News, reviews and stuff of interest to teens, particularly in the local areas of Casey and Cardinia.
If you want some light relief in your life, then 'Mistakes were Made' by Stephen Pastis might well be the book for you.
This is a very, very funny book, full of quirky and humourous illustrations that accompany the text.
The main character is Timmy Failure (the surname Failure being a derivation of Fayleure, but, for reasons unknown, the name was changed).
In nearly every cartoon illustration, Timmy is standing looking directly at the reader whilst wearing his trademark scarf, and a 'stuck in the headlights' expression on his face.
Timmy Failure is the CEO of a detective agency which has its headquarters in his mother's wardrobe. The agency consists of Timmy and his colleague, a make-believe polar bear called Total, which makes the name of his agency, Total Failure Inc.
Timmy and Total blunder from case to case, attempting to solve crimes with hilarious results, always missing the obvious.
Take the case of the dead hamster, for instance. His school mate Max's hamster has died, and has called on Timmy to find out the circumstances. Timmy asks the following questions of the hamster - 'Did he have any enemies?' 'Did he have a lot of money?' 'Was he depressed?' 'Was he involved in criminal activity?'
No case is too small or large for him, from missing socks to the French Revolution.
Timmy lives in his own little world where he reigns supreme and those around him are ignorant.
Teachers are frustrated with his ability and refusal to follow instructions or adhere to rules. His grades are deplorable.
Cleverly, however, his new teacher develops a plan whereby he enlists Timmy to work on independent research for him, thus Timmy quite unwittingly begins to do the right thing.
While there are plenty of Medieval fantasy novels, grand and original ideas outside the generic ‘knight in shining armour sets out on quest’ storyline are hard to come by. Kristin Cashore, author of Graceling weaves the story of Lady Katsa the niece of King Randa set in the world of the Seven Kingdoms where quite occasionally a person is born with an extreme skill called a Grace, signified by eyes of different and strange colours. Their skills can take place in almost any form, from being able to bake better than any other or read minds. Katsa is Graced with a skill she finds a curse – the Grace of killing. These Gracelings are feared and exploited in the Seven Kingdoms, but none more so than Katsa, who's expected to do the dirty work of torture and punishment for her uncle. The story follows her voyage of self-discovery and struggle between enslavement and freedom, good and evil and the mystery of the One-Eyed King.
Three cheers for 'Girl Defective' by Simone Howell.
I loved this book, and hope it wins all the awards and accolades it deserves.
Life is seen through the eyes of fifteen year old Sky (Skylark) Martin, a teenager who describes herself as being 'surface clean but underneath having a weird hormonal stew brewing.'
Sky lives with her family-a father who is a heavy drinker and whose record store business is in dire straights, and her brother 'Gully' who 'intense' and has social difficulties.
The setting-St. Kilda-is beautifully conveyed, whether it be buying fish and chips at the local shop or travelling past the St. Kilda beach the reader has a keen sense of the colour and flavour of the St. Kilda scene.
'Girl Defective' is part-detective novel, part coming-of-age. An unknown person throws a brick into the window of the record shop and Gully throws himself into the role of trying to find out who the culprit is.
Sky is struggling to find her place in the world. Her friends, family and acquaintances are often quirky, odd-ball characters but are also very real and likeable.
I got the date wrong for the next teen book group meeting. It should be Thursday 9th of May, instead of the 10th. This key should really exist on our keyboards:
This is just a reminder that the second Teen Book Group session is coming up at Narre Warren Library. All teens are invited - whether or not you came to the first session. I can guarantee the group is super nice and we are looking for new members to join us.
The next book that we are discussing is The Fault in Our Stars by the amazing John Green. Hazel is tough, funny, awesome girl who has cancer, and is resigned to the fact that she is going to die. Then she meets Augustus at a cancer support group and things start getting complicated. If you love to have a good cry then this is a great book to read, but it is also funny and real - the way all John Green's books are. I highly recommend Looking for Alaska which is great too.
If you are keen to join the Book Group all you need to do is call Narre Warren Library on 9704 7696, and then show up on Thursday 10th May at 4.30pm. If you need a copy of the book you can borrow them from Narre Warren. Just ask for me (Celia) and I will get one for you. There will be food! I look forward to meeting you.
Below is the book trailer for the book, and below that is John Green reading the first chapter of the book. Enjoy!