba Bray

William C. Morris debut YA author award winner, Flash Burnout by L.K. Madigan

 YALSA Excellence in Nonfiction Award winner, Charles and Emma by Deborah Heiligman

Ok, this is becoming a very long post so I will tell you about the books that are coming out this week some other time! Check out all the award winners when you have time.