The Library Ninja Blog

2014 Official Teens' Top Ten Nominations Announced!

In honor of Celebrate Teen Literature Day, which falls every Thursday during National Library Week, this year's Teens' Top Ten Nominees have officially been announced.


Here are the nominees:

Which ones have you read and which one is next on your list?

Don't forget, to check back with YALSA between August 15 and Teen Read Week at in order to vote for your favories. The winners will be announced the week after Teen Read Week.

National Poetry Month

April is National Poetry Month!

To celebrate, during "Studio Scribes: Creative Writing Club for Homeschool Teens", we got poetic. Inspired by the Guerrilla Haiku Movement, we sprang to the sidewalks outside the library. Teens welcomed passersby to join us as we chalked haikus on the concrete. It was hard to come back inside! That’s right, poetry doesn’t have to be stuffy, nor solitary- just go out there, observe the world, even connect with others, and write!

Teen Haiku Group
teen haikuTeen POEM

Join us for these other poetry-inspired programs at the Studio!

Plant a "PoeTree" Monday, April 14, 5:30-7pm
Music as Poetry Tuesday, April 15, 5-6:30pm
Celebrate Teen Literature Day Ready In Thursday, April 17, 4:30-6:30pm

4/9/2014 by Catherine W. Add a Comment Share this:

Share Your Musical Passion!

Last week at the Studio, we recorded our thoughts on some of our favorite songs. We each had different tastes, ranging from Frozen's "Let It Go" to J Moss's "Good & Bad". What we had in common, though, was an excitement to share our passion for these great songs!

We used the free software, Audacity, to record and add music clips to our reviews. Listen in on these two podcasts from the program! Then leave a comment on your favorite song!


A review of Bastille's "Pompeii." Get ready to have the chorus stuck in your head!

Nugget the DJ

"Nugget" also visited the Studio to give us the scoop on his latest original electronic music.

4/4/2014 by Catherine W. 1 Comment - Add a Comment Share this:
Topics: Music, Teen Reviews

Teen Review by Christopher K... The Adoration Of Jenna Fox

Jenna Fox was only sixteen when she got into the car accident that changed her whole life. She had just woken up wondering, wondering what happened just before all of this. The truth unfolds in this wonderful book by Mary Pearson! Jenna goes through a life of questions,answers, and thoughts of what was wrong. Suddenly she found out! I liked this book because it was full of suspense and mystery, and I could not put it down for the life of me! I liked following Jenna's life, and was wondering exactly with the book one what happened to Jenna in the first place and two why are the parents not worried? I would suggest this to everyone I knew no matter what genre they enjoy, or despise! You will fall in love with this book as you start getting into it, and reading!

My favorite character was Lily because she helped Jenna through all of the questions, and other things while she was going through all of her life in these few weeks. She was truly an inspiration to Jenna before the accident, and shortly after woke up from coma. This book was truly heart wrenching, and would recommend it to everyone! I have no dislike of characters in this book because they all help Jenna with her worries, and life as she goes through the new one! This is definitely a goodread! Pick it up at your local library soon!

Other books in the series

Other books you may enjoy

4/4/2014 by Library Ninja Add a Comment Share this:
Topics: Books, Teen Reviews

Teen Volunteer Corps: Work It! @ the Central Library

teensTeen Volunteer Corps-Work It is back this upcoming Monday, April 7th @ 4:30 p.m.

If you are 13-18 years old and are in need of completing volunteer hours or would like to work off some of your library fines, then come out and work if off while helping our library (and awesome library staff).

If you do not have any fines or required volunteer hours, come out and help us out anyway. You can check out the Studio, meet some new friends and pick up some new books on your way out.

This month, we will be helping to prepare for the upcoming World Book Night Reception. We will be making book giver packets, making buttons with our amazingly fun button-maker and organizing the books that will given out on World Book Night.

Important: If you are volunteering to work off your fines, you have to stay the entire three hours to be eligible to receive up to $10 in fine forgiveness.


Hope to see you next week down in the Studio!

4/1/2014 by Raquel R. Add a Comment Share this:

Amazing Teens, Amazing Poetry


Junior High Students take part of a great poetry program called Finding Your Own Voice! Check it out!

Poem #1

By: Jashan C.

Money is the creation that we put in education. 
We spend it everyday for some good preperatation.
We give it out everyday to our great Nation.
You can see it around world on all of the boys and girls, 
and even the all around world, there are some bad things too.

Poem #2

By: Hailey F.

Money brings me sorrow, it brings greed and power.
It has ruined me and my family.
All anyone knows anymore the green pointless paper that makes my life sour.
And though I have also fallen victim to the lush sight of money,
my soul yerns to see the times when it never exsisted. 
I will admit, I hate money.
Any kind. 
For it has poisoned my way of life. 

Poem #3

By: Rorie F.

Almost everybody sees it as a need,
but almost all of them have the corruptioin of greed.
I don't need it, its just paper.
They believe it would disappear like vapor,
its paper,
Burns wholes in pockets even when you locked it.
They need it only for the greed,
it destroys families and makes enemies. 
It's paper.
I pretend it's vapor.
So it won't destroy me or my family.
So I won't make enemies, any kind  is bad.
I won't do any thing for it. 
We should burn it,
We should destory it, 
For it destroys us so I have a question to ask is it worth it?

Poem #4

By: Daylon F.

Money, what is money?
Why do we use money?
What can you do with money?
You can do lot's with it, 
Spend it, earn it, take it,
All these things you can do with money.
Without it, what can you do?
What can you do, terrifying right?
So ask me, what do you do with money?
3/27/2014 by Veronica R. 1 Comment - Add a Comment Share this:

Teen Review by Katie... Animal Farm

Yes, I know, George Orwell’s Animal Farm is on your least-favorite English teacher’s list of “Books That I Won’t Make You Read, But You Need to Read or You Will Fail English Forever”. It’s mashed in with all of those thick, dusty classics… but (trust me on this), Animal Farm is really a timeless look on rebellions against tyrants and the flaws in powerful positions. Sound like any dystopian novels you’ve been checking into lately?

Animals running their own farm—ridiculous! Or, maybe not. Farmer Jones—the owner of the Manor Farm—spends his time either stumbling around drunk or using a cruel whip against his mistreated farm animals. Little does he know that the animals have formed an alliance under the guidance of Old Major, a prize boar who dreams of the future days when animals will chase the humans out of England and live in everlasting peace together. The moved creatures talk of rebellions and how they will never live like the tyrannical men who beat them; they hope to keep the spark of revolution alive to pass it onto the next generations, and that maybe, someday, there will be an uprising. The animal rebellion comes sooner than then our heroes assume—when opportunity arises, they take it: Jones is chased out and Manor Farm becomes Animal Farm. Everything is looking up, but soon the newly-arisen leaders of Animal Farm develop an addiction to power. Will new tyrants rise? Will the animals stand strong against the hardships they face? Will Old Major’s dream be realized? I’m not going to tell you; go read it yourself!

Other books you may enjoy

3/27/2014 by Library Ninja Add a Comment Share this:
Topics: Books, Teen Reviews

Multiple Perspectives

Every time I read a good book, I am always so impressed by an author's ability to create an entire story with multiple characters, settings and twists. Many authors like to change things up once in awhile and collaborate with another fellow author to add a new different perspective and voice to their novels but I am even more impressed when a single author takes on such a challenge alone.

Here are some of my favorites:

This was my first Rainbow Rowell read and I was an instant fan. Eleanor & Park is a not-so-typical love story in the 1980s between quiet, ortracized, Eleanor and loved, but self-consious Park. Eleanor and Park come from two different background and have very little in common besides music and books but despite their practical notion that their love will not last, they give it everything they have anyway in each alternating chapter.


Bumped is a little known book from 2011 but it tells a thought-provoking tale about a futuristic world in which the importance of reproduction is encouraged among teenagers. In the year 2036, a virus has made anyone over the age of 18 infertile and girls are led to believe that they only have two choices in life: become high-priced Surrogettes or in the town of Goodside become ultraconservative wives and mothers. This short novel is told in the point of view of two sixteen-year-old twins separated at birth who are now leaving on opposites ends of the social specter. I love that you have to dig deeper into the irony of this book to discover the real message behind this novel and its characters.


I love when novels tell you the end of the story at the beginner, work their way backward and then throw you for a loop. Brother/Sister does just that. As twins, Will and Asheley tell their Californian adventure story to the police in Mexico, we slowly find out how the body count escalated and who is to blame.

Will and Asheley each take turns telling their tale in their different voices. Will is a bit of an outsider with an anger management problem while Asheley tries to easy-going and a social butterfly despite her family's dark past.


I believe Identical was the first book that I read by the ever-impressive, Ellen Hopkins. In almost all of her novels, Hopkins takes on the voice of two or more characters. In her 2009, Tricks, she takes on the role of five different characters. In Identical, Hopkins introduces two very different twin sisters, Kaeleigh and Raeanne, who deal with their troubled past in very different ways in alternating sections.

Kaeleigh, who is sweet and quiet, but suffers from an eating disorder and her father's unwanted advances. Raeanne is wild and tries to find the attentation that she lacks at home from drugs and strangers.

It is a tragic tale with one of the biggest twist endings I have ever read but which led me to become a life-long fan of Ellen Hopkins.


Here are some other novels with alternating points-of-view:

3/24/2014 by Raquel R. Add a Comment Share this:

Teen Review by Christopher... Fablehaven

This book was absolutely the best fantasy book I have read!

Brandon Mull is a wonderful author, and I hope to read more of his books, as this one made me satisfied with his work! I would recommend it to anyone I know!

The thing that really struck my interest was the cover and synopsis of this particular book! This book is about hidden refuge called Fablehaven where their were creatures that you saw, but really did not see, and you will see why when you read this wonderful book! Anyways, Kendra and her brother Seth go to Fablehaven to stay with their grandpa. Alot of ad venture in this book, and I would recommend it to anyone who likes Fantasy, mythical creatures, and adventure!

I really like Fablehaven because it has a wonderful story plot, and adventures through out this wild book! My favorite character is Seth because he can be mischievous at times, and rebellious to the rules, and such. My least favorite character is Muriel because she is trying to make their visit to their grandpas miserable as can be! I hope you give this book a chance as it is really a wonderful book!

Other books in the series

Other books you may enjoy

3/14/2014 by Library Ninja Add a Comment Share this:
Topics: Teen Reviews

What you missed at February's Japan Day!

dollDo you have a particular anime that you can’t keep to yourself? Looking to hang out with other teens that love Japanese culture and want to learn more? Then come by the Studio!

Blog post by Amina D., Studio Intern

Japan Day is a monthly event put on by the Arlington Public Library to celebrate all things related to Japanese culture. Whether it’s doing origami, learning hiragana, making kokeshi dolls (more on that in a bit) or just having fun watching some anime, the goal of Japan Day is to have a day where teens get to learn a little bit about the Japanese culture and just have a space where they can be themselves!

In February, we learned about kokeshi dolls. Kokeshi dolls are basically a traditional Japanese toy that was bought as a souvenir after a visit to a hot springs, or onsen, as it’s known in Japan. For February, the teens got a bit crafty and we created our own take of the kokeshi doll!

What’s February without Valentine’s Day? Guess who’s stressing about buying the chocolate and making the dinner arrangements? It’s the ladies! As a young girl or working woman, not only do you have to worry about what you’re gonna buy for your sweetheart, but (though it’s becoming less common), you have to buy some sweet treats for your male coworker, boss, teacher, or classmate. Did I blow your mind? Read up more on Valentine’s Day in Japan and the day where the fellas that received chocolate have to show how much they appreciated the gift here.

Are you interested in what’s coming up for this month’s Japan Day? Well, here’s a hint Did I mention every Japan Day we hold an awesome giveaway of anime-related stuff and Japanese snacks?! Join us!

*The next Japan Day will be March 29, from 2:30-5:30pm at the Teen Studio in the George W. Hawkes Central Library basement floor. Hope to see you there!