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Library Matters

Library Matters is a podcast by Montgomery County Public Libraries exploring the world of books, libraries, technology, and learning.
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Library Matters is a podcast of Montgomery County Public Libraries (MCPL) in Montgomery County, MD. Each episode we explore the world of books, libraries, technology, and learning. Library Matters is hosted by Julie Dina, Outreach Associate, Lauren Martino, Children's Librarian at our Silver Spring branch, and David Payne, Branch Manager of our Davis branch and Acting Branch Manager of our Potomac branch.  

Jul 18, 2018

Listen to the audio

Julie Dina:  Hi, I’m Julie Dina.  In this episode of Library Matters, we are doing something a little different.  For the past few months MCPL has invited children ages 10 through 14 to explore literature by recording a video about a book they’ve enjoyed.  We’ve collected some of these book talks to share with our Library Matters’ listeners. 

We hope you enjoy the enthusiasm these young readers have expressed for their books and for reading as much as we have.  You can see these and more of MCPL’s literary explorer videos on our YouTube channel mcplmd.  MCPL’s literary explorer program was made possible by grants from the NBC Universal Foundation and Washington’s NBC4.

Book Reviewer 1:  Who knew forgotten letters stuck inside a book could change someone’s life.  Absolutely Truly by Heather Vogel Frederick, it’s heartwarming story about a girl named Truly Lovejoy who gets tangled in a mystery of a letter inside a copy of Charlotte’s Web.  After Truly’s father gets injured by an IED overseas the Lovejoy’s move from Texas to a tiny town in New Hampshire called Pumpkin Falls.  

When Truly finds a letter in an autographed edition of Charlotte’s Web, she follows the clues and is soon roped in a treasure hunt taking her all around Pumpkin Falls.  I liked this book because it’s fun and its sweet mystery about friendship and family.  I really enjoyed this book and I hope you do too.

Book Reviewer 2:  With the Wrinkle in Time movie coming out hundreds of people were introduced to the characters of Meg, Calvin and Charles Wallace but did you know that Madeleine L’Engle already wrote a sequel to it?  Wind in the door also takes a sci-fi oriented trip but instead of going to the far reaches of space they go deep into Charles Wallace’s mitochondria, which is the body’s main energy producer.

With her companions, old and new, Meg was either prevail over darkness or loss her brother.  Wind in the door gives you seven questions through the plot, such as – wait I shall not tell.  It is a fast-paced book with several scientific facts that are mind bending.  For instance, the microscopic scale from the mitochondria to you is about the same as the scale from you to out the galaxy, neat?

She also had a coming of age story about the creatures that were living in the mitochondria.  With vivid characters, strange new creatures and an imagination that trumps all, Madeleine L’Engle has created a wonderful sequel that will thrill readers, young and old, with Wind in the door.

Book Reviewer 3:  Some look like giant walking turtles, others are black with wings and look almost like armored ravens, “Shadow Titans!” Emily shouted.  I’m Manisha and the book I will be reviewing is Pegasus The End of Olympus by Kate O’Hearn.  The book I chose to discuss is about a girl named Emily and her best friend, the winged stallion Pegasus.  Emily now has less powers and a different body so she feels as if she’s being judged.  But she still has one more promise to fulfill, to rescue Agent B from the evil central research unit.

But while at the facility she finds a monster older than Olympus itself.  I would recommend this book to someone else because it is action packed, filled with adventure and busting with excitement.  Will Emily defeat the monsters?  Will Olympus make peace with the Titans?  You’ll have to read the book to find out.

Book Reviewer 4:  Right, let’s have fun.  “Hallo Silver I didn’t see you there.” “I, a lowly Red am about to vanquish you, and if you survive, you should read this.”  This is Red Queen.  Red Queen is about the teenage girl named Mare Barrow in a world where the people are divided by their blood; Red or Silver.  Mare is Red, [Indiscernible] [00:04:10] while Silvers are the nobles.  Their Silver blood gives them superpowers.

One day Mare is called by the king to serve him but when she crushes the party, she realizes she has powers but she is a red.  Mare latter joins the rebellion in order to give the reds their rights but the stakes are high, and when blood goes against blood, who will survive in the deadly of power.  Red Queen is an amazing book about betrayal, loyalty, love.  If you like bloodshed and epic battle scenes then you read the Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard.

Book Reviewer 5:  One second everything is normal, the next is not.  In a blink of an eye everyone 15 years and older vanishes into thin air along with phone signals, internet, any way to get help.  Gone by Michael Grant is a young adult dystopian series of seven books.  In dystopia books somebody threatens the survival of the human race, creating a living nightmare.  After an asteroid hits a nuclear power plant in California a radioactive monster is born.

It created an energy barrier that made everyone 15 and older vanish, living the kids to fend for themselves.  Some of the kids even develop supernatural abilities, throughout the series the kids fight hunger, lies, plague, fear, and even each other.  This series is full of unexpected twists and turns with mutations and monsters that will live your jaw hanging open.

I guarantee that you will be hooked into their world.  Full of action, suspense, humor, mystery and fear, this is a series that teens will never forget.

Book Reviewer 6:  Hi there, I was just reading this really cool book called Harry Potter and the Sorcery’s Stone by J. K. Rowling.  In the beginning of the book, we find out how Harry lives a miserable life with his aunt and uncle, and spoil cousin.  But all this is about to change when a mysterious letter arrives in the mail addressed to Harry.

He gets accepted into Hogwart’s school of witchcraft and wizardry.  Along the way Harry finds out 11 years ago his parents were killed by the dark lord Voldemort and now he’s planning on coming to kill Harry.  Will Harry survive his deadly encounter with Lord Voldemort?  Will Harry and his friends be able to protect themselves? Find out in Harry Potter and the Sorcery’s Stone. 

I recommend this book for all ages that’s it’s a wonderful introduction to Harry Potter’s life and the wizarding world.

Book Reviewer 7:  How ever imagined walking eight hours twice, everyday just to get to the closest water source that’s not even 100% clean? Linda Sue Park describes Nya’s struggles to find water in a Long Walk to Water.  Nya has to retrieve water for her family, walking for 16 hours total every day. 

One day, Nya’s sister was extremely sick.  Her parents went to their tribe’s chief and asked for help.  He tells them that the nearest medical clinic is 90 miles away.  In Sudan the cars are a rare sight.  Nya’s sister walked with her dad for three whole days until they found a small medical clinic.  A nurse cared for Nya’s sister and said that the cause of her sickness is because of dirty water.  Will the family get clean water?  Will Nya’s sister survive?  Read a Long Walk to Water by Linda Sue Park to find out.

Book Reviewer 8:  “Olivia?”  A voice called out, “Olivia Grace Harrison?” It was the most amazing sight Olivia had ever seen in her life.  It was her Royal Highness Princess Amelia Mignonette of Genovia.  Until that moment, Olivia was a typical sixth grader who lived with her aunt and step uncle after her mom passed away.

But when the royal sister she never knew suddenly emerges onto the scene to pick her up from school, Olivia’s life changes dramatically.  In an instance, she is transformed from an ordinary school girl to a real-life princess.  Olivia is whisked away in a royal Genovian limousine and finally meets her dad and family.  A dream that until now was unfulfilled.

When her step uncle finds out that she was with her true family, he becomes furious and takes her back to the place where she grew up.  Olivia ponders her future.  Will she remain with the only family she knew, and live the ordinary life she was used to?  Or will she be drawn to her royal roots in Genovia to be with her dad’s family?  Will Olivia be able to live in Genovia happily ever after?

There’s only one way to find out.  Pick up and read Meg Cabot’s imaginative novel, From the Notebooks of a Middle School Princess.

Book Reviewer 9:  Do you like mystery? Then you should read one of the Hardy Boys books.  This book by Franklin W. Dixon is called the Secret of the Caves.  The Hardy boys are trying to find a missing person called Morgan Todd, but along the way people try to hurt the Hardy boys.  One time in Honeycomb caves, very strange things happened.  People who seem to be good are just criminals.

I like this book because at first the mystery can get really confusing, but finally the mystery is really interesting.

Book Reviewer 10:  For English class, I’m writing a poem and I decided it’s going to be about sounds.  Sounds of the wrinkled, squirm creatures that live in tide pools.  The problem is my teacher thought it was terrible, she gave me an F.  Then I showed it to my dad, a professor of literature, he changed my F into a Fabulous.  My dad said not everyone can understand poetry.  This is a passage from the book Anastasia Krupnik by Lois Lowry.

This is about a ten-year-old girl who is confident, insightful, funny and stays on top of her world.  She is a fourth grader dealing with all fourth-grade drama.  Being ten years old is in deed confusing.  Anastasia doesn’t know if she wants to be a ballerina or an ice skater.  She hasn’t decided yet.  She has an old grandmother who sometimes doesn’t remember her and makes her sad.

Anastasia has a lot to do with boys, baby brother on the way, friends, her gold fish, and school.  Anastasia loves to make a list of what she likes, and what she hates.  She is just writing to solve many problems but she will always hate eating liver.

I love this book because it motivated me to start a journal in which I can write in every day.  Writing helps me work out difficult situations.  I also try to solve my problems by looking at the pros and cons.  This way I too, come up happier and wiser.  This book will help you stay positive and help you deal with life’s drama, like it helps me.

Julie Dina:  We hope you enjoyed these engaging book talks.  We are so glad these young shared their enthusiasm for their books with us.  You can find all these books in MCPL’s catalogue.  Keep the conversation going by following us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest. Don’t forget to subscribe to the podcast, on the Apple podcast app, Sticher or wherever you get your podcasts.  Also please review and rate us on Apple podcast, we’d love to know what you think.

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