YAACING | Winter 2018
Table of Contents Message from the Chair 3 Message from the Editors 4
News LSC Journal Club - Christie Menzo and Lindsey Krabbenhoft 5
Pro-D Day Passive Programming - Alexandria Yurgensen 16
Reviews Books with Buzz - Sadie Tucker 18
Call for Submissions 21
Columns Jbrary: We’ll Link to That - Dana Horrocks and Lindsey Krabbenhoft 6 YAACS Continuing Education: Ukulele Storytime - Jamie Fong and Nicole Brazeau 8
Features Spanish at the Library - Heather Gloster 12 Help us Fill our Bucket - Patricia Lesku 14
Cover art by Afton Schindel 2017
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Message From the Chair It’s the time of the year when we slow down and pause momentarily. Programming slows over the holidays and we’re wrapping up the year. Looking back on 2017, I see a year that brought us new opportunities, engaging events and good connections. A few months ago, Kate Longley put out a formal invitation encouraging everyone to use the YAACS listserv. Looking back, we’ve shared some great ideas and made some announcements. There is room for more activity and I encourage everyone to use this space in the New Year. It is a great connector and platform for bringing forward issues related to our field. I am pleased to present the Lightning Talk presentation videos from the 2017 Youth Services Institute. These short talks were presented by you and for you, and looked closely at children and teen initiatives, programs, community connections, resources and more from libraries across BC. For those in attendance at YSI 2017, please revisit the day! If you didn’t attend, here’s your opportunity to dig into the goings-on in public libraries. Thanks again to our presenters, I know these videos will spark the imagination of many. I wish to thank Julia and Jane for their dedication to YAACS newsletter and to these rest of the YAACs crew and members (you!) who support YAACS. See you in the New Year! Sarah Harrison YAACS Chair, BCLA email@example.com READ MORE ON OUR WEBSITE
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Message from the Editors Winter is here, and whether you’re sheltering from the rain or shoveling away the snow, this season’s YAACING is just the thing to curl up with. We’ve got engaging programming ideas, an invitation to participate in an exciting new professional development opportunity, book reviews, and more, so pour yourself a hot cup of tea and settle in! We’d like to take a moment to thank our talented and dedicated Creative Director, Afton Schindel, for all her hard work in putting together so many beautiful YAACING issues. As Afton steps down from her role, we wish her all the best! Here’s wishing you all a warm, cozy winter filled with great reads, great programs, and great times! Your YAACING Editors, Julia McKnight and Jane Whittingham firstname.lastname@example.org READ MORE ISSUES OF YAACING
YAACING | Winter 2018
Library Services for Children Journal Club
Calling fellow research nerds! We are so excited to share a new professional development resource that we hope everyone serving children in B.C. libraries can take advantage of. It’s called the Library Services for Children Journal Club and it is 100% free. We started this journal club because we believe that staying up-to-date on current research trends makes us better practitioners. We also know how hard it can be to find the time during the work day to search and read research articles related to youth services. The LSC Journal Club does part of that work for you. Every two months we select a research article that falls into one of the following categories: child development, STEAM, inclusivity, policy and planning, library as place, and community engagement. Then we meet in local groups to discuss the article and how it can apply to our work in libraries. Not in Vancouver? We’d love for your to start your own group and let
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us know about it! Meetings can be formal like in a staff meeting or they can be informal like a potluck at someone’s home or in a bar. It’s whatever works for you! In November we met to discuss executive function skills and how we can support their development in the library. Our January discussion will centre on our role as media mentors as we delve into what makes an app “educational.” If you can’t meet locally you are welcome to read the articles and submit a reflection piece to us that we will post for you. Or you can tweet your thoughts using the hashtag #lscjournalclub. Our hope is that the Library Services for Children Journal Club provides the structure and tools we need to stay on top of current research. The more informed we are of research-based practice, the better our service to children in libraries. Lindsey Krabbenhoft and Christie Menzo are children’s librarians at VPL. 5
Jbrary: We’ll Link to That! Oral Storytelling The art of storytelling is an important aspect of a children’s librarian’s job. Oral storytelling can be daunting, so we’re sharing ten of our favourite oral stories that can be used with kids of any age. Try these in a storytime, a spooky stories around the campfire program, or at your next Summer Reading Club visit. 1. Chicken in the Library This must have been written by a librarian- it allows you to talk about your collection, explain how to seek, locate and check out books at your library AND finishes with a goofy frog pun. Adapt to fit your library and group, this one works for toddlers up to school age kids. 2. Mr. Wiggle and Mr. Waggle You might not think of fingerplays as stories- but trust us, the narrative patterns, characters and story arc all fit the bill. This is fun and easy to do and your toddlers will be asking for it each week, especially as they master the motions with their fingers and hands. Feel free to add in extra bits or shorten it up if kids are getting squirrely. 3. The Mouse Family Takes a Walk We learned this story that uses ASL at a Mother Goose training. We love how the ending includes a positive message about bilingualism. Great for toddlers and up, especially when you repeat it each week. YAACING | Winter 2018
4. Grandfather Bear is Hungry If you’ve got a bear and chipmunk puppet, you’re all set for this one! This story gives a reason why chipmunk has stripes down his back. It works well in the spring when animals are waking up from hibernation. 5. Pigeon and Turtle Go to New York City This folktale from Haiti includes poop jokes and chances for the audience to participate. Recommended for both preschoolers or school-age kids. 6. 10 Fuzzy Chicks Short rhymes work really well as introductory oral stories for babies and toddlers. This one uses our hands to tell the story of ten chicks hatching. Perfect for spring and summer storytimes. 7. Little Clapping Mouse This story’s got rhythm! Add in some clapping to help those kids that need to move while talking. We love how this one rhymes and we recommend it for toddlers on up.
8. Billy Goats Trip Trap Speaking of rhythm, this story’s got a real beat too! The rhyming couplets make this an easy way to share the classic story with little ones and even infants if parents try it as a bounce. Want to spice it up? Try incorporating rhythm sticks or other musical instruments.
10. Be a Seed This little rhyme reminds us that stories are taking place all around us- even in nature. Have kids try it first with their hands and arms and then tell it again from crouching to standing. A great little story for spring!
9. The Three Little Pigs Another classic story told through rich rhyming language. This version was written by Carol Ashton and is fun to do with children young and old. Encourage little ones to hold up their fingers and tell the story along with you.
Do you have a favourite oral story you love to share with kids? Send us an email at email@example.com with your suggestions!
Lindsey Krabbenhoft and Dana Horrocks are children’s librarians at Vancouver Public Library
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Column: YAACS Continuing Education
Children’s librarians Jamie F. (VPL), Tina L. (BPL), Nicole B. (VPL)
Ukulele for Storytime Nicole and I were thrilled to be invited by YAACS to co-host an introductory Ukulele for Storytimes workshop at Burnaby Public Library alongside Tina Lee. We wanted participants to walk away inspired by the possibilities of the humble ukulele as a storytime tool while also sharing practical tips. Entry-level ukuleles are low-cost, fun to play, portable, and quite simply a crowd-pleaser. It might be easy brownie points, but I’ll often get a chorus of cheers from parents and children when I dramatically bring out the ukulele from behind the felt board.
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Our workshop covered getting to know your ukulele, storytime strategies, and resources for learning ukulele online and in the community. Based on our own experiences, we also discussed that it’s okay to be terrible. Out of tune? The audience doesn’t care! Forgot the chords? Put down the uke and keep singing! As with any other storytime tool like felt stories or egg shakers, use the ukulele selectively and strategically. I’ve been playing for over 5 years and I still mostly stick to the same 1 or 2 songs including Raffi’s I’m in the Mood for Singing.
Storytime Strategies Ukuleles are fun to play and definitely attract a lot of attention at storytime! All awesomeness considered, we recommend using the ukulele selectively and strategically. This will allow you to maintain a balance of other great early literacy elements like reading, rhyming, and talking with your group. We like the idea of consistently using your uke the same way throughout one storytime season. You could consider picking one or two of these methods:
Opening songs and closing songs “Get up and dance” songs to encourage children to move and get the wiggles out Freeze dances (stop playing abruptly, holler “FREEZE!”, get kids to pause movement, then play again) Lead a circle song by playing your uke “pied-piper” style as you walk around the room Lullaby songs to calm and soothe babies
Songs These basic transcriptions show where you’d strum each chord in relation to the lyrics. ROW, ROW, ROW YOUR BOAT (Traditional) C C C C Row, row, row your boat, C C C Gently down the stream C C C C Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily C C C Life is but a dream FRÈRE JACQUES (Traditional) C C C C Frere Jacques, Frere Jacques C C C C Dormez-vous? Dormez-vous? C C C C Sonnez les matines, sonnez les matines C C C C Ding dang dong, ding dang dong YAACING | Winter 2018
MAMA’S LITTLE BABY LOVES DANCING (Traditional) Based on same tune as “Sittin’ in my High Chair” and “Shortnin’ Bread”
C C C C Mama's little baby loves dancing, dancing C C G7 C Mama's little baby loves turning round. C C C C Mama's little baby loves dancing, dancing C C G7 C Mama's little baby loves turning round. C C C C Lean to the left, lean to the right C C G7 C Hug that baby nice and tight C C C C Lean to the left, lean to the right C C G7 C Hug that baby nice and tight 9
SHAKE MY SILLIES OUT (by Raffi) C C C C I've gotta shake, shake, shake my sillies out
G7 G7 C C Shake, shake, shake my sillies out C C C C C Shake, shake, shake my sillies out G7 G7 C And wiggle my waggles away More verses: clap my crazies out /jump my jiggles out I WAKE UP MY HANDS C C C C C I wake up my hands with a shake, shake, shake G G G C C C A shake, shake, shake, a shake, shake, shake C C C C C I wake up my hands with a shake, shake, shake
G G C Then I wake up my hands no more Continue with additional verses for different body parts (eyes/blink, legs/jump, etc.)
TWINKLE, TWINKLE, LITTLE STAR Also works for “ABC” and “Baa, Baa, Black Sheep”
C F C Twinkle twinkle little star G7 C G C How I wonder what you are C F C G Up above the world so high C F C G Like a diamond in the sky C F C Twinkle twinkle little star G7 C G C How I wonder what you are
Storytime Ukulele https://storytimeukulele.wordpress.com Blog and collection of simple ukulele chords for storytime songs. Created by VPL Children’s Librarian, April Ens! The Ukulele Helper https://ukulelehelper.com Interactive website for finding and identifying chords
Yousician https://yousician.com Free, ad-supported app (available in Google Play and Apple Store) for learning instruments including ukulele. YOUTUBE VIDEOS The Ukulele Teacher Channel https://www.youtube.com/user/TheUk uleleTeacher/videos John Atkins is a passionate ukulele teacher who has built up an impressive library of tutorials for playing all the latest hits. It’s easy to stay motivated and develop your skills just by jamming out to the pop songs of your choice.
Ukulele Hunt http://ukulelehunt.com Ukulele chords, reviews, guides to buying your first ukulele YAACING | Winter 2018
Cynthia Lin Music Channel http://bit.ly/1Ng626C Cynthia covers ukulele basics in six sessions and then offers you a number of song tutorials to choose from as you continue to learn. She demonstrates all of her ukulele techniques with clear explanations and moves along at the perfect pace for beginners. One Music School Channel http://bit.ly/2AqJDaf Katie DeNure’s tutorials are some of the best you’ll find - with professional camera work and editing, plus a split screen with close-ups of her ukulele so you can easily see what you should be doing. Check out her playlist section for eight videos especially for beginners and the growing collection of lessons that teach you how to play popular songs . Axis of Awesome - 4 Chords http://bit.ly/1fsC9nI A group of musically-inclined comedians cleverly demonstrates the power of knowing just four chords in this very popular video with over 34 million views. FACEBOOK Groups Storytime Underground https://www.facebook.com/groups/sto rytimeunderground This Facebook group is full of storytime professionals - and some of them play the ukulele! A friendly place where you can ask for uke song recommendations or just share how you’ve been using the ukulele in your early years programs. Search for “ukulele” on the left toolbar in order to see recent discussions.
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Ukulele Players (Uke Players) https://www.facebook.com/groups/177 948428891902 Hit the “Join this Group Button” and answer a few easy questions to prove you’re not a robot so the admins in charge will let you into their free forum for over 10,000 international ukulele players. Ask questions and learn from others - a great way to keep up to date on all things ukulele. Ukulele Storytime https://www.facebook.com/ukulelestory time Rose demonstrates how to play several songs that are perfect for storytime. Join and contribute! Ukulele Underground https://www.facebook.com/groups/uku leleunderground An even larger global ukulele group with 15,000 members, just in case you can’t get enough ukulele in your social media mix. Jamie Fong and Nicole Brazeau are children’s librarians at Vancouver Public Library
Spanish at the Library: For Teens & Tweens Spanish has long been considered a cool language. I remember when I was in secondary school I couldn’t wait to drop French and take Spanish in grade 9. In university I was thrilled to go on an exchange to Mexico and learn the language from native speakers. Spanish still holds its mystique and cool factor today. With direct flights from Prince George to Puerto Vallarta going in the wintertime, PGians are definitely keen to take a “hot holiday” and get out of the cold, making Spanish a popular language to learn here too. I attempted to offer a drop-in Spanish for teens program 2 years ago in the fall. I wouldn’t say it was a complete flop but I soon realized with an academic program that is cumulative, a drop-in option doesn’t work! There were three girls who came religiously and then random teens would show up every week and we would spend half the class trying to catch them up. This fall I decided to offer the program again but it was registered, ten spots. Our Youth Services department was doing some experimenting with Double Digit (10-12 years)/Teen programming. I know, I know! Any literature you read on serving teenagers warns against this. My reasoning for offering this tween/teen split was I was hoping to attract some sibling groups who often hang out at the YAACING | Winter 2018
library after school. One of the girls who had stuck with the program the first time requested we offer Spanish again and asked for it to be held on Wednesday afternoons when her mother brings her younger siblings to Lego Time. We went ahead and ran two sessions, Spanish 1 and Spanish 2, each course was 8 weeks long. We had 9 students sign up and as I had hoped, 2 sibling groups participated. I hung onto my old Spanish textbook from when I did the exchange in Mexico, ‘Pido la Palabra,’ and used many of the Spanish books we have in our collection to guide the course. Being an academic program I wanted it to be fun and not feel so much like school so we focused more on learning sentences and vocab instead of conjugating verbs. 12
As the group got to know each other they became very chatty. I was happy that they were making friends and decided to institute a time at the beginning of the program where they could share stories. Two sisters sing in a local choir and had learned a couple of Spanish songs. They sang for us and taught the group the songs while we translated the lyrics. Another boy has travelled to Mexico a few times while his mum taught yoga workshops there so he was eager to tell us about his Mexican adventures. I was genuinely surprised at how well the Spanish course went. By giving the youth homework that was optional they were more likely to come back the next week. I also incorporated some fun games such as splitting the youth into teams and giving them 5 minutes to come up with as many Spanish speaking countries as possible. Quick facts about the program: Who: Youth from age 10-17 Where: At our downtown branch in Prince George. What: Spanish Club. Learn new Spanish words, phrases and about the Hispanic world while meeting new people. When: Two sessions with 8 classes per session. The classes were held from 4-5pm on Wednesday after school. Why: Many youth are interested in learning Spanish but local schools don’t offer it until grade 9. With Spanish Club youth can get a head start learning the language and the library can promote their Spanish collection.
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Awesome Spanish Books for your junior collection! Easy Spanish, by Ben Denne and Nicole Irving Spanish Dictionary for Beginners, by Helen Davies Cada Oveja Con su Pareja, by Estrella Ortiz Arroyo Luna, by Antonio Rubio and Oscar Villán Los Colores, by Christiane Gunzi Mi Primera Mirada a Los Tamaños, by Christiane Gunzi Un Abuelo, Sí, by Nelson Ramos Castro
Heather Gloster is a Youth Services Librarian at the Prince George Public Library. In 2016 she received the BCLA Young Adult and Children’s Service Award in recognition of exceptional service to children and youth in BC. 13
Help Us Fill Our Bucket: Encouraging Community-Minded Behaviour in the Library As population density increases on the North Shore, our library has become our community’s living room. It’s a place where families can meet, read, study, and play together. In 2015, we were finding that our customers needed guidance around making the space safe and welcoming for all. Children’s staff wanted a positive way to open up conversations with our customers about desired library behaviour. We didn’t want to be focussed on negative behaviours (“No running!”) but rather able to reward good behaviour that we saw.
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Most importantly, we wanted to be consistent throughout the department in handling these kinds of (sometimes sensitive) conversations. In one of our staff meetings, we worked together to brainstorm ways to achieve our goals and found inspiration from the Carol McCloud book Have You Filled A Bucket Today? We repurposed one of our bulletin boards into our bucket board. The components of the board are simple: You need an image of an empty vessel or space, a clearly-worded description of the behaviours you’d like to see, and a whole lot of stickers. 14
Our first board was a very literal take on McCloud’s bucket idea, inviting children to: ● ● ● ●
Put books on the reshelve trolley when they are done with them Stay with their grown up Use their walking legs Tidy up toys and puzzles
Whenever we notice good behaviour children are rewarded with a sticker for the board (and very often one for themselves!), and when we notice behaviour we’d like to change we open up
a conversation by asking, “Would you like a sticker? I can tell you how to get one…” In the two years that we’ve been working with our bucket board, we’ve moved from buckets, to snow globes, to gardens, to buses, and back again. Better still, we’ve noticed a considerable change in community-minded behaviour. It’s no surprise to you, but stickers are a great motivator, and a powerful tool that helps us creating a family space that is safe and welcoming for all.
Patricia Lesku is a Public Service Assistant / Auxiliary Librarian at the North Vancouver City Library
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Pro-D Day? Passive Programming to the Rescue! With the start of the school year come the inevitable: Pro-D Days! The recent changes in the British Columbia curriculum have brought more Professional Development Days and Implementation Days in the 2017/2018 school calendar. Pro-D Days can provide a great opportunity to draw the school-age crowd in to the library with programs. Maybe you’ve been itching to do a brand new program or perhaps you want to offer a crowd favourite you’ve done before. New programs are exciting but for many libraries, Pro-D Days can be hit-or-miss in terms of attendance and it can be hard to justify spending a lot of time planning and preparing for a program that may not draw a large attendance. This is where drop-in passive programs come in.
This can lead to great conversations with caregivers who may not have been aware of all the other amazing programs the library offers. So what kind of passive programs can you run for Pro-D Days? Surprise Ferocious Beings Paper Project: This simple folding craft from CraftWhack is easy and fun to make. Kids will want to surprise/scare you with their creations. Display printed instructions in the Children’s Area. Supplies: blank paper, markers
The first time I heard the term passive programming, I’ll admit I thought it sounded kind of like lazy programming (“Aren’t ‘active’ programs better?” I wondered). But they’re not lazy at all! It can be a great opportunity to do hands-on activities and crafts while highlighting different collections or features of the library. The only difference is that they are self-led or self-directed and (ideally) drop-in. Drop-in passive programs can be a fun discovery for families who may have stopped by the library looking for books and instead found a little something extra. YAACING | Winter 2018
Corner Bookmark: Bookmark making is also a great passive program to do and there are a lot of fun bookmarks out there to make, like Monster Corner Bookmarks.
I tacked this on to Family Board Game Day to highlighting books that are tucked away on the non-fiction shelves.
This program requires a bit of prep beforehand if you don’t have origami paper handy (I made copies of this template printed on 8.5 x 11 paper and it worked in a pinch). Supplies: printed instructions to display, paper, glue, scissors, markers. So simple and fun! Scavenger Hunt
Board Games: If you want to take a break from crafts and you have a collection of in-house board games, why not plan a Family Board Game Day where families can drop-in and play? Kids can make new friends in an informal and fun setting. If you don’t have a collection of board games, do a “Books that are Games” display in your Children’s Area (inspired by this Jbrary post). YAACING | Winter 2018
Another popular passive program is the scavenger hunt. I ran one for a Pro-D Day that fell in September and it never fails to engage a crowd. There are so many variations of scavenger hunts you can run: secret message scavenger hunts, object scavenger hunts, book themed scavenger hunts! A scavenger hunt also has the added benefit of encouraging its participants to explore the library, in ways they hadn’t before. Think about areas of the space or collection you want to emphasize or highlight and go for it. You can also do a prize draw or give-away for those who complete the hunt for that extra bit of incentive, but a scavenger hunt is in many ways its own prize and your younger patrons will have fun working their way through the clues. So if there are Pro-D Days on the horizon in your community, don’t let them pass you by. Try out a passive program!
Alexandria Yurgensen is a children’s librarian at Vancouver Public Library. 17
Books With Buzz With so many titles coming out each month, it’s a challenge to keep track. Here are some books published in the last little while that have caught my eye and (mostly) received reviewer buzz. Mild preference given to stories featuring diversity of any kind and Canadian creators.
Babies & Toddlers Up! How Families Around the World Carry Their Little Ones Hughes, Susan (Canadian) Starred reviews: CM Magazine This is a fabulous book depicting a variety of caregivers, from a variety of cultures, carrying their babies. You will not find a more casually inclusive baby book. Preschool Now Portis, Antoinette Starred reviews: Kirkus, SLJ, Horn Book (Pre-gr.1) Favourite things can be silly or beautiful, brief or enduring, but there is always value in appreciating the now. This YAACING | Winter 2018
book invites young readers to savour the moment and appreciate the little details that surround them. The pictures are suitable for a storytime, but this really shines as a lap book. Hello Goodbye Dog Gianferrari, Maria Starred reviews: Booklist, Goodreads (4.1*) (Pre-gr.1) Moose the dog loves “hello”, but he is not so fond of “goodbye,” especially when it involves Zara going to school. Every goodbye leads to an escape and a return to Zara’s school, with an increasing number of people required to bring Moose back home. The story features mixed-race girl in a wheelchair, which is treated like it’s no big thing. Exceedingly cute and exuberant.
The Only Fish in the Sea Stead. Philip C. Starred reviews: Kirkus, PW, SLJ (Pre–gr.1) When Sadie finds out that 18
someone threw their goldfish, still in its bag, into the ocean, she mounts a rescue effort. Busy illustrations using ink and watercolour complement the adventurous quality of the story and Sadie’s intrepid spirit. All the Way to Havana Engle, Margarita Starred reviews: Kirkus, PW, SLJ, Goodreads (4.1*) (Pre-gr.2) A boy’s family must drive into Havana to celebrate his cousin’s birth. The only problem? Their car, which is as old as his abuelo, is making sounds like a baby chick (“pio pio, pio pio, pfffft”) rather than a busy chicken (“cara cara, cara cara, cluck, cluck, cluck”). A joyous read that is great for classic car lovers and those looking to learn a little bit about Cuban culture. Accompanied by lush, true-to-life illustrations.
Early Elementary A Different Pond Phi, Bao Starred reviews: Kirkus, PW, SLJ, Horn Book, Goodreads (4.2*) (K-gr.3) A story inspired by the author’s childhood. A young boy gets up early to help his dad fish. They live in the city, but travel to a local pond in order to feed the family. While fishing, the boy’s father recounts experiences from his life in Vietnam. A gentle, loving book that does not flinch from the difficult histories and lives of many refugee families who live in the United States and Canada. Flowers for Sarajevo McCutcheon, John Starred reviews: Kirkus, SLJ, Goodreads YAACING | Winter 2018
(4.3*) (gr.2-5) Drasko mans the family’s flower stand with his father in Sarajevo. When his father is sent off to war, Drasko must run it by himself. Then the bakery across the square is bombed and 21 people perish. Now, Drasko and the rest of the square’s merchants must decide if they will band together as a community or fracture apart.
Middle Grades The First Rule of Punk Pérez, Celia C. Starred reviews: PW, Kirkus, SLJ, Goodreads (4.4*) (gr.3-6) 12-year-old Malú’s mother would prefer that she be a proper Mexican lady, but Malú chafes against her academic mother’s expectations. When she moves to a predominantly Latinx school, she is quickly dubbed a “coconut” – brown on the outside and white on the inside. Does Malú’s love for punk music and zines mean that she cannot also embrace Mexican culture? The Wonderling Bartόk, Mira Starred reviews: Kirkus, SLJ, Goodreads (4.1*) (gr.4-8) Number Thirteen is a fox groundling, part fox and part human. He lives in The Home where groundlings of all sorts are housed. When he rescues a bird groundling they decide to escape and discover their destinies. School Library Journal states, “Bearing some similarities to Lemony Snicket’s ‘A Series of Unfortunate Events’ with shades of Erin Hunter’s ‘Warriors’ series, Bartók’s title will appeal to readers who appreciate
anthropomorphized animal characters, high-stakes adventure, and Dickensian settings.” The Stars Beneath Our Feet Moore, David Barclay Starred reviews: Kirkus, PW, SLJ (gr.5-9) Lolly is still feeling the loss of his brother after Jermaine is murdered by a drug dealing gang. One of the ways he copes is by building with Lego. As his creation outgrows his home and moves into the local community centre, he finds solace in creating “the alien metropolis of Harmonee.” Unfortunately, Lego and the support he receives from numerous adults and peers cannot negate the danger and violence that he encounters every time he walks out the door. A gritty but hopeful depiction of life in a poor neighbourhood. Thornhill Smy, Pam Starred reviews: Kirkus, PW (gr.5-11) A creepy illustrated novel following two girls from different times. In the early 1980s, Mary lives a miserable life in an orphanage. In 2017, Ella has just moved into a new house that borders that same orphanage, now in ruins. When Ella encounters Mary’s ghost, a friendship develops. Mary’s story is told through diary entries while Ella, a selective mute, has her story told through eerie black and white images.
High School Wild Beauty McLemore, Anna-Marie Starred reviews: Kirkus, Booklist, SLJ, Goodreads (4.1*) (gr.7+) The Nomeolvides women have tended a magical garden estate for YAACING | Winter 2018
generations. They find safety there, but this comes at a cost. When a Nomeolvides woman falls in love, the object of her affection disappears. When four cousins all fall in love with the same person, they decide to cast a spell to protect her. What ends up happening is inexplicable, but may be a sign that the curse is nearing its end: A boy with no memory appears. Is he one of the mysterious loves returned? Kirkus says, “Part mystery, part love story, this evocative, lush novel is a delight for sophisticated readers.” Chemistry Lynch, C.L. (Canadian) Starred reviews: Okay, this one didn’t get any starred reviews (mostly because it wasn’t reviewed in the first place), I just really liked it! (gr.8+) Stella has just moved to Vancouver and she hates it. She is large in both personality and build and doesn’t make friends easily. The only classmate that she manages to bond with is a geek and also maybe (probably) undead. When zombies begin showing up around town, is Howard to blame? The Agony of Bun O’Keefe Smith, Heather (Canadian) Starred reviews: Kirkus, Quill & Quire, Goodreads (4.4*) (gr.9+) 14-year-old Bun lives with her mother in 1986 Newfoundland. Her mother is a hoarder and neglects Bun horribly. When she is kicked out, Bun ends up in St. John’s where she is taken in by a house full of kind but troubled youth. With a “strange combination of jaded realism and innocence” (Quill & Quire), Bun will learn about the outside world and finally become part of a family. 20
They Both Die at the End Silvera, Adam Starred reviews: PW, Kirkus, SLJ, Goodreads (4.3*) (gr.9+) What would you do if you learned that you would die sometime, somehow, in the next 24 hours? Mateo and Rufus are faced with this question when they both receive their Death-Cast calls. Using an app to find their Last Friend, they team up to enjoy what time they have left. What they find is a deep friendship and a romance that will last them a lifetime. You Don’t Know Me but I Know You Barrow, Rebecca
Starred reviews: Kirkus (gr.9+) Audrey has a supportive family and a loyal boyfriend. When she discovers that she is pregnant, she is faced with a seemingly impossible decision. This title has been lauded for telling a teenage pregnancy story without falling into tropes and for depicting the complexity of the decisions at hand. Teen Librarian Toolbox says it best: “One would hope that a story that is about a pregnant young woman would have depth and would show the inner workings of her making whatever choice she makes—and wow, does this book have depth.”
Sadie Tucker is a children’s librarian at Vancouver Public Library.
Call for Submissions YAACING is published four times per year and is always looking for submissions that might interest children’s and teen specialists in BC libraries. We accept articles, program descriptions and ideas, conference reports, and much more. If you would like to write a regular column, send us a brief pitch. Submissions should be no more than 1500 words, sent in an editable format (not PDF). Please include a byline with your job title and workplace, or for students: your school, program and class information, if applicable. YAACING invites your contributions to our Reviews and Felt Story sections: Reviews: Please send us reviews of books, blogs, websites, or other resources. Submissions should be no more than 300 words. Longer reviews may be considered for publication as featured articles. Felt Stories: Share your creativity! YAACING is looking for felt story patterns. Submissions should include a printable pattern, photograph of the finished product, and related rhyme or note about the origin of the story. The deadline for the Spring 2018 issue of YAACING is February 15 2018. Please email your submissions to the editors at YAACING@gmail.com
YAACING | Winter 2018
Published on Dec 20, 2017