In the Stacks: Confessions of a YALSA Hub Challenge Reader

In the Stacks: A Blog Straight from the Mind of Steve

It is with much sadness in my heart that I submit this new blog. As I write these very words, with tears in my eyes (not really, but you get the idea), I sit here defeated. I regret to inform you all that I did NOT complete the YALSA Hub Reading Challenge. The clock has stopped, the buzzer has rung, and my final tally is only a mere 15 books completed out of my 25 book goal. I will say, however, that I am extremely pleased that I did set aside the time to read a whole 15 books in such a short amount of time. This being because I have not read 15 books total in almost a couple years let alone a couple months. So… a small pat on the back for me is still in order I’m sure. Not that it matters, but I have included my list of items that I read from the selected titles on my list:

  1. My Friend Dahmer by Derf Backderf (still can’t believe that name)
  2. Annie Sullivan and the Trials of Helen Keller by Joseph Lambert
  3. Trinity: A Graphic History of the First Atomic Bomb by Jonathan Fetter-Vorm
  4. October Mourning: A Song for Matthew Shepard by Leslea Newman
  5. Drama by Raina Telgemeier
  6. Somebody, Please Tell Me Who I Am by Harry Mazer
  7. The Watch That Ends the Night by Allan Wolf
  8. The Night She Disappeared by April Henry
  9. Moonbird: A Year on the Wind with the Great Survivor B95 by Phillip Hoose
  10. The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson
  11. Every Day by David Levithan
  12. Ten by Gretchen McNeil
  13. Personal Effects by E.M. Kokie
  14. The Silence of Our Friends by Mark Long
  15. Struts and Frets by Jon Skovron

dramaI am also very happy that I got to read such amazing titles that I would have never known had I not done this challenge. Some new favorites were made and much fun was had. Drama, I must say, was absolutely a marvelous graphic novel! A tale about an eccentric high school girl obsessed with boys and theatre, what more could you need in a story? The story was so funny and the images were superb. I even got my step-daughter reading it. I think it’s safe to say we both have a mutual author we both like now. I even just recently picked up another work by Raina Telgemeier titled Smile. I can’t wait to start it now that I have some free time without any other reading commitments.

Every Day by David Levithan is another amazing read I discovered. I have read some other things by Mr. Levithan before like the infamous Nick everydayand Norah’s Infinite Playlist and Will Grayson, Will Grayson. I will say that those were excellent books as well, but Every Day just had this story line that almost immediately sucked me in and soon enough it was pure torture for me to have to break from reading it. It is a teenage love story, and a good one at that. The story is about a person who falls in love with a beautiful girl and the foundations of their hopeful romance. The catch; this person wakes up each morning in the body of a completely different person (Either a boy or girl, ranging from about 12 to 19 years old, and living in a location that’s within a 50 mile radius from the lady he/she loves). Now if that doesn’t add on an extra special element from your usual YA romance books I don’t know what will.

Lastly, I was extremely pleased that the last book I read for this challenge was Struts and Frets by Jon Skovron. I absolutely LOVED this book! It almost made me cry that inevitably I would have to finish the book and move on with my life because I just became so invested in these wonderful characters. The story is about Sammy, a rock star in the making who is trying his best to make his high school band mates into the new sound of his generation. Sammy has to take his main advice on life from his strutsandfretsattractive, therapist mom and grandfather who once was a talented musician but now struggles with the onset of Alzheimer’s. Sammy and all of his friends are just such relatable characters to everyone we all knew our teen years at that period when “real life” was just around the corner.

All of these amazing titles and many, MANY more are just waiting to be picked up in the YA area at Whitney. Try and set some time aside this summer and check ‘em on out! Happy reading to you all!


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