Graphic Novels & Manga – Collection Development Resources

graphicnovelsI love reading young adult books and really try to stay current on the latest great books and trends, but knowledge of graphic novels and manga is definitely not my strong suit. My library has an outstanding collection of graphic novels and a fairly good collection of manga thanks to the former librarian and I have been trying to continuously add to it. I love having a subscription to Junior Library Guild’s graphic novels category, that way every month I get a great new graphic novel. Students are also a great resource for recommendations especially for manga. Here are some other great places to find all the latest news on graphic novels and manga.

Do you have another great resources that you use for graphic novels and manga? Please share them in the comments!

Book Displays

I love library displays, they are a great way to get students talking about books. Every year the book banning display always gets the most conversation! Sometimes I have difficulty coming up with ideas, but Pinterest always saves me!

I have numerous areas to create displays, including 2 display cases, several bookcases and table tops and one large bulletin board. I find that the bulletin board is the one I have the most difficulty being creative with, but these are a few that I really loved how they came out.

What have been your most successful bulletin boards?

Take One or Tear One, Either Way Just Share One

take-one-tear-one-either-way-just-share-one

One of the things I love to do is create book displays in the library. I find that students tend to pick up and check out books that are out on display. One of our guidance counselors asked me to do a display about bullying and I got this idea from my go to place for creative ideas, Pinterest. Students not only loved making the sticky notes, but they loved taking them and giving them away. I was constantly adding new sticky notes to the display.

Recommended books about bullying:

What other books on bullying would you recommend?

{Book Review} All the Bright Places

{Book Review} All the Bright PlacesAll the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven
Published by Random House Children's Books on January 6th 2015
Genres: Death & Dying, Depression & Mental Illness, Love & Romance, Social Issues, Young Adult
Pages: 400
Source: Purchased
Add to your TBR on Goodreads
five-stars

The Fault in Our Stars meets Eleanor and Park in this exhilarating and heart-wrenching love story about a girl who learns to live from a boy who intends to die.Soon to be a major motion picture starring Elle Fanning! Theodore Finch is fascinated by death, and he constantly thinks of ways he might kill himself. But each time, something good, no matter how small, stops him. Violet Markey lives for the future, counting the days until graduation, when she can escape her Indiana town and her aching grief in the wake of her sister’s recent death. When Finch and Violet meet on the ledge of the bell tower at school, it’s unclear who saves whom. And when they pair up on a project to discover the “natural wonders” of their state, both Finch and Violet make more important discoveries: It’s only with Violet that Finch can be himself—a weird, funny, live-out-loud guy who’s not such a freak after all. And it’s only with Finch that Violet can forget to count away the days and start living them. But as Violet’s world grows, Finch’s begins to shrink. This is an intense, gripping novel perfect for fans of Jay Asher, Rainbow Rowell, John Green, Gayle Forman, and Jenny Downham from a talented new voice in YA, Jennifer Niven.

My thoughts: Mental illness has such a terrible stigma in our society; for some reason we look at a disease of the body (i.e. cancer) very differently than a disease of the brain. The more I learn and read about it the more frustrated I become because it is so hard for people to get the help they so desperately need. Whether they are too afraid to reach out or their illness is ignored, this happens far too often in our society. Until mental illness touches your life it is extremely difficult to not only understand its effects on the person suffering, but also its effect on all the people close to them. All the Bright Places opens our eyes and hearts to two broken young adults, Finch and Violet. Finch, determined to become Violet’s savior, through a class assignment where they have to visit the “wondrous sights” of Indiana.

“Everyone around you is going to give you a gentle push now and then, but never hard enough because they don’t want to upset Poor Violet. You need shoving, not pushing. You need to jump back on that camel. Otherwise you’re going to stay up on the ledge you’ve made for yourself.”

As Finch fights to bring Violet out of her dark depression we discover that Finch’s mental illness goes much deeper, but their friendship and relationship grows even as Violet’s parents forbid her from seeing him.

“You are all the colors in one, at full brightness.”

What happens next can only be described as heart wrenching. I kept turning the pages hoping beyond hope that what I thought was going to happen didn’t.

I absolutely love books that have scavenger hunts or road trips, i.e. Paper Towns, Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares, Let’s Go Places, The Disenchantments and this is one going to the top of that list. All the Bright Places is a beautiful story, albeit extremely sad, and I absolutely adore Jennifer Niven’s writing.  I found that she captured the lives of two young adults very accurately. It took me awhile to figure out what Finch was suffering from, but I think that only highlights the difficulties of diagnosing mental illness.

“That’s just his thing. It’s what he does.”

All the Bright Places is so important because it underscores the issues surrounding mental illness especially in young adults and hopefully brings an awareness to the dire consequences. I knew after about two chapters that this was going to be a tear jerker and I finished the book with tears streaming down my face.

five-stars

{Book Review} Half Bad

{Book Review} Half BadHalf Bad by Sally Green
Published by Penguin on March 4th 2014
Genres: Boys & Men, Family, Fantasy & Magic, Young Adult
Pages: 416
Source: Purchased
Add to your TBR on Goodreads
four-stars

In modern-day England, witches live alongside humans: White witches, who are good; Black witches, who are evil; and sixteen-year-old Nathan, who is both. Nathan’s father is the world’s most powerful and cruel Black witch, and his mother is dead. He is hunted from all sides. Trapped in a cage, beaten and handcuffed, Nathan must escape before his seventeenth birthday, at which point he will receive three gifts from his father and come into his own as a witch—or else he will die. But how can Nathan find his father when his every action is tracked, when there is no one safe to trust—not even family, not even the girl he loves? In the tradition of Patrick Ness and Markus Zusak, Half Bad is a gripping tale of alienation and the indomitable will to survive, a story that will grab hold of you and not let go until the very last page.

My thoughts: If you like action, adventure, plus magic then this book is for you. In a world where witches live among fains (humans) in Modern Day England, white witches are good and black witches are bad, and Nathan is the only half white witch and half black witch. In some ways this book reminded me a little bit of Harry Potter, since Nathan is an outcast.  He is ‘different’ from everyone else, since he is half white witch and half black witch and is forever being tormented by the white witches, with whom he has grown up with. No one wants anything to do with him and the white witch council is slowly limiting his rights and freedom; no one trusts him as they don’t know whether his loyalty lies with the white or black witches. Nathan is not only trying to figure out who he is but he also needs to find his father, Marcus, the most feared black witch of all. When the council imprisons him, Nathan must figure out a way to escape and locate his father to find out why he left him and has never tried to find him. In the process he begins to define who he is and learns to place trust in others.  This books kept me on the edge of my seat and turning the pages.

four-stars

Top 10 of 2014

I try to read about 25 books a year and my goal this year is to double that! I thought it would be fun to share my top 10 favorite books I read in 2014. I’ve included links to the titles in Goodreads in case you want to add them to your TBR.

Are any of your favorite books on this list? What was your favorite book of 2014?

Top10-2014

Fall for Anything
by Courtney Summers

“Sometimes I feel hunted by my grief. It circles me, stalks me. It’s always in my periphery. Sometimes I can fake it out. Sometimes I make myself go so still, it can’t sense that I’m there anymore and it goes away. I do that right now.”

Me, Earl and the Dying Girl
by Jesse Andrews

“Look, I was an idiot. I didn’t want people to think that I had a crush, so I decided to give everyone the impression that I truly, honestly hated Madison Harter. For no reason. Just thinking about this makes me want to punch myself in the eyeball.”

The Beginning of Everything
by Robyn Schneider

“Words could betray you if you chose the wrong ones, or mean less if you used too many. Jokes could be grandly miscalculated, or stories deemed boring, and I’d learned early on that my sense of humor and ideas about what sorts of things were fascinating didn’t exactly overlap with my friends’.”

This Song Will Save Your Life
by Leila Sales

“You think it’s so easy to change yourself. You think it’s so easy, but it’s not. True, things don’t stay the same forever: couches are replaced, boys leave, you discover a song, your body becomes forever scarred. And with each of these moments you change and change again, your true self spinning, shifting positions– but always at last it returns to you, like a dancer on the floor. Because throughout it all, you are still, always, you: beautiful and bruised, known and unknowable. And isn’t that – just you – enough.”

The Impossible Knife of Memory
by Laurie Halse Anderson

“I needed to hear the world but didn’t want the world to know I was listening.”

The Here and Now
by Ann Brashares

“It’s wrong, I know, but I play out this dance with him, exquisite and slow. I play it out in my head, because that is the only place it will ever happen.”

Say What You Will
by Cammie McGovern

“I’ve decided that it’s possible to love someone for entirely selfless reasons, for all of their flaws and weaknesses, and still not succeed in having them love you back. It’s sad, perhaps, but not tragic, unless you dwell forever in the pursuit of their elusive affections.”

Let’s Get Lost
by Adi Alsaid

“People hurt each other. It happens to everyone. Intentionally, unintentionally, regretfully or not. It’s a part of what we do as people. The beauty is that we have the ability to heal and forgive.”

The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks
by E. Lockhart

“It is better to be alone, she figures, than to be with someone who can’t see who you are. It is better to lead than to follow. It is better to speak up than stay silent. It is better to open doors than to shut them on people.

She will not be simple and sweet. She will not be what people tell her to be. That Bunny Rabbit is dead.”

Glory O’Brien’s History of the Future
by A.S. King

“I wished I could take her to the library and hand her over to the librarians. Please teach her about everything, I’d say.”