Wellington City Libraries

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Teen Blog

Reading, Wellington, and whatever else – teenblog@wcl.govt.nz

Month: November 2010

Wellington Zinefest 2010

zinefest2010The 4th annual Wellington Zinefest is on this Saturday 20th of November from 12-5pm at Mighty Mighty (104 Cuba Street). Zinefest is a market day where you can peruse and purchase heaps of local, national and international zines and self published music.

We will be bringing zines from our collection of over 1,000 to join in the fun at Zinefest and creating a comfy reading area for you to relax and recover from all the DIY excitement.

Come along! Wellington Zinefest is proudly sponsored by Wellington City Libraries.

What’s a Zine?

The word zine (an abbreviation of the equally elusive word fanzine) has come to describe DIY magazines of an independent nature. Fanzines don’t have the same commercial ambitions or restraints as magazines. Fanzines are often a labour of love. Some are collaborative, others are created by just one person. Some are comics, some cover obscure local bands, others pay homage to the hugely famous (though in a creepy stalker kind of way), some are art objects in their own right. This year Wellington Zinefest has also invited participation from those creating DIY music (records, CDs and tapes).

If you’re interested in crafting a zine then have a look at Whatcha mean, what’s a zine? by Mark Todd (a different Mark Todd to the one of Olympics fame).

Amazon’s Top 10 Books for Teens in 2010

It’s the Best Books Silly Season again! Here’s what the Amazon.com editors think were the best quality young adult books in 2010 (here’s the list in its natural habitat):

  1. Will Grayson, Will Grayson, John Green & David Levithan
  2. Revolution, Jennifer Donnelly
  3. Before I Fall, Lauren Oliver
  4. Incarceron, Catherine Fisher
  5. Fat Vampire: A Never Coming of Age Story, Adam Rex
  6. I Am Number Four, Pittacus Lore
  7. Extraordinary, Nancy Werlin
  8. Fever Crumb, Philip Reeve
  9. The Dark Days of Hamburger Halpin, Josh Berk
  10. Ship Breaker, Paolo Bacigalupi

Reserve them, read them and see if you think the Amazon editors know what they’re talking about!


Yup, it’s that time.

We can’t sit your exams (and you probably wouldn’t want my French mark) but we would like to help, so:

We have old exam papers, if you would like to use them in your study. Just ask one of the librarians at the desk. (In Central ask at the children’s desk or on the second floor.)

We’ve collected some tips and sites that might help you here

When you need a break, you might like our facebook page which has some fine ways to use your time.

And lastly if any old people are being too noisy and disturbing you,  please ask a librarian to shush them. It’s only fair.

Good Luck!

Perhaps some animes are in order?

We have some more anime. Here it is…

Avatar, the legend of Aang. Book 2, Earth, Volume 3
The gang visit a library buried under some sand. They learn important things related to Fire Nation and a stand-off ensues with some would-be conquerers. All very exciting stuff, but you understand it’s the library which makes this bunch of episodes a Teen Blog favourite.

Avatar, the legend of Aang. Book 2, Earth, Volume 4
Do you like bending battles? If so you’re in luck, this set of episodes culminates in what can only be described as the best bending battle of the season! Will the Earth Kingdom succumb to Fire Nation? Or can our heroes save the day?

Bleach : the movie. 2, The Diamonddust Rebellion
“When a caravan transporting the King’s Seal is attacked, Toshiro Hitsugaya and Squad 10 are on the ready. As they prepare to protect the treasure that holds immeasurable power, Hitsugaya suddenly abandons the scene alongside the thieves and becomes one of the accused. In response, the Soul Society calls for his capture and execution. Upon hearing the edict, Substitute Soul Reaper Ichigo Kurosaki is immediately suspicious and determined to uncover the facts. But when Hitsugaya refuses to defend his actions and fights against his comrades, it seems his fate is all but sealed. Can Ichigo uncover Hitsugaya’s motives before they destroy his honor, his life, and the Soul Society?”–Container.

Cover to Cover

Cover to Cover is Kerikeri High School’s library blog, and it has loads of content! Loads of excellent content that we wish we had (and maybe will have soon, haha). Anyway, do take a look!

New Mags 5/11/10

Happy (merry?) Guy Fawkes night! Here are a load of new magazines to flick through.

Bart Simpson’s Treehouse of Horror #12, Bart Simpson : Behind the Scenes #39, and Simpsons Comics #166, Bart Simpson : Scourge of Homer #22 – All the Simpsons you can read, that’s for sure
Creme December 2010 – Taylor Swift | Trend to try: layering | Should you shimmer? | Plan your future | Horoscopes (Aries: “When was the last time you laughed so hard you cried?”)
Teen Vogue November 2010 – Perfect skin | Sexy hair | Cute looks | Horoscopes (Scorpio: “You’ll finally be able to buy the cute wool cape you’ve been eying”)
Girlfriend November 2010 – ‘Wanna Be a Billionaire?’ (yes thanks) | Are you a chronic overthinker? | Horoscopes (Leo: “A quiet space at home, or alone at the library, is your best setting for learning now”)
Australian Mad Magazine #460

New Books

As promised, here are some more new books. Maybe all of them. There are many! If there was an earthquake right now they would fall on me, perhaps injuring me slightly.

Nevermore, by Kelly Creagh (543 pages) – Isobel falls in lurve with the aloof and sarky (and gorgeous) Varen, whose dream world – based on the not-at-all-jolly stories of Edgar Allan Poe – have come to life. She must rescue him before his nightmares devour him!

First line: ‘By the end of fourth period, Isobel’s espresso buzz from that morning’s venti latte had long since worn off.

Annexed, by Sharon Dogar (329 pages) – Peter van Pels and his family went into hiding with Anne Frank, and there, in this (imagined) story, he finds himself falling in love with her. As history documents, it’s not a happy love story, and Peter’s experience continues into and beyond the Nazi death camps.

First lines: ‘I think I’m still alive. But I’m not sure.

The FitzOsbornes in Exile : The Montmaray Journals Book Two, by Michelle Cooper (451 pages) – Diary-writer Sophie and her family’s home, an island kingdom!, has been overrun by the Nazis, and they all find themselves trying to navigate the English aristocracy while pretty much penniless and/or mad. A sequel (obviously!) to this book.

First line: ‘I write this sitting at an exquisite little Louis the Fifteenth secretaire in the White Drawing Room, using a gold fountain pen borrowed from the King of Montmaray and a bottle of ink provided by one of the footmen.

Demon Princess : Reign Check, by Michelle Rowan (292 pages) – Nikki is half human, and half demon, and ‘has had a lot to deal with’. A faery king enrols at her high school to investigate her potential for destroying the world, and Nikki is summoned to the Underworld to appear before a demon council for some reason. And! She’s also madly in love with her Shadow Creature servant, Michael, but it’s forbidden. 🙁

First line: ‘Act normal, I told myself as I pushed through the front doors of Erin Heights High School.

The Hunt : A Dark Touch Novel, by Amy Meredith (262 pages) – Another supernatural romance, the genre du jour. Demons are on the hunt and Eve must use her powers to fight them. She’s also mad keen on ‘gorgeous’ Luke, who may or may not be something more as well. Do they have a future together? Do they have a future at all? Will anyone have a future?

First line: ‘“Dude, have you decided to give up showering?” Dave Perry called after practice on Monday.

Trash, by Andy Mulligan (215 pages) – Everyone seems to be reserving this book! It’s about three friends who live in a dumpsite somewhere in the third world,, making a living from trash. They find something – a deady secret – and shortly afterwards they are ‘hunted without mercy.’ But it has a happy ending; it is ‘utterly original and universal, it will touch the world.’

First line: ‘My name is Raphael Fernandez and I am a dumpsite boy.

Kiss Me Deadly : Tales of Paranormal Romance, edited by Trisha Telep (430 pages) -Thirteen stories of vampires, werewolves, ghosts, shapeshifters, fallen angels, zombies (ugh) and other instances of supernatural love. Actually really good even if you’re no fan of supernatural romance; Maggie Stiefvater’s The Hounds of Ulster is a cracking story.

Beautiful Darkness, by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl (503 pages) – Going to copy and paste this synopsis; ‘In a small southern town with a secret world hidden in plain sight, sixteen-year-old Lena, who possesses supernatural powers and faces a life-altering decision, draws away from her true love, Ethan, a mortal with frightening visions.’

First line: ‘I used to think our town, buried in the South Carolina back woods, stuck in the muddy bottom of the Santee River valley, was the middle of nowhere.

Yes, I Know the Monkey Man, by Dori Hillestad Butler (196 pages) – When T. J.’s dad is injured she discovers that she was kidnapped by her father 10 years ago. Not only does she have a mother and a step-father, but also a twin sister. This book also arguably has the best title of any book, ever.

First line: ‘The little red light on our answering machine was blinking on and off when I wandered into the kitchen.

Mutation : The Phoenix Files, by Chris Morphew (311 pages) – This is the third book in the Phoenix Files series. We reviewed the first book a while ago. There were 100 days left before the world ends; now there are only 63 days left and (in addition to the whole major catastrophe thing) something weird is happening to the people of Phoenix.

First line: ‘My fists clenched in my lap as Shackletone approached the podium, a hint of his sick, grandfatherly smile still pulling at his lips.‘ 

Love Sucks!, by Melissa Francis (285 pages) – a sequel to Bite Me!, and if there’s a third book what do you think it will be called? Stake Out! maybe. Pass The Grave-y! probably not. Love at First Bite! Jack reckons. Vampire teen A. J. still suffers being in love with her gorgeous step-brother, and maybe her vampire trainer, who is also gorgeous, and her father wants to take over the world, AND she has to plan the prom.

First line: ‘My mother’s baby shower.

The Body Finder, by Kimberly Derting (329 pages) – Violet has the cheery ability to psychically detect dead bodies, as well as the imprint that remains on their killers. So now that a serial killer is stalking her small town, she realises that she’s the only one who can find the killer (and she’s being haunted quite a bit). She teams up with best friend Jay, who she’s developing feelings for (he is gorgeous).

First line: ‘Violet Ambrose wandered away from the safety of her father as she listened to the harmony of  sounds weaving delicately around her.

The Secret To Lying, by Todd Mitchell (328 pages) – James was a nerd at his old school, but now that he’s been enrolled in an exclusive academy for mathletes he can easily be the ‘cool guy’ – he makes up a tough background for himself and soon is lying about everything. Unfortunately there are consequences, and in his case they are quite destructive.

First line: ‘I was the guy no one noticed.

Once Dead, Twice Shy, by Kim Harrison (232 pages) – More supernatural romance. This one’s particular hook is dead teen Madison, who, with the help of a magic amulet, affects the illusion of a live body, and is involved in the battle between light and dark reapers. There’s also her cute crush, and a guardian angel. A sequel is in the works!

First lines: ‘Everyone does it. Dies, I mean.

The Project, by Brian Falkner (343 pages) – Falkner’s last book, Brainjack, won this year’s NZ Post Children’s Book Award in the YA fiction category. So this book should be quite good! It’s about a book (the ‘most boring book in the world’) that hides a terrible secret; when it’s revealed the world may never be the same again.

First line: ‘“I reckon we would have got away with it if it wasn’t for that drunken chipmunk.”

Before We Say Goodbye, by Gabriella Ambrosio (144 pages) – Two cousins – Dima and Myriam – are Palestinians living in Jerusalem. Myriam is hopeful of visiting America with Dima, but Dima has no dreams of the future; she has ‘already accepted her destiny: today she will die.’

First line: ‘It was technically springtime on the day that Dima got up from her mattress after a long yet strangely brief and confused night.

Girl Saves Boy, by Steph Bowe (280 pages) – A romance, but not supernatural (refreshingly!). Sacha has a terminal disease, his mother has died, and his father is seeing his art teacher. He attempts to drown himself! But luckily is rescued by Jewel Valentine, and it’s all uphill from there.

First line: ‘My brother’s last word was: “Polo.”

The Runaway Dragon, by Kate Coombs (292 pages) – The sequel to The Runaway Princess, in which Princess Meg finds a baby dragon. Laddy, the dragon, runs away from home, so the Princess, her friends, and a group of guardsmen go on a quest to find him.

First line: ‘At first Meg visited Laddy a lot, riding her horse from the castle through the Witch’s Wood to Hookhorn Farm, where her friend Cam’s sister lived.

Token of Darkness, by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes (197 pages) – Gorgeous football hero, Cooper, has a car accident, and when he awakens he starts seeing a ghost. Samantha (the ghost) is attractive but is, you know, a ghost, so their relationship is going to be a bit out of the ordinary. Delilah, a clairvoyant cheerleader, and telepathic Brent realise that Cooper’s in trouble. Awoooh.

First line: ‘The darkness was a alive, and it was hungry.

There is also a new book about Glee, called 100% Gleek : The Unofficial Guide to Glee!, and a comic version of Anthony Horowitz’s Raven’s Gate called, well, The Power of Five. Book One, Raven’s Gate : The Graphic Novel.

Most Wanted: November 2010

It’s Shadow Wave by several lengths this month, with daylight to Mockingjay. Tomorrow When the War Began and the fast finishing Torment couldn’t be separated in photos for third. (Tis Melbourne Cup Day.)

The queue for Shadow Wave is moving along: if you reserved it at the end of August you should be getting it very soon. We’ve got lots of copies (22). The Mockingjay queue is up to the beginning of September. I Shall Wear Midnight (also a good name for a racehorse) by Terry Pratchett is the last in the series featuring Tiffany Aching (see also Wintersmith, A Hat Full of Sky and The Wee Free Men in reverse order), and sneaks into the Most Wanted list this month. Actually, they’re all smashing racehorse names.

1. Shadow Wave, Robert Muchamore [no change]
2. Mockingjay, Suzanne Collins [up 1]
3. Torment, Lauren Kate [up 5]
3. Tomorrow When the War Began, John Marsden [down 1]
4. Clockwork Angel, Cassandra Clare [no change]
5. Last Sacrifice, Richelle Mead [no change]
6. Crescendo, Becca Fitzpatrick [up 1]
7. Dead of the Night, John Marsden [down 1]
8.  I Shall Wear Midnight, Terry Pratchett [new]
9. The Hunger Games, Suzanne Collins [new again]
10. Catching Fire, Suzanne Collins [new again]

Heaps of New Books

Zombies Vs. Unicorns (415 pages) – if it came down to it, which team would you be on? Read the stories and pick your team. There’s even extra content that you can access on the interweb if you’ve got a smart phone – there’s a souped up QR-type code on the back cover. We’re thinking it might just be the book trailer (which is here), but we’ve been known to be wrong.

First sentence (from the introduction): Since the dawn of time one question has dominated all others: Zombies or Unicorns?

fishhookfishhookfishhookfishhook plus an extra fishhook for the cool cover.

Fat Vampire: A Never Coming of Age Story, Adam Rex (324 pages) – Actually, really, being eternally a teenager wouldn’t be the greatest, especially if you’re not exactly cut and chiselled, which Doug Lee isn’t. But what he is is a vampire, and has the stars of the reality television show Vampire Hunters after him.

First sentence: Doug came to, lying on his back in what felt smelled like a field.

fishhook cool cover again.

Torment, Lauren Kate (452 pages) – get your supernatural romance, fallen angel fix here. The hotly anticipated sequel to Fallen, which stayed atop our Most Wanted list for months and months this year. Daniel must go off and hunt the Outcasts, so he hides Luce at an exclusive academy (!) for gifted students, where she finds out more about her special powers and those freaky shadows. Fallen angels keep secrets though, dangerous ones…

First sentence: Daniel stared out at the bay.

I Am Number Four, Pittacus Lore (440 pages) – the much hyped first book in the Lorien Legacies series where nine, um, people, arrive from another planet methinks, and “walk among us”. Trouble is they’re getting picked off, one by two by three, and number four is next. Again, this comes complete with the promise of *extra material* via the QR code on the jacket. Wikipedia will also tell you who Pittacus Lore really is.

First sentence: The door starts shaking.

Good Oil, Laura Buzo (283 pages) – a straight-up romance with no supernatural creatures, Good Oil tells the story of Amelia, who falls for the much older Chris, an engaging university student. She enjoys spending time with him, and he appears to like her company too, but it’s complicated.

First sentence: ‘I’m writing a play,’ says Chris, leaning over the counter of my cash register.

Perchance to Dream, Lisa Mantchev (333 pages) – the marvellously quirky sequel to the marvellously quirky Eyes Like Stars and some of the most fantastical fantasy that might do your head in. Bertie’s left the Theatre in search of Nate the pirate, who has been captured (perhaps killed?) by the Sea Goddess. With her is Ariel, doing his best to distract her in a love-triangle type of way, and the four fairies, thinking of nothing much other than food.  Along the way Bertie learns more about her magic, her father, and which team to pick, Nate or Ariel?

First sentence: ‘It is a truth universally acknowledged,’ Mustardseed said, flying in lazy loops like an intoxicated bumblebee, ‘that a fairy in possession of a good appetite must be in want of pie.’

fishhookfishhookfishhook for the Jane Austen reference.

The Life of a Teenage Body-Snatcher, Doug McLeod (304 pages) – a funny horror, black comedy story. Thomas is a well-bred sixteen year old in 1828 who falls in with Plenitude, a body-snatcher, and is then pursued by all manner of ghoulish types.

First sentence: There are no stars, no moon to illuminate the grounds of the parish church.

iBoy, Kevin Brooks (290 pages) – Tom was attacked by (I extrapolate) a gang on his estate, and bits of his iPhone became embedded in his brain (hopefully the bubble wrap popping app still works) and now he has special powers. Sounds like fun, having a GPS in your brain, but no: he must make difficult choices that lead to “terrifying” consequences. Sinister.

First sentence: The mobile phone that shattered my skull was a 32GB iPhone 3GS.

Dark Flame, Alyson Noel (The Immortals, 320 pages) – Ever tries to help Haven get to grips with being an Immortal, and must also fight “for control of her body, her soul – and the timeless true love she’s been chasing for centuries.” (Book cover)

First sentence: ‘What the fug?’

The Deathday Letter, Shaun David Hutchinson (240 pages) – Ollie receives a letter saying he’s going to die in one day’s time, so his friend suggests he spend that day attempting to win the heart of the girl of his dreams, Ronnie. He does this (attempt to win: I’m not saying if he’s successful).

First sentence: ‘Oliver! Oliver, I need you downstairs right now!’

Party, Tom Leveen (228 pages) – it’s the end of the school year and there’s a party: eleven characters tell the story of why they went and what happened, leading to a conclusion that “no one saw coming.”

First sentence: I’m the girl nobody knows until she commits suicide.

More to come…

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