Book Spotlight: I Hunt Killers

I Hunt Killers by Barry Lyga


     Jasper (Jazz) is the son of the worst serial killer that has ever been recorded, Billy Dent.  Unfortunately for him, his father raised him with all the knowledge that a serial killer needs – how to use any kind of weapon, how to select and lure a victim away, how to pick locks and insure privacy for committing torture and murder.  Jazz tries to prove to himself and society that he is just another normal teenager but he can’t get his father’s crimes out of his head and his worst fear is that he might turn out just like his dad.  Billy has been in jail for years, but when the killings start up again in his hometown, Jazz tries to help the police catch the culprit, even when it requires him to confront his father in prison.

     The book is exciting and fast-paced although the content is quite disturbing in parts.  The discussion of torture and murder, while not terribly graphic, is certainly enough to give the reader the creeps.  Jazz is a very likeable character and readers will find themselves rooting for him to succeed!  I get the feeling that this book might turn into a series and I will be looking for future installments to find out what happens to Jazz and how many more killers he will catch.

     This book was nominated for the Teen Top Ten of 2013!

Book Spotlight: Monument 14

Monument 14 by Emmy Laybourne

monument14     14 school kids are in trouble when a massive hailstorm sends their school bus crashing through the glass doors of a chain superstore in order to find shelter. Escalating disasters cause the riot gates to descend trapping the kids inside the store.  The kids struggle for survival while debating whether it is safer to stay or figure out a way to leave and find out what, if anything, is left of their families and the rest of civilization.

     This is a super exciting book!  The realtionships between the kids, ranging in age from 5 to 18, and their struggle to cooperate with each other in order to survive make an interesting human side to a story filled with natural disasters and chemical warfare.  The story flows nicely and makes you want to keep those pages turning!  This book was nominated for the Young Adult Top Ten books of 2013 and I think it will win!  The story is followed by Monument 14: Sky on fire by Emmy Laybourne – I am planning to read that right away!



Book Spotlight: Son by Lois Lowry

giver     Everyone remembers The Giver, that dystopian book by Lois Lowry that we all had to read in school? Children receive their lifetime assignments at the ceremony of 12 years.  When Jonas becomes the community's Receiver of memories, he discovers a terrible truth about the community he lives in.  20 years later, Lois Lowry has answered questions about what happened to Jonas and the baby he was protecting in a sequel called Son.

son   In Son by Lois Lowry, Claire has been assigned the job of Birthmother in her small community but unlike the other birthmothers, she becomes attached to her baby and feels a terrible loss when he is taken away.  When things don't go as planned for the child, Claire goes to extreme measures to find and rescue her son.  You can't go wrong with Lois Lowry and this book is well-written, unpredictable, and exciting!  Claire's life has such a roller-coaster of feelings, it is impossible to put the book down.  Read or re-read The Giver first if you can – to better understand Claire's community.

This book was nominated for the YALSA Top Ten books of 2013!

To learn more about YALSA's Top Ten books, click here

To see the list of nominated books, click here

The Hunt Series by Andrew Fukuda

hunt     1. The Hunt by Andrew Fukuda

     17-year-old Gene has lived alone since he was 10.  His family was killed by vampires who have taken over civilization.  It is only by his careful planning and following of society rules that he has managed to live among them, undetected.  Now he has been selected to participate in a hunt for the few remaining humans in captivity.  This exciting and fast-paced book kept me turning pages and sneaking every chance to read on.  I had to read the sequel, too!

prey     2. The Prey by Andrew Fukuda

     Now Gene finds himself running for his life along with the other humans from the hunt.  Is there anywhere safe from the vampires who have taken over civilization?  Gene and the others find a place that seems like the answer until more and more sinister things keep happening.  I rarely like sequels as much as the first book but this one was just as exciting with lots of plot twists and turns that kept me on the edge of my seat!

trap     3. The Trap by Andrew Fukuda

     This book comes out in November and I can't wait!  I will certainly be buying it for the library and, hopefully, among the first to put a hold on it!  If the first two books in this Trilogy were any indication, this one is bound to be a page-turner and full of surprises.


Book Spotlights: Code Name Verity

codenameverity Book           codenameverityaudio Audio

Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

Code Name Verity on 9 CD's

Audio Book Review by Kathy, Library Branch Manager, Northwest Branch

Excellent historical fiction–ww2, two women's unlikely friendship but for the war; brought together–one a English "civilian" pilot for the war effort, the other an undercover agent/radio code operator, one of whom is captured by the nazis, the other finds herself working for the French resistance. Plausible, touching, with multiple plot twists conveyed via diary-like entries. Two strong female characters, who share laughter, tears and friendship.

I loved this book, the readers are excellent.

For those who liked "Between Shades of Gray" I'd recommend this.

2012 Staff Picks


Recommended by Kathy D. at Central                           Recommended by Kathy D. at Central



Recommended by Genny & Kathy D. at Central           Recommended by Geoffrey at Central



Recommended by Geoffrey & Kathy D. at Central       Recommended by Kathy D. at Central



Recommended by Tiffany at Sebastopol                     Recommended by Rebecca at Central

              & Charity at Healdsburg



Recommended by Rebecca at Central                             Recommended by Genny at Central



Recommended by Nancy at Northwest                            Recommended by Kim at Northwest








Recommended by Rebecca & Kathy D. at Central    Recommended by Nancy at Northwest

                 & Tiffany at Sebastopol         





Book Spotlight: Every day

Every day by David Levithan

Book Review by Tiffany, Librarian, Sebastopol Branch

Imagine not owning a body. Instead, you wake up every day in someone else’s body. You never know what town you will wake up in, if you will be male or female for the day or who your friends and family will be. That’s the only life that “A” has ever known. Now 16 years old, he has learned to deal with this by avoiding attachment to any one life. That is, until the day he wakes up as Justin. When “A” sees Justin’s girlfriend Rhiannon, he falls in love with her and this changes everything.

Why I picked it up: The cover was what intrigued me at first. Once I read the inside cover, I knew I had to give it a try. I thought the book could go either way, really bad or really good. I wanted to see if he was able to execute the premise of the book well.

Why I’d finished it: It was very good. He did a good job of making the characters, especially “A”, seem real. I wanted to see if “A” could make a relationship work with Rhiannon.

Who I would recommend it to: Anyone looking for a good story with interesting, well-developed characters.

Book Spotlight: My Boyfriend is a Monster: I Love Him to Pieces

My Boyfriend is a Monster:  I Love Him to Pieces by Evonne Tsang

Review by Tiffany, Sebastopol Branch

Dicey, a jock, and Jack, a nerd, have to work together to keep an egg alive for a school project.  In the middle of their project, they start to have feelings for each other and decide to go out on a first date.  One their first date, a zombie apocalypse breaks out in their town (don’t you just hate it when that happens?!?).  Will the two make it out of the city alive?

Why I picked it up:  I’m in the middle of reading 25 out of the 80 “Best of the Best” YALSA (Young Adult Library Services Association) books.  This book is listed as one of the top ten graphic novels for teens.

Why I’d finished it:  I’m not normally into graphic novels, but this one was somewhat endearing.  I really liked the two characters, Dicey and Jack.  Plus it only took me about ½ hour to read.

Who I would recommend it to:  Anyone who wants a quick, fast, fun read with zombies.  I had fun reading something different than what I usually pick up.