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Teen Talk. Photo of teens laughing together.
 
Hey teens, let’s talk! 

I'm Taylor, one of the Youth Services librarians at Aurora Central Library.  
Cartoon Taylor  
 
Each month at the Aurora Public Library, I cover a variety of topics for teens. This month’s blog on mindfulness.  
Swing by the Aurora Central Library's teen area to browse books, resources, and activities related to the monthly topic. 

Artwork of person meditating in center with colorful surroundings

Mindfulness and meditation have become buzzwords over the last few years and for good reason—it works, it’s free, it’s simple, and anyone can do it. The COVID-19 pandemic has affected us all and altered the way we do life. Slowing down and remaining present is now more essential than ever to our overall well-being.  

Let’s dive in  what is mindfulness? 

“Mindfulness means maintaining a moment-by-moment awareness of our thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, and surrounding environment, through a gentle, nurturing lens.  

Mindfulness also involves acceptance, meaning that we pay attention to our thoughts and feelings without judging them—without believing, for instance, that there’s a “right” or “wrong” way to think or feel in a given moment.  

When we practice mindfulness, our thoughts tune into what we’re sensing in the present moment rather than rehashing the past or imagining the future.” 
 (Source: Greater Good Magazine)

Quote on yellow background. Text: We have a finite amount of energy to spend every day before becoming exhausted. Mindfulness helps you use your energy wisely, spending it on situations, people, and causes that bring you the most joy, meaning and peace. By Thich Nhat Hanh
 
 
Read these articles about the power of mindfulness in daily life:
- How I Became a Mindfulness Convert
- Benefits of Mindfulness
- How to Practice Mindfulness: 11 Practical Steps and Tips


Graphic showing impact of mindfulness

I only recently got into meditation and mindfulness. I had heard a lot about the practice. I had heard about the benefits, but I still was resistant. It felt too easy or like it wouldn’t make much of a difference. About eight months ago I started incorporating deep breathing meditation before bed to help with my insomnia. I would play some ocean sounds or thunderstorms on my phone and practice deep breathing for twenty minutes while lying in bed. The results were instant and long-lasting. 

Since then, whenever I have started to feel overwhelmed or anxious I’ll try to remember to step aside and take a couple of deep breathes to re-center myself. I can feel my body relaxing and the tension leaving after a few breathes. It’s amazing! 

Three months ago I started reading up on mindfulness. I was surprised to find how simple and transformative the practice was. It sounds so simple—pay attention to the present moment, pay attention to how you feel, your surroundings, etc. 

The area of my life where I was able to see immediate changes was with eating. When practicing mindful eating you have no distractions, savor each bite, and fully engage with the act of eating and the food in front of you. 

What is most important about mindfulness is that you don’t have to be perfect and it is something that you continue to practice and grow with. I hope that you will consider incorporating mindfulness into your daily life and giving meditation a try. I have found it to be more beneficial than I thought. 

Quote on yellow background. Text: You need to wake up from your autopilot mode. You have to live deeply and with more awareness so that you can be attentive to each moment. By Thich Nhat Hanh 

Explore these free apps for guided meditations and mindfulness practices:
Smiling Mind – FREE app 
- Insight Timer – FREE app (pay for more access) 


Check out these books related to mindfulness and meditation:

 

Check back in April for our next Teen Talk! 

Join me every Thursday at 4 p.m. for our weekly Teen Hang at Aurora Central Library (14949 E. Alameda Pkwy.). I'd love to meet you and hear about what topics you’d like featured.   

Taylor written in cursive
Posted by [email protected]  On Mar 01, 2022 at 12:29 PM
  
Breaking Down Barriers. Image of castle. Aurora Public Library logo.
 

Breaking Down LGBTQA+ Barriers in Teen and Adult Fiction

“Cemetery Boys” by Aiden Thomas 
Cover of "Cemetery Boys"Yadriel has summoned a ghost, and now he can’t get rid of him. 
 
When his traditional Latinx family has problems accepting his gender, Yadriel becomes determined to prove himself a real brujo. With the help of his cousin and best friend Maritza, he performs the ritual himself, and then sets out to find the ghost of his murdered cousin and set it free. 
 
However, the ghost he summons is actually Julian Diaz, the school’s resident bad boy, and Julian is not about to go quietly into death. He’s determined to find out what happened and tie up some loose ends before he leaves. Left with no choice, Yadriel agrees to help Julian, so that they can both get what they want. But the longer Yadriel spends with Julian, the less he wants to let him leave. 


“Carry On” by Rainbow Rowell 
Cover of "Carry On"Simon Snow is the worst Chosen One who's ever been chosen. 
 
That's what his roommate, Baz, says. And Baz might be evil and a vampire and a complete git, but he's probably right. 
 
Half the time, Simon can't even make his wand work, and the other half, he starts something on fire. His mentor's avoiding him, his girlfriend broke up with him, and there's a magic-eating monster running around, wearing Simon's face. Baz would be having a field day with all this, if he were here — it's their last year at the Watford School of Magicks, and Simon's infuriating nemesis didn't even bother to show up.  


“The Gentlemen’s Guide to Vice and Virtue” by Mackenzi Lee 
Cover of "A Gentlemen's Guide to Vice and Virtue"Henry “Monty” Montague was born and bred to be a gentleman, but he was never one to be tamed. The finest boarding schools in England and the constant disapproval of his father haven’t been able to curb any of his roguish passions—not for gambling halls, late nights spent with a bottle of spirits, or waking up in the arms of women or men. 
 
But as Monty embarks on his Grand Tour of Europe, his quest for a life filled with pleasure and vice is in danger of coming to an end. Not only does his father expect him to take over the family’s estate upon his return, but Monty is also nursing an impossible crush on his best friend and traveling companion, Percy. 
 
Still it isn’t in Monty’s nature to give up. Even with his younger sister, Felicity, in tow, he vows to make this yearlong escapade one last hedonistic hurrah and flirt with Percy from Paris to Rome. But when one of Monty’s reckless decisions turns their trip abroad into a harrowing manhunt that spans across Europe, it calls into question everything he knows, including his relationship with the boy he adores. 


“Beyond Binary: Genderqueer and Sexually Fluid Speculative Fiction” by Brit Mandelo 
Cover of "Beyond Binary"Speculative fiction is the literature of questions, of challenges and imagination, and what better to question than the ways in which gender and sexuality have been rigidly defined, partitioned off, put in little boxes? These seventeen stories explore the ways in which identity can go beyond binary from space colonies to small college towns, from angels to androids, and from a magical past to other worlds entirely, the authors in this collection have brought to life wonderful tales starring people who proudly define (and redefine) their own genders, sexualities, identities, and so much else in between. 

 

 


“Love Beyond Body, Space, and Time” by Hope Nicholson 
Cover of "Love Beyond"Love Beyond, Body, Space, and Time" is a collection of indigenous science fiction and urban fantasy focusing on LGBT and two-spirit characters. These stories range from a transgender woman trying an experimental transition medication to young lovers separated through decades and meeting far in their own future. These are stories of machines and magic, love, and self-love. 

 




 

Breaking Down Protagonists of Color Barriers in Teen and Adult Fiction

“Dread Nation” by Justina Ireland 
Cover of "Dread Nation"Jane McKeene was born two days before the dead began to walk the battlefields of Gettysburg and Chancellorsville—derailing the War Between the States and changing America forever. In this new nation, safety for all depends on the work of a few, and laws like the Native and Negro Reeducation Act require certain children attend combat schools to learn to put down the dead. But there are also opportunities—and Jane is studying to become an Attendant, trained in both weaponry and etiquette to protect the well-to-do. It’s a chance for a better life for Negro girls like Jane. After all, not even being the daughter of a wealthy white Southern woman could save her from society’s expectations. 

But that’s not a life Jane wants. Almost finished with her education at Miss Preston’s School of Combat in Baltimore, Jane is set on returning to her Kentucky home and doesn’t pay much mind to the politics of the eastern cities, with their talk of returning America to the glory of its days before the dead rose. But when families around Baltimore County begin to go missing, Jane is caught in the middle of a conspiracy, one that finds her in a desperate fight for her life against some powerful enemies. And the restless dead, it would seem, are the least of her problems. 
 

“Children of Blood and Bone” by Tomi Adeyemi 
Cover of "Children of Blood and Bone"Zélie Adebola remembers when the soil of Orïsha hummed with magic. Burners ignited flames, Tiders beckoned waves, and Zélie’s Reaper mother summoned forth souls. 
 
But everything changed the night magic disappeared. Under the orders of a ruthless king, maji were killed, leaving Zélie without a mother and her people without hope. 
 
Now Zélie has one chance to bring back magic and strike against the monarchy. With the help of a rogue princess, Zélie must outwit and outrun the crown prince, who is hell-bent on eradicating magic for good. 
 
Danger lurks in Orïsha, where snow leoponaires prowl and vengeful spirits wait in the waters. Yet the greatest danger may be Zélie herself as she struggles to control her powers and her growing feelings for an enemy.  
 

“Legendborn” by Tracy Deonn 
Cover of "Legendborn"After her mother dies in an accident, sixteen-year-old Bree Matthews wants nothing to do with her family memories or childhood home. A residential program for bright high schoolers at UNC–Chapel Hill seems like the perfect escape—until Bree witnesses a magical attack her very first night on campus. 
 
A flying demon feeding on human energies. 
 
A secret society of so called “Legendborn” students that hunt the creatures down. 
 
And a mysterious teenage mage who calls himself a “Merlin” and who attempts—and fails—to wipe Bree’s memory of everything she saw. 
 
The mage’s failure unlocks Bree’s own unique magic and a buried memory with a hidden connection: the night her mother died, another Merlin was at the hospital. Now that Bree knows there’s more to her mother’s death than what’s on the police report, she’ll do whatever it takes to find out the truth, even if that means infiltrating the Legendborn as one of their initiates. 
 
She recruits Nick, a self-exiled Legendborn with his own grudge against the group, and their reluctant partnership pulls them deeper into the society’s secrets—and closer to each other. But when the Legendborn reveal themselves as the descendants of King Arthur’s knights and explain that a magical war is coming, Bree has to decide how far she’ll go for the truth and whether she should use her magic to take the society down—or join the fight.  

 
“The Gilda Stories” by Jewelle Gomez 
Cover of "The Gilda Stories"The winner of two Lambda Literary Awards (fiction and science fiction) The Gilda Stories is a very lesbian American odyssey. Escaping from slavery in the 1850s Gilda's longing for kinship and community grows over two hundred years. Her induction into a family of benevolent vampyres takes her on an adventurous and dangerous journey full of loud laughter and subtle terror.  

 






“The Poppy War” by R. F. Kuang 
Cover of "The Poppy War"A brilliantly imaginative talent makes her exciting debut with this epic historical military fantasy, inspired by the bloody history of China’s twentieth century and filled with treachery and magic, in the tradition of Ken Liu’s Grace of Kings and N.K. Jemisin’s Inheritance Trilogy. 
 
When Rin aced the Keju—the Empire-wide test to find the most talented youth to learn at the Academies—it was a shock to everyone: to the test officials, who couldn’t believe a war orphan from Rooster Province could pass without cheating; to Rin’s guardians, who believed they’d finally be able to marry her off and further their criminal enterprise; and to Rin herself, who realized she was finally free of the servitude and despair that had made up her daily existence. That she got into Sinegard—the most elite military school in Nikan—was even more surprising. 
 
But surprises aren’t always good.  

 

Breaking Down Non-Ableist Barriers in Teen and Adult Fiction

“The Nobleman's Guide to Scandal and Shipwrecks” by Mackenzi Lee 
Cover of "The Nobleman's Guide to Scandal and Shipwrecks"Return to the enchanting world of the Montague siblings in the finale to the New York Times bestselling and Stonewall Honor-winning series, featuring a teenage Adrian Montague as he desperately seeks the now adult Monty and Felicity—the older siblings he never knew he had. 

Adrian Montague has a bright future. The sole heir to his father's estate, he is an up and coming political writer and engaged to an activist who challenges and inspires him. But most young Lords aren't battling the debilitating anxiety Adrian secretly lives with, or the growing fear that it might consume him and all he hopes to accomplish. In the wake of his mother's unexpected death, Adrian is also concerned people will find out that he has the mental illness she struggled with for years. 

When a newly found keepsake of hers—a piece of a broken spyglass—comes into Adrian's possession, he's thrust into the past and finds himself face to face with an older brother he never knew he had. Henry "Monty" Montague has been living quietly in London for years, and his sudden appearance sends Adrian on a quest to unravel family secrets that only the spyglass can answer. 

In pursuit of answers about the relic, the brothers chart a course to locate their sister Felicity. But as they travel between the pirate courts of Rabat, Portuguese islands, the canals of Amsterdam, and into unknown Artic waters, the Montague siblings are thrown into one final adventure as they face a ghostly legend that threatens their whole family.  
 

“Magonia” by Maria Dahvana Headley 
Cover of "Magonia"Since she was a baby, Aza Ray Boyle has suffered from a mysterious lung disease that makes it ever harder for her to breathe, to speak—to live. So when Aza catches a glimpse of a ship in the sky, her family chalks it up to a cruel side effect of her medication. But Aza doesn’t think this is a hallucination. She can hear someone on the ship calling her name. 
 
Only her best friend, Jason, listens. Jason, who’s always been there. Jason, for whom she might have more-than-friendly feelings. But before Aza can consider that thrilling idea, something goes terribly wrong. Aza is lost to our world—and found by another. Magonia. 
 
Above the clouds, in a land of trading ships, Aza is not the weak and dying thing she was. In Magonia, she can breathe for the first time. Better, she has immense power—but as she navigates her new life, she discovers that war between Magonia and Earth is coming. In Aza’s hands lies the fate of the whole of humanity—including the boy who loves her. Where do her loyalties lie?  
 

“The Blade Itself” by Joe Abercrombie 
Cover of "The Blade Itself"Logen Ninefingers, infamous barbarian, has finally run out of luck. Caught in one feud too many, he's on the verge of becoming a dead barbarian — leaving nothing behind him but bad songs, dead friends, and a lot of happy enemies. 

Nobleman, dashing officer, and paragon of selfishness, Captain Jezal dan Luthar has nothing more dangerous in mind than fleecing his friends at cards and dreaming of glory in the fencing circle. But war is brewing, and on the battlefields of the frozen North they fight by altogether bloodier rules. 

Inquisitor Glokta, cripple turned torturer, would like nothing better than to see Jezal come home in a box. But then Glokta hates everyone: cutting treason out of the Union one confession at a time leaves little room for friendship. His latest trail of corpses may lead him right to the rotten heart of government, if he can stay alive long enough to follow it. 

Enter the wizard, Bayaz. A bald old man with a terrible temper and a pathetic assistant, he could be the First of the Magi, he could be a spectacular fraud, but whatever he is, he's about to make the lives of Logen, Jezal, and Glokta a whole lot more difficult. 

Murderous conspiracies rise to the surface, old scores are ready to be settled, and the line between hero and villain is sharp enough to draw blood. 

Unpredictable, compelling, wickedly funny, and packed with unforgettable characters, The Blade Itself is noir fantasy with a real cutting edge.   
 

“A Curse so Dark and Lonely” by Brit Mandelo 
Cover of "A Curse So Dark and Lonely"Cursed by a powerful enchantress to repeat the autumn of his eighteenth year, Prince Rhen, the heir of Emberfall, thought he could be saved easily if a girl fell for him. But that was before he turned into a vicious beast hell-bent on destruction. Before he destroyed his castle, his family, and every last shred of hope. 
 
Nothing has ever been easy for Harper. With her father long gone, her mother dying, and her brother constantly underestimating her because of her cerebral palsy, Harper learned to be tough enough to survive. When she tries to save a stranger on the streets of Washington, DC, she's pulled into a magical world. 
 
Break the curse, save the kingdom. Harper doesn't know where she is or what to believe. A prince? A curse? A monster? As she spends time with Rhen in this enchanted land, she begins to understand what's at stake. And as Rhen realizes Harper is not just another girl to charm, his hope comes flooding back. But powerful forces are standing against Emberfall . . . and it will take more than a broken curse to save Harper, Rhen, and his people from utter ruin.   
 

“For a Muse of Fire” by Heidi Heilig 
Cover of "For a Muse of Fire"Jetta’s family is famed as the most talented troupe of shadow players in the land. With Jetta behind the scrim, their puppets seem to move without string or stick a trade secret, they say. In truth, Jetta can see the souls of the recently departed and bind them to the puppets with her blood. But the old ways are forbidden ever since the colonial army conquered their country, so Jetta must never show never tell. Her skill and fame are her family’s way to earn a spot aboard the royal ship to Aquitan, where shadow plays are the latest rage, and where rumor has it the Mad King has a spring that cures his ills. Because seeing spirits is not the only thing that plagues Jetta. But as rebellion seethes and as Jetta meets a young smuggler, she will face truths and decisions that she never imagined—and safety will never seem so far away. Heidi Heilig creates a world inspired by Asian cultures and French colonialism.    
 

 

Breaking Down Queer and Found Family Barriers in Teen and Adult Fiction

“The Weight of the Stars” by K Ancrm 
cover of "The Weight of the Stars"Ryann Bird dreams of traveling across the stars. But a career in space isn’t an option for a girl who lives in a trailer park on the wrong side of town. So Ryann becomes her circumstances and settles for acting out and skipping school to hang out with her delinquent friends. 
 
One day she meets Alexandria: a furious loner who spurns Ryann’s offer of friendship. After a horrific accident leaves Alexandria with a broken arm, the two misfits are brought together despite themselves—and Ryann learns her secret: Alexandria’s mother is an astronaut who volunteered for a one-way trip to the edge of the solar system. 
 
Every night without fail, Alexandria waits to catch radio signals from her mother. And its up to Ryann to lift her onto the roof day after day until the silence between them grows into friendship, and eventually something more . . . 
 
In K. Ancrum’s signature poetic style, this slow-burn romance will have you savoring every page.  
 
"Every Heart a Doorway" by Seanan McGuire
Cover of "Every Heart a Doorway"Eleanor West’s Home for Wayward Children 
No Solicitations 
No Visitors 
No Quests 
 
Children have always disappeared under the right conditions; slipping through the shadows under a bed or at the back of a wardrobe, tumbling down rabbit holes and into old wells, and emerging somewhere... else. 
 
But magical lands have little need for used-up miracle children. 
 
Nancy tumbled once, but now she’s back. The things she’s experienced... they change a person. The children under Miss West’s care understand all too well. And each of them is seeking a way back to their own fantasy world. 
 
But Nancy’s arrival marks a change at the Home. There’s a darkness just around each corner, and when tragedy strikes, it’s up to Nancy and her new-found schoolmates to get to the heart of the matter. 
 
No matter the cost.    
 
“Labyrinth Lost” by Zoraida Cordova 
Cover of "Labyrinth Lost"
Alex is a bruja, the most powerful witch in a generation…and she hates magic. At her Deathday celebration, Alex performs a spell to rid herself of her power. But it backfires. Her whole family vanishes into thin air, leaving her alone with Nova, a brujo she can’t trust, but who may be Alex’s only chance at saving her family.   









“The Gilded Ones” by Namina Forna 
Cover of "The Gilded Ones"Sixteen-year-old Deka lives in fear and anticipation of the blood ceremony that will determine whether she will become a member of her village. Already different from everyone else because of her unnatural intuition, Deka prays for red blood so she can finally feel like she belongs. 
 
But on the day of the ceremony, her blood runs gold, the color of impurity--and Deka knows she will face a consequence worse than death. 
 
Then a mysterious woman comes to her with a choice: stay in the village and submit to her fate, or leave to fight for the emperor in an army of girls just like her. They are called alaki--near-immortals with rare gifts. And they are the only ones who can stop the empire's greatest threat. 
 
Knowing the dangers that lie ahead yet yearning for acceptance, Deka decides to leave the only life she's ever known. But as she journeys to the capital to train for the biggest battle of her life, she will discover that the great walled city holds many surprises. Nothing and no one are quite what they seem to be--not even Deka herself.  


“The House in the Cerulean Sea” by TJ Klune 
Cover of "The House in the Cerulean Sea"A magical island. A dangerous task. A burning secret. 
 
Linus Baker leads a quiet, solitary life. At forty, he lives in a tiny house with a devious cat and his old records. As a Case Worker at the Department in Charge Of Magical Youth, he spends his days overseeing the well-being of children in government-sanctioned orphanages. 
 
When Linus is unexpectedly summoned by Extremely Upper Management he's given a curious and highly classified assignment: travel to Marsyas Island Orphanage, where six dangerous children reside: a gnome, a sprite, a wyvern, an unidentifiable green blob, a were-Pomeranian, and the Antichrist. Linus must set aside his fears and determine whether or not they’re likely to bring about the end of days. 
 
But the children aren’t the only secret the island keeps. Their caretaker is the charming and enigmatic Arthur Parnassus, who will do anything to keep his wards safe. As Arthur and Linus grow closer, long-held secrets are exposed, and Linus must make a choice: destroy a home or watch the world burn. 
 
An enchanting story, masterfully told, The House in the Cerulean Sea is about the profound experience of discovering an unlikely family in an unexpected place—and realizing that family is yours.   
Posted by [email protected]  On Feb 05, 2022 at 11:38 AM
  
If You Like That, Try This!

If You Like That, Try This!
by APL Staff

Looking for something new to read? We've got you covered! Check out our staff recommendations for your favorite fantasy books and series and discover something new! Each image links to the item in our catalog so you can play a hold and start enjoying as soon as possible. Let us know in the comments which books is your favorite and which ones you're adding to your to-read list!
 
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Posted by [email protected]ragov.org  On Feb 05, 2022 at 8:57 AM
  
Teen Talk


Hey teens, let’s talk!
I'm Taylor, one of the Youth Services librarians at Aurora Central Library. 

Cartoon of woman with short hair, surrounded by rainbow border on corners

Each month at Aurora Public Library, I cover a variety of topics for teens. This month’s blog is all about studying. 
Swing by the Aurora Central Library's teen area to browse books, resources, and/or activities related to the monthly topic.


Studying... Ugh! If you are anything like me, studying can be a chore. 
When I was in school, I really struggled. I didn't do well on tests, had a hard time retaining information, and dreaded learning. Now, I work at the library where I eat books full of knowledge for breakfast! 😊

Image of Buddy the Elf from "Elf" with meme font that says "I like learning. Learning is my favorite"

It can feel like if you do not do well in school that you are not smart. I am here to tell you, that is not the case! The pressure to memorize facts and make straight A’s can leave you feeling inadequate when you do not perform well. I am living proof that you can do very poorly in school and still be intelligent. It can be challenging, but it isn't impossible. You can learn how to cultivate good study habits and discover what works for you.
Hopefully this blog will give you some advice that will help you feel more confident at school. 

These 3 articles go into depth on best studying practices:
5 Research-Backed Studying Techniques
The Complete Study Guide for Every Type of Learner
- Top 10 Tips on How to Study Smarter, Not Longer

After reading the above articles, here’s a few tips I would add:
1. Reframe Studying in Your Mind
Once I reframed the way I viewed school, studying and learning from a place of dread and like something I HAD to do, to something I wanted to do/had the opportunity to do—it really did help. Our brains have miraculous powers and we can trick ourselves with our thoughts. It can be helpful to think about school and learning as a way to acquire new knowledge and discover some cool stuff about life, rather than thinking about it as collecting boring facts or useless information that you need to know for a test and then toss. Maybe you will use what you learn in school in the future, maybe you won’t... but either way, it’s rad to know things. So why not spend the time to actually learn and maintain that knowledge in your mind. 

Cartoon showing steps of Cognitive Reframing
 

2. Take Some Deep Breaths
Simply breathing is your best friend! Anxious, overwhelming thoughts can consume our minds. Whenever your feel stressed, nervous, like things are too much or you are not good enough—just deeply inhale for several seconds and exhale for several seconds a few times in a row. This has been a helpful practice for me while I am studying, before taking a test or giving a presentation. 

Deep breaths infographic
 
3. Communicate with Friends, Parents, and Teachers
This is an unconventional tip, but one that I think can help. When we communicate our needs, challenges, intentions and so forth to those in our life it can help alleviate some pressure. When I was in school there would be times when I studied nonstop, but still failed the test. My parents would be upset with me. They didn’t think I studied at all. Rather than helping support me and try to find ways to improve my studying, they blamed my bad grades on a lack of commitment. I was left filled with guilt and shame for not being smart enough. Once I started communicating more, the people in my life knew where I was coming from, which allowed for more empathy and understanding. 

Drawn images of people talking to each other

4. Explore a Variety of Tactics
What works for one person, isn’t going to necessarily work for the other. It’s important to remember that we all learn differently. Even with yourself, what might help you with math may not work as effectively with history. Trying out different studying methods to see what fits is vital. 
Study Methods infographic

Study Methods infographic
 
Explore books & eContent regarding studying:


Check back next month for our next Teen Talk! 

Join me every Thursday at 4 p.m. for our weekly Teen Hang at Aurora Central Library (14949 E. Alameda Pkwy.). I'd love to meet you and hear about what topics you’d like featured. 
 
Taylor written in cursive

Posted by [email protected]  On Jan 04, 2022 at 4:03 PM
  
Book Clubs

As we prepare to say “Farewell” to 2021 and usher in 2022, we’re sharing some of our favorite reads from APL’s many book clubs! Each title was selected by the staff member who runs the book club from each club’s 2021 booklist. Learn more about our book clubs at AuroraGov.org/BookClubs

Non-Fiction Book Club 
Cover of book "My Own Words"Staff Pick: “My Own Words” by Ruth Bader Ginsberg
The first book from Ruth Bader Ginsburg since becoming a Supreme Court Justice in 1993--a witty, engaging, serious, and playful collection of writings and speeches from the woman who has had a powerful and enduring influence on law, women's rights, and popular culture. My Own Words is a selection of writings and speeches by Justice Ginsburg on wide-ranging topics, including gender equality, the workways of the Supreme Court, on being Jewish, on law and lawyers in opera, and on the value of looking beyond US shores when interpreting the US Constitution. Throughout her life Justice Ginsburg has been (and continues to be) a prolific writer and public speaker. This book contains a sampling, selected by Justice Ginsburg and her authorized biographers Mary Hartnett and Wendy W. Williams. Justice Ginsburg has written an Introduction to the book, and Hartnett and Williams introduce each chapter, giving biographical context and quotes gleaned from hundreds of interviews they have conducted. This is a fascinating glimpse into the life of one of America's most influential women

Horror Corner Book Club
Cover of book NOS4A2Staff Pick: “NOS4A2” by Joe Hill
Victoria McQueen has a secret gift for finding things: a misplaced bracelet, a missing photograph, answers to unanswerable questions. On her Raleigh Tuff Burner bike, she makes her way to a rickety covered bridge that, within moments, takes her wherever she needs to go, whether it’s across Massachusetts or across the country. Charles Talent Manx has a way with children. He likes to take them for rides in his 1938 Rolls-Royce Wraith with the NOS4A2 vanity plate. With his old car, he can slip right out of the everyday world, and onto the hidden roads that transport them to an astonishing – and terrifying – playground of amusements he calls “Christmasland.” Then, one day, Vic goes looking for trouble—and finds Manx. That was a lifetime ago. Now Vic, the only kid to ever escape Manx’s unmitigated evil, is all grown up and desperate to forget. But Charlie Manx never stopped thinking about Victoria McQueen. He’s on the road again and he’s picked up a new passenger: Vic’s own son.

Books at the Bar
Book cover of The BearStaff Pick: “The Bear” by Andrew Krivak
In an Edenic future, a girl and her father live close to the land in the shadow of a lone mountain. They possess a few remnants of civilization: some books, a pane of glass, a set of flint and steel, a comb. The father teaches the girl how to fish and hunt, the secrets of the seasons and the stars. He is preparing her for an adulthood in harmony with nature, for they are the last two left. But when the girl suddenly finds herself alone in an unknown landscape, it is a bear that will lead her back home through a vast wilderness, which offers the greatest lessons of all, if she can only learn to listen. A cautionary tale of human fragility, of love and loss, The Bear is a stunning tribute to the beauty of nature's dominion.




Short Story Book Club
Staff Picks:
- “The Secret Life of Bots” by Suzanne Palmer – Read here
-“State Change” by Ken Liu – Read here
- “Open House on Haunted Hill" by John Wiswell – Read here


True Crime Book Club
Cover of Devil in the GroveStaff Pick: “Devil in the Grove: Thurgood Marshall, the Groveland Boys and the Dawn of a New America” by Gilbert King
Arguably the most important American lawyer of the twentieth century, Thurgood Marshall was on the verge of bringing the landmark suit Brown v. Board of Education before the U.S. Supreme Court when he became embroiled in an explosive and deadly case that threatened to change the course of the civil rights movement and cost him his life.

In 1949, Florida’s orange industry was booming, and citrus barons got rich on the backs of cheap Jim Crow labor. To maintain order and profits, they turned to Willis V. McCall, a violent sheriff who ruled Lake County with murderous resolve. When a white seventeen-year-old Groveland girl cried rape, McCall was fast on the trail of four young blacks who dared to envision a future for themselves beyond the citrus groves. By day’s end, the Ku Klux Klan had rolled into town, burning the homes of blacks to the ground and chasing hundreds into the swamps, hell-bent on lynching the young men who came to be known as “the Groveland Boys.”

And so began the chain of events that would bring Thurgood Marshall, the man known as “Mr. Civil Rights,” into the deadly fray. Associates thought it was suicidal for him to wade into the “Florida Terror” at a time when he was irreplaceable to the burgeoning civil rights movement, but the lawyer would not shrink from the fight—not after the Klan had murdered one of Marshall’s NAACP associates involved with the case and Marshall had endured continual threats that he would be next.

Drawing on a wealth of never-before-published material, including the FBI’s unredacted Groveland case files, as well as unprecedented access to the NAACP’s Legal Defense Fund files, King shines new light on this remarkable civil rights crusader, setting his rich and driving narrative against the heroic backdrop of a case that U.S. Supreme Court justice Robert Jackson decried as “one of the best examples of one of the worst menaces to American justice.

Daytime Booklovers’ Book Club
Finding DorothyStaff Pick: “Finding Dorothy” by Elizabeth Letts
This richly imagined novel tells the story behind The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, the book that inspired the iconic film, through the eyes of author L. Frank Baum's intrepid wife, Maud. Hollywood, 1938: As soon as she learns that M-G-M is adapting her late husband's masterpiece for the screen, seventy-seven-year-old Maud Gage Baum sets about trying to finagle her way onto the set. Nineteen years after Frank's passing, Maud is the only person who can help the producers stay true to the spirit of the book--because she's the only one left who knows its secrets. But the moment she hears Judy Garland rehearsing the first notes of "Over the Rainbow," Maud recognizes the yearning that defined her own life story: from her youth as a suffragette's daughter to her coming of age as one of the first women in the Ivy League, from her blossoming romance with Frank to the hardscrabble prairie years that inspired The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. Judy reminds Maud of a young girl she cared for and tried to help in South Dakota, a dreamer who never got her happy ending. Now, with the young actress under pressure from the studio as well as her ambitious stage mother, Maud resolves to protect her--the way she tried so hard to protect the real Dorothy.

Armchair Generals Book Club
Cover of "Guns of August"Staff Pick: “The Guns of August” by Barbara W. Tuchman
Historian and Pulitzer Prize-winning author Barbara Tuchman has brought to life again the people and events that led up to World War I. With attention to fascinating detail, and an intense knowledge of her subject and its characters, Ms. Tuchman reveals, for the first time, just how the war started, why, and how it could have been stopped but wasn't. A classic historical survey of a time and a people we all need to know more about, “The Guns of August” will not be forgotten.


Posted by [email protected]  On Dec 15, 2021 at 10:34 AM
  
Mental Health Spotlight

Resources listed are for informational purposes only and should not be used to diagnose or treat a condition without the guidance of a mental health professional. If you or someone you know is having a mental health emergency, please call 911 or Colorado Crisis Services at 1.844.493.TALK.

Hey teens! Interested in mental health?

Each month the Aurora Public Library focuses on a different topic related to mental health. Swing by the Aurora Central Library's teen area to browse YA novels and nonfiction related to the monthly topic. Whether you or someone you know is facing a mental health issue, or you are just interested in the topic, APL has information, resources and reading materials for you.

Remember, your mental health matters.

This month’s Mental Health Spotlight is on Self-Care.

Self-care is not a substitute for professional help and does not cure mental illness. However, incorporating self-care practices into your daily life can make a positive impact on your well-being both in the short and long-term. Read more here.
 
Some daily self-care includes sleep, nutrition, movement, boundaries & relaxation. 

Mental Health Superpowers

Sleep
Getting adequate sleep on a regular basis is essential to the functioning of not only our bodies and brains, but also our well-being. Sleep impacts more than you may think. When you are operating on limited sleep, our brains cannot process information as efficiently—which can leave us feeling confused, irritable, and emotionally charged. 

Sleep Tips for Teens

10 Sleep Tips for Teens
 

Nutrition
Proper nutrition is so important. When we fuel our bodies with nutrient rich foods, our bodies and brains are able to function at optimal levels. Not only are we physically feeding our bodies, but our overall mental health and well-being can be improved with a healthy diet. 

How What You Eat Affects Your Mental Health
Food and Mood
6 Ways to Practice Mindful Eating

6 ways to practice mindful eating
 

Movement
Regular, consistent exercise is one simple way to improve your overall health. Many people are familiar with the physical benefits exercise can reap—from maintaining healthy weight to preventing diseases, but exercise can also boost your energy, improve your sleep and enhance your mood. 
- 7 Benefits of Regular Physical Activity
How to Start Exercising: A Beginner’s Guide to Working Out
- How to Stay Active As a Teen

The Mental Health Benefits of Exercise
 

Boundaries
Boundaries are guidelines for relationships with those in your life. They are important to establish for your own well-being, as well as helpful for those on the receiving in to know how best to behave with you. Often times boundary setting can feel awkward, harsh, confusing, or wrong – setting boundaries with those in your life is not selfish, it actually creates a more safe and rewarding relationship or both parties. 
How to Establish Boundaries
- What Are Boundaries and Why Are They Important
Why Do Boundaries Make Us Feel Bad
- How to Set Healthy Boundaries With Friends to Preserve Your Mental and Emotional Well-Being

Boundary-Setting Sentences


Relaxation
Slowing down, relaxing, and re-centering yourself can sometimes feel like a luxury that we do not have. Many of us are busy with school, home, friends, chores, hobbies-- and it seems like there are endless things on our to-do list. Our culture is one that values being productive and can glorify being stressed out. But what is more important to our well-being is actually stopping to be aware of the present moment. Deep breathing and practicing mindfulness can do wonders to your emotional, mental, and physical well-being. 

10 Cool Meditations
12 Science-Based Benefits of Meditation
- Getting Started with Mindfulness
Visit the Calm Room—Videos, Sounds, and Resources to Help You Relax and Refocus

Self Care 101
 


Explore books that address Self-Care:


For more resources for all ages, visit the nonfiction department at your local library. Resources are also available at Aurora Mental Health.

Check back in 2022 for our next blog post!
Posted by [email protected]  On Dec 06, 2021 at 1:31 PM
  
Mental Health Spotlight

Mental Health Spotlight: Abuse

Resources listed are for informational purposes only and should not be used to diagnose or treat a condition without the guidance of a mental health professional. If you or someone you know is having a mental health emergency, please call 911 or Colorado Crisis Services at 1.844.493.TALK.

Hey teens! Interested in mental health?

Each month the Aurora Public Library focuses on a different topic related to mental health. Swing by the Aurora Central Library's teen area to browse Young Adult novels and nonfiction related to the monthly topic. Whether you or someone you know is facing a mental health issue, or you are just interested in the topic, APL has information, resources and reading materials for you.

Remember, your mental health matters.

This month’s Mental Health Spotlight is on abuse.

The definition of abuse is: “a pattern of behavior used by one person to gain and maintain power and control over another.” Abuse can take a number of forms and it is important to note that abuse is a pattern of behavior, not a single incident. 

Types of Abuse:
1. Physical: any non-accidental act or behavior causing injury, trauma, or other physical suffering or bodily harm.

2. Sexual: abusive sexual behavior by one person upon another. Often perpetrated using force or by taking advantage of another.
 
3. Verbal: type of mental abuse through the use of language. It is an act of abuse where the abuser attacks the self-concept of the victim, decreasing their self-confidence and making them feel powerless. Examples include: harassing, labeling, insulting, scolding, excessive yelling, derogatory terms, delivery of statements intended to fright, humiliate, denigrate, or belittle. 

4. Mental/Emotional: any kind of abuse that is emotional rather than physical. It can include anything from verbal abuse and constant criticism to more subtle tactics such as intimidation, manipulation, and refusal to ever be pleased. Emotional abuse can take several forms. Three general patterns of abusive behavior include aggressing, denying, and minimizing.

5. Neglect: either through action or inaction, an abuser deprives a vulnerable person of the care necessary to maintain their physical or mental health. Examples include: not providing basic items such as food, water, clothing, a safe place to live, medicine, or health care.

6. Financial: control over the other person’s access to economic resources, which diminishes the victim's capacity to support themselves and forces them to depend on the perpetrator financially. Examples include: Preventing someone from obtaining education, restricting their ability to find employment, maintain, or advance their careers, spending their money without their consent, or creating debt. 

7. Cultural/Identity: use aspects of a victim’s particular cultural identity to inflict suffering, or as a means of control. Examples include: Not letting someone observe the dietary or dress customs of their faith, using racial slurs, threatening to ‘out’ someone as LGBTQA+  if their friends and family don’t know, or isolating someone who doesn’t speak the dominant language where they.

8. Online: any type of abuse that happens on the internet. It can happen across any device that's connected to the web, like computers, tablets and mobile phones. 

 
Articles Regarding Abuse:
- Abusive Relationships
- What Is Emotional Abuse? 
- What a Flashback Feels Like as a Survivor of Sexual Abuse
- 10 Common Patterns Of Verbal Abuse
- How to Recognize the Signs of Mental and Emotional Abuse
- 5 Actionable Steps Towards Healing After an Abusive Relationship
- What Are the Short- and Long-Term Effects of Emotional Abuse? 
- The Connection Between Verbal Abuse And Anxiety (That No One Talks About)
- How To Help A Friend Who May Be In An Abusive Relationship
Online Abuse

Graphics about emotional abuse, gaslighting and trauma responses

Find Support:
There is support for you. Calling an anonymous hotline can provide support, answer questions, and help connect you to additional resources. 
- National Domestic Violence Hotline - 800-799-7233
- National Sexual Assault Hotline - 800-656-4673
- Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline - 800-422-4453
- National Runaway Safeline - 800-786-2929


Explore Young Adult novels & nonfiction that address abuse:


For more resources for all ages, visit the nonfiction department at your local library. Resources are also available at Aurora Mental Health.

Check back in December for our next Mental Health Spotlight!
Posted by [email protected]  On Nov 04, 2021 at 12:34 PM
  
Three on a Theme: Double Double Toil and Trouble

Votes have been counted and it's time for October’s Three on a Theme recommendations!

October’s options were DOUBLE DOUBLE, TOIL & TROUBLE vs. FALL IN LOVE and the winner was... DOUBLE DOUBLE, TOIL & TROUBLE! Halloween may be over, but that doesn’t mean the magical fun has to end! Check out our below recommendations for books featuring witches, wizards and magic!

Let us know in the comments which ones you've read, which are your favorites and what's on your to-read list!

Adults
Cover of Bait and Witch
“Bait and Witch” by Angela M. Sanders (Witch Way Librarian Mystery Series)
Librarian Josie Way moved to small-town Oregon to lay low. Instead, thanks to newfound magic abilities-and a killer on the loose-she's leapt out of the frying pan and into a cauldron of trouble ... Josie Way loved working among the Library of Congress's leather-scented stacks-until she uncovered corruption and made herself a target. As Wilfred, Oregon's new librarian, Josie can stay undercover until the case goes to court. But life in this little town isn't as subdued as she expected. The library, housed in a Victorian mansion, is slated to be bulldozed. Still digesting the news that her safe haven is about to become scrap lumber, Josie discovers a body in the woods ... Almost as shocking, Josie learns that she's descended from a long line of witches-and her powers have suddenly sprung to life. With help from a spoiled alley cat who just may be her familiar, Josie's thumbing through a catalog of suspects, hoping she can conjure a way to save her library-and her life! Check out the whole series here.



Young Adults
Cover of The Scapegracers“The Scapegracers” by Hannah Abigail Clarke
An outcast teenage lesbian witch finds her coven hidden amongst the popular girls in her school, and performs some seriously badass magic in the process. Skulking near the bottom of West High's social pyramid, Sideways Pike lurks under the bleachers doing magic tricks for Coke bottles. As a witch, lesbian, and lifelong outsider, she's had a hard time making friends. But when the three most popular girls pay her $40 to cast a spell at their Halloween party, Sideways gets swept into a new clique. The unholy trinity are dangerous angels, sugar-coated rattlesnakes, and now-unbelievably-Sideways' best friends. Together, the four bond to form a ferocious and powerful coven. They plan parties, cast curses on dudebros, try to find Sideways a girlfriend, and elude the fundamentalist witch hunters hellbent stealing their magic. But for Sideways, the hardest part is the whole 'having friends' thing. Who knew that balancing human interaction with supernatural peril could be so complicated? Rich with the urgency of feral youth, The Scapegracers explores growing up and complex female friendship with all the rage of a teenage girl. It subverts the trope of competitive mean girls and instead portrays a mercilessly supportive clique of diverse and vivid characters. It is an atmospheric, voice-driven novel of the occult, and the first of a three-book series. 

Kids
Cover of the Worst Witch“The Worst Witch” by Jill Murphy
Catch up on Mildred Hubble's magical adventures at Miss Cackle's Academy for Witches with these reissued editions featuring energetic new covers. Mildred Hubble is starting her first year at Miss Cackle's Academy for Witches—and making a mess of it! She can't ride her broomstick without crashing, she's always getting her spells mixed up, and worst of all, the teacher's pet, Ethel, has just become her sworn enemy. Check out the whole series here.

Posted by [email protected]  On Nov 01, 2021 at 10:36 AM
  
Mental Health Spotlight

Resources listed are for informational purposes only and should not be used to diagnose or treat a condition without the guidance of a mental health professional. If you or someone you know is having a mental health emergency, please call 911 or Colorado Crisis Services at 1.844.493.TALK.

Hey teens! Interested in mental health?

Each month the Aurora Public Library focuses on a different topic related to mental health. Swing by the Aurora Central Library's teen area to browse YA novels and nonfiction related to the monthly topic. Whether you or someone you know is facing a mental health issue, or you are just interested in the topic, APL has information, resources and reading materials for you. 

Remember, your mental health matters. 

This month’s Mental Health Spotlight is on Bipolar Disorder. 
 Bipolar Disorder

About Bipolar Disorder
Bipolar Disorder is a mental health condition that causes cycles of extreme mood swings. These episodes of mania or hypomania and depression can severely impact a person’s daily functioning. The highs and lows of Bipolar Disorder can occur multiple times a year or rarely. 
 
Chart showing signs of Bipolar Disorder Symptoms

Mania or hypomania symptoms can include:
Abnormally upbeat, jumpy or wired
Increased activity, energy or agitation
Exaggerated sense of well-being and self-confidence (euphoria)
Decreased need for sleep
Unusual talkativeness
Racing thoughts
Distractibility
Poor decision-making — for example, going on buying sprees, taking sexual risks or making foolish investments

Depression symptoms can include:
Depressed mood, such as feeling sad, empty, hopeless or tearful (in children and teens, depressed mood can appear as irritability)
Marked loss of interest or feeling no pleasure in all — or almost all — activities
Significant weight loss when not dieting, weight gain, or decrease or increase in appetite (in children, failure to gain weight as expected can be a sign of depression)
Either insomnia or sleeping too much
Either restlessness or slowed behavior
Fatigue or loss of energy
Feelings of worthlessness or excessive or inappropriate guilt
Decreased ability to think or concentrate, or indecisiveness
Thinking about, planning or attempting suicide

Learn more about Bipolar Disorder here.

Relatable Articles to Explore:
Here's What It's Actually Like To Live With Bipolar Disorder

15 Self-Care Tips for People Living with Bipolar Disorder

What I Want My Loved Ones to Understand About Bipolar Depression

12 Celebrities That Have Opened Up About Having Bipolar Disorder

This Is What a Mixed Bipolar Episode Feels Like

Effects of Bipolar Disorder on the Body

How Do I Tell New Friends About My History of Bipolar Disorder? 

11 Ways People Cope With Bipolar Disorder Isolation


Explore Young Adult novels & nonfiction that address Bipolar Disorder



For more resources for all ages, visit the nonfiction department at your local library and look for call number 616.89. Resources are also available at Aurora Mental Health.  

Aurora Central Library display featuring books about bipolar disorcer

Check back in November for our next Mental Health Spotlight!  
Posted by [email protected]  On Oct 12, 2021 at 9:33 AM
  
Three on a Theme: Best and Brightest

Votes have been counted and it's time for this month's Three on a Theme recommendations!

This month's options were BEST & BRIGHTEST vs. READING REBELS and the winner was...BEST & BRIGHTEST! Take a look at the list below for the the most circulated eBooks from OverDrive in 2020 - decided by our patrons!

Let us know in the comments which ones you've read, which are your favorites and what's on your to-read list!

 
Adult eBooks

Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens
"Where the Crawdads Sing" by Delia Owens
Fans of Barbara Kingsolver will love this stunning debut novel from a New York Times bestselling nature writer, about an unforgettable young woman determined to make her way in the wilds of North Carolina, and the two men that will break her isolation open. For years, rumors of the "Marsh Girl" have haunted Barkley Cove, a quiet town on the North Carolina coast. She's barefoot and wild; unfit for polite society. So in late 1969, when handsome Chase Andrews is found dead, the locals immediately suspect Kya Clark. But Kya is not what they say. Abandoned at age ten, she has survived on her own in the marsh that she calls home. A born naturalist with just one day of school, she takes life lessons from the land, learning from the false signals of fireflies the real way of this world. But while she could have lived in solitude forever, the time comes when she yearns to be touched and loved. Drawn to two young men from town, who are each intrigued by her wild beauty, Kya opens herself to a new and startling world--until the unthinkable happens. In Where the Crawdads Sing, Owens juxtaposes an exquisite ode to the natural world against a heartbreaking coming of age story and a surprising murder investigation. Thought-provoking, wise, and deeply moving, Owens's debut novel reminds us that we are forever shaped by the children we once were, and that we are all subject to the beautiful and violent secrets that nature keeps.

The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides "The Silent Patient" by Alex Michaelides
Alicia Berenson's life is seemingly perfect. A famous painter married to an in-demand fashion photographer, she lives in a grand house with big windows overlooking a park in one of London's most desirable areas. One evening her husband Gabriel returns home late from a fashion shoot, and Alicia shoots him five times in the face, and then never speaks another word. Alicia's refusal to talk, or give any kind of explanation, turns a domestic tragedy into something far grander, a mystery that captures the public imagination and casts Alicia into notoriety. The price of her art skyrockets, and she, the silent patient, is hidden away from the tabloids and spotlight at the Grove, a secure forensic unit in North London. Theo Faber is a criminal psychotherapist who has waited a long time for the opportunity to work with Alicia. His determination to get her to talk and unravel the mystery of why she shot her husband takes him down a twisting path into his own motivations--a search for the truth that threatens to consume him....

"Blue Moon" by Lee Child "Blue Moon" by Lee Child
In the next highly anticipated installment of Lee Child's acclaimed suspense series, Jack Reacher comes to the aid of an elderly couple . . . and confronts his most dangerous opponents yet. Check out more Jack Reacher novels here. 






Young Adult eBooks

The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins"The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes" by Suzanne Collins
It is the morning of the reaping that will kick off the tenth annual Hunger Games. In the Capital, 18-year-old Coriolanus Snow is preparing for his one shot at glory as a mentor in the Games. The once-mighty house of Snow has fallen on hard times, its fate hanging on the slender chance that Coriolanus will be able to outcharm, outwit, and outmaneuver his fellow students to mentor the winning tribute.

The odds are against him. He's been given the humiliating assignment of mentoring the female tribute from District 12, the lowest of the low. Their fates are now completely intertwined -- every choice Coriolanus makes could lead to favor or failure, triumph or ruin. Inside the arena, it will be a fight to the death. Outside the arena, Coriolanus starts to feel for his doomed tribute... and must weigh his need to follow the rules against his desire to survive no matter what it takes.

Funny, You Don't look Autistic by Michael McCreary"Funny, You Don't Look Autistic" by Michael McCreary
Like many others on the autism spectrum, 20-something stand-up comic Michael McCreary has been told by more than a few well-meaning folks that he doesn't "look" autistic. But, as he's quick to point out in this memoir, autism "looks" different for just about everyone with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Diagnosed with ASD at age five, McCreary got hit with the performance bug not much later. During a difficult time in junior high, he started journaling, eventually turning his pain e into something empowering-and funny. He scored his first stand-up gig at age 14, and hasn't looked back. This unique and hilarious #OwnVoices memoir breaks down what it's like to live with autism for readers on and off the spectrum. Candid scenes from McCreary's life are broken up with funny visuals and factual asides. Funny, You Don't Look Autistic is an invaluable and compelling read for young readers with ASD looking for voices to relate to, as well as for readers hoping to broaden their understanding of ASD.
Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter moves between two worlds: the poor neighborhood where she lives and the fancy suburban prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is shattered when Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Khalil was unarmed. Soon afterward, his death is a national headline. Some are calling him a thug, maybe even a drug dealer and a gangbanger. Protesters are taking to the streets in Khalils name. Some cops and the local drug lord try to intimidate Starr and her family. What everyone wants to know is: what really went down that night? And the only person alive who can answer that is Starr. But what Starr doesor does notsay could upend her community. It could also endanger her life.


Kids' Chapter Books

"Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" by JK Rowling "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" by JK Rowling

Harry Potter's life is miserable. His parents are dead and he's stuck with his heartless relatives, who force him to live in a tiny closet under the stairs. But his fortune changes when he receives a letter that tells him the truth about himself: he's a wizard. A mysterious visitor rescues him from his relatives and takes him to his new home, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

After a lifetime of bottling up his magical powers, Harry finally feels like a normal kid. But even within the Wizarding community, he is special. He is the boy who lived: the only person to have ever survived a killing curse inflicted by the evil Lord Voldemort, who launched a brutal takeover of the Wizarding world, only to vanish after failing to kill Harry.

Though Harry's first year at Hogwarts is the best of his life, not everything is perfect. There is a dangerous secret object hidden within the castle walls, and Harry believes it's his responsibility to prevent it from falling into evil hands. But doing so will bring him into contact with forces more terrifying than he ever could have imagined.

"Wonder" by RJ Palacio "Wonder" by RJ Palacio
Ten-year-old Auggie Pullman, who was born with extreme facial abnormalities and was not expected to survive, goes from being home-schooled to entering fifth grade at a private middle school in Manhattan, which entails enduring the taunting and fear of his classmates as he struggles to be seen as just another student.







Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney"Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Old School" by Jeff Kinney
Life was better in the old days. Or was it? That's the question Greg Heffley is asking as his town voluntarily unplugs and goes electronics-free. But modern life has its conveniences, and Greg isn't cut out for an old-fashioned world. With tension building inside and outside the Heffley home, will Greg find a way to survive? Or is going "old school" just too hard for a kid like Greg? Check out more "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" here.






Picture Books

The Good Egg"The Good Egg" by Jory John
When the other eggs in his carton behave badly, the good egg feels like he needs to be perfect.








"The Cool Bean" by Jory John "The Cool Bean" by Jory John
Everyone knows the cool beans. They're sooooo cool. And then there's the uncool has-bean . . . Always on the sidelines, one bean unsuccessfully tries everything he can to fit in with the crowd--until one day the cool beans show him how it's done.







"the Bad Seed" by Jory John"The Bad Seed" by Jory John
A naughty seed with a bad attitude, bad temper, and bad manners vows to change his life for the better, but his efforts are met with skepticism by his friends.
Posted by [email protected]  On Sep 24, 2021 at 11:05 AM
  
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