Who Says Teens Don't Read?

Throne of GlassCindy: I love my job. Oh, sure, there are days….but truly, I love what I do. This week I had a booktalking first. Here’s the scoop:

When I booktalk in my middle school it means six hours (classes of booktalking). I usually try to present mostly titles that I have multiple copies of and then sprinkle in some newer titles of which I may only own one copy. Each hour I am presenting a mostly new selection from my booktalk cart because the previous hour’s titles usually get snapped up. Many of my teachers have the students jot titles and authors down on a booktalk form the students paste in book journals and then when they return to the library again for checkout they will have a list of books they were interested in but which they didn’t get when they were here previously. This is really helpful as I serve two large middle schools and cannot always be there when they come for checkout.

Anyway, Thursday I returned to school after two days with a horrid cold/flu and felt that I was not at the top of my booktalking game and yet it was a successful day of booktalking. It turns out that the Hunger Games series was a popular read over the summer (sarcasm, folks) and I had a lot of 7th graders eager for read alikes. I told them that their penchant for books about killing was creeping me out, but I was ready for them. I had one copy of Sarah J. Maas’ book Throne of Glass (Bloomsbury 2012) and after booktalking this story about a girl competing to be the King’s Assassin (read my linked review for more details) I had a four-way fight for the books by 4 7th grade boys. I offered to draw from slips of names for it rather than having blood shed on the library floor over it. But the boys looked at me, looked at each other, and one of them said, “Rock, Paper, Scissors!” And they efficiently organized into two pairs, decided “two out of three” and eliminated two of them and then held the championship round. The winner cheered as he headed to the circ desk with the book!

While I stood there in amazement (these kids are no strangers to competition), and two of the other three “losers” went to look for alternate books, one of them came over to me. In a whisper and leaning close he said, “Can I put that book on reserve?” HA! I love a guy who understand his library procedure! Let the games begin! And may the odds be ever in your favor!!!

P.S. I guess I’d better get that book order placed that has the sequel, Crown of Midnight, on it. And maybe I need some more copies of the first book, what do ya think?

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About the Author:

Cindy Dobrez and Lynn Rutan are Booklist reviewers and middle-school librarians who have chaired both ALA’s Best Books for Young Adults and the Michael L. Printz Award for YA Literature committees.

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