I love these. If only I'd discovered them before I decided to be an English major - it would have saved me so much time!

My favorites:

The Collected Works of Jane Austen
If On a Winter's Night a Traveler
Dante's Inferno
Ethan Frome

So far in the last two months I have:

- Finished my first year of grad school - halfway to my MLS degree!
- Worked at an internship that I love and is hopefully a huge step towards a great job I'll love in the future
- Lost 15 pounds
- Got a really cute new haircut
- Got new soft contact lenses.

The conclusion, my friends? I am MADE OF AWESOME. Now I just need to lose 25 more pounds and I'm pretty sure I'll be the sexiest librarian ever.

Rhapsody in Blue – Gershwin

A Little Bit More – Jamie Lidell

Hard Time Killing Floor Blues – Chris Thomas King

The Two Sides of Monsieur Valentine – Spoon

If You Find Yourself Caught in Love – Belle and Sebastian

Be Gone – British Sea Power

Piano Sonata no. 14 in C-Sharp Minor (Moonlight Sonata) – Beethoven

Falling and Laughing – Orange Juice

Your Cover’s Blown – Belle and Sebastian

Skin Is, My – Andrew Bird

Rated-R Movie – Fine China

Norwegian Wood – The Beatles

Lloyd, I’m Ready to be Heartbroken – Camera Obscura

Cybele’s Reverie – Stereolab

Off the Record – My Morning Jacket

We Could Walk Together - The Clientele

How to Disappear Completely – Radiohead

Let’s Save Tony Orlando’s House – Yo La Tengo

Marian the Librarian – from The Music Man

On the Radio - Regina Spektor

A burning bush!

Today at the library one of the teens came running up to us at the desk yelling, "There's something on fire outside!" Of course we all immediately ran for the windows, where we saw several bushes next to the English Lutheran church's parking lot up in flames, with lots of smoke billowing out over downtown. At first it didn't seem like anyone else had even noticed, so Jennifer got on the phone and tried calling the library's security and the office for the church to get ahold of people. Finally a few security guys from the library ran out with fire extinguishers, but they couldn't get it out, and eventually the fire truck had to come out. Whew! We were all worried that the fire was going to jump from the bushes to a nearby tree, or that the car parked right next to the fire would be damaged. Luckily things were under control pretty quickly after the fire department arrived, although the bushes looked pretty sad. It looks like it was probably caused by a cigarette that someone threw out without making sure it wasn't still burning. I'm glad it turned out to be a relatively minor thing and easily handled, but it was still by far the most exciting thing that happened in our day!

I've been going through Mother Reader's list of all of the Book Challenge participants this year, taking notes on what I should read next - people have read lots of good stuff, it looks like. The most frustrating thing is all of the people who have read and reviewed advance copies of books that aren't out until later this summer or fall - some of them sound really intriguing and I kept writing them down only to discover I can't read them yet! I miss the days when I was working at Mitchell Books and could carry home armloads of ARCs to look over.

Well, officially I'm not done until 7:00 a.m. tomorrow morning, but I'm tired and I've got a headache from hell, so I seriously doubt I'll be getting any more reading in before then. I've finished two more books since my last post, but I'm too tired and yucky feeling right now to do full reviews, so I'll just say a few words about each:

The Goose Girl, by Shannon Hale -

I really liked this one. I've always loved fairy tale retellings, ever since I read Robin McKinley's Beauty years ago, and this was a good one. Hale really creates a detailed and believable world, the characters are fun, and there's a nice little romance as well. It looks like there are two sequels following some of the minor characters from this book, so I'll have to check those out as well.

Hattie Big Sky, by Kirby Larson -

I don't know if it was just that this was the last book of the marathon I read and I was starting to wind down, or what, but I had some trouble getting into this one initially. Maybe because it's the only historical fiction of the bunch and so I had to switch gears a bit. One thing that I appreciated was that in the end, our plucky heroine trying to hold down a Montana claim all by herself does NOT succeed - pretty unusual in children's fiction, maybe, but very realistic, considering the odds against her. So, yeah. My impressions of the book as a whole are kind of foggy right now, I think, but I did end up liking it pretty well, although sometimes it felt a bit too messagey.

So that's that, then! Time to wrap things up. Here are the totals for my weekend reading experience:

Books read: 6
Pages read: 1856
Time spent reading: About 20 hours or so

I didn't get as much reading done as I would have liked, since other events came up, but overall it was a fun experience and I'm glad I did it. Right now, though, I just want to get rid of this headache and go to bed and sleep for twelve hours.

Yikes, a vampire book! Vampires are usually not at all my thing, but I’ve heard good things about Westerfeld from teens and YA librarians, so I decided to give this one a try. It’s the story of Cal, a Texas transplant to New York who happens to be a parasite-positive, or peep – basically, he’s a vampire without any negative symptoms and all the enhancements – better vision, super strength, et cetera. Turns out that the vampire parasite is a sexually transmitted disease, it’s spreading throughout New York, and it’s Cal’s job to track down other peeps before they cause utter destruction and mayhem. Every other chapter is a break from the story into a gory description of various nightmarish parasites – I could see some teens really getting into these chapters, and others wanting to just skip them to get back to the story. I can’t decide if they were too much of a distraction or if they worked for me (Also, I’m afraid I’ll have nightmares about some of the nasties Westerfeld describes). I’m also not quite sure about the bizarre twist the plot takes towards the end. I was just settling in to buying the existence of peeps and the underground Night Watch, and then I was all, “Wait, what? Giant worms? So confused…” Anyway, overall it gets a thumbs up from me.

Victoria, who insists on being called Egg after the heroine in her favorite sci-fi movie, is going to high school in Hollywood, living with her mostly out-of-work actor mother, and spending her free time working in her dad’s special effects shop. She’s definitely a loner and does her best to make herself “boy proof” and distant from other students. And then, of course, there’s a boy, one who manages to intrigue Egg even after she decides to take an instant dislike to him. Egg was a fun, prickly character – I alternately wanted to hang out with her and to slap her. It does seem as if too much is crammed into too short of a book, and the ending feels really abrupt and rushed. Overall, though, I liked this one quite a bit and it’s definitely got me interested to read more of Castellucci.

Yes! I finally got around to reading this one! I’ve had it on my list ever since I read and loved Looking for Alaska earlier this year, and of course I’ve been an avid Brotherhood 2.0 viewer for a while now, but I just hadn’t managed to tackle this one yet. Part of the reason behind that, I think, was that the description just didn’t grab me the way Looking for Alaska did, or some of the other books in my to-be-read stack. But now I can definitely say I wish I hadn’t waited so long – I might like this one even better than Alaska.

The book in a nutshell: self-described “washed-up child prodigy” Colin Singleton has only ever dated Katherines, and has just been dumped by Katherine the 19th. In an attempt to get Colin out of the dumps, his best friend Hassan decides it’s time for a road trip. Somehow they end up in Gutshot, Tennessee, where they meet a girl named Lindsey and her mom, who owns a tampon string factory and soon hires Hassan and Colin. Oh, and Colin’s trying to come up with a mathematical theorem to determine who will be the dumpee and dumper in every relationship. And then there’s Archduke Franz Ferdinand’s grave, a crazy hunting trip, and lots and lots of anagrams (not to be confused with pangrams). Crazy fun!

I think maybe part of the reason I liked this one so much is that Colin is SO the type that I would’ve gone for in high school. I love the hot geeky boys! I can’t count out Hassan, though. At first it seemed like he was just there to fulfill the funny fat kid sidekick role, but luckily Green didn’t fall into that trap, and he ends up being a really interesting, likeable character in his own right. I’d actually kind of like to see a sequel focusing on Hassan and his adventures.

Whew. After I finished this book, I had to just sit and stare at the wall for a while. This was definitely a page-turner and a nail-biter! It’s written as the diary of a girl named Miranda, who leads a completely normal teenage life, complete with all of the usual worries about homework and prom dates, until a meteor hits the moon with a far greater impact than expected, knocking its orbit askew and completely wreaking havoc on life on earth. First there are the disastrous tides caused by the moon’s near proximity, then there are the massive volcano eruptions, which send so much ash into the air that the sun is completely blocked and temperatures plummet.

So yeah, lots of disaster here – but it all pretty much happens off-screen. What we see is a much more intimate portrait of how Miranda and her family deal with all of these end-of-the-world catastrophes as they become increasingly isolated from the world outside their home. I was iffy on this book at first, because I thought the initial plot catalyst was so far-fetched, but in the end I loved it. It’s incredibly tense in a quiet, smothering kind of way, if that makes sense. I love Miranda’s voice – she and her family face problems that would have been unthinkable just months earlier, and she shows a lot of strength and growth, but she’s still just such a TEENAGER that I couldn’t help but love her. The depiction of her family and her relationships with them was wonderful, too. It looks like Pfeffer’s doing a sequel of sorts to this one, too – I’ll definitely have to seek that one out.

I've officially started the 48-Hour Book Challenge as of this morning, although unfortunately I haven't had a lot of reading time yet since I've been hanging out with an out-of-town friend. I'm about halfway through Life As We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer, and hopefully I can really settle down to reading now. Review coming soon!

Oh yeah, and I'm getting ready to do this. The plan was to start tomorrow morning, but my friend Joel is coming to visit and we're going to be hanging out in Fort Wayne until he leaves tomorrow afternoon, so I don't think I'm going to get in quite as much reading as I'd planned. But such is life. Hopefully I'll still manage to blog a couple of reviews at least.

*Edit: I think I've decided to start around seven or eight a.m. tomorrow morning. I can get in a couple of hours of reading while I wait for Joel to wake up, and then get back to it later in the evening. So I'll lose a huge chunk of reading time, but I never expected to actually be able to just sit and read for 48 hours straight. Anyway, I don't get to see Joel too often and we're doing library and book-related things so it'll be a grand old time.

(Did I just say "grand old time?" I think maybe I did.)

Float On – Modest Mouse

Star Bodies – New Pornographers

Neighborhood #3 (Power Out) – The Arcade Fire

Run! Christian, Run! – Super Furry Animals

Since K Got Over Me – The Clientele

The Pipettes – Pull Shapes

Wake Up Boo! – The Boo Radleys

Sleep the Clock Around – Belle and Sebastian

Juxtapozed with U – Super Furry Animals

Kinderszenen, Op. 15, Träumerei - Schumann

Looters’ Follies – Destroyer

Little Triggers – Elvis Costello

Crazy – Gnarls Barkley

Concerning the UFO Sighting Near Highland, Illinois – Sufjan Stevens

Season of the Shark – Yo La Tengo

With Catlike Tread, Upon Our Prey We Steal – from Pirates of Penzance

Absent Friends – Divine Comedy

Know Which Way the Wind Blows – Postmarks

Born to a Family – The Go-Betweens

Clair de Lune – Debussy

This is why I love the Allen County Public Library. All those zombies in the video? Yeah, I work with them.


The Allen County Public Library Harry Potter Book Seven Release Party draws near! One of the YA department's responsibilities is to make wands to give to the kids, and of course the bulk of that job falls on the interns. Let's check the count so far:

250 wands made.

2750 to go.

Two paper cuts and ten very raw fingers.

Ahh, the glamorous life of an intern.

Metal Guru – T.Rex

√Čtude Op. 10, No. 3 in E Major – Chopin

Fall of the Star High School Running Back – Mountain Goats

Do What You Wanna Do – Acid House Kings

Escarpment Blues – Sarah Harmer

How Lester Lost His Wife – Of Montreal

Venus and Serena – Super Furry Animals

We Are the Sleepyheads – Belle and Sebastian

Bogoroditsye Dyevo – Rachmaninoff

So Happy Together – The Turtles

Fox in the Snow – Belle and Sebastian

Do It Clean – Echo and the Bunnymen

Spinning – The Innocence Mission

Scythian Empires – Andrew Bird

The Jessica Numbers – New Pornographers

Wouldn’t It Be Nice – Beach Boys

O Maria – Beck

Impromptu In E-Flat Major, Op. 90, No. 2 – Schubert

Runnin’ Out of Fools – Neko Case

Sex – The Pipettes

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