Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Book Review: The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman, 4 out of 5 stars

The newberry award winning book for 2008, The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman is more creepy take on the themes of the Jungle Book. Instead of an orphan raised by wolves in a jungle, an orphan is raised by ghosts in a graveyard.

The book starts off with a chilling hook, a triple murder that sets up why Nobody Owens must live in secret in a graveyard, though the rest of the book, while dark, has more of a sad charm and humor about it. Several characters are obvious nods to Jungle book characters, but by the end of the book they've all become their own characters. I particularly liked Gaiman' werewolf character (who's indeed a mirror for one of Rudyard Kipling's character, but I won't spoil which), my regret is that it wasn't used more.

Gaiman's writing pattern is to take old stories and twist them. Sometimes, I think he does so to the point of detriment to the original, but here, the characters are their own and I think avoid that problem. I still recommend the 'original' over this, and Gaiman's sad, wistful view of death that pervades the book may make it difficult for the especially young.

Still, this is a very well crafted book. I also must point out that the mist like illustrations that accompany it complement the book nicely. In fact, It makes me wish more books (aside from graphic novels) used illustrations as effectively.

No Teen Programming this Week

Attention! There is no Teen Programming this Thursday! Also, the library is closed Jan 1-2

Next Tuesday at 6 will be our Teen Writers' Group, followed by Board Game Night on Thursday, then Anime Club on Saturday, January 8th at 1 pm.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Woods Runner by Gary Paulsen

4 out of 5 stars

A quick read that will appeal to reluctant readers, historical buffs, fans of war and suspense novels, and fans of Gary Paulsen's other books.

The year is 1776, in west Pennsylvania, Samuel is 13, but already providing for his family through his hunting skills. British troops attack his town, and kidnap his parents, and Samuel is determined to fin them. Paulsen gives us short historical asides between chapters which help flesh out the context for the reader. It's a harsh war book, more about a family caught in middle of a conflict than about the high ideals of the revolution.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

In order to spice up this blog, I thought I'd paste some of my good reads page reviews here. Keep in mind, these opinions are mine alone!

Unwind by Neal Shusterman

Went back and forth on whether to go 3 or 4 stars with this, finally changed my mind back to three.  It's a pretty horrifying book, with some interesting questions...but I think it went a bit in the wrong direction from the start.  
In short: Trying to attach it to abortion hurt the book.  It was unnecessary.  My opinion, but let me explain:

So a war between anti-abortion and pro-abortion forces breaks out, and the resolution is that a child is protected until they are 13.  From 13-18, parents have the option to "Unwind" their child. The child is still "alive," just distributed amongst those in need of organs and body parts. This is largely accepted and on top of it, all major religious organizations have apparently bought into it wholeheartedly, endorsing church members to "tithe" excess children.  As a side plot: Mothers with unwanted children can "stork" unwanted babies in rather 'quaint' fashion: leave a child at a family's door step. If you don't get caught, it's legally theirs.  Our story focuses on three children who are set up to be unwound for different reasons, and their attempt to escape.

Creepy premise, and I don't find the idea of parents donating their teens organs as implausible as some.  History is loaded with human and child sacrifice after all.  And teens in our country frankly exist in a rather ambiguous legal limbo at times.  And the fact that many children are "storked" on other parents adds to the tendency for parents to think "It's not my kid anyway."

The problem is that as a resolution to an abortion war it doesn't make much sense. Almost all those against abortion believe in a human soul, and aren't going to find the pseudo-zen, materialistic logic that defines life as simply organic material, so dividing the child means you don't have to 'die.'  And on the pro abortion side, well, having to raise the child until 13 kindof defeats the purpose of abortion in the first place I suspect.  I understand it's not meant to be a 'good' compromise, and is meant to be a desperate attempt to end a war, but it bugs me a lot.  

Plus it leads me to ask uncomfortable questions about the book.  The author actually tries to be neutral in the debate, but I'll just ask this: At one point, when debating the war, a kid, as a kind of "last word in the argument" (where characters go back and forth for awhile, until one character says some profound one sentence phrase which seems to be the best, last word), states that if more people had been willing to say "I don't know"; in the abortion debate, the war might not have happened.  Interesting point...but would the kids about to be unwound say the same thing about the unwinding debate?  The practice of unwinding is just as accepted in their day as abortion is in our society.  

Alright, all that said, once the background of the war starts to fade in the latter half of the book, I found this nagging complaint to fade a bit and actually got drawn into the book.  There's good characterization here, I like the picture of a kid finding out behind his parents back that they've signed him up to be unwound, then getting revenge by being excessively nice to them.  The book grabs onto a fear of alienation teens have from the adult world, as if all the dirty looks they get for hanging out at the mall hide a secret wish that they could just go away.  And the implications of a society where organs are so easily available to be taken and shared is delved into.  So I'm not saying this a bad story.  And it is certainly very, very creepy, cringe worthy at times, especially if the idea of having your body taken apart pushes your buttons.

I'll add that some scenes will almost certainly be too intense for younger or just plain sensitive readers.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Upcoming Teen Events

Upcoming @ the Teen Scene:

12/9 Movie: Prince Caspian (PG) 5-8 pm
12/11 Teen Anime Club 1-3 pm
12/16 Teen Game Night 6-8
12/23 Make Christmas Cookies 6-8
12/24-26 Library Closed.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Harry Potter movie this Thursday

This Thursday at RPL: Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince. Doors open at 5 pm! Be there early and get hyped for the release of the new movie!

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Battle of the Books

Think you know your YA books? Come to the Library at 6 on November 4 for our Battle of the Books! We'll have book Jeopardy! Oh, and video games too.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Halloween Snacks

Make and enjoy Halloween snacks this Thursday at the teen scene! Carmel spiders and more!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Teen Read Week

C'mon this Thursday at 6 for Game Night folks! We'll have game tournaments and prizes!

Plus come to the Teen Scene from now until thanksgiving to vote for the best and worst books, book characters and movies of the past year!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Poltergeist this Thursday at the library

This Thursday at 6, we'll watch the classic horror film, Poltergeist! This movie is for patrons 13 and up only!

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

This Thursday...

Feeling brave? Come listen to and share frightening tales this Thursday at 6 at the Rogers Public Library!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Anime Explosion!

Anime Explosion Thursday at 6! Howl's Moving castle, crafts and more!

Any people interested in an Anime Club at the library should come and voice their opinion here!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Get on the Mic!

Teen Karaoke Night this Thursday at 6 pm! Get Creative at your library!

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Tuesday Program

Tuesday Teen Writers' group tonight at 6! ages 13-18 in the Proctoring Room.

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Book Buffet!

Check out our Teen Book Buffet this Thursday at 6 pm! Have dinner on us and a catch a good book in the progress.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Caught Reading!

Today is "Read Comics in Public Day," so here's Evan reading a copy of Captain America by Ed Brubaker. You can find trade paperbacks of Captain America and other comics at the Rogers Public Library today!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

No Library Programming this week

There's no library programming for teens this week, unfortunately. But we still have a lot of upcoming teen programs in September:

September 2nd @ 6-8 p.m.
Book Buffet: Have dinner on us while you read quietly! Ages 13-18
September 7th @ 6-7 p.m.
Enter the Conversation, Teen Writers Tuesday: Teen writers of all types
are welcome! Learn and share tips on good writing. Ages 13-18
September 9th @ 6-8 p.m.
Movie Night: Percy Jackson and the Olympians (PG). Ages 13-18.
September 16th @ 6-8 p.m.
Teen Game Night. Nintendo Wii, Guitar Hero, board games and more! Ages 13-18.
September 23rd @ 6-8 p.m.
Karaoke: Display your singing skills for all to hear! Ages 13-18
September 30th @ 6-8 p.m.
Anime Explosion: Discuss future meetings of Anime Club and create Japanese
themed crafts. We’ll also be showing Howl’s Moving Castle (PG)! Ages 13-18

Monday, August 09, 2010

Congrats to Reason to Live!

Congrats to the band Reason to Live for winning our Battle of the Bands!

And with that, Summer Reading Club is over for 2010. But we still have a Photo Workshop class this Thursday at 1, plus a movie, Ferris Bueller's Day off Thursday at 6 pm.

Hope to see you there!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Tie Dye and the Battle of the Bands!

Come join us for a tie dye workshop on Tuesday this week at 1.

Then get ready for the Battle of the Bands, this Saturday, July 31st at noon!

Our bands this year our:

Samurai Luncheon
Surf de Soleil
and Reason to Live, a new local Rogers band!

Spread the word, and we'll see you there!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Teen Improv

Teen Improv this Tuesday at 1! Come share your creative acting skills with other teens!

Friday, July 02, 2010

Library Closed July 4th and 5th

We will be closed this Sunday and Monday in celebration of Independence Day. Enjoy your weekend, and try a few American themed books in the meantime:

The real revolution : the global story of American independence / by Marc Aronson.

Why did the American Revolution take place? It was about more than the dates and details we all know: war elephants charging a fort in India and high-stakes gambles of bankers in Scotland, among other events, also played a part in the "real revolution" in the minds of the entire population of what would become the United States.

Under siege! : three children at the Civil War battle for Vicksburg
/ by Andrea Warren

This book looks at the 1862-63 battle for Vicksburg through the eyes of three children: ten-year-old Lucy, the daughter of a Vicksburg merchant; eleven-year-old Willie, the son of a minister; and twelve-year old Frederick, the son of Ulysses S. Grant.

The smart aleck's guide to American history / by Adam Selzer.

Improve your historical knowledge with this witty and efficient presentation of pivotal themes and events such as the American Revolution, Civil War, and civil rights movement. This clever and informative work follows a chronological arrangement from early exploration to the inauguration of President Barack Obama in January 2009.

Eyes of the emperor / Graham Salisbury.

Following orders from the United States Army, several young Japanese American men train K-9 units to hunt Asians during World War II.

Give me liberty / L.M. Elliott.

Follows the life of thirteen-year-old Nathaniel Dunn, from May 1774 to December 1775, as he serves his indentureship with a music teacher in Williamsburg, Virginia, and witnesses the growing rift between patriots and loyalists, culminating in the American Revolution.

Captain America : Winter soldier. Vol.1

Captain America's nemesis, the Red Skull, has been murdered and Cap must find his killer. Plus, he has to retrieve the Skull's last project, a Cosmic Cube that can alter reality, and stop a group of the Skull's followers from setting off bombs in Paris, London, and Manhattan.

Don't forget: Book Club this Tuesday at 6 pm!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Deathly Hallows Trailer Up:

I thought I'd post a link in case some Harry Potter fans were unaware:


Sunday, June 27, 2010

Still Going Strong!

We had over 22 people attend our Boating Class last week!

Thanks to everyone who's helped make our programs a big success this summer! There's still time to sign up for Summer Reading Club! Get free books, prizes and a shot at an MP3 player!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Book Club and Summer Reading Kick Off!!

Come this Tuesday at 6 pm in the Teen Garden and enjoy our outdoor book club! Discuss the latest books, get ideas for your next book to read!

Speaking of reading, we're celebrating Summer Reading Club June 5th at the library from 1-4 with events for all ages! In particular, come to the library lawn and play some volleyball, then limbo to the music!

See you there!


Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Game on!

Feeling competitive?

Come to our Super Smash Bros Tournament Thursday at 6! Show us your gaming skills!

Feeling creative?

Come to the Anime Club and paint and design paper lanterns Saturday at 12!

And don't forget to sign up for Summer Reading Club!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Sign Up for Summer Reading Club!

Sign up here.

Also, check out a printable pdf form of our programs here.

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Anime Club Reminder

Anime Club this Saturday at noon! Share fanart and fanfiction and watch a program of your choice!

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Book Club in the Sun

Teen Book Club outside this evening in the Teen Garden at 6 pm. Come have some lemonade and discuss your favorite books!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Don't forget: Summer Reading Club registration opens Saturday!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Get Crafty: Custom Journals

Thanks to all who came to our anime club! You can see pictures of their parasol art on our facebook page!

Want to design something else? We have a craft your own journal workshop this Tuesday at 6 pm.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Anime Club!

Anime Club this Saturday!!!! Design Japanese parasols!!! 12-2 pm in the Community Room. Bring your friends and creativity!!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Summer Reading Club is Coming...

Thanks to all those who came to our Teen Coffee and Poetry House Thursday. It was fun!

Registration for summer reading club starts May 1st! Know how many books you'll read this summer? By the way, it's open to adults too, so get mom and dad in on the act!

Our next program is on April 24th: It's Anime Club again, and we're creating japanese parasols!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Teen Poetry Coffee House

Hello again, this week, I'd like to invite you to the library on Thursday, April 15th to celebrate National Poetry Month!

Come to the RPL Community room at 6 p.m. and share your Poetry in an open air setting! Ages 13-18 and guests.

Also, you can now become a fan of the Rogers Public Library on Facebook. Check out all the latest info, and even connect to our catalog.

Finally, a reminder that the NWA Youth Battle of the Bands is coming this July 31st!

Got a band? We've got auditions this Saturday (April 17th) at 5:30 but we need you to apply first! If that won't work, email me (eday@rogersark.org) or join us at http://www.myspace.com/nwayouthbattleofthebands.

Thursday, April 08, 2010


Anime Club this weekend!!! We're showing Ponyo, (rated G). Ages 13-18 and guests welcome, show starts at noon in the RPL Community Room.

Monday, April 05, 2010

Book Club Tuesday!

Come the Rogers Public Library Community room at 6 pm on Tuesday, April 6th to discuss the latest books at the RPL Teen Scene. Got a book you're dying to talk about? Need suggestions? Want to kick back and relax after school? Come on down!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

A New Arrival and a Familiar Event.

We have a new Young Adult Library Assistant! Please Welcome Samantha Smith to the team!

Also, the NWA Youth Battle of the Bands returns this summer on July 31st! If you know a high school band interested in participating, send an email to eday@rogersark.org.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Spring Break Teen Scene Schedule

Tuesday, 3 pm Picture Frame Craft, Community Room
Wednesday, 1 pm Star Trek (PG-13) Community Room
Saturday, 12 pm Anime Club, Community Room

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Smash Bros Tourny!

Game Night Thursday, March 11! 6-8 pm! We've got a Super Smash Bros Brawl Tournament. To reserve a spot, go to our online calendar at rpl.lib.ar.us and click on the event!

Also, don't forget about Anime Club this Saturday at 12. We'll be talking about the Arkansas Anime Festival and watch Inuyasha: The Fire on Mystic Island.

Monday, March 01, 2010

Teen Book Club at a New Time!

This Tuesday the Teen Book Club is an hour later. We now start at 6 p.m.

Got a book you want to talk about? Have a book you'd love to read together? Come and check us out! Ages 13-18 and parents are welcome.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Hershey Candy Rose Craft!

Tomorrow, February 23rd, 5-6 pm at the Rogers Public Library:

Teens Get Crafty! Candy Rose, ages 13-18
Join us to me your own Hershey Kiss Rose! Register online or call the library.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Upcoming Teen Schedule

Hello everyone!

There’s lots of fun coming up at the Rogers Public Library Teen Scene!


Thursday, February 18th, 6-8 pm Teen Game Night, ages 13-18.

Come and try out Nintendo Wii, Guitar Hero, Board Games and more!

Tuesday, February 23rd, 5-6 pm Teens Get Crafty! Candy Rose, ages 13-18

Join us to me your own Hershey Kiss Rose! Register online or call the library.

Saturday, February 27th, 12-2 pm Anime Club, ages 13-18 and guests

cme make a tasty snack of Pocky with us!

For March:

Tuesday, March 2nd, 6-7 pm, Teen Book Club!

Note the later time! Come and share what books you’ve been reading! Get suggestions for great new books! Ages 13-18 and parents.

Teen Tech Week!

Tuesday, March 9th, 6-6:30 pm, Teen Tech Demonstration

To be held in Teen Scene! Come have a demonstration of all the tools the library has to offer that can help you do homework and have fun as well! See how to use our databases, get online help from tutors, and download an audio book from your own home! Teens ages 13-18 and their guest are invited to attend.

Thursday, March 11th, 6-8 pm, Teen Tech Week: Game Night Throwdown!

Show us your skills! Register for this event to compete with other area teens at Super Smash Bros Brawl for Nintendo Wii! They'll be other games like Guitar hero available for those who are not participating or knocked out of the tournament. Ages 13-18.

In order to register, fill on the information below or call 479-621-1152, ext 32.

Monday, February 08, 2010

Empower Me 2 Be Workshop

Don't forget, this Tuesday at 5 pm:

'Empower Me 2 Be' is a fun and exciting monthly workshop to help teens learn new healthy recipies, excercises and confidence in who you are! Teens ages 13-18 and their guest are invited to attend.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Teen Book Club

Check out our Teen Book Club at 5 pm in the Community Room! Talk about your latest favorite reads.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Closed again

The Rogers Public Library will be closed Saturday, January 30th. Again, we apologize for the inconvenience.

Library Closed

The Rogers Public Library will be closed today due to the weather. We apologize for the inconvenience.

In the meantime, curl up with a good book and stay warm!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Duck Tape Workshop

Calling all Rogers teens, come this Tuesday at 5 pm and make all sorts of stuff with duck tape at our Ductigami workshop!

We'll make wallets, cell phone covers, roses and more out of duck tape! No registration required.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Michael L. Printz Award

Congrats to Libba Bray for her book Going Bovine, winning the Michael L. Printz award for best YA book. Check out the list of winners and honor books here.

Anime Club

Come make Japanese Papers Fans this Saturday at the Anime Club! Meet us in the Community Room from 12-2!

By the way, if you haven't noticed, we have our own display out in the library hallway by the magazines now! This month's theme is "New books for a new year" and features various new titles fro you to check out! We'll update it every month!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Martin Luther King Jr Day Movie!

Join us this Monday to celebrate MLK Jr Day with a special showing of "The Great Debaters" (PG-13) @ 1-3pm. Ages 13-18 and parents welcome!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Movie tonight!

Be here at 5 pm tonight for a screening of Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince (PG). Note the early start time.

Saturday, January 09, 2010

We're open again today 9-5. Stay toasty and share your ideas at our Teen Council @ 11, then Ranama 1/2 shows @ our Anime Club @ 12.