Loft Blog
What Are You Reading? PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 24 January 2014 00:00

Here's what students at Nichols Middle have been reading:

 

altAllegiant by Veronica Roth

The faction-based society that Tris Prior once believed in is shattered--fractured by violence and power struggles and scarred by loss and betrayal. So when offered a chance to explore the world past the limits she's known, Tris is ready. But will she be prepared to face impossible choices about courage, allegiance, sacrifice and love?

 

altSylo by D.J. McHale

They came from the sky parachuting out of military helicopters to invade Tucker Pierce's idyllic hometown on Pemberwick Island, Maine. They call themselves SYLO and they are a secret branch of the U.S. Navy. SYLO's commander, Captain Granger, informs Pemberwick residents that the island has been hit by a lethal virus and must be quarantined. Now Pemberwick is cut off from the outside world. Tucker believes there's more to SYLO's story. Only Tucker holds the clues that can solve this deadly mystery. Look to the sky because Pemberwick Island is only the first stop.

 

altJinx by Meg Cabot

Sixteen-year-old Jean "Jinx" Honeychurch, the descendant of a witch, must leave Iowa to live with relatives in Manhattan after the first spell she casts goes awry, but she will have to improve her skills to stop her cousin from practicing black magic that endangers them and the boy they both like.

 

 

 

 

 
Time Between Us / Tamara Ireland Stone PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 22 January 2014 00:00

altIt’s 1995 and Anna’s life is about to completely alter its course when she meets Bennett, the new guy at their high school.  He’s just moved to town from San Francisco.  Anna is immediately attracted to Bennett, but just as she thinks they’ve really connected he disappears for a few weeks. When Bennett returns he has an unbelievable secret he has to share with Anna.  Not only is Bennett from San Francisco, he’s from San Francisco 16 years in the future.  Bennett can travel through time.  He came to Evanston hoping to find his sister, who he lost in 1994 on their last trip together.  He was never planning on meeting Anna and falling in love, but now that they find themselves undeniable drawn together they have some hard decisions to make. What risks are they willing to take to stay together? Will their choices have consequences that might set the future off balance? Time Between Us is a lovely romance, with the added twist of time travel, plus it takes place right here in Evanston. If you need a good book to warm up with then pick this title up today. 

 

Make sure to reserve your spot at our exclusive YA author meet and greet with the author of Time Between Us, Tamara Ireland Stone! She'll be visiting the Loft, talking about her books, answering questions and signing books Thursday, February 6 from 7-8:30pm. Books will be sold at the event courtesy of our wonderful partner The Bookstall at Chestnut Court.  

 
 
The Spectacular Now - DVD PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 20 January 2014 20:19

titleBelieve everything you've heard about Miles Teller and Shailene Woodley in The Spectacular Now . They are really, really good. Woodley especially: As I watched this heartfelt adaptation of Tim Tharp's National Book Award-finalist 2008 YA novel I kept thinking: Woodley is an extraordinary talent. Her vulnerability - and courage to live in it on screen - runs deep. She is trusting and wonderfully natural. I can see why she has scored roles as the lead in both Divergent and The Fault in Our Stars. Bodes well for both movies.

And Miles Teller! His Sutter Keely, a liquor-steeped, hard-partying, devil-may-care, YOLO-worshiping, denial-suffering high school senior, is winning, funny, and charismatic. You know this dude. He's in every high school in America, the guy who can't admit that high school will end - or that college actually might matter and that he needs to think at least a tiny bit about the future beyond how to get drunk tonight - and that his relationships crumble because of the deep dysfunction hiding underneath his convincing and fun demeanor. Teller's performance is layered beautifully and by the middle of the film there can be no doubt: this guy is suffering. But because he's pegged as the party guy, the drinker, the dude, virtually no one will consider his inner world of pain.

Keely's alcoholism is portrayed by Teller naturally, as well as his self-deception, lies and desperation to please people, but this is also where the film falls short. Having never read the book, I have no idea how - or if - alcoholism is dealt with in Tharp's writing, but here I kept waiting for the alcohol to destroy - or even threaten - his relationship with Aimee. But the toxic effects of alcoholism are almost completely unexplored within the context of love and life. She never says a thing about it. What's worse, she reveals at one point that her dad was an addict, yet there was no exploration of the danger of her attraction to someone who is clearly a reckless addict, nor what would realistically be her ability to recognize him as one. Further, Teller introduces her to alcohol, encourages her to drink, (she begins drinking a lot), so there's a plot development of him basically enabling what is possibly her latent tendencies towards addiction, a potentially tragic storyline, but that isn't even touched on.

All that said, I experienced strong feelings watching certain scenes. His meeting his dad, played by Kyle Chandler (the coach on Friday Night Lights) as a frenetic, forgetful, alcoholic burn-out, evoked feelings of self-loathing and horror for Keely that he may be a younger version of his dad. The legacy of dysfunction passed down from father to son was powerful here. Chandler, like all the other actors in the strong supporting cast, nails his character. It was painful to watch a boy meet his dad for the first time - after so many years wondering about him - and realize: this is the guy? And then after a few hours: oh, God, please don't let this be the guy. The way he lashes out at Aimee rather than deal with his rage after meeting his dad was raw. 

It's not The Perks of Being A Wallflower, (the superior movie), the glazing over alcoholism bugged me, and the ending is a "magic girl" cop-out, but still: The Spectacular Now is a special film. It made me feel strongly (tears in my eyes maybe 10 times) and presents realistically and movingly a boy in crisis, while showing him as a decent, complex, familiar person with a good heart, childhood trauma, and room to grow. And Woodley is just wonderful. See it for her. See it for both of them. The two actors found the most natural connection, a believable love that felt true to life, that carried them - and the film - through to the end of senior year into that wide, unknown beyond.

(Jarrett, The Loft) 

 
What Are You Reading? PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 17 January 2014 00:00

Here's what students at Nichols Middle School are reading:

 

altJulie of the Wolves by Jean Craighead George

While running away from home and an unwanted marriage, a thirteen-year-old Eskimo girl becomes lost on the North Slope of Alaska and is befriended by a wolf pack.

 

 

 

altThe Death Cloud by Andrew Lane

In 1868, with his army officer father suddenly posted to India, and his mother mysteriously "unwell,"  fourteen-year-old Sherlock Holmes is sent to stay with his eccentric uncle and aunt in their vast house in Hampshire, where he uncovers his first murder and a diabolical villain.

 

 

altThis Isn't What it Looks Like by Pseudonymous Bosch

Cass finds herself alone and disoriented in a dream-like world, while back at home she is in the hospital in a coma with Max-Ernest desperately searching for a way to awaken her.

Pseudonymous

 

While running away from home and an unwanted marriage, a thirteen-year-old Eskimo girl becomes lost on the North Slope of Alaska and is befriended by a wolf pack. - See more at: http://evanston.bibliocommons.com/item/show/279362035_julie_of_the_wolves#sthash.TxC3LvXJ.dpuf
 
Kids of Kabul / Deborah Ellis PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 13 January 2014 00:00

altDeborah Ellis, author of the award winning Breadwinner trilogy, has assembled an amazing collection of true accounts of tweens and teens living in Kabul, Afghanistan. Ellis decided to travel to Kabul to find out how life had changed for these kids since the reign of the Taliban ended there in 2001.    

Through the stories that these kids share you’re able to get a little insight into the positive changes that happened in their lives, but also the challenges and struggles they continues to face. 

One account shared by fourteen year old, Faranoz, tells how her life changed once she learn how to read  and how it empowered her after not being allowed to attend school for many years. 

“But now I know I am smart, so I am not afraid anymore. After a year of learning to read, we are all different people.  We can stand up straight and read out the words we have written in clear voices.  We laugh more than we cry. “

“Afghanistan is one of the world’s most heavily land-mined countries on earth.” Noorahu, 16, shared how his life changed after his legs were damaged by a land mine and how people treat him because it, both good and bad.

Some of the children at this center are like me. They have bad legs or no legs or hand missing or something wrong like that. Other students have everything they’re supposed to have. We are all treated the same. When a teacher is talking you can’t tell if they’re talking to a disabled kid or a regular kid. So no one feels different”

Kids of Kabul is a very insightful, thought provoking read, that can really provide a new awareness about what life is really like now for youth in Kabul both the good parts and the not so good.

 

(Renee, the Loft)

 
 
What Are You Reading? PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 10 January 2014 00:00

Check out what the students at Nichols Middle School have been reading:

 

altDays of Blood and Starlight by Laini Taylor

The otherworldly Karou struggles to come to terms with who and what she is, and how far she'll go to avenge her people. - See more at: http://evanston.bibliocommons.com/item/show/2169238035_days_of_blood_amp_starlight#sthash.wHHIstCX.dpuf

The otherworldly Karou struggles to come to terms with who and what she is, and how far she'll go to avenge her people.

 

altA Corner of White by Jaclyn Moriarty

Fourteen-year-old Madeleine of Cambridge, England, struggling to cope with poverty and her mother's illness, and fifteen-year-old Elliot of the Kingdom of Cello in a parallel world where colors are villainous and his father is missing, begin exchanging notes through a crack between their worlds and find they can be of great help to each other.

altThe Eye of Minds by James Dashner

Michael is a skilled internet gamer in a world of advanced technology.  When a cyber-terrorist begins to threaten players Michael is called upon to seek him and his secrets out. 

"Michael is a skilled internet gamer in a world of advanced technology. When a cyber-terrorist begins to threaten players, Michael is called upon to seek him and his secrets out - See more at: http://evanston.bibliocommons.com/item/show/2235817035_the_eye_of_minds#sthash.7Ng0JDF2.dpuf
 
John Green Read-a-Likes PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 09 January 2014 20:41

Read everything John Green and can't get enough? Try one of these books by authors who write in a style similar to Mr. Green. The stories are a good blend of funny and sad, romantic and heartbreaking--just like classic John Green. 

 

titleGoing Bovine

Written by Libba Bray 

 

Cameron Smith, a disaffected sixteen year-old who, after being diagnosed with Creutzfeld-Jakob's (aka mad cow) disease, sets off on a road trip with a death-obsessed video gaming dwarf he meets in the hospital in an attempt to find a cure.

 

 

 

 

 

titleThe Perks of Being a Wallflower

Directed by Stephan Chbosky

Stephen Chbosky

 

Based on the wildly popular novel by Stephen Chbosky about a freshman named Charlie who is always watching from the sidelines until a pair of charismatic seniors takes him under their wing. Beautiful, free-spirited Sam and her fearless stepbrother Patrick shepherd Charlie through new friendships, first love, burgeoning sexuality, bacchanalian parties, midnight screenings of The Rocky Horror Picture Show and the quest for the perfect song.

 

 

 

titleEveryday 

Written by David Levithan 

Every morning A wakes in a different person's body, in a different person's life, learning over the years to never get too attached, until he wakes up in the body of Justin and falls in love with Justin's girlfriend, Rhiannon. - See more at: http://evanston.bibliocommons.com/item/show/2166840035_every_day#sthash.8Ayjyp3B.dpuf

Every morning A wakes in a different person's body, in a different person's life, learning over the years to never get too attached, until he wakes up in the body of Justin and falls in love with Justin's girlfriend, Rhiannon. - See more at: http://evanston.bibliocommons.com/item/show/2166840035_every_day#sthash.8Ayjyp3B.dpuf

Every morning A wakes in a different person's body, in a different person's life, learning over the years to never get too attached, until he wakes up in the body of Justin and falls in love with Justin's girlfriend, Rhiannon. - See more at: http://evanston.bibliocommons.com/item/show/2166840035_every_day#sthash.8Ayjyp3B.dpuf

Every morning A wakes in a different person's body, in a different person's life, learning over the years to never get too attached, until he wakes up in the body of Justin and falls in love with Justin's girlfriend, Rhiannon. - See more at: http://evanston.bibliocommons.com/item/show/2166840035_every_day#sthash.8Ayjyp3B.dpuf

 

Every morning A wakes in a different person's body, in a different person's life, learning over the years to never get too attached, until he wakes up in the body of Justin and falls in love with Justin's girlfriend, Rhiannon. 

 

 

Check out these and more at John Green Read-a-Likes!

 

(Ashley, the Loft)

 
<< Start < Prev 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Next > End >>

Page 7 of 69
JavaScript disabled or chat unavailable.
Homework Help!
Brainfuse Homework Help
Follow Us!
Teen Facebook Page Twitter badge The Loft on Tumblr
New YA Titles


Free template 'colorfall2' by [ Anch ] Gorsk.net Studio. Please, don't remove this hidden copyleft!