Best Books: Marilyn

LFHS sophomore Marilyn has a favorite book called Sophomores and Other Oxymorons, book #2 in the David Lubar series Sleeping Freshman Never Lie.

Check out the Goodreads review below:

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¨An honest and funny follow-up to the popular Sleeping Freshmen Never Lie, award-winning author David Lubar pens a tale that perfectly captures the ridiculous, tumultuous, and sometimes heartbreaking truths about high school

Read more at Goodreads.com.

 

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Stressed? We’ve Got a Book for That!

With AP testing wrapping up and finals on the horizon, we can feel the stress levels rise among our library patrons. It’s no surprise that a librarian would turn to a book to escape a hectic day, but did you know reading is a scientifically proven way to de-stress?

If you choose the right book and setting, you can decrease your stress levels by 2/3rds in just 6 minutes, according to cognitive neuropsychologist Dr. David Lewis. This outranks listening to music, drinking tea, or going for a walk! Berns, Blaine, Prietula, and Pye found that the stress reducing benefits of reading a great novel can even stay with us days later.

So what kind of book should you read to reap these benefits? Research indicates fictional stories with a strong, narrative arc that you find enjoyable are best. Don’t forget to find a quiet atmosphere so you can get lost in the story!

Here are a few ideas recommended by LFHS Library Staff-

Mrs. Nielsen recommends…….

wintersmith

 

“Wintersmith is the third title in an exuberant series crackling with energy and humour. It follows The Wee Free Men and Hat Full of Sky. Tiffany Aching is a trainee witch — now working for the seriously scary Miss Treason. But when Tiffany witnesses the Dark Dance — the crossover from summer to winter — she does what no one has ever done before and leaps into the dance. Into the oldest story there ever is.”  Read the full synopsis here from Goodreads.

 

 

Mrs. Middlebrook recommends…

stardust

 

“Life moves at a leisurely pace in the tiny town of Wall – named after the imposing stone barrier which separates the town from a grassy meadow. Here, young Tristran Thorn has lost his heart to the beautiful Victoria Forester and for the coveted prize of her hand, Tristran vows to retrieve a fallen star and deliver it to his beloved. It is an oath that sends him over the ancient wall and into a world that is dangerous and strange beyond imagining . .” Read the full synopsis on Goodreads.

 

 

Ms. Turek recommends….

basho

 

“Matsuo Basho (1644-94) is considered Japan’s greatest haiku poet. Narrow Road to the Interior (Oku no Hosomichi) is his masterpiece. Ostensibly a chronological account of the poet’s five-month journey in 1689 into the deep country north and west of the old capital, Edo, the work is in fact artful and carefully sculpted, rich in literary and Zen allusion and filled with great insights and vital rhythms.” Find the full synopsis here from Goodreads.

 

 

Best Books: Elliott

The best book of Elliott, LFHS Class of 2019, is The Gift of Rain by Tan Twan Eng. He explains,¨The book explores relationships formed and broken in a setting during World War 2, taking place in Malaysia. The narrator’s voice matures throughout the story, as he witnesses the loss of loved ones to Japanese invasion and violent diplomacy.¨

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Goodreads Synopsis:

¨Set during the tumult of World War II, on the lush Malayan island of Penang, The Gift of Rain tells a riveting and poignant tale about a young man caught in the tangle of wartime loyalties and deceits.¨

Interested? Check out more here.

 

We’re #1! First Books in a Series

As we head into summer with lots of time to read, here are seven first books in a series you may want to try. Some are award nominees as well as favorite librarian picks – you decide which #1 book looks like the next best read for you. Click on the book titles to read the Goodreads’ synopsis.

Leviathan

6050678Part of Scott Westerfeld’s trilogy, the award-winning Leviathan comes highly recommended by Ed Technology’s Mrs. Grigg. Behemoth and Goliath complete this steampunk series.

 

 

 

The Name of the Wind

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Recommended by students and staff alike, this first book of the Kingkiller Chronicle by Patrick Rothfuss is considered an amazing fantasy. The Wise Man’s Fear is book two, followed by The Slow Regard of Silent Things.

 

 

Six of Crows

23437156The 2018 Abraham Lincoln Award-winning Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo is a great series about six dangerous outcasts and an impossible heist. Book two, Crooked Kingdom, continues the tale.

 

 

The Cuckoo’s Calling

16160797Robert Galbraith, more commonly known to the world as J.K. Rowling, has a mystery series following private investigator Cormoran Strike. Also adapted for TV and coming to US screens this summer,  The Silkworm is the second book in the series and Career of Evil is book three with more to come. Ms. Fumarolo, LFHS Librarian, highly recommends this series.

 

 

The Selection

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Kiera Cass’ Selection series is an interesting twist on The Bachelor concept – 35 girls, 1 crown, and marriage to a prince. If you like this first book, there are so many more to enjoy. LFHS Library staff members recommend this fun read.

 

 

Days Gone Bye, Volume 1

138398Mrs. Roman, LFHS Library’s comic connoisseur, loves the Walking Dead graphic novel series by Robert Kirkman and Tony Moore. Check out Volume 1 and see if this is a series you can sink your teeth into – seriously.

 

 

 

Ender’s Game

375802LFHS Library Assistant Mrs. Middlebrook recommends the Sci-Fi series Ender’s Saga by Orson Scott Card. The other books in the series include the original books, Speaker for the Dead, Xenocide, and Children of the Mind as well as much newer tales, all found here.

Best Books: Julia

image1Julia, LFHS Class of 2021, has a favorite mystery called The May Queen Murders by Sarah Jude. ¨It has a great mixture of romance, mystery, murder, and thriller. Not only that but it’s very descriptive and makes you feel the same emotions the main character goes through,¨ she says.

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Goodreads Review:
¨Stay on the roads. Don’t enter the woods. Never go out at night. Those are the rules in Rowan’s Glen, a remote farming community in the Missouri Ozarks where Ivy Templeton’s family has lived for centuries… The other kids at school may think the Glen kids are weird, but Ivy doesn’t care—she has her cousin Heather as her best friend. The two girls share everything with each other—or so Ivy thinks. When Heather goes missing after a May Day celebration, Ivy discovers that both her best friend and her beloved hometown are as full of secrets as the woods that surround them.¨

Sincerely Yours: Stories Connecting to Readers Through Letters

Dear Reader,

Here’s a vocabulary word that you might not be familiar with: epistolary (adj): a literary work in the form of letters. Sometimes narrators are speaking directly to the reader, but in the case of epistolary novels, readers get the story through letters, diary entries, text messages – they take the usual form of storytelling and turn it on its head. Some of the books listed below qualify as epistolary, but all of them involve letter writing as a central part of the plot. Go ahead and explore the descriptions to learn more – no postage required!

Sincerely Yours,
The LFHS Library

Dear Mr. Knightly by Katherine Reay (a local author!)

17657649“After college, Samantha receives an extraordinary opportunity. The anonymous “Mr. Knightley” offers her a full scholarship to earn her graduate degree at the prestigious Medill School of Journalism. The sole condition is that Sam write to Mr. Knightley regularly to keep him apprised of her progress.

As Sam’s true identity begins to reveal itself through her letters, her heart begins to soften to those around her—a damaged teenager and fellow inhabitant of Grace House, her classmates at Medill, and, most powerfully, successful novelist Alex Powell. But just as Sam finally begins to trust, she learns that Alex has secrets of his own—secrets that, for better or for worse, make it impossible for Sam to hide behind…”

Dear Zoe by Philip Beard

284335“Philip Beard’s stunning debut novel is fifteen-year-old Tess DeNunzio’s letter to her sister, Zoe, lost to a hit-and-run driver on a day when it seemed that nothing mattered but the tragedies playing out in New York and Washington. Dear Zoe is a remarkable study of grief, adolescence, and healing with a pitch-perfect narrator who is at once sharp and naïve, world- worried and self-centered, funny and heartbreakingly honest. Tess begins her letter to Zoe as a means of figuring out her own life, her place in the world, but the result is a novel of rare power and grace that tells us much about ours.

Dear Teen Me: Authors Write Letters to Their Teen Selves

12479640Dear Teen Me includes advice from 70 YA authors (including Lauren Oliver, Ellen Hopkins, and Nancy Holder, to name a few) to their teenage selves. The letters cover a wide range of topics, including physical abuse, body issues, bullying, friendship, love, and enough insecurities to fill an auditorium. So pick a page, and find out which of your favorite authors had a really bad first kiss? Who found true love at 18? Who wishes he’d had more fun in high school instead of studying so hard? Some authors write diary entries, some write letters, and a few graphic novelists turn their stories into visual art.”

I Will Always Write Back by Caitlin Alifirenka and Martin Ganda

22875069“It started as an assignment. Everyone in Caitlin’s class wrote to an unknown student somewhere in a distant place. All the other kids picked countries like France or Germany, but when Caitlin saw Zimbabwe written on the board, it sounded like the most exotic place she had ever heard of–so she chose it. Martin was lucky to even receive a pen pal letter. There were only ten letters, and forty kids in his class. But he was the top student, so he got the first one.

That letter was the beginning of a correspondence that spanned six years and changed two lives. In this compelling dual memoir, Caitlin and Martin recount how they became best friends –and better people–through letters.”

If You Find This Letter
by Hannah Brencher

21412144“Fresh out of college, Hannah Brencher moved to New York, expecting her life to look like a scene from Sex and the City. Instead, she found a city full of people who knew where they were going and what they were doing and didn’t have time for a girl still trying to figure it all out. Lonely and depressed, she noticed a woman who looked like she felt the same way on the subway. Hannah did something strange–she wrote the woman a letter. She folded it, scribbled If you find this letter, it’s for you on the front and left it behind.

When she realized that it made her feel better, she started writing and leaving love notes all over the city… Hannah’s project took on a life of its own when she made an offer on her blog: She would handwrite a note and mail it to anyone who wanted one. Overnight, her inbox exploded with requests from people all over the world. Nearly 400 handwritten letters later, she started the website, The World Needs More Love Letters, which quickly grew…”

Letters to Zell by Camille Griep

23308599“Everything is going according to story for CeCi (Cinderella), Bianca (Snow White), and Rory (Sleeping Beauty)—until the day that Zell (Rapunzel) decides to leave Grimmland and pursue her life. Now, Zell’s best friends are left to wonder whether their own passions are worth risking their predetermined “happily ever afters,” regardless of the consequences.”

 

 

Love Letters to the Dead by Ava Dellaira

18140047“It begins as an assignment for English class: Write a letter to a dead person. Laurel chooses Kurt Cobain because her sister, May, loved him. And he died young, just like May did. Soon, Laurel has a notebook full of letters to people like Janis Joplin, Amy Winehouse, Amelia Earhart, Heath Ledger, and more — though she never gives a single one of them to her teacher. She writes about starting high school, navigating new friendships, falling in love for the first time, learning to live with her splintering family. And, finally, about the abuse she suffered while May was supposed to be looking out for her. Only then, once Laurel has written down the truth about what happened to herself, can she truly begin to accept what happened to May.”

P.S. I Love You by Cecelia Ahern

366522“Holly couldn’t live without her husband Gerry, until the day she had to. They were the kind of young couple who could finish each other’s sentences. When Gerry succumbs to a terminal illness and dies, 30-year-old Holly is set adrift, unable to pick up the pieces. But with the help of a series of letters her husband left her before he died and a little nudging from an eccentric assortment of family and friends, she learns to laugh, overcome her fears, and discover a world she never knew existed.”

 

We are Still Tornadoes by Michael Kun and Susan Mullen

28220739“Growing up across the street from each other, Scott and Cath have been best friends for most of their lives. Now they’ve graduated high school, and Cath is off to college while Scott stays at home trying to get his band off the ground. Neither of them realized that their first year after high school would be so hard.

Fortunately, Scott and Cath still have each other, and it’s through their letters that they survive heartache, annoying roommates, family dramas, and the pressure of figuring out what to do with the rest of their lives.

Why We Broke Up by Daniel Handler

10798418“Min Green and Ed Slaterton are breaking up, so Min is writing Ed a letter and giving him a box. Inside the box is why they broke up. Two bottle caps, a movie ticket, a folded note, a box of matches, a protractor, books, a toy truck, a pair of ugly earrings, a comb from a motel room, and every other item collected over the course of a giddy, intimate, heartbreaking relationship.”

 

P.S. Looking for more books that explore telling stories in different and exciting ways? Consider trying a novel in verse (stories told through poems) or maybe a different format like an audiobook (great for when you’re on the go)!

 

Best Books: Sophia

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LFHS freshman Sophia has a favorite read called Love and Gelato by Jenna Evans Welch. She says, ¨It kept me interested and combined love and adventure in the perfect ratio!!!!!!! MUST READ! Best book I’ve ever read.¨

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Goodread Synopsis:

¨Lina is spending the summer in Tuscany, but she isn’t in the mood for Italy’s famous sunshine and fairy-tale landscape. She’s only there because it was her mother’s dying wish that she get to know her father. But what kind of father isn’t around for sixteen years? All Lina wants to do is get back home.

But then she is given a journal that her mom had kept when she lived in Italy. Suddenly Lina’s uncovering a magical world of secret romances, art, and hidden bakeries. A world that inspires Lina, along with the ever-so-charming Ren, to follow in her mother’s footsteps and unearth a secret that has been kept for far too long. It’s a secret that will change everything she knew about her mother, her father—and even herself.¨ Read more here.