Monday, July 3, 2017


DK is known for their amazing informational texts. At ALA this year they were pushing their line of STEAM, Maker, and Coding titles. You can see a few of the books in the image above, but Day 4 of ALA Bites is really about the online resources that you can pair with these titles!


Friday, June 30, 2017

ALA Bites: Yu-Gi-Oh! at the Library

Remember the anime where the kid with the crazy hair used cards to make monsters come alive and battle in an arena? If you do then you realize I am talking about Yu-Gi-Oh! Day 3 of ALA Bites brings a programming opportunity for this incredibly popular anime turned worldwide card game phenomenon. The folks over at Konami, the creators of the card game, want the Yu-Gi-Oh! Trading Card Game to be a part of your library programming. In this new initiative you can have a local Yu-Gi-Oh! Brand Ambassador come to your library to teach your patrons how to play the game! For more information see the scans below! (So many exclamation points!)

Konami contacts:

For demo kit inquiries -

For Brand Ambassador inquiries -

Thursday, June 29, 2017

ALA Bites: Scholastic Online Preview

Day 2 of ALA Bites brings you an easy to peruse online preview of Scholastic's upcoming titles for Fall 2017. With these videos you can hear directly from the authors and illustrators about their works. This preview has videos from Daniel Jose Older, Alan Gratz, Peter Sis, Jordan Sonnenblick, Maggie Stiefvater, Jennifer L. Holm and more. Click the photo above to visit the Scholastic Fall 2017 Preview containing titles for all ages!

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

ALA Bites: Pokemon Adventures

Upon returning from ALA Annual in Chicago the SCLS-YS team has a few things that we came upon that we want to share with you. From posters to programs to upcoming titles look for a new bite each day of the upcoming week!

First up is this poster we found at Viz Media's booth. The Pokemon Adventures manga is one of those popular items that many libraries can barely keep on the shelves. When they are on the shelves the question is, "What order do these go in?" Since these series within a series are crafted after the video games as they have been released there is a specific order to the volumes as well as the sub-series within. Take a look at this graphic to see how exactly the Pokemon Adventures series should live on your shelves!

For a full view of the poster with series' annotations click here!

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Reviews: Galley Group - March 2nd

Reviews of soon-to-be published reads by Galley Group*

Kristen from Brentwood

Seven Days of You by Cecilia Vinesse

Sophia is leaving Tokyo to move back to NJ. She's leaving the only 2 best friends, Mika and David, she's ever had. She has one week left with them and with the place she loves. Throwing a wrench into her week...Jamie, Mika's best friend is moving back from the States. He left 3 years ago, right after a big blow out with Sophia. Like so many teen books there are love triangles galore! Sophia has a crush on David. David is dating Caroline. Mika is secretly sleeping with David. And Jamie has always liked Sophia! And during the week Sophia decides she likes Jamie. So much drama! Drama! Drama! Not as good as Jennifer E. Smith but close. 3 stars

Brian from Patchogue-Medford

A List of Cages by Robin Roe

Julian is a young boy who has a slew of problems. He lives with his uncle/godfather Russell where there is definitely more to that relationship than meets the eye. After losing his parents to a car accident, he moved in with Adam, a boy slightly older and Adam's caring mother. But now Julian is in a different situation and he definitely needs a friend. Can he get the help he needs before it is too late? This was a great novel filled with a very memorable cast of characters. I enjoyed all of the side characters, in particular Emerald and Charlie and Adam's other friends as well. This book deals with a very difficult topic in a very well written manner and is a book I think I will be keeping an eye on for award lists this year. 5 stars

Love and First Sight by Josh Sundquist

We meet a young guy named Will who is blind. Will has been going to a special school, but decides to go mainstream. When he starts the school, he is treated like an invalid which is the last way he wants to be handled. He stumbled upon a table of nice kids and becomes enamored with one of them named Cecily. But when Will gets the chance to have an experimental procedure that could allow him to see, will he jump at the chance? This book was just alright for me. The writing was so so, and there were a few scenes where the characters seemed to be a bit overwritten. It was a very quick read, but not a particularly memorable one. 3 stars

The Truth of Right Now by Kara Lee Corthron

High school is not an easy time and it’s very hard for Lilith, "Lily," who has returned to school after a suicide attempt. Her former best friends are acting weird and she absolutely cannot stand her lab partner Tara. But Lily encounters Dari, an African American student who was transferred to the school, and the two loners bond. Can the budding romance survive Lily's ongoing mental struggles? This book was pretty well written with some interesting side characters. I enjoyed the switching chapters and thought that the mother was very memorable as well, as well as Dari's extremely nasty father. This was a lot like other teen romance stories, but it kept me engaged throughout. 4 stars

Jocelyn from Westhampton

You’re Welcome Universe by Whitney Gardner

At Julia’s school for the deaf her best friend is slandered on a wall. OUr artist main character decides to paint a mural over the walled abuse only to be turned in by the friend she was trying to protect. Now expelled Julia is forced to go to a public school where she will be mixed with hearing kids as well. At the public school, she discovers the upsides to being deaf. This book has normal teenage angst, thoughts about fitting in, Julia finding herself, and whether or not she is her art. This is a great book that looks inward and seeing the world not just through the noises that you typically hear in normal communication. The book has a lot of elements - pictures, sign diagrams, text conversations, depth. Easy & quick to read with wide appeal. Light on male characters. 15+. 4 stars

Catherine from Hauppauge

The Someday Birds by Sally J. Pla

An awesome book about a kid who is autistic and has two twin brothers who wreak havoc and a boy-crazy older sister. They live with their grandmother because their father is in the hospital with a head injury - he’s a war photojournalist who was injured. Charlie is a lovable character who progresses through life. It’s a road trip book! They are in California and the dad has to go to a specialist in Virginia. During the trip they discover connections between their father and his new 24 hour caretaker. Another aspect of the story is that Charlie loves birding. He and his dad had a list of “someday birds” and he’s checking off birds on the list as they travel across the country. The author weaves “bird” mentality into the story in an incredible way. Each section is a different bird that he’s about to discover. He finds a journal from his favorite birder at a store and discovers he lives near the hospital where his dad is, and is hoping to be able to return it to him in person. Well-developed characters with endearing relationships. Satisfying ending. Nothing objectionable content-wise, but young teen for concepts. 5 very shiny stars.

Jan from Longwood

The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl: Squirrel Meets World by Shannon Hale

Set in the Marvel Universe, Doreen Green is in 9th grade and has the powers of a squirrel and a hidden squirrel tail. Her hidden tail makes her a big girl -- calls it her “badonk”. She has super strength, super hearing, a large bushy tale and tremendous agility, and of course she can talk to squirrels. She has moved to a new town, is sunny, optimistic, quirky, but has trouble making friends because of her large badonk. Doreen ends up making some great friends inc luding a classmate who is deaf and the local squirrels, including special friend Tippy Toe. When the bad guy emerges, the Micro Manager (MM), Doreen texts other Marvel heroes for help. At the climax, he kidnaps several squirrels as well as the toddler that Doreen babysits! The book is written in third person, but is footnoted throughout with 1st person snarky comments from Squirrel Girl herself. This title reads down - 5th + even though Doreen is in 9th grade. Will appeal to everyone, but especially Marvel fans. 4 stars for charm and cuteness, loses a star for being a bit overwritten and lagging in the middle.

Jessica from Center Moriches

See you in the Cosmos, Carl Sagan by Jack Cheng

This road trip book is for middle graders, but can absolutely read up. For those who are curious Carl Sagan was an astronomer who recorded sounds of life on earth on a golden disc that was sent into space on a Voyager mission. Alex, our main protagonist, is so obsessed with Carl Sagan, he names his adopted dog after him. Alex has an ipod that he’s spray painted gold that he talks into all the time recording the daily happenings in his life. He wants to send it into space like Carl Sagan did. Each chapter of the book gives you the dialogue, written out like a script, that is being recorded on his ipod. Alex is extremely likable, and mostly very mature (cooks for his mom, who is detached, dad is MIA, older brother lives away) with charming, immature qualities as well. Alex decides to go on a journey with his dog and his rocket to get on the train and get to the camp to get to the competition where he can send his iPod into space. WARNING: his dog goes missing on the trip, there are mysterious siblings, strangers on the trip, and mom has severe mental health issues that send her to the hospital. This book has both chuckle-out-loud worthy and heart-wrenching moments. A great quick read. 5 stars!

Khan from Port Jefferson

Perijee and Me by Ross Montgomery

Ten-year-old Caitlin, is dyslexic and is hiding it from her parents. While attending school she finds a little white blob on the island they live on. She names the little alien Perijee. Perijee is a combo between ET, Gremlins, and Godzilla.She feeds him and he starts growing. She brings him home and he starts destroying the house. Dad eventually calls the army who knocks down the house to try and get him, but he’s already huge and angry/scared. After beign taken to a special army camp for safety Caitlin knows that she is the only one who can stop Perijee from destroying their home. As she makes her way off the camp she meets allies and groups of people who want Perijee to be their god. Caitlin must figure out where Perijee is from and how to return him to not only his normal state, but also his home. 5th-8th grade that reads on a higher level due to astronomy talk. 4.5 stars

Optimists Die First by Susan Nielsen

Petula is both obsessed and afraid of death. While meeting with her school guidance counselor she says that she has done some research and it turns out that optimists die ten years earlier than pessimists. Hearing this her guidance counselor makes her join an art therapy group. She meets a group of kids who are all dealing with their own problems. We also discover more about Petula’s past and how her baby sister died when she was younger. Throughout the book the group of kids work together to help each other deal with their tragic pasts. 5 stars

*Galley Group is a group of young adult librarians that meet about every 6-8 weeks to discuss ARCs, or galleys, they have read in the interim. They discuss plot, age group, writing, audience, opinion, etc. The group was made to help with collection development and reader's advisory for our teen patrons. If you would like more information about Galley Group contact Derek!

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

First-Ever ARClub Meeting!

The first-ever meeting of ARClub was held today at the Bohemia Panera! We were a small group, but we were mighty! Check out the books we discussed below, and keep an eye out for them when they're published. Join us for our second meeting on Wednesday, March 29 @ SCLS at 10 am. Click here to register or email Patty. There will be refreshments and fun! At the bottom of this post is a picture showing ARCs currently available (you can also read and review your own). Email Darla to be sent a copy.

Derek from SCLS

5/02/17 from Crown Publishers
This debut novel tells the story of Lemonade Liberty Witt, who has been taught her whole life that you should try your hardest to take lemons and make lemonade -- in other words, make the best of things. But this is the biggest lemon that Lemonade has ever been given - her mother has died. She has now moved to Northern California to live with her grandfather Charlie, basically a stranger to her. This is also the town where the famous Bigfoot video was taken, so everyone is obsessed with it. Her grandfather even owns a Bigfoot souvenir shop. Everything at her grandfather’s house is different - he has the wrong soap, the wrong breafkast, everything. Her first day there, she meets a little boy, Tobin, the founder and leader of Bigfoot Detectives, Inc. which he runs out of a garage to investigate local Bigfoot sightings. He stays at the grandfather’s house while his mom, a nurse, works. At first Lemonade and Tobin's personalities clash, but he takes her on as his assistant at the detective agency and they start to have a great time. Eventually we learn that Tobin’s father went to Vietnam where he became a POW and was thought to be dead, but one day they found out he was alive. When they went to meet him at the airport, he was gone - a double loss. Lemonade and Tobin's losses make them closer. The book is mainly about Lemonade dealing with the “volcano” of emotions inside of her. It’s about grief, finding your place in a new home, and finding family and friends during a hard time. Cute, funny, touching, and a tear-jerker. The author, who is a child psychologist by day, has a way of explaining Lemonade’s depression and anxiety that is real and relatable. Tobin is based on her son, who she lost when he was nine months old. This is her way of making her own lemonade out of her life’s lemons.

Four stars

Maeghan from Northport/Mastics-Moriches-Shirley

The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl: Squirrel Meets World by Shannon Hale and Dean Hale
2/7/17 from Marvel Press
Maeghan got into this book because she’s already a big fan of Marvel's Squirrel Girl comics and wanted to see how it translated to the children’s novel form. She thinks it reads very true from the comics! Most of the book is told from Doreen’s (Squirrel Girl’s) point of view, with some switches. Doreen has just moved from California to an OK-sort of small suburb in New Jersey where a lot of juvenile vandalism like knocked over trash cans and graffiti is going on. The locals say it’s being carried out by the Skunk Gang, some kids from the next school over. Doreen was born with a squirrel tail that she’s always had to hide, but she loves it anyway and keeps it hidden under her clothes all day — which she gets made fun of for, but. The first person Doreen meets at the school is Anna Sophia, a Hispanic girl who is deaf. Anna Sophia is hesitant to be friends because she was burned by her last best friend who moved away and cut her off, but Doreen is enthusiastic about their friendship. As Doreen is coming into her powers (she has the proportional strength and speed of a squirrel - she can leap about 50 feet, run very fast, and is very strong), she discovers gathers groups of local kids who want to be “Squirrel Scouts” and help her, crossing clique lines. Everyone important in the story is a middle schooler, even the bad guys. Doreen has a great, humorous voice. All the chapters are in 3rd person, even Doreen’s, but there are footnotes throughout the entire book that are from Doreen’s first person perspective. The footnotes are goofy and add a lot from the story. There are appearances from other Marvel characters - she texts with some Avengers and some Guardians. 

4.5 stars

The Gauntlet by Karuna Riazi

Maeghan heard about this book from Nova Ren Suma’s talk at the YASD luncheon, and while she hasn't finished it yet, she wanted to give it a shout out for an awesome beginning. The story starts on Farah’s 12th birthday. Her and her Bangladeshi-American family have just moved from Queens to the Upper West Side, and she doesn’t really know anyone yet, AND she’s the only girl who wears a Hijab in her class, which they harass her about. Her only two friends at the party are her besties from her old school, with everyone else basically strangers and their nannies and families. Her family loves games of all types. Farah tries to drown out the party by playing marbles with her little brother, who has ADHD and is a bit of a spotlight lover, even on his big sister's birthday. Her aunt tells her she has a gift for her upstairs - it’s a game! She catches her brother about to open it, but she and her friends chase him away. They decide, let’s play the game before little bro gets everyone in trouble! The box, which is covered in beautiful etchings, has a heartbeat when they hold it and feels like it’s alive. Something surely exciting is going to happen with this game! A must-read for gamer kids and anyone who you think would like Jumanji. (rating to come!)

Darla from SCLS

Flying Lessons and Other Stories, edited by Ellen Oh
Published in January by Penguin Random House
Flying Lessons is a compilation of short stories written by a diverse array of superstar authors, compiled and edited by Ellen Oh, the founder of We Need Diverse Books. Not a note falls flat in this collection, which includes contributions from Kwame Alexander, Soman Chainani, Matt de la Peña, Tim Federle, Grace Lin, Meg Medina, Walter Dean Myers, Tim Tingle, Jaqueline Woodson, and newcomer Kelly J. Baptiste, the winner of a short story contest to be part of the book. Baptiste's story, "The Beans and Rice Chronicles of Isaiah Dunn," was a particular favorite. It tells the story of Isaiah, a little boy whose family has recently suffered the loss of his father. Much of the responsibility of caring for his 5 year old sister has fallen on his young shoulders as his mother grapples with crushing depression, but all that turmoil doesn't darken his his strong and lovable personality. One day Isaiah discovers the secret short story his father was writing about a boy who becomes a superhero whenever he eats his mom's rice and beans, and his mission becomes to find the time to enter it into a short story contest. But this is just one story among many that leave a lasting impression.
4.5 Stars, a must-buy.

Available ARCS:

Friday, January 13, 2017

Reading is Sweet at Riverhead Library!

Something sweet is happening at Riverhead Library this winter!

Melissa Fried, the new Children's Services Coordinator at Riverhead, along with her staff, has whipped up a treat for young readers - the "Reading is Sweet" winter reading club! The children's room was transformed into a real-life Candyland to inspire children to sink their teeth into some tasty reads. It worked -- they had 100 kids sign up for the club in 3 days! The theme was inspired by the reference department's "Food for Thought" theme, and the delicious decorations were concocted by library clerk Margie Santiago. Check it out below!

The club runs from January 9 to February 24.