Teen Top Ten

Teens voted for their favorite young adult book during Teen Read Week. Here is the top ten:
1. “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince” by J.K. Rowling
2. “Twilight” by Stephanie Meyer
3. “Eldest” by Christopher Paolini
4. “Rebel Angels” by Libba Bray
5. “Peeps” by Scott Westerfeld
6. “13 Little Blue Envelopes” by Maureen Johnson
7. “Poison” by Chris Wooding
8. “Captain Hook: The Adventures of a Notorious Youth” by J.V. Hart
9. “If I Have a Wicked Stepmother, Where’s My Prince?” by Melissa Kantor
10.”Elsewhere” by Gabrielle Zevin
Whoa! Some of my favorite teen novels! These teens have great taste. I too loved Peeps, Elsewhere, and Rebel Angels.

Holiday Recommendations

The Horn Book has a nice collection of reviews of great new children’s holiday titles:  Holiday High Notes.  There are certainly enough titles here to fill up a sleigh and keep a whole bunch of naughty or nice children happy for hours. 

My Buddy, Slug

My Buddy, Slug by Jarrett Krosoczka.

This is the rather strange but ultimately wonderful story of Alex whose best friend is Slug.  They do everything together all day long and at first it is fun, but then it gets to be a bit too much for Alex.  Finally, when Slug is sleeping over, Alex complains to his mother.  But Slug overhears and is crushed.  Eventually, after being very lonely, Alex finds a way to apologize to his friend and repair the damage. 

At first, I was a little worried about the premise of a boy having a huge orange slug for a friend, but Slug is really a warm lump of a friend who is completely lovable if a little annoying.  It turns out that using Slug as a friend makes the story more accessible and less judgmental.  The friendly, cartoon-style art is fun and vibrant.  I enjoyed Slug’s comments and l-o-n-g stories as well. 

This one is a lot of fun and can make for an interesting addition to bug storytimes or friend units.  It is appropriate for preschoolers and kindergarteners, but could be used for slightly older children to start a discussion on friendships.