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Results 26 - 50 of 149,966
26. Library Programs: LibraryCon-Part 3-What Worked and What I'd Change

This is part of a three part series about the LibraryCon program we hosted at my library. Be sure to check out:


Many cool people who helped make LibraryCon awesome!
(photo credit: E.M. Ervin

So there were many, many things that went wonderfully at LibraryCon and we pulled off an amazingly fantastic event. I'm so proud of all the work that everyone did and what a fun program it turned out to be.

Here's what worked well:

-Involve the local geek community.  We reached out to so many organizations, cosplay groups, gaming groups, authors, illustrators, and other area cons to create our booths. In turn, those groups gave us names of others to include. This worked well because it helped us find people who really wanted to be part of this event.

-Provide water! And food if possible. We provided lots (over 100!) bottles of water for the people staffing tables and speaking on panels. They told us over and over again how thankful they were for this and it was such an easy thing to do! We also got a donation for lunch for our panelists and provided snacks for those staffing the booths, which was another nice treat. We also made sure we had staff available to sit at their booths while they took a break to eat.

-Have something for all ages. We had a huge mix of ages from kids to adults and lots of families attend LibraryCon because we really wanted it to be a family friendly event. Our booths all had something fun to offer for all ages and having various Cosplay groups was a huge treat for the kids. We also had a Geeky Storytime, which was a huge hit with kids and parents. We could have added even more kid events and plan to do so for next year.

-Have assigned tables clearly marked for vendors.  Also be sure to have lots of extension cords and power strips on hand. We had every table assigned and the list was left with the greeters at the front door. This made set up very easy and run smoothly.

Most of the feedback we had was positive, and the comments about what to change were actually very minor. But no event is absolutely perfect, so here's what I'd change for next year:

-More Signage-We had a whiteboard outside the panel room and had a flier with a schedule of events and room locations. Everything was kept in our main concourse of the library and the rooms are all located right off the concourse, so it was pretty well contained to the front. But people still requested more signage about what was happening where and where rooms were located.

-Bring people into the library. Since most of the event happened in the main concourse, there was very little traffic into the library. This was good (it kept noisy things up front) and bad (people didn't explore the library as much as they could have). We had a scavenger hunt happening in the stacks and not many people knew about it because they didn't make it back to the Children's Department. We also had some kids crafts there as well that got ignored after storytime. I would like to find a way to bring people into the library more and show off lots of library resources and geeky book displays next year. Also, bring over a lot of your Science Fiction/Fantasy/Horror/Graphic Novel collections to highlight at your event. We created a last minute geeky kids book display and the books flew off the display!

-Have a booth for the library. This might seem like a no brainer, but we didn't think about it. We thought oh, hey, people are coming to the library so they'll find out about what we offer. But that wasn't the case. Next year, I want to have a booth for library card sign ups and have information about upcoming programs.

-Create a hashtag. Neither Valerie or I are very active on Twitter, so it didn't occur to either of us to create a hashtag for the event until the day of! This is a great way to collect pictures and feedback from attendees on social media and spread the word about your event.

-Make sure you have enough trash cans. Another silly one, but we noticed that by the end of the evening, the trash cans located in the concourse were overflowing! Something else we really hadn't thought about! But for the most part, there wasn't much trash to pick up and the event itself was very clean.

-Offer even more things to do! We only hosted three panels because this was our first LibraryCon. We spread them out throughout the afternoon because we were trying to think of when people would arrive, want to take breaks, eat, etc. As my husband pointed out to me, "people will eat when they want to eat-you just have events and let them figure it out." Next year, I think we don't have to worry about spacing things out and having breaks, but instead offer more panels, fandom meetups, and gaming demos.

Overall we had a fantastic event it was lots of fun. You don't need to have a huge budget to put on an amazing event. Our entire LibraryCon was put together on about $80, and most of that could have even been taken out and not really needed. Include your community and you will get a great response. I can't wait to do it all again-bigger and better-next year!

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27. Volunteer Now for Award/Selection Committees and Taskforces!

*Please note that the PPYA and Amazing Audiobooks Committees are virtual. YALSA members with book selection and evaluation experience and who are comfortable working in an online environment with tools like ALA Connect, Google Docs, Skype, etc. should put their names forward for consideration.

Past-President Chris Shoemaker noted in his blog post last month that the YALSA Board adopted a new policy about serving on award committees.  Beginning Feb. 1, 2016, any individual who has served on any YALSA award committee will need to wait two years before he or she is eligible to serve on another YALSA award committee. For more information, see this board document from Annual.

If you have been on selection and award committees before, please consider volunteering for the new Selection and Award Committees Oversight Committee (more info can be found in this board document).  This new committee needs experienced YALSA members to serve as liaisons and to standardize policies and procedures for selection and award committees.

The Fine Print

  • Eligibility: To be considered for an appointment, you must be a current personal member of YALSA and submit a Committee Volunteer form by Oct. 1, 2015. If you are appointed, service will begin on Feb. 1, 2016.
  • If you are currently serving on a selection or award committee and you are eligible to and interested in serving for another term, you must fill out a volunteer form for this round (so I know you're still interested and want to do serve another term)
  • Qualifications: Serving on a committee or taskforce is a significant commitment. Please review the resources on this web page before you submit a form to make sure that committee work is a good fit for you at this point in time.
  • Need more information? Click on the links above. Check out the Committee FAQ.  Watch the Selection Committee Webinar.
  • Please free to contact me with any questions or issues at gsarahthelibrarian at gmail .com.

Thanks for volunteering with YALSA!

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28. As promised

IMG_9036

Rilla’s pocket handiwork.

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29. On My Honor

On My Honor. Marion Dane Bauer. 1986. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. 96 pages. [Source: Review copy]



The good news is that the jacket copy of this book is so straight forward I would have known to avoid this one as a kid. (Sad books and I did not get along.)

What is the book about? Joel and Tony are close friends, perhaps even best, best friends. But Joel isn't honest with Tony. And Tony isn't honest with Joel. If either boy had been honest, then the book wouldn't exist essentially. The truth is, Joel doesn't want to go with Tony to Starved Rock state park to climb the bluffs. And Tony doesn't want to go swimming at the city pool with Joel. Joel's last hope is that his Dad will say no to the boys biking over to the state park. Is Joel honest with his Dad? Of course not! Don't be silly. His Dad thinks his son wants to go biking with his friend. And though he knows it may be beyond his child's ability to bike eight or nine miles each way, he says yes. Perhaps he wants his son to like him and think he's cool? Joel tries to hide his disappointment that his Dad failed him by setting up good boundaries, and reluctantly Joel sets off on a very long journey. (In the Dad's defense, Joel and Tony are not honest about what they're going to do once they get to the state park.)

At some point, perhaps halfway, perhaps not. The boys take a break on the bridge. Tony decides to change plans. Now Joel had promised his Dad that they wouldn't change plans, that they would go where they were supposed to go, and do what they were supposed to do, but, does Joel have the integrity, the "honor," to stand his ground? Of course not! Not in this book! Tony decides to go swimming in the river, the river that both boys had been warned was dangerous dozens and dozens of times. Tony talks his friend into going swimming in a dangerous river. Joel knew he was making a bad decision, a "wrong" decision, a breaking-all-rules, and going-against-my-parents-decision, but he goes along with Tony anyway. Into the water they go. But Tony has a big secret: he can't swim. And, as you can imagine, swimming in a dangerous river with strong currents and whirlpools is not the best idea if you can't swim. So Tony drowns.

What little regard I have for Joel is completely lost in the next half of this oh-so-short novel. (I was so thankful this one is short!!!) Is Joel honest with anyone after the accident? Does he tell the police? Does he tell Tony's mom? Does he tell his Dad? It's not that he doesn't tell anyone--he tells a stranger, someone near the scene that he gets to look for Tony in the river--but when this stranger wants to do the right thing, the only necessary thing, Joel makes promises he has no intention of keeping. The lying begins. He has no idea what happened to Tony. He left Tony on the road, on his way to the state park. Tony was alive and biking the last time he saw him. He has no idea why he isn't back home yet.

The truth does come out, of course, but not in a way that puts Joel in a good light, an honorable position. The book ends with Joel and his Dad having a heartfelt conversation. But that conversation didn't sit right with me. Joel wants assurance that there is a heaven and that his friend, Tony, is there. And his Dad tells him that no one can be sure that there even is a heaven. But if there is a heaven, then he's sure Tony is there. I'm not sure which annoys me more. The emphasis that "no one can be sure" there is a heaven, or, the assumption that anyone who dies automatically goes to heaven. I'm not suggesting that the book should end with a discussion that heaven is a real place and hell is a real place, and unless you're trusting in Christ as your Savior, you're destined for hell. That's an unlikely book ending for sure.

Who's responsible? Who's to be held accountable? Who's to blame? The book spends some time devoted to this, mostly through showing and not telling. (Though that last conversation with his Dad does bring this up.) The book certainly can bring a reaction out of the reader.

On My Honor was a Newbery Honor book in 1987.

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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30. More Chronicle Books!

Sometimes you just need a new board book - I hear you!  Well I have a few new ones that crossed my desk today that I think you will enjoy.

Friends and Trucks by Sara Gillingham are adorable board books.  The baby in these books is playing with friends - experiencing all different activities throughout the day - but what sets these books apart is the spinning head on the baby - you can make him/her sad or happy depending on what you'd like.  How fun to interact with you little one with these engaging books!



Two others that you will enjoy sharing with your little ones are Who's There?  and  All Shook Up by Alain Crozon.  Both are colorful books with flaps - you can turn each page and have your child guess what is hiding under the flaps.  These are fun and the illustrations are hilarious as well. 



Lastly, a picture book for the older set - The Bear's Surprise by Benjamin Chaud.  This is a book that will provide HOURS of entertainment.  The illustrations are so intricate that you want to look over and over to see what you missed the first time.  The cut outs in the pages also make for a fun way to read/guess with your child what will happen next.  AND the author has given you questions right in the text to get you talking and thinking as you read.  This would be a super title for a circus theme as well - and sometimes those are hard to find.



I was sent these titles by the publisher for an honest review on my blog.

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31. Get the Word out about Your #SummerLearning Successes!

You work hard all summer to provide teens with a variety of activities to help them learn and grow.  But chances are, your elected officials do not know about the great work you do and what it means to teens and to the community.  So, it's up to you to show them!  Elected officials need to know about the vital role libraries play in helping teens succeed in school and prepare for college, careers and life.  Without this knowledge, they will not be able to make informed decisions regarding key pieces of legislation, such as the Elementary & Secondary Education Act (ESEA) or the Library Services & Technology Act (LSTA).  District Days--the time when members of Congress are back in their home states--are the perfect chance for you to show off all the great things you do for and with teens through your library, by inviting your Congressperson to come and visit any time between Aug. 1 and Sept. 6, 2015.  You could also bring your teen patrons to them at their local office.  YALSA's wiki page has everything you need to extend your invitation, plan for a visit, and be a great host!  Your teens are relying on you to speak up for them, so be sure to seize this opportunity.  Then, tell us how it goes by sending photos and information using the #act4teens hashtag.

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32. Spotlight and Giveaway: Wolf Trouble by Paige Tyler

I have a spotlight and giveaway to celebrate the release of Wolf Trouble by Paige Tyler.  You can win a complete set of her SWAT series!

Title: Wolf Trouble

Author: Paige Tyler

Series: SWAT, #2

Pubdate: August 4th, 2015

ISBN: 9781492608509

He’s in trouble with a capital T

There’s never been a female on the Dallas SWAT team and Senior Corporal Xander Riggs prefers it that way. The elite pack of alpha male wolfshifters is no place for a woman. But Khaki Blake is no ordinary woman.

When Khaki walks through the door attractive as hell and smelling like heaven, Xander doesn’t know what the heck to do. Worse, she’s put under his command and Xander’s protective instincts go on high alert. When things start heating up both on and off the clock, it’s almost impossible to keep their heads in the game and their hands off each other…

Paige Tyler is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of sexy, romantic fiction. She and her very own military hero (also known as her husband) live on the beautiful Florida coast with their adorable fur baby (also known as their dog). Paige graduated with a degree in education, but decided to pursue her passion and write books about hunky alpha males and the kickbutt heroines who fall in love with them. Visit www.paigetylertheauthor.com.

***

Paige Tyler’s sexy, action-packed SWAT series is back this August with the release of Wolf Trouble! To celebrate this latest release, Corporal Xander Riggs has agreed to sit down for a Q&A with us:

What was the biggest difference between Kansas City and Dallas?

The people I work with. Back in KC they weren’t a team and that cost them. Here we’re a Pack. We don’t do anything without thinking how it’s going to affect the other members.

An Excerpt:

Xander had to pick his jaw up off the floor of the training room when Gage introduced the newest member of the SWAT team. He didn’t know what to expect, but it sure as hell wasn’t Officer Khaki Blake. Tall with an athletic build and just enough curves to fill out the SWAT T-shirt, she had the biggest brown eyes and softest looking lips he’d ever seen. She had her dark hair back in a bun, so he couldn’t tell how long it was, but he’d bet money it fell past her shoulders. She smelled way too good to be believed, too—like a slice of frosted spice cake in a uniform.

Shit. He was practically panting. If he didn’t get a grip soon, he was going to start drooling.

He gave the other guys a covert glance to see how they were dealing with her scent and was stunned to see that none of them reacted at all. Why not? His nose wasn’t that much better than theirs. He knew for a fact that several of the other guys—Cooper Landry and Jayden Brooks specifically—could smell a hell of a lot better than he could.

Maybe everyone was so mesmerized by finally getting to see a female version of their kind that the rest of their senses had stopped working.

Gage had left it up to Xander to fill the guys in on what had gone down at the meeting with Deputy Chief Mason while he’d headed home to get ready for his trip to Washington State. While the guys had been pissed that the top brass was playing politics with the team, they’d been intrigued at the idea of adding a female werewolf to the Pack.

They’d bombarded him with dozens of questions, none of which he could answer. Was she as fast and strong as they were? Did her abilities manifest themselves in completely different ways? Would she be as aggressive as they were and able to handle herself in a fight? Were there more like her out there, or was she the only one?

Not all the questions were so general. Brooks wondered what she would look like, Max Lowry wanted to know if she would smell like them, and Eric Becker… Well, Becker just wanted to know if she liked to wear yoga pants. God, that kid had an obsession with those things.

Xander had told them what he knew—that no one except Gage knew a damn thing about female werewolves. And Xander wasn’t so sure how much their commander knew, either.

While Xander was lost in thought, Gage turned the floor over to Khaki, who was currently explaining how much she appreciated the opportunity to be in SWAT.

“I know I won’t be handed anything, but I look forward to proving to every one of you that I belong in the Pack and on the team.” She spoke in a light, lilting voice that surprisingly filled the large classroom. Xander could definitely pick up the Midwest accent, so she probably wasn’t originally from the Pacific Northwest. “I’m not asking for anything from you but a chance to do prove myself.”

Buy Links:

Amazon: http://amzn.to/1EnYbgA

Apple: http://apple.co/1EnZg8a

BAM: http://bit.ly/1JHEAiD

B&N: http://bit.ly/1PBe0MW

Chapters: http://bit.ly/1F1zirI

Indiebound: http://bit.ly/1SoHn3R

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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33. If You Liked Cruel Beauty...

 

Contributed by Samantha Randolph, Staff Reviewer

 

Cruel Beauty is hands down one of my all time favorites. I’ve spent a whole chapter of my thesis working with it, and I just fall in love with it more every time I read it. My favorite part of the story? The main character, Nyx, a young woman who isn’t that nice. Nyx is a majorly complex character, full of bitterness, kindness, love, and hate. She is more than a touch wicked, but far, far from evil, and I love her for it.

b2ap3_thumbnail_cruel-beauty-cover.png

 

Here are 5 other books that have that same element of a main character who isn’t all smiles and sunshine (not that there is anything wrong with that either).

 

 b2ap3_thumbnail_messenger-of-fear-cover.pngb2ap3_thumbnail_tattooed-heart-cover.png

 

b2ap3_thumbnail_nimona-cover.png

 

b2ap3_thumbnail_the-break-up-artist-cover.png

 

b2ap3_thumbnail_hexed-cover.pngb2ap3_thumbnail_charmed-cover.png

 

b2ap3_thumbnail_hit-cover.png

 

 

Happy Reading!

 

b2ap3_thumbnail_samantha-randolph-bio.png

Samantha Randolph is a Staff Reviewer for YABC. She absolutely loves children's, middle grade, and young adult literature. Samantha is currently attending a small university where she will soon graduate with a degree in English Literature. She can also be found at The Forest of Words and Pages, Fresh Fiction, and most coffee shops that serve cinnamon roll lattes. 

 


Read More

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34. Discovering Books as an Adult, Part 1: Find the Right Time for You

I've been thinking about a series of posts on discovering books as an adult for a while now.  I work in a college library, so our collection definitely has an academic focus, but we also try to keep a small popular reading collection as well.  I frequently hear from students that they liked to read as children, or in high school, but that they haven't picked up a book in years.  I hear the same thing from many of my non-reader friends.  People who don't read say enviously that they wish they could find time.  Or they tell me they loved books in younger years, but since college they haven't know what to look for or where to start to find the time.

For those who aren't immersed in the culture of books through blogging, librarianship, teaching, or the publishing industry, it can be completely overwhelming to a would-be reader who hasn't picked something up in years.  The options for starting are endless and I can totally understand how people find it difficult to know where and how to start reading again after years of focusing on home, family, career, or school.  So I'm going to do a short series here about what the options are, how to determine what you want to read, find the right time for you to read, and where you can find the right books for your needs.

Five years ago (basically a billion years in blogging time) I posted about how I find time for reading. All those ideas still apply, but I thought I'd update it with a bit less defensiveness and more frankness about the fact that, if books aren't already a part of your world, it may be difficult to imagine a place for them in the midst of the business of life.

So in addition to my previous post, I offer these suggestions:

  • Always have a book on you.  Carry a paperback or e-reader in your purse, download a reading app on your phone, or download audiobooks for your commute or road trips.  This suggestion frequently works in my favor, but not always.  A lot of people recommend reading while waiting in line or while shopping or while waiting on an appointment.  I have a hard time reading for just a few moments at a time, but I have been so grateful to have access to a book at times when I've found myself stranded for a length of time with nothing to do (or a dead phone).


  • Schedule reading time.  If you've got young kids, this is probably more difficult, but not impossible.  My schedule allows for daily reading time, but maybe yours doesn't.  Maybe what works for your schedule is an hour a week on Saturday afternoons that your partner can watch the kids.  Or for thirty minutes a day during naptime.  Don't stress about reading in terms of quantity of books read or time spent reading.  Just make it a priority and give it the same attention you'd give any other entertainment or interest.


  • Along with scheduling time to read, be mindful of how you spend your down time.  I am the absolute worst at this.  I can easily waste a half hour that could have been spent reading browsing Pintrest or clicking through Netflix trying to decide what I'd like to watch.  I have to force myself to make a continual effort to make those 5, 10, or 15 minute spaces of free time count for something, whether it's reading for that short time, or using that time to take care of other tasks so that I have more time for reading at night.


  • Make reading a family event.  If your kids are old enough, read out loud to them.  My brother recently read The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe to my nephew.  I was lucky enough to be there for a night of it and had as much fun listening to him read it as I would reading it myself.  Getting to experience great children's literature with children as they read it or hear it for the first time is such a treat.  If your kids are old enough to read on their own, designate a portion of each evening to reading silently as a family.  And if you don't have kids, find a book that your partner, roommate, or best friend would also like and read it together.  I'm not much of a fan of reading out loud with Luke, but we frequently choose a book we'd both like and listen to it or read it separately and then discuss as we read through text messages, g-chats, or dinner conversations.  
  • Don't get caught up in comparisons.  Don't compare yourself to other readers.  Don't compare yourself to other non-readers.  Don't compare your choice of reading materials to the choices of anyone else.  And don't compare your response to the material you choose to anyone else's response.  Maybe you hate a book that was critically acclaimed.  Maybe you love a book that was panned.  You're not reading for other readers, you're reading for you.
  • Most importantly, remember you're not in school anymore.  In school, you read what you were told to read, whether or not it interested you.  Those days are over - you can read anything you want now!  You're an adult!  Don't choose a book you think you ought to read or that is on a top ten list or that everyone you know read in school but you avoided.  Trust your instincts and pick something that you know you'll like.  And if you start something and don't like it?  Put it down.  Skim a boring description of a meal or landscape if those things don't interest you.  You're not going to be tested on it and if it's not fun, you'll find reasons not to do it.  
So now we've gone over the basics of finding time to read and how to incorporate reading into your life, even if you're pressed for time.  I think the best place to go from here is going to be finding the right place and format for reading and making it easy for you to choose to pick up a book as opposed to turning on the TV or playing WordBrain on your iphone for three hours straight (I mean what?  No one I know does that). 

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35. One Good Dragon Deserves Another: Review

If only a perfectly nice dragon could be left well enough alone to manage his curse removal business with his partner (and crush) the human mage, Marci. Unfortunately for Julius, his family is far too big and far too, well, draconic to ever let him be. And clan seer Bob claims to have big plans for him. This does not at all add up to a quiet lifetime of removing tank badger spirits (don’t ask) from the erstwhile cursed. This series is just so much awesome fantasy fun. Picking up shortly after the events of Nice Dragons Finish Last, Julius and Marci are giving it their best to scrape by running a curse removal business when major events start happening that throw the two into a situation way beyond their means. Estella, seer, daughter of the Three Sisters and long time enemy of the Heartstriker clan has put into motion... Read more »

The post One Good Dragon Deserves Another: Review appeared first on The Midnight Garden.

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36. Orpheus in the Underworld by Yvan Pommaux, 56 pp

Yvan Pommaux, beloved, multiple award-winning author and illustrator in France, has a detailed research and illustration style that we were treated too on this side of the Atlantic when TOON Graphics published  Theseus and the Minotaur last year. Pommaux's books are a very welcome addition to the shelves of graphic novels and Greek mythology. George O'Connor's graphic novel series The

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37. Utah Boy Who Reads Junk Mail Receives Thousands of Books Thanks to Mailman's Facebook Plea


Matthew Flores
C/O Sandy post office
8850 s 700 e
Sandy, Utah 84070
He's counting on me, so I'm counting on you!






This is Matthew Flores. Today while delivering mail to his apartment complex, I saw him reading ads, and then he asked me if I had any extra mail he could read. He told me his wish is to have books to read. I told him the library had many, but he said they don't have a car, and couldn't afford the bus. So... let's get this 12 year old some books! Let's help him. I was given many books as a child, and it's time to help someone else! Please share and let's get him tons of reading material! Most kids his age want electronics! It's great to see his desire, and you should have seen him beam when I said I could help!
Matthew Flores
C/O Sandy post office
8850 s 700 e
Sandy, Utah 84070
He's counting on me, so I'm counting on you!

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38. Micro Reviews: Pop Stars, Cowgirls, Zombies, and Beasties!

 

I have been reading up a storm, but I’ve been lax on writing reviews.  Here’s a quick catch up post with short reviews.

Hello, I Love You by Katie M Stout

C-

This dragged for me, and I didn’t think there was any chemistry between Grace and Jason. I read this mainly for the setting, but the school might as well have been anywhere, which was a big disappointment. Cultural details were sparse and shallow.  I didn’t get a feeling that Grace was in a foreign country, and the fact that everyone she interacted with spoke English didn’t help make this unique or different. It also bugged me that Jason and his sister were the only Koreans to use Korean names.

 

The Surgeon and the Cowgirl by Heidi Hormel

C / C+

Both protagonists were all about “Me, me, me!” and it felt like it took forever for them to mature. I’m not completely convinced that they will ever effectively communicate, which made the ending rushed and not completely believable.

What Once We Feared by Carrie Ryan

Not enough here to even call this a short story. Lots of potential, but it fell flat because it felt so incomplete. This should have been called a teaser, not a short story.

 

Discount Armageddon by Seanan McGuire

B/ B-

Fun, quirky read that somehow combines ballroom dance with mythological critters.

Verity comes from a long line of cryptozoologists, but her true passion is for competitive dance. She’s spending a year in Manhattan to pursue her dance career, as well as to keep an eye on the beasties living in the big city. When Dominic, a member of Covenant, arrives in town, his kill all non-humans before even asking them how their day is going attitude gets on Very’s nerves. Both Dominic and the sudden appearance of a snake cult in the sewers under the city have made her life extremely complicated.

Though it got a little draggy in places, and was over the top in others, overall Discount Armageddon was a fun adventure.

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39. Stonewall: Breaking Out in the Fight for Gay Rights

Stonewall: Breaking Out in the Fight for Gay Rights   by Ann Bausum Viking-an imprint of Penguin, 2015 ISBN: 9780670016792 Grades 9-12 The reviewer received a copy of the book from the publisher. Ann Bausum is known for writing nonfiction books about civil rights and social justice. Her latest book for teens, Stonewall: Breaking Out in the Fight for Gay Rights, describes how the Stonewall

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40. This Old Van - a bookwrap









Unwrapping...







Authored by Kim Norman and Illustrated by Carolyn Conahan

Ages 3-7


Unwrapping some of the fabulous illustrations for you...


















About the book...



What a fun rollicking book!  Get your cool on man, because these well-preserved hippies are on a roll.  The book is written in rhyme and playfully sung to the tune of "This Old Man,"

"This old van, she passed one,
shining in the rising sun.

"With a click clack rattle rack,
ready for some fun,
this old van says,
"GOODBYE-BYE, ONE !"


When an invitation arrives from Jake requesting a visit from his grandparents for a special event - and not be late - the two groovy flower children get decked out in their tie-dye duds, hop into their dated, funky hippie-mobile, take their puppy, and flee the scene. 

As they head to their destination they encounter a train, two bulldozers, three tractors, and four trucks...you get the idea... right up to ten. "What a gas"! They are in the groove baby, ready to go and to make it on time for Jake's big event.  

The illustrations are "Wicked!"  Canon's elaborate pastel illustrations are buzzing with activity, bright colours, and happiness. "Far out!" 

 I highly, highly recommend this book.  It is "Out of sight." 



About the author...






Kim Norman's children's books have been published by Dial, Dutton, Sterling and Scholastic. Her books have been well-reviewed in publications such as the New York Times and Publishers Weekly, and have been distributed in Scholastic Book Fairs and take-home Club fliers. Kim has built a national reputation as a school presenter, having done author visits in more than a hundred schools around the country.

Kim is an actress and singer, and has been known to practice her time step in a grocery line. Her books often feature animals, which were a big part of her childhood. Family pets included unusual critters such as a squirrel, an iguana and a raccoon named Danny.

She lives in Smithfield, Virginia, with the REAL Crocodaddy (her husband of more than 25 years.) They're the parents of two grown sons and the grandparents of one very large, shaggy Newfoundland. www.kimnormanbooks.com



About the illustrator...






Growing up at my mom's house, I rode bareback, picked wild berries, hauled hay, and made jam. At my dad's house, I got summer jobs in aerospace, watched rocket launches, went on long road trips in the VW van, swam with pretty fish, and sharks, barracudas, and alligators, too. I've always found the world to be an interesting place full of contrast and surprises. I'm happy to have a job that means I get to explore the world and any idea I scare up, and call it work. Photo: Judi Gardiner (Carolyn at Silver Falls) 





Read on and read always!


It's a wrap.




Contact me at storywrapsblog@gmail.com







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41. Apologetics Study Bible for Students

I get quite a few requests to review items on my blog - some jump out at me and some don't.  This one, however, was one that I truly hoped I'd make it on the blog review team.  The Apologetics Study Bible for Students is one I wish we'd had when my boys were younger.  One of my sons has been deep into theology and apologetics since he could read - he just devoured anything on these topics and he would have thoroughly enjoyed this Bible as a reference tool he could sink his teeth into!  The articles in the Bible (120 of them) are written by some of today's leading Christian thinkers and they deal with some of the big questions - Homosexuality, Yoga, New Age Movement, Cloning, Gambling, Scientology, Rape and Incest and more.  The articles are thoughtful and well-written and give our teens some great topics to ponder.  The Bible is created to be appealing to teens - both the design and layout.  We also thought the Twisted Scripture articles were great!  These are written to discuss topics that current religious movements use to twist Scripture and go against historic Christian teaching.  This is another area where we want to strengthen our kids' faith in the world in which we live.

The other thing we loved about this Bible is the resource library of videos online.  There are videos still yet to be added - but some there already as well that answer the tough questions in video format - you can stream them or download them OR even share to social media.  I was excited with the quality of the videos and the topics they covered.  http://www.apologeticsbible.com/video-archive/

Don't forget to enter the Confident Faith Sweepstakes while you are surfing - this is a great contest when you can win a Bible, mini apologetic library or even a trip!  https://app.promo.eprize.com/confidentfaith/

ADDED BONUS - I was told I could give away a copy as well here on my blog!  So - you get an entry for commenting below.  AND leave a separate message for each social media platform you share this giveaway on and you will get additional entries.  Winners will be chosen on August 7!



"Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.
 Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway. If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller / FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days, you are not eligible to win. If you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.”

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42. My Thoughts: Some Adult Books I Have Read


This was a great read, but not at all on par to READY PLAYER ONE by the same author.  (If you haven;t read that yet, what are you waiting for).  This book is a bit of a genius story though--generations of people raised on video games and science fiction tales were actually being trained for an inter-galactic war.  I love that!  I love that everything people experience they can relate to a movie or tv show they watched or book they read or a game they played.  It is so much more satisfying that these things are real life (unlike the Walking Dead--how many words for zombies do they have that isn't "zombie"?).  I enjoyed this book, didn't read it near as fast as I did Ready Player One, and didn't love how neatly thing tied up in the end.  It will make a great movie someday!









I was not at all interested in reading THE MARTIAN until I saw the trailer for the movie.  That caught my interest and luckily I was able to get a copy from my library that day.  This was a fantastic read, a little slow when it was just Mark's log on Mars, but once NASA figured out Mark was alive this book just flew.  I can't wait for the movie.  The tension during some of the scenes in the book was so strong that I know seeing it on screen with totally stress me out.  Luckily I know how it all ends so watching it all will be a little easier for me!  Great story.  If you love science or survival stories, read this book.

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43. Exclusive Excerpt & 10 Chances to Win! // AWAKE by Natasha Preston

Today we are celebrating Natasha Preston's newest YA Thriller, AWAKE, which will be releasing August 4th.  Natasha has graciously provided us with an exclusive excerpt from the book, and make sure you check out the awesome giveaway at the end of this post! Excerpt from AWAKE by Natasha Preston “Come here,” I said, holding my hands out. Usually she would curl into my side but

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44. 10 QUESTIONS TO ASK ABOUT YOUR TEEN SERVICES

Are you struggling trying to find ways to engage teens at your library? Look no further! As part of our ongoing research relating to teen library services, we talked with teens across the country and have answers for you in “10 Questions to Ask about Your Teen Services.” (For details about the research, see our recent YALS article: Denise Agosto, Rachel Magee, Andrea Forte, and Michael Dickard, 2015, "The Teens Speak Out: What Teens in a Tech High School Really Think about Libraries...and What You can do to Improve their Perceptions." Young Adult Library Services 13 (3): 7-12.)

10 Questions to Ask about Your Teen Services

  1. Can teens find quiet spaces for reading and studying in your library and vibrant spaces for hanging out, socializing, and creative activities?

It’s important to remember that teens use libraries for all sorts of activities - social interaction, quiet reading, collaborative school work, and hanging out with friends. Your library space needs to support all of these diverse activities. When asked why they use libraries, some of the teens we’ve worked with talked about schoolwork. For example, Kacie* (age 18), told us that she hadn’t visited her public library in years. Then she stopped in one day and realized that it was a great place to do her homework. She realized that: "'Hey! The library is quiet. There's everything I need [for studying].'… It was like: 'Hey! The library's kind of awesome!'" On the other hand, other teens told us about using libraries as spaces to connect with their friends or to engage in creative pursuits. As Jamie (age 18) explained: "People usually just go to the library to play music or just chill out, eat lunch, or read a game magazine. I have used it for that. They have cool magazines there." Your library should provide clearly marked spaces to support each of these different activities.

  1. Do you avoid charging fines and other penalties that can keep teens away from the library?

Our work with teens has taught us that worries about possible fines and fees even as small as thirty cents can keep teens from using their public and school libraries. As Jenny (age 16) told us: "I used to [use the public library]. What ended up happening was a thirty dollar fine for a video that I didn't even check out, so I never ended up going back and finding out how to solve the problem.” Patrick (age 18) explained that: "Personally, I know that I'm really bad at remembering due dates, or I'll just be really lazy one day and be like, 'I don't want to return this book right now.' So to save myself money and know I don't have to worry about that, I don't bother using real libraries."

What's more important: attracting teens to libraries, or collecting fines? We think you’ll agree that encouraging teens to use libraries is far more important. It’s time we work toward finding creative non-monetary alternatives to fines and fees. Possible solutions include providing volunteering options for working off fines and scheduling periodic amnesty days instead of insisting that teens pay up.

  1. Do teens help you decide what you stock in the library?

Some teens told us that the materials their libraries stock are irrelevant or uninteresting to them. For instance, Amani (age 16) said that libraries "don't necessarily have the books you might be looking for," so she prefers going to bookstores or looking for reading materials online. Public and school libraries should set up a communication channels to encourage teens to ask for the materials they would most like to use—not just books, but magazines, music, gaming equipment, and any other types of materials you consider purchasing.

  1. Are you fighting against the stereotype of libraries as just book providers?

Many teens we talked to expressed the idea that "library" equals "books"and nothing else. This limited perception meant they would mainly think to use a library when looking for a paper book, not for socializing, for entertainment opportunities, for homework help, or to take advantage of the many other services that libraries offer. As Hannah (age 15) stated, she goes "to a school that doesn't use books as much [for class assignments], so that's another reason why I've never used [the library]." As librarians and other library staff know, libraries offer much, much more than just books, but this message doesn’t seem to be getting through to teens. As a field we must work to fight against the outdated image of libraries just as book providers and help teens learn the full range of services that today’s libraries offer.

  1. Are you going to where the teens are (outside of the library) to market your services?

Most library research takes place in libraries and uses library users as study participants. Our research took place in high schools with random groups of students who did not self-identify as library users. Sadly, the teens in our studies were largely unfamiliar with their libraries and were mostly infrequent public and school library users. Jamie (age 18) even suggested that "today's youth have quit libraries," in part because "usually everything is done online." This finding highlights the importance of moving library marketing outside the physical library boundaries. After all, why focus your marketing efforts on teens who are already using libraries? Moving outside the library to other places where teens go, such as shopping malls, churches, community centers, sports fields, and online to social media and any other popular online teen hangouts makes for much more effective marketing by spreading the message of how great your library is to teens who don’t already know it.

  1. Are you working to ensure that all library staff exhibit positive, welcoming attitudes toward teens?

We learned that some teens perceive libraries as having unpleasant, unwelcoming staff members—people who don’t seem to like teens all that much. For example, Meghan (age 17) noted that the previously pleasant atmosphere of her school library was ruined by a new "librarian that was like, 'No food! No drinks! No talking!' [After she was hired] people were no longer interested in going there." Once the library gets the reputation of being unwelcoming to teens, it can spread quickly throughout the teen community and keep teens away.

  1. Are your policies framed in positive language?

We also learned that negative language in library policies can send the message that the library views teens as potential troublemakers. A sign that says, “No cell phone use in the library!” sends an angry, distrustful message. A sign that says, “Please take all phone calls to the lobby to avoid disrupting others who are working” means the same thing but sends a message of trust and mutual respect. Library staff members’ actions when enforcing policies can also have a major effect on teens’ perceptions of the library. Kacie (age 18) described returning to the library after having a positive experience with library staff waiving a fine: "Yeah, the one time I had sixty cents [in fines]. One book was late, but they forgave that. That was very nice. That's why I keep going. I've been at least five times in the last two months." Framing library policies in positive language can go a long way toward promoting the image of the library as welcoming to teens.

  1. Are you matching your services to your teen community’s unique needs?

We all know that community needs and interests should drive collection development and programming, but it’s a rule that bears repeating. For example, there has been strong push in the library literature to think of public and school libraries as technology providers, but in economically-advantaged or technology-saturated communities, teens are likely to have reduced needs for technology access. As Maisha (age 15), a student in a technology magnet school, told us: "I really don't need to go to the library because I have everything at home," including several digital devices and full access to a range of online tools and resources at home and at school. In these types of communities, the more effective approach to teen library services might be to focus on providing community engagement opportunities, civic participation outlets, social activities, recreation, information literacy education, etc., instead of focusing on information resource provision and on technology access. For more disadvantaged communities, however, public and school libraries might better serve teens by focusing resources and energy on providing technology access, infrastructure, and education, and by providing information resources teens can't get elsewhere.

  1. Do you provide opportunities for teens to demonstrate their knowledge and accomplishments, such as avenues for displaying teen fiction, teen photography, teen computer game designs, teen music compositions and performances, etc.?

Libraries are perfect places for celebrating and encouraging teens' creativity and their creations. Teens in our studies described deep levels of engagement with creative endeavors like writing, photography, and music. Taahira (age 14) explained that, "I just take pictures, because I want to be a photographer when I grow up." She went on to detail her photography and to describe her efforts to find good outlets for sharing her work others. Isaac (age 16) explained that he plays "drums, guitar, and bass…. We started a [music] club, too." Libraries have the opportunity to provide community spaces where teens can share their creativity and knowledge with other teens and with their community at large, both in the physical library and online via the library’s website or social media accounts.

  1. Do you work hard to bring the teens in your community together at your library, either face-to-face or online?

The teens in our studies told us that the social support aspects of libraries are key to engaging their interest, especially for those with limited transportation options or limited access to places where they can safely or easily hang out and socialize. Public and school libraries interested in increasing teen participation should look toward providing services that facilitate social interaction and focus on promoting libraries as social organizations. Victoria (age 16) described a successful program at her local public library: "They have these things every Tuesday, these teen programs that they have. And all these teens from different places come and meet, and they play all these games, and eat, and just hang out. We actually started going on Tuesdays, because it was really fun." That’s what teen librarianship should be about at its core: bringing teens together and providing them with a wide variety of opportunities for positive social, intellectual, and personal development.

Were you able to answer yes to all 10 questions? We hope so!

Please tell us if you found this information useful by completing a short, three-question survey at: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/GRN5PMQ. For more information about our research with teens, visit our homepage: Drexel University’s Youth Online Research Group.

Thank you!

 

By Michelle Purcell, Rachel Magee, Denise Agosto, and Andrea Forte

-----

*Note: All teens’ names are pseudonyms. Quotes come from our interviews and focus groups with high school students, conducted between 2013 and 2015 in U.S. public high schools.

10 Questions to Ask about Your Teen Services” is based on research conducted by Drexel University’s Youth Online Research Group, funded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services [IMLS], Award #LG-06-11-0261-11, and the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship under Grant No. 2011121873.

 

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45. Five Little Monkeys

Board Book: Five Little Monkeys: A finger & toes nursery rhyme book. Natalie Marshall. Scholastic. 2015. 12 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence:  Five Little monkeys jumping on the bed. One fell off and bumped his head. Mama called the doctor and the doctor said...No more moneys jumping on the bed!

Premise/plot: A board book adaptation of the classic nursery rhyme "Five Little Monkeys."

My thoughts: The pages are easy to turn, which is a good thing, always. The illustrations are nice enough, I suppose. The text itself isn't surprising or extra-wonderful. The book includes "helpful" illustrations for parents who are clueless on the motions of the song/rhyme. (Are they necessary?)

The traditional rhyme is fun. As is the song. Here's one of my favorite adaptations:


© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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46. Happy Birthday Beatrix Potter! And a Magical Visit to Remember

Happy belated birthday to Beatrix Potter!  This week Tuesday July 28th marked the 182nd birthday of this beloved and influential storyteller. Her books are well-loved favorites in our house and the milestone of her birthday reminded me of a lovely guest post from a Jump Into a Book reader that I felt was worth revisiting. Enjoy!

Beatrix Potter

Hello Jump Into A Book Readers!

My name is Karen Meacham and my blog is called Little Acorns.

Little Acorns

I am a PreKindergarten teacher at an independent school in the United States, and a mother of three children, ages 14, 12, and 6. As a teacher and parent I am passionate about outdoor education, time for children to play, and reading to children.

In the Spring of 2008, our family had the opportunity to spend a semester in England while my husband was teaching at a local university. We had a fantastic time, and truly felt the semester was a life changing experience for our whole family. Not only did we get to immerse ourselves in a new culture, meeting many kind and helpful people, but we got to see many wonderful places as well.

One weekend in early March, my husband very kindly kept the children, and my best friend Trish and I ventured to a place I have longed for ages to visit, the Lake District. We took the train, with a day stop in Chesterfield, to Windermere Station. Our bed and breakfast was only a few blocks and a short walk away. After a good night’s sleep and a delicious breakfast, we headed out to one of my most anticipated destinations, Beatrix Potter’s home, Hill Top Farm!

To get to Hill Top Farm we strolled through the town of Bowness-on-Windermere and then took the ferry across Lake Windermere. Despite the fact that it was fairly chilly and raining, we decided to take the footpath the couple of miles up to Hill Top Farm. We like hiking and were not going to be deterred by a little rain. Plus we figured Beatrix Potter certainly wouldn’t have had the option to take a shuttle bus, and we wanted to see the area as much the way she did as we could.

The permitted path led us through some lovely wooded areas, along the road briefly, through some farmland, and up the hill (as the house’s name would suggest) to Hill Top Farm! Upon arrival, Trish and I headed over to purchase our tickets for the house. To keep the numbers of visitors inside the house at any given time, manageable, the National Trust sells timed tickets to Hill Top. Trish and I purchased our tickets and spent the half hour or so until our time to enter the house, strolling around the grounds and exploring a bit of Beatrix Potter’s gardens. It even stopped raining long enough for me to take my hat off for a picture!

Permitted Path

We enjoyed exploring the gardens a bit, but because of the time of year, not too much was going on above the surface of the ground. I read that visiting the gardens in the summer is wonderful (late June and early July are said to be the best times to see the garden in its full glory), and that it has a large variety of flowers and vegetables. If you are interested in seeing pictures of Beatrix Potter’s gorgeous garden, there are many available online or you may simply peruse your copy of The Tale of Tom Kitten. Miss Potter used her own garden as a model for the garden in the story!

The Tale of Tom Kitten

 

My name is Karen, and I am a PreKindergarten teacher at an independent school. In our class, we use some Montessori materials and methods, some Waldorf-inspired materials and stories, and some aspects of the Reggio Emilia approach. We also spend lots of time outside in nature, learning and playing! This blog Little Acorns is about my ideas and inspirations, my classroom, and my lovely family! I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoy writing it.

The post Happy Birthday Beatrix Potter! And a Magical Visit to Remember appeared first on Jump Into A Book.

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47. Do Not Let The Photo Put You Off

Hi, All!
Apparently, THIS as a passport photo is not allowed. Ridiculous!

In between decorating (the last time was 2004) and feeling VERY guilty about evicting spiders (seriously, it's their home, too, but they WILL love the new decor!) I am working on the big post and with 2000 or so of you visiting the site a day I need to keep you happy!

But, can I ask a favour of all of you who are really -really- interested in Independent comics?

Ignore Amazon and the other big buck businesses you might think of looking at for Black Tower books as I get very little from any sale (in fact, books sold that way are give aways!).

I have an online store front here:

http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/hoopercomicsuk

Now, I am not saying go and buy something.  What I am asking is that, perhaps, you take a few minutes to just look at the prose books, comic albums and graphic novels that are available. I would recommend Chung Ling Soo and Dene Vernon -drawn by a very popular artist (so he is a creator worth investing in) and, of course, anything by Ben R. Dilworth who, if you know about comics, you will know has been around a while and even drew Mark Millar's Shadowmen back in the 1990s. Dilworth's work tends to get the most reaction from people and he spans the genres -it's why he's called "the spanner" (he has no loose nuts or bolts that I know of).

Sadly, I have very limited work by Paul Ashley Brown or else I would be pushing that like crazy -but he has contributed to one of the Tales of Terror anthologies!

Now, if you like anything you see -then buy!

Support Independent comics, kids!

Now...off to paint!

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48. New Baby Books

With the imminent arrival of my own new baby, I’ve had baby books on the brain these past few months. From the books we recommend to sleepless parents to the books about childhood and technology we give to the parents of savvy teens, librarians are sometimes intimately involved in the struggles of our patrons’ childhoods. Never is this more clear than when we’re asked for books about a new baby. A great new sibling book can help immensely in easing the transition from being an only child to being one of a group.

julius_baby_of_the_worldKevin Henkes’s Julius, the Baby of the World is one of my favorite picture books, period, but it also is one of the best new sibling books I think I’ve read. I recommend it to parents all the time, and have the personal experience to back it up – this is the book my parents gave to me and my sister before the arrival of my much-younger baby brother. Children of all ages can identify with Lily’s excitement about her new sibling before he arrives and her horror at the way her life changes afterwards! The resolution, when it comes, is perfect. Of course Lily can say mean things about her brother, but no one else can!

peter's chairAnxiety over a new sibling is a universal issue, which is why a book first published in 1967,  Peter’s Chair by Ezra Jack Keats, as relevant today as it was the day it was published. When Peter’s parents repaint his crib pink for his new baby sister, Peter is perturbed but willing to let it go. When they decide to paint his chair, however, Peter takes a stand. Again, Peter’s eventual acceptance of his sister’s place in his life shows a way forward for children hearing the story that is both natural and comforting. Life will change with a new sibling, but it doesn’t have to change for the worse.

What are you favorite books about new babies?

 

The post New Baby Books appeared first on ALSC Blog.

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49. Saint Anything, by Sarah Dessen | Book Review

Fans of Sarah Dessen will not be disappointed by this expertly-written and perfectly paced summer read.

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50. Delcourt -Ocelot


 O celot est un magnifique félin qui parcourt le monde en compagnie de sa maîtresse, une jet-setteuse digne de Nabilla, afin de concourir aux plus importants concours de beauté animale. Mais au moment d’un transfert à Roissy, leurs routes se séparent et le voilà secouru par une curieuse bande de chats prêts à tout pour le ramener à son vrai domicile qu’il n’a jamais connu : la jungle sudaméricaine.

http://www.bdgest.com/preview-1755-BD-ocelot-ocelot.html


;
 
 

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