Famous Sighting!

So, a couple weeks back I ran into Jay Asher, author of 13 Reasons Why, in Barnes and Noble!  It was so exciting.  We casually talked about the Printz winners this year, neither of us had read Midwinters Blood, but both thought it sounded good.  I had met Jay a couple times before, at conferences and he actually used to work at the library I work at, so my co-workers know him well.  His story is totally inspiration to me, because I have always wanted to be a writer.  I think some times that writers, actors, etc… that they are untouchable figures, but Jay is just a normal dude, who happens to be great friends with some of the coolest authors of our time!  It would be awesome to have be able to write a book and just be able to talk about it with those guys!  

Also, I’ve started posting my reviews on http://awardsbyamy.wordpress.com/ so check them out!  More to come soon!


Another Semester–but nearing the end!

Hello all!

I am at the beginning of a new semester and beginning a new semester long assignment.  I will be creating another blog of books, but these will all be award winning titles. [ http://awardsbyamy.wordpress.com/ ]

This time I’ll be reading and reviewing 45 titles.  It will be a little less intense than the summer of 50 YA titles, but I will also be doing my Senior E-Portfolio this semester, which is overwhelming to say the least.  I should be finishing up my degree in August which is SUPER exciting, and life will soon be changing for me as I am hoping to get somewhere in California.  The boyfriend and I hope to be able to move together whenever and wherever I get a job!  This will definitely be a year for change and hopefully one of those changes is that I blog here more!

Thanks for reading!

Welcome to 203

Welcome to the new year, the new semester, and your new journey into a Master’s in Library Science!  

In this course, you will be covering the basics of how to be an online student.  You will be able to learn to navigate through Desire to Learn, which is the Learning Management System that San Jose State uses, but you will also learn how to use the tools provided through King Library and technical assistance that is always available to you.  This class is important not only because it is your ticket to continuing the program, but because it allows you to master the skills you will need to fully commit and absorb all that this degree has to offer you.

203 taught me how important it is to communicate on the discussion boards, and how to communicate effectively and kindly.  Communicating through text is more and more common, and it is imperative in this degree to know how to communicate your ideas and your tone correctly.  Also, I know it is cliché, but there are no stupid questions, so post any and all questions in the discussion boards because it is likely that another student had the same one.  If Dale or I are not the first to see the question, one of your fellow students may be able to give you an answer.  Of course, you can always email Dale or me as well, or contact us through BB IM for a quick answer.

So now you are off to make your way through the course and through the degree!  Best of luck to you all, and I hope to be getting to know each one of you better!

That Summer by Sarah Dessen


Age Level: 12+

ISBN-10: 0142401722

Reader’s Annotation/Teaser: Haven’s summer is one full of change and it seems that she is being forced to change with everything else.  She just wants something to ground her, something allow her to make good memories again. 

Plot Summary: Haven has grown to be just shy of six feet tall in the last six months and she doesn’t feel like she can fit into the way things are now.  Her father is getting remarried, and she is constantly taking care of her mother’s feelings.  Her sister is getting married at the end of the summer, and thus everything is revolving around the wedding plans.  Haven’s best friend comes back from 4H camp madly in love, with habits and an attitude that neither Haven nor her parents like.  Haven feels alone in the world this summer until she comes across Sumner, one of her sister, Ashley’s old boyfriends.  Sumner reminds her of that summer where everything was good; when her parents were still together, when Ashley laughed and was nice to Haven, and when they went away as a family on vacation to the beach. Haven spends this summer selling shoes at the mall and trying to cope with and digest all the changes that are happening and have happened around her.  It is a summer of growing up and changing roles, as well as connecting with her family in a way she hasn’t ever before. 

Critical Evaluation: I listened to the audio book version of this book and would like to initially evaluate the reader of the novel.  I have read many Dessen books, which are all mostly set in the same area and have never been so aware of the fact that they were set in the south as in this reading of the book.  Although it was nice to have slightly different voices for the different characters, the readers drawl was slow and made all the characters seem unlikable because of they way she portrayed them talking.  As Sarah Dessen’s first novel, this book is mostly about the characters around the protagonist, rather than Haven herself.  Towards the end, she does a lot of Coming of Age in a quick burst of teenage angst and then familial love.  Unlike most Dessen’s novel, Haven’s character seems unrealistically calm with the events that are surrounding her.  Dessen cleverly uses a vent in Haven’s floor to allow her to hear the conversations that are happening in the kitchen.  In this way, we get Haven’s point of view, but also a third person point of view as well.  Overall, the characters grow and the plot moves at a good rate, but the depth of Haven’s character, and her lack of romance makes this novel very different than most her other novels.

About the Author:  Sarah Dessen grew up in Chapel Hill, North Carolina and attended UNC-Chapel Hill, graduating with highest honors in Creative Writing. She is the author of several novels, including The Truth about Forever, Just Listen and Along for the Ride. A motion picture based on her first two books That Summer and Someone Like You, entitled How to Deal, was released in 2003. Her eleventh novel, The Moon and More, was published in June 2013. She lives in North Carolina. (Dessen 2013)

Genre: Realistic Fiction/Coming of Age

Curriculum Ties: None

Book talking Ideas: Read Haven’s description of Ashley’s boyfriends and how they dictate times in their lives.

            Ask readers if they have ever had a friend who has marked periods of their life.

            Ask readers to describe their perfect summer.

Challenging Issues: None

Why I chose it: I have loved every Sarah Dessen book I have read and I had a long drive to go on, so I jumped at the chance to listen to one of her books on the road.  While this is not my favorite book of hers, I do like the movie adaptation, and think that Dessen is vital to a collection.


Dessen, S. (2013). Bio/Press kit. Sarah Dessen. Retrieved from http://sarahdessen.com/press-kit/.

My Blogs…And stuff

As I’m sure you have all wondered… Where are all those blog posts Amy was complaining about… Well, my teacher said we had to make a new blog (grumble) for this assignment specifically.  We also had to give her drafts to correct, and make sure we were doing things correctly (which was nice).  Anyways… I have just started posting the blogs on this other blog [ http://amycote.wordpress.com/ . ] If you want to go read them there, that would be awesome… if not I am going to try to post more blog friendly (less academic in tone) versions here as time allows.

Time is also been interesting this summer.  I am Busy with a capital B.  Working and school this summer has been crazy but I am about half way through.  I have some really big projects coming up, but then I might be able to take a week off and end that week with a family Wedding!!!! I love Weddings, they are always so happy and a great way to see family that I miss.  Being away from home this summer has been really hard, but working at the library and keeping my foot in the door, as well as running the teen programs for the county has been fun and exciting, even if exhausting sometimes.

Anyways, gotta get cracking back on the homework.  I’m at a coffee shop.  I’ve become a coffee-shop homework-do’er this summer!  When your bedroom is also your classroom, it starts to feel REALLY small, and your bed always feel really HUGE and welcoming!  =]

Hopefully I will post some book reviews soon.  Sorry about the delay!

New Assignment, but should be interesting

Hello to anyone who is still out there even though I am terrible at keeping up with this thing.

I have new for you.  I have an assignment for my YA Materials class to make a blog of a collection we would like for a teen section at a library.  They won’t all be books, but hopefully they will all be enjoyable posts.  I have to do 50 in total! I hope I don’t lose any of you in the process. It seems like a very difficult assignment, mostly because of the time consuming nature of consuming 50 materials, be them books, movies, tv shows, etc… in ten weeks!  But I shall prevail!  

Anyways, they may come in sporadic chunks when I have the time to get on here, but hopefully there will be some every week… and not 50 in the last week.  Let me know if you have an opinion on what I am reviewing, including what you think about my review!  Thanks!

Teen Section

Hey all!

Just here with another update on my teen section. Yes, mine!  I feel like this is now my baby, and the other librarians seem to be treating it as such too!  At our library, we have four “spinners” for paper backs.  Two of them were for paper back fiction and the other two were graphic novels.  With the massive shift of the hardbacks, we started inter-filing the paperbacks that go along with the hardback series.  By this I mean, all the Rick Riordan Percy Jackson books are all together, whether they are hardback or paper back.  We also did this with authors that were really popular, like Gary Paulsen, Alex Horowitz, or my favorite…Sarah Dessen! I worked out so well that after inter-filing those and weeding out the books that we had too many copies of them, we could fit all the paperback left into one spinner.  And now, well next week, I will be organizing all of our graphic novels into the three spinners.  And it couldn’t have happened any sooner, because our graphic spinners were so out-of-order, and so full that we haven’t been able to shelve any graphic novels for a week and a half, and thus they have been piling up uncontrollably.

Starting in the summer, I will also be doing the summer reading programs for the teens, which will be fun!  I’m running multiple Duct-Tape craft events, and will probably get little other events set up.  I want more than anything to do more and more, but with school and my other job, things have been busy!  I just renewed my lease, and so will be staying put for another year, and with that knowledge, my boss has decided to give me a budget to work with.  I will soon have free rein to plan events that I want, or so I hope!  I think it will be a great experience to work with a budget and to see in the grand scheme of things how much these programs cost the library!

Still loving my job!  And that’s what is important.  More updates later!