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Goodbye Salinger

by Alexandra May - 0 Comment(s)

J.D. Salinger, seen in this photo from 1951, lived a reclusive life in New Hampshire and shunned critical and media interest, giving his last interview in 1980.

J.D. Salinger, acclaimed author of Catcher in the Rye, died this past Wednesday.

You can read about Salinger here.

Celebrate his life (and Freedom to Read week) by reading Catcher in the Rye, which has been banned more times than I can count.

Angels are the New Vampires

by Alexandra May - 0 Comment(s)

I'm sick of vampires. How about you? Even if you love them, maybe you've read all the good vampire fiction out there. Not to worry - there's a new supernatural being stealing hearts and souls in YA Fiction!

Angels seem to be popping up everywhere lately. Fallen angels are especially prevalent, possibly because they're rebels, which is always fun. If you're hankering for some heavenly (or not-so-heavenly) romance, try one of these!

Hush Hush Cover

Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick

Fallen Cover

Fallen, by Lauren Kate

Kissed by an Angel Cover

Kissed by an Angel, by Elizabeth Chandler

Eternal Cover

Eternal, by Cynthia Leitich Smith

Follow Us!

by Alexandra May - 0 Comment(s)


If you want to hear about the hottest new books, movies, and contests for teens... follow us on Twitter!

BONUS: You'll get a sneak-peek at what our NEW teen website is going to look like!

Naruto vs. Bleach: Choose Your Team!

by Alexandra May - 1 Comment(s)

Bleach Vol 1 Naruto Vol 1

This post is the second in Laura's Manga Mania series.

Naruto and Bleach are both team-centered shonen adventure series which star blond spiky-haired troublemaking teenagers. Both heroes have enormous power and a desire to protect everyone. The series are epically long (over 40 volumes each and growing), with complicated plots and a huge cast of characters.

For some reason, anime and manga fans have taken it upon themselves to pit Naruto and Bleach against one another. So I urge you, read them both, get in on the action, and pick your team!

Art and story by: Tite Kubo

Teenage trouble-maker Ichigo Kurosaki has always been able to see spirits. But his trouble really begins when he meets Soul Reaper Rukia Kuchiki. He accidentally inherits her shinigami (death god) powers, and is forced to take up her task of sending lost souls to the afterlife and defending humans from evil spirits.

Bleach is an ongoing series, and the English translations are currently at volume 28, with a new volume coming out in December. It’s currently one of the hottest series in Japan, and has sold over 40 million copies. Bleach is so popular, it’s inspired several Original Video Animations (OVAs), animated feature films, rock musicals, video games, and a plethora of other merchandise.

Some fun facts:
You will notice the appearance of the number 15 in background art and costume design. This is because the name Ichigo can be broken up into “ichi” and “go,” which in Japanese are the words for “1” and “5.” The word “ichigo” also means “strawberry,” something that the hero is often teased about. His father meant for “Ichigo” to mean “he who protects." With Japanese kanji, it all depends on how you spell it!

Art and story by: Masashi Kishimoto

Naruto is a story about an adolescent ninja, Naruto Uzumaki, whose skill is pulling pranks. However, his dream is to prove himself by becoming the leader and most powerful ninja in the village, the Hokage. Although this seems to be a pipe-dream, it’s not out of his reach. After all, he’s the vessel of an enormous power: the nine-tailed fox demon.

This series is ongoing, and available in English up to volume 46. The next volume is due out in December. Naruto has sold over 89 million copies in Japan and is the inspiration for: several sequels, original video animations (OVAs), novellas, video games, trading card games, and much more!

Some fun facts:
The name “Uzumaki” literally means “coil.” You will find images of coils throughout this manga (especially noticeable on Naruto’s belly). The word “naruto” is the Japanese word for a steamed fish-paste cake (looks like a flower with a coil in the middle) which is used to decorate soup or ramen -- Naruto’s favourite thing!

Win a Trip to Ottawa!

by Alexandra May - 0 Comment(s)

Contest Logo

If you're a writer or artist, you can win a trip to Ottawa and other prizes!

I'm talking about the Mathieu Da Costa Challenge, which celebrates diversity in Canada. All you have to do is enter a piece of writing or artwork which "celebrates the contributions made by Canadians of Aboriginal, African, or other backgrounds to the building of Canada."

The winners get an all-expenses paid trip to Ottawa, VIP seating at the Mathieu Da Costa Awards Ceremony, and other mystery prizes!

For details, ask at your Library or check the contest website:

Freedom to Read Contest

by Alexandra May - 0 Comment(s)

Freedom to Read Week 2010 Banner

Books are regularly challenged, banned and censored in Canada! See this post for more info on banned books.

February 21 - 27 is Freedom to Read Week, a time when we celebrate intellectual freedom - your right to read, write or view whatever you want.

And we're having a contest! Submit a short essay about your experiences with censorship (has a book been banned at your school?) or about what "freedom to read" means to you. Then win prizes!

Click here for details and the entry form!