Tag Archives: Comics

February Book Horoscopes!

starbookFebruary is weird because it is the second month of the year, the first month of a new semester, and the second-to-last month of winter; the month that despite it’s only having 28 days somehow seems to drag on and on in cold ambiguity.

Luckily, we’ve selected a bunch of fantastic books to engage your consciousness so that before you know it, spring will be just over the horizon!  Remember to help yourselves to any of the books on this list, which as always come from a variety of genres and reading levels.

AriesYoung Warriors

Young Warriors by Tamora Pierce and Josepha Sherman

This book is an anthology compiled by two great authors. It is a collection of fantastical tales of young people showing strength. If you feel yourself in need of some inspiration to get you through the last part of winter, this book will give you the relief your adventurous heart is yearning for.

Rosie ProjectTaurus

The Rosie Project by Graeme Simison

This is hilarious and heartfelt romantic comedy is sure to please you as we approach Valentine’s Day. Don, the main character, likes his life to be orderly and doesn’t like taking risks. He suffers from an unfortunate lack of social skills, but he finds love in Rosie, a wildly different woman who pushes him out of his comfort zone, as he helps her search for her missing father.

GeminiCurious Incident

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon

This book is an inspiring story about Christopher John Francis Boone, a fifteen-year-old boy on the autistic spectrum who has a very particular view of the world around him. Then one day his neighbor’s dog Wellington is killed, and Christopher takes on the role of a detective to figure out what happened.

Fahrenheit 451Cancer

Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

The start of the new semester is a great time for you to go back and read a classic – or if this is your first time reading it, enjoy this treat! Fahrenheit 451 is the dystopian tale of everyone’s worst nightmare – a world without books. Guy Montag is a fireman, and his job is to burn them. Poetic, striking and important, his story will both entertain you and make you reflect about the value of art.

LeoFlowers for Algernon

Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes

Charlie is a mentally disabled man who is being subjected to experimentation in a series of studies to increase his intelligence. The same treatments are being given to Algernon, a lab mouse. When Charlie’s intelligence begins to accelerate beyond what anyone had imagined was possible, everyone is thrilled – until Algernon begins to deteriorate unexpectedly. What will happen to Charlie?

WatchmenVirgo

Watchmen by Alan Moore

This brilliant graphic novel tells the story of what happens to superheroes when they begin to suffer from failures that seem to be uncomfortably akin to those of humble mortals. This book talks about humanity and questions what it truly means to be a superhero, all the while never ceasing to entertain. Continue reading

Post-Apocalyptic/Dystopian Stories

Look for something futuristic? Maybe dystopian future?

The first thing I’d have to recommend is the CW show The 100. With the start of the second season in mid-October, the first season was added to Netflix and The Seattle Public Library, and like many teens, I binge-watched it in 3 days. Continue reading

Usagi Yojimbo: Wandering Bunny Samurai Bodyguard

Title: Usagi Yojimbo

Author: Stan Sakai

Summary: Bunny wandering samurai bodyguard is generally epic, feudal Japan with animal-people.

Gut reaction: Feudal Japan, samurai, animals, episodic

Why: Basically, it’s your typical samurai story – a mysterious and powerful wandering samurai does stuff with morals, has money problems, and beats up bad guys, except Usagi has animals. Usagi Yojimbo means bunny bodyguard, and the titular character is literally a rabbit with armor and a sword. Other than that, it’s an OK if slightly unrealistic period piece.

Who would like this book: Sengoku fans, animal fans, samurai fans. I’ll read until I get bored with it, which probably won’t happen.

–Lexie, 15, West Seattle

WTS

Too Much to Read?

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Does this ever happen to you?

–submitted by Susanna, Montlake Branch

Two transgender students grow up in Japan.


wanderingson1Title:  Wandering Son

Author:  Shimura Takako

Summary:  Two transgender elementary school students in Japan grow up.

Gut reaction: Deep and cute.

Why: The characters and their reactions are very life-like and the contemporary Japanese setting was executed flawlessly.  The plot progressed logically and mimicked the pacing of real life, which you don’t get often these days.  I could empathize with the main characters and the side characters had a lot of personality.

Who would like this book:  All shoujo fans, seinen fans, and anyone into LGBTQ+ would love this series.  I will definitely follow it to the end!

–Lexie, West Seattle, Teen Blogger

Manga Reviewed: The Wallflower

wallflower1Title: The Wallflower
Author: Tomoko Hayakawa
Summary: Four pretty boys have to turn a horror-loving girl into a perfect lady
Gut reaction: shallow but fun
Why: The heroine, Sunako, grows on you and isn’t annoying. I find that the constant chibi drawing style of only her is, though. The four boys, especially the main, Kyohei, are quite annoying but they don’t get in the way. The plot is going nowhere and allows for little to no development. Also, each chapter is a repeat of the same old scenario.
Who would like this book: Shoujo fans and fans of light-hearted simple fun stories would like this. It’s a good light read, so I’ll probably follow until it becomes a pure love story.

— Lexie, 16, West Seattle

Not-to-miss summer movies!

XMen

X-Men: Days of Future Past

Certainly not the only Marvel movie being released this year (namely, The Winter Solider, aka Cap’n America: Bucky Returns; and Spider-Man, No. 5), but by far, the most anticipated, due to its amazing ensemble cast, which includes Ian McKellan, Patrick Stewart, and Hugh Jackman (!) Future Past will act as a sequel to 2006’s The Last Stand, as well as 2011’s First Class.

 

Guardians of the Galaxy*Guardians of the Galaxy (Aug 1st), I salute you, and you deserve your own blog post.

 

TFiOS

The Fault in Our Stars

The trailer made me cry.

The plot seems simple: Two kids who have cancer fall in love. However, it is the combination of both the characters and storytelling that makes this one stand out against the flood of Realistic contemporary young adult literature.

Time Magazine deemed John Green’s fourth novel “damn near genius,” and though I find the term genius slightly pretentious, I have to agree this is one of those rare genuine and poetically written young love stories that is equal parts sweet romance and, as is evident in the title, existential meditation. I cannot recommend it enough.

Fun fact: The two star-crossed lovers also play siblings in the post-apocalyptic Divergent. As the new YA-film it-girl, Shailene Woodley also stars in The Spectacular Now (2012) — yes, this was also first a book! — opposite a charming, but hedonistic Miles Teller, in a film about The School of Life. Both the novel and film are available in our catalog.  Dig it.

The Giver

The Giver – Aug 15th

Can anyone else say: Finally?!  The original “unfilmable” YA novel, before it was even a genre, will be hitting theaters this August!

Boasting a spectacular cast, including Jeff Bridges and Meryl Streep (and maybe you’ll surprise us, Taylor Swift… ), Lois Lowry‘s quintessential dystopian tale is set in a futuristic society with all pain and conflict eradicated and one boy chosen as the community’s Receiver of Memories. Published in 1993 and the first of a loose quartet, which was finally completed nearly two decades later in 2012, The Giver was awarded the Newberry Medal in 1994, and remains to this day among the greatest of young adult literature.

Check it out (again!) or for the first time here.

–Amanda D, Ballard Staffer

BAL