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Friday, May 22, 2015

Fun YA Quizzes!!!

Admit it: You've spent waaaayy too much time doing online quizzes when you could have been doing homework. So we decided to make it a little easier for you. Here are some of our favorite book quizzes we've found online.

Which Teen Book Character Are You?
via quibblo.com

Camp Half Blood Parentage Test (Mostly Accurate)
via quotev.com

How Many Of These Young Adult Books Have You Read?
So little time, so much to read.
via buzzfeed.com

The Harry Potter Night Sorting Hat quiz
Ever wonder which house you'd be in if you went to Hogwarts? We're celebrating Harry Potter Book Night with this sorting-hat quiz, which will answer this forever!
via theguardian.com

Are You More Harry Potter or Draco Malfoy?
Take this magical quiz to find out!
via buzzfeed.com

Are You More Ron Weasley Or Hermione Granger?
Either way, you'll be BFFs with the Chosen One.
via buzzfeed.com

Can You Guess The "Harry Potter" Character By These Emojis?
Do You-Know-Who? Warning: spoilers.
via buzzfeed.com

Which "Harry Potter" Core Subject Would You Get An Outstanding In?
Remember, swish and flick!
via buzzfeed.com

Who Is Your YA Boyfriend?
via popsugar.com

Who is your YA book boyfriend? [Yes, another quiz about YA boyfriends!]
via gotoquiz.com

Book lovers: What's your reading personality?
via bookbrowse.com

Which of the March sisters from Little Women are you? 
Let's face it, no one can read Louisa May Alcott's novel without identifying with one of the four March sisters. Find out which one you really are!
via theguardian.com

Insurgent by Veronica Roth - quiz
To celebrate the release of Insurgent, the second film in Veronica Roth's Divergent trilogy, we have created a quiz to see how big a fan you are!
via theguardian.com

The Alice in Wonderland quiz
The Imagine Festival is celebrating the 150th Anniversary of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland! We have lots of events that you can come to during the festival. Do you know why a raven is like a writing desk? How well will you do in our Alice quiz?
via theguardian.com

Which classic book would be perfect for me? 
Is your new year's resolution to read some classic books? Take our classics match quiz to find your ideal classics read!
via theguardian.com

LGBT characters in teen fiction - quiz
LGBT characters and storylines are becoming more and more common in YA fiction. But can you tell your LGBT from your YMCA? Take our quiz and find out just how out and proud about your reading you should be!
via theguardian.com

What YA Book Should You Read Next?
Wondering what to bump up on your TBR? Let us help you narrow your choices...
via uppercasebox.com

And aaaalll of these quizzes from Sporcle.com

Comment with your results!

MRL is not responsible for nor does it endorse the content of non-MRL websites. Users should use critical judgment in relying on information found in these websites and determine what information is appropriate to their needs.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

"5 Things I Learned While Writing 'Nobody's Goddess'"

We've reposted from Diversity in YA before, and here is another awesome post:


I began work on a manuscript that led to my YA romantic fantasy debut, Nobody’s Goddess, twelve years before its publication. What I wrote then bears little resemblance to what will be published April 21st, but some of the images that first popped into my mind back then became the groundwork for the finished product. It all started with a cavern bathed in violet light, a cavern that made it into the finished manuscript even when characters, the plot and the role of the cavern did not. Writing Nobody’s Goddess taught me a lot of things, but these five are the most important: 
1. Stories can evolve. Many authors talk about shelving early manuscripts they wrote, claiming their writing skills weren’t polished at the time or citing a long list of rejections. I believe that even if the earliest work you do on a project doesn’t see the light of day, if you believe in the core of your story, you’ll eventually figure out how to make it work—even if you have to rewrite the story from page one more than once. 
2. Write at your own pace. If you can write every day, you’ll get a lot done and improve much quicker than writers who don’t. That said, it’s not a feasible schedule for every writer. It’s been a long journey, but I discovered that I write best when I write every day (or nearly every day) for a few months at a time and then let myself rest for a few months, using that time to edit and outline other projects. I wrote what became the original finished first draft ofNobody’s Goddess in just nine days. (I’d scrapped most of what I’d written on the project before that, although the bare bones of some of it made it through.) I made far more significant progress in those nine days than I had in the nine years before that. 
3. Prepare to revise. When I finished the first draft of Nobody’s Goddess, after years of writing aimlessly, I thought the hardest part was behind me. Over the next few years, I revised it significantly for: an agent (which led to me signing with another agent), an editor at a publisher, a second round of submissions with my agent’s help after that didn’t work out, and for my publisher after signing, with a number of smaller revisions with the help of beta readers and editors along the way. It takes a lot to shape your ideas into something that’s ready to share with readers, and you won’t have to go it alone, but you should be ready to rip up your manuscript and rework scenes if necessary. Some of the characters in the final version of my book didn’t even appear in the version we first sent out to publishers. 
4. Write what you love. When I first wrote what would in some form become Nobody’s Goddess (then called, embarrassingly,Dreamalgam; at least the next working title, The Veiled Man’s Goddess, was an improvement), I lacked passion for the project because I was focusing on writing a story that didn’t speak to me as a reader. I wanted to write a YA fantasy, and romance was an afterthought; I wasn’t sure it was going to appear at all. I was focused on fantasy and dreams, even though I usually found dream scenes irritating in the entertainment I consumed. Eventually, I remembered how much I adore a twisted kind of romance and decided to scrap the dream angle entirely, instead writing a story I hoped would prove in the vein of Pride and Prejudice or Jane Eyre or even Jim Henson’s Labyrinth, with a Byronic hero and a heroine who stands up for herself and what she believes in rather than simply caving in to his affections. Because I love those types of stories, going in that direction made writing easier. 
5. Focus on scenes that speak to you. If you’re having difficulty writing, think about the scenes you’ve yet to write. If one seems really exciting, go ahead and skip to it. Re-discover that passion you feel for the project as you write that scene, and then go back and fill in the gaps in the plot later. The more organized-minded might not like to write that way, but it’s important you keep writing any way you can rather than letting yourself get stuck because you’re not sure how the next chronological scene should go. Write to bring the characters in your head to life. Write to promote more diverse reading, with worlds more accurately reflective of the world we live in. Write just because you want to. Most importantly—just write.
Amy McNulty is a freelance writer and editor from Wisconsin with an honors degree in English. She was first published in a national scholarly journal (The Concord Review) while in high school and currently spends her days alternatively writing about anime and business topics and crafting stories with dastardly villains and antiheroes set in fantastical medieval settings. Nobody’s Goddess, the first book in The Never Veil Series, is her debut YA romantic fantasy. You can find her on Twitter and Facebook.
Nobody’s Goddess is available for purchase.

Thursday, May 7, 2015

May Book Club Post!

Title: The Ghosts of Heaven
Author: Marcus Sedgwick
Copyright: 2015
Call Number: YA Fiction SED (at North River)

You'll notice the patterns appear in Marcus Sedgwick's The Ghosts of Heaven. The story is told in four parts, the characters strewn throughout Earth's history, but the stories are strikingly similar. 

First there is the Girl, who dreams of drawing on the cave walls like the Storyteller. Next there is Anna, whose village believes she is a witch. Then we meet Charles Dexter, a once-successful poet who now resides in a mental institution in the 1920's. Finally, we experience the life of Keir Bowman, an astronaut who wakes every 10 years to maintain the massive spaceship on which he resides, travelling to form a new habitat for the 510 Earthlings on board.

There are mixed reactions about this book. Many readers appreciate the beautiful way in which it is written. Each story is unique in its own way. They are all told from different perspectives, with different narration styles. The characters are dynamic but lonely. There is an appealing mix of introspection, madness, and danger in each of them. But the stories can be a lot to get through. This article (SPOILER ALERT!!!) defines the book as "ambitious, intriguing and frustrating." If you don't think the stories sound interesting, at least read The Ghosts of Heaven to be a part of the discussion.

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Why Do You Read YA?

This article says that YA experiences are universal and timeless; people will be writing and reading YA books for a long time.

What do you think? Will you continue to read YA after you're out of the age group? Or is it dependent on the book, not the genre?

And for that matter, why do you read YA? Is it about the characters or the subject? Take the poll below!

Why do you read YA?

pollcode.com free polls

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Literary Playlist: Beautiful Music for Ugly Children

At the start of Beautiful Music for Ugly Children, Gabe's neighbor hooked him up with the gig of a lifetime: his own radio show. Gabe's going through his own stuff right now--transitioning, fighting off feelings for his best friend, trying to finish high school in one piece, dealing with his not-so-supportive family--but the radio show is his favorite part of the week. And it leads to new things for Gabe. Some of them aren't so great, and most of them scare the heck out of him, but Gabe's hopeful they'll lead to a new life for him.

Gabe is the new Elvis because he's ready to start his real life.

Read Beautiful Music for Ugly Children and listen to his Elvis-filled playlist:

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Earth Day + Recycled DIY Crafts Event!!!!

On Earth Day (April 22), we'll be making super-awesome DIY crafts using discarded trash! That's right, trash!! Here are the deets:

Recycled DIY Crafts

Celebrate Earth Day by creating cool crafts with recycled products, Wednesday, April 22, from 6-7 PM! Make a duct tape wallet, soda box pencil case, book safe, and more! Enjoy snacks and book paper origami, too.

Main Library - downtown Harrisonburg

And while you're here at the library, be sure to turn in your essay and/or artwork for the Honored Teachers Contest!

Honored Teacher Essays/Artwork Due

All students, K-12th grade, are eligible to enter the Robert B. and Gladys Hopkins Strickler Honored Teachers Writing and Art Contest. Essays/artwork are due today.
Main Library - downtown Harrisonburg

And finally, how perfect is this compilation of 2014's greatest hits using household items? We are so going to watch this on repeat during the Recycled DIY Crafts event.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Prim Dances!

If you're a THG fan who watches Dancing With the Stars, you may have gotten a treat. In this week's challenge, contestants had to commemorate their most memorable year in dance. Willow Shields, who plays Prim in The Hunger Games movie series, themed hers around THG!!! Check it out below:

Monday, April 6, 2015

MRL YA March Mayhem Book Bracket WINNER!!!

...And the winner is... The Giver! 

(Wow, you guys must like the classics! The Giver was the earliest-published book on the bracket and it took the cake!)

Thanks to everyone who voted!

Friday, April 3, 2015

April Book Club Post!

Title: The Boy in the Black Suit
Author: Jason Reynolds
Copyright: 2015
Call Number: YA Fiction REYNO

It's the beginning of senior year, and Matt has already missed the first few weeks. His mom was sick--cancer--and passed away. And now Matt has to go back to school. Classes aren't bothering him--he's done well in high school, so he only has to go half a day--it's the other kids. They're looking at him like he's broken or different. And he is different; he's had to grow up fast, and now he's changed, probably for forever. His boy Chris is still trying to treat him normal, but his dad is getting lost in a bottle. Matt doesn't even want to cook anymore, since that was something his mom did with him.

To fill his time, Matt decides to get a part-time job. He expected to walk out of the Cluck Bucket with a job on the fryer, but he ends up leaving with an offer to work at Mr. Ray's funeral home. He's always known Mr. Ray as the guy who survived cancer twice and is now trying to inform others of the disease. Now Mr. Ray is looking out for him: paying him to help set up for funerals, picking him up from school, and helping when Matt's dad goes off the deep end. 

The one thing Matt loves about his new job is going to funerals. He wants to see someone go through what he went through with his mom. It makes him feel better, as strange as it sounds. One of those people is Lovey. She'll be the first one to roll her eyes at any joke you have about her name. She just lost her grandma--Matt was at her funeral--and as they help each other through that pain, they realize they have more in common than they thought.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Literary Playlist: I'm Glad I Did

The year is 1963. JJ Green is only 16 years old, but she already graduated from high school. She's going to college in the fall, but for the summer, she gets a job at Good Music, in the same building in which her "music industry no-goodnik" Uncle Bernie works. Her mother cuts her a deal: If JJ can get the label to buy a song of hers in three weeks, she'll allow her to continue working toward her songwriting dream. If not, she has to become a lawyer.

JJ loves her new job at Good Music. She can be close to professional songwriters--and hopefully their talent will inspire her own songwriting. She's working on a song when she meets a music icon: Sweet Dulcie Brown, who happens to be working there as a custodian. She and Dulcie spend nights working on JJ's song. She also gets surprising help from an aspiring lyricist, Luke Silver, son of the recently departed George Silver, music producer extraordinaire. They eventually cut a demo of "I'm Glad I Did," which will hopefully

JJ gets tied up in the lives of those she meets: Dulcie, Luke, music producer Bobby Goodman, elevator operator Nick, her estranged Uncle Bernie, and his young wife, Marla. When one of her new friends turns up dead, she doesn't believe it was a suicide. JJ has no choice but to find the killer--and unravel the lies behind the music industry.

Hit play to set the mood for I'm Glad I Did by Cynthia Weil: