• Delicious French Fries

    “Consent is as easy as FRIES.”

#metoo, #timesup, and the Definition of Consent

”Consent is as easy as FRIES: Freely Given, Reversible, Informed, Enthusiastic, and Specific.” -Planned Parenthood

Q: What is ’consent’?

A: "Consent is not the absence of 'no', it is an enthusiastic YES!"

The answer above is a quote from What Does Consent Really Mean? a new graphic novel that has arrived in several of our Young Adult sections across the county.  

Our friend Webster (the dictionary of course), makes it seem so simple: “intransitive verbto give assent or approval: agree.”  If it’s really that basic, then how has a hashtag become a nationwide (and beyond) movement resulting in thousands upon thousands of women, trans individuals, and men all divulging long closeted secrets of abuse... and the corresponding consequences of tarnished reputations, loss of employment, court cases, and even prison sentences?

The reality is, there is no simple answer, magic wand, or bandage that will ‘make it all better’.  What we can do is read, observe, listen, educate & advocate for ourselves and each other, and move forward into a future where everyone understands that an ‘enthusiastic yes’ is an essential ingredient in our relationships of all types.

Speaking of reading................... (hint, hint!)

Interested in checking out some #metoo fiction? 

Immerse yourself in our Teen Book Lists page and scroll down to the #metoo booklist carousel for some relevant reads.

Additionally, listed below are several important resources for teens & young adults.  It might not hurt to program these numbers in your phone right now so that you will be prepared if/when a friend or someone you know needs help.

-24 Hour Suicide Prevention Hotline

-S.A.Y 24/7 Hotline, Teen Shelter, Resources

-Verity: compassion, safety, support (sexual abuse/assault hotline)

-Forestville Teen Clinic

Note: These are examples of help that is available to you—there are additional organizations accessible countywide.  If you need help/information/resources, don’t hesitate to reach out.  Ask the open-minded Young Adult Librarian at your favorite branch of the Sonoma County Library.  We’re here for you!

Post by Rosalie C. Abbott, Sebastopol Regional Library

  • Spiderman Action Figure

    Consider this your cordial invitation to LumaCon!

Our Favorite Worlds Collide at LumaCon!

Our favorite worlds will collide this Saturday at LumaCon 2018!  

Join us! 

Librarians have been furiously conspiring with young adults to create a savagely fun event for you to enjoy.  You will have the opportunity to meet authors and illustrators, enjoy chalk talks and Cosplay, FanWar, LARPing, an Artists’ Alley, activities & crafts, and check out exhibitors & vendors.

Librarians love to collaborate, especially with other community partners who are all working to make Sonoma County (and the world!) a more creative and literate place for everyone. The power players who are making it all happen are: the Petaluma Regional Library (a branch of the Sonoma County Library), the Casa Grande High School Library, and the Petaluma High School Library.  Here’s a shoutout to all of the superhero librarians, young adults, community volunteers, and Friends of the Petaluma Library who are making this fantastic event a reality for the youth of Sonoma County!

Here’s a peek at the schedule, but there is SO MUCH MORE:

(More Info: www.lumacon.net)


Date: 1/27/18

Time: 10 AM - 4 PM

Location: Lucchesi Center, Petaluma, CA

Costumes? Absolutely!

Note: 2018 LumaCon Logo Artwork by contest winner Anna D.

Got Questions?  Ask the comical Young Adult Librarian at your local branch of the Sonoma County Library.

We are here for you!

Post by Rosalie C. Abbott, Sebastopol Regional Library


  • Young man and woman doing yoga on beach at sunset.

    Try something new, all of our programs are free!

Happy New Year!

Why not try something new in 2018?

The New Year is a perfect time of year to get a fresh start.  It's a time to gain perspective, create new goals, or just try something that you've never done before.  Are you up for the adventure?  

Young Adult Librarians across the county have been conspiring to create a season of opportunity for Teens... you'll be able to have some fun, learn new skills, and get connected.  Here are a few highlights of the activities that you can expect during the month of January at various branches of the Sonoma County Library!

Project Linus @ Windsor Regional Library on 1/2:

Project Linus is a nonprofit organization that provides blankets to children in need.  This program provides an opportunity for teens to help others as well as learn a new craft.  Teens individually or in pairs create knotted fleece blankets for donation to the local Linus Project chapter.

Teen Yoga @ Rohnert Park Library on 1/3, and @ the Sebastopol Regional Library on 1/31:

This class is specifically designed for teens, giving them an opportunity to work on strength and flexibility while relieving the stress of daily life. Classes build positive self awareness and self esteem through active yoga poses, balance work, partner games, breath work, and deep relaxation with music. This is the perfect break in between the busy worlds of school, friends, family, studying and partying. Join us to de-stress and power up! All Teens welcome.

At the Rincon Valley Branch, check out these fabulous opportunities:

Chess Club & Maker Space for Teens (soft electronic circuits anyone?)

What’s happening at the Petaluma Library this month? (Besides LUMACON of course?!)

CoderDojo, Homework Help, SAT Prep, Jam Session with SoCo Music...

Are you getting ready for National History Day?  Check this out at the Central Library:

National History Day Project Rx is a research open house.

  • Conduct primary and secondary research with the guidance of library staff.
  • Get one-on-one help from a History Day staff member.
  • Attend a mini-lesson on annotated bibliographies and/or thesis statements.
  • View sample projects.
  • Get pumped up about History Day!
We’ve also got Virtual Reality & Adventures in Coding at Healdsburg.  
These are just a few examples of the programs your Librarians have been preparing for you... and we’re just talking about January—there’s more to come!  So drop by, check out our online calendar, and try something NEW!

Got Questions?  Ask the enthusiastic Teen Librarian at your local branch of the Sonoma County Library for more information, or to sign up for one of these interesting and fun programs!

Post by Rosalie C. Abbott, Sebastopol Regional Library
  • Teen with book and coffee.

    Here's the number one reason why we loved 2017!

Best (Young Adult) Books of 2017

The holiday season can be an opportunity to celebrate and spend plenty of quality time with family and friends—offering more ‘togetherness’ than you even thought was possible.  It can also be an excellent time to hide out (alone!) with an enthralling book.  Amidst a year of political, cultural, and economic upheaval... one incredibly positive thing that occurred during 2017 is that truckloads of fantastic new Young Adult fiction titles were published.  

Need to find a captivating book to read during winter break?  As always, we’ve got your back.  Use your library card and try out NovelistPlus. This powerful resource helps readers to search for their next perfect read. It allows you to use a favorite author or title as a guide to locate other authors and titles that you will love. (sonomalibrary.org->research->databases->novelistplus)

Additionally, here are a few lists of the hottest 2017 YA fiction books...  you’re welcome!

Best YA Fiction - Goodreads Choice Awards

Best YA Fiction - Vulture

Best YA Fiction - Seventeen Magazine

Best YA Fiction - YALSA

Best YA Fiction - Paste

Best YA Fiction - Time Magazine

Best YA Fiction - POPSUGAR

Best YA Fiction - Brightly

Best YA Fiction - TeenVogue

Best YA Fiction - Amazon

Best Books - NPR

Click here for the link to our Library Catalog where you can find most of these titles for free!

Got Questions?  Ask one of our approachable & attentive YA Librarians at your nearest branch of the Sonoma County Library.

Post by Rosalie C. Abbott, Sebastopol Regional Library

  • Multiple Computer screens, high tech, binary code

    The Debate Over Net Neutrality

Can You Be Neutral About ‘Net Neutrality’? (Points of View)

What is Net Neutrality:

“Internet, or "net," neutrality is the idea that Internet users should have equal access to all Internet content and that corporations and government agencies should not restrict access to Internet sites or services. The debate began in the early 2000s, and the term "net neutrality" was first coined by Columbia University law professor Tim Wu in 2003. The net neutrality debate covers both government regulations that censor Internet content and efforts by Internet service providers (ISPs) to restrict or reduce access to certain sites and services to increase their profits.” (Isuit)

Why Does it Matter Now?

“The Federal Communications Commission will vote Dec. 14 on a plan to undo the landmark 2015 rules that had placed Internet service providers like Comcast and Verizon under the strictest-ever regulatory oversight.” (Selyukh)

Gaining Perspective:

The Sonoma County Library has an excellent online resource where you may read about controversial topics to become more well informed. ‘Points of View’ offers topic overview, critical analysis, as well as both point and counterpoint arguements.  Go to: www.sonomalibrary.org -> Research -> Databases -> Points of View (library card & pin)

Not sure where to begin?  Ask the Young Adult Librarian at your local branch of the Sonoma County Library.  

We’re here for you.

Post By Rosalie C. Abbott / Sebastopol Regional Library

Works Consulted:

-Points of View: Internet Neutrality 9/30/2016, p1-1. 1p.

-FCC Unveils Plan to Repeal Net Neutrality Rules https://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/11/21/565682679/fcc-unveils-plan-to-repeal-net-neutrality-rules

Disaster and Resilience - A Teen Book List

Do you ever wonder what this world is coming to?  

One peek at the news or your Instagram feed, and it can feel like you just woke up to the apocalypse.  We've seen natural disasters reaching far around the globe and right here in our own backyards.  There's violence, terror, and... the list goes on.  During these times, when it seems like our reality can't possibly get any worse... it can be incredibly helpful to reach for examples of resilience, survival, strength, and courage.  Scroll down for a list of books (fiction and non-fiction) where young adults have been put to the test--mostly by natural disasters--and not only survive... they also thrive in the face of hardship and devastation.

Cover image for In darkness

In Darkness Lake, by Nick Lake, Fiction (Library Call Number: Y LAKE) "Shorty" is a Haitian boy trapped in the ruins of a hospital when the earth explodes around him. Surrounded by lifeless bodies and growing desperately weak from lack of food and water, death seems imminent. Yet as Shorty waits in darkness for a rescue that may never come, he becomes aware of another presence, one reaching out to him across two hundred years of history.

Cover image for Dark water

Dark Water, by Laura McNeal, Fiction (Library Call Number: Y MCNEAL) Living in a cottage on her uncle's southern California avocado ranch since her parent's messy divorce, fifteen-year-old Pearl Dewitt meets and falls in love with an illegal migrant worker, and is trapped with him when wildfires approach his makeshift forest home.

Cover image for All we have left

All We Have Left, by Wendy Mills, Fiction (Library Call Number: Y MILLS) In interweaving stories of sixteen-year-olds, modern-day Jesse tries to cope with the ramifications of her brother's death on 9/11, while in 2001, Alia, a Muslim, gets trapped in one of the Twin Towers and meets a boy who changes everything for her as flames rage around them.

Cover image for The memory of things

The Memory of Things, by Gae Polisner, Fiction (Library Call Number: Y POLISNER) On the morning of September 11, 2001, sixteen-year-old Kyle Donohue watches the first twin tower come down, then while fleeing home to safety, he finds a girl covered in ash who has no memory.

Cover image for Hurricane song

Hurricane Song, by Paul Volponi, Fiction (Library Call Number: Y VOLPONI) Twelve-year-old Miles Shaw goes to live with his father, a jazz musician, in New Orleans, and together they survive the horrors of Hurricane Katrina in the Superdome, learning about each other and growing closer through their painful experiences.

Cover image for Hold Tight, Don't Let Go

Hold tight, don't let go : a novel of Haiti, by Laura Rose Wagner, Fiction (Library Call Number: Y WAGNER) In the aftermath of the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, Nadine goes to live with her father in Miami while her cousin Magdalie, raised as her sister, remains behind in a refugee camp, dreaming of joining Nadine but wondering if she must accept that her life and future are in Port-au-Prince.

 a novel

Salvage the Bones, by Jesmyn Ward, Fiction (Library Call Number: WARD) Enduring a hardscrabble existence as the children of alcoholic and absent parents, four siblings from a coastal Mississippi town prepare their meager stores for the arrival of Hurricane Katrina while struggling with such challenges as a teen pregnancy and a dying litter of prize pups.

 Hurricane Katrina and New Orleans

Drowned City: Hurricane Katrina and New Orleans, by Don Brown, Non-Fiction (Library Call Number: Y 363.34 BROWN) On August 29, 2005, Hurricane Katrina's monstrous winds and surging water overwhelmed the protective levees around low-lying New Orleans, Louisiana. One thousand eight hundred and thirty-three people lost their lives. The tale of this historic storm and the drowning of an American city is one of selflessness, heroism, and courage -- and also of incompetence, racism, and criminality.

 the true story of how I survived and escaped North Korea

Every falling star : the true story of how I survived and escaped North Korea, by Sungju Lee, Non-Fiction (Library Call Number: Y 951.9305 LEE) This is the memoir of a boy named Sungju who grew up in North Korea and, at the age of twelve, was forced to live on the streets and fend for himself after his parents disappeared. Finally, after years of being homeless and living with a gang, Sungju is reunited with his maternal grandparents and, eventually, his father.

Cover image for The bite of the mango

The Bite of the Mango, by Mariatu Kamara, Non-Fiction (Library Call Number: Y 966.404 KAMARA) When Mariatu set out for a neighborhood village in Sierra Leone, she was kidnapped and tortured, and both of her hands cut off. She turned to begging to survive. This heartrending memoir is a testament to her courage and resilience. Today she is a UNICEF Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict.

NOTE: This list was thoughtfully compiled for you by our *fabulous* Young Adult Librarian, Lara Mayelian, at the Rincon Valley Regional Library.  If you are looking for additional titles or need more recommendations, ask your friendly Teen Librarian at your local branch of the Sonoma County Library.  

We are here for you!

Post by Rosalie Abbott, Sebastopol Regional Library

Imagine if Teens Could Vote!

In today’s society, often times it might seem like teenagers don’t have a lot of control over their world.  Most teens have to keep their parent(s) and their teachers happy--tasks which basically add up to the equivalent of a full-time job.  Until they turn 18, voting in local & national elections isn’t possible.  So, where can young adults express their opinions and let their voices be heard?

Decorative image of shoes.

Here’s a little secret.  Young Adult Librarians across the country and all around the globe care about teens, and we always want to know what you think.  Here’s just one example.  We’ve listened to teenagers from around the world who recently voted on the top 10 young adult books from 2016… and we are happy to share the results here, check them out!

YALSA Official 2017 Teens’ Top Ten titles announced:

  1. Don’t Get Caught by Kurt Dinan.

  1. Scythe by Neal Shusterman.

  1. The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon.

  1. Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare.

  1. This is Where It Ends by Marieke Nijkamp.

  1. Heartless by Marissa Meyer.

  1. P.S. I Like You by Kasie West.

  1. Love & Gelato by Jenna Evans Welch.

  1. Genius: The Game by Leopoldo Gout.

  1. If I Was Your Girl by Meredith Russo.

If you haven’t already read these titles, they just might be worth adding to your TBR list… at least, that’s what teens around the globe are telling us!  Meanwhile, keep reading those 2017 books so that you’ll be ready to submit your own nominations when the time is right.  

Got Questions?  

Ask your friendly Young Adult Librarian at your local branch of the Sonoma County Library!  

We are here for you.

Post by Rosalie Abbott, Sebastopol Regional Library

Lost in the Library? We’ve got an App for that!

Teens, have you ever walked into the Library… looking for an interesting book to read, only to be completely overwhelmed by endless shelves of books?!  

The “Teen Book Finder” is a free app that helps teens find nearly 4,000 award-winning young adult titles (from YALSA). Download it today!  

NOTE: This also works for voracious readers who need to search high and low for their next great read… we’ve got you.

Picture of app

Need help?  Ask the friendly Teen Librarian at your local Sonoma County Library branch.  

Happy Reading!  ;)

Do You Like a Good Challenge?

This past summer, the Sonoma County Library found out that yes indeed--teens do thrive when offered the pressure and perspective of a decent challenge!  Studies show that students who read at least six books over the summer beat the “summer slide” and start school in the fall ready to learn--so we decided to offer a little bit of motivation to help make that happen.

Ancient, Art, Climb, Courage, High, Man, Outdoors

Teens across Sonoma County read book after book, and received prize after prize all summer long... including free books, treats, earbuds, book bags, gift cards, and of course a raffle ticket for the GRAND PRIZE: a Chromebook!

Now that students are back in school, you might be wondering who managed to escape the “summer slide”... AND, who won those fabulous Chromebooks from the various branches of the Library?

Beautiful, Business, Computer, Female, Girl, Internet

More teens than ever participated in the TeenRead program.  Many played, most had fun, and a few lucky souls were the winners of the 6 Book Challenge raffle tickets. If you didn't win, we hope you at least had a great summer full of incredible and fantastic books. Curious about the lucky winners?  Scroll down for the photo gallery.


These lucky teens who participated in the teen summer reading program won a CHROMEBOOK!!

Central - Congratulations Phineas!

Cloverdale - Congratulations (name not published by request)!

Guerneville - Congratulations Riley!

Healdsburg - Congratulations Maggie!

Northwest -Congratulations Mateo!

Petaluma - Congratulations Will!

Rincon Valley - Congratulations Zannet!

Rohnert Park / Cotati - Congratulations Adeline!

Roseland - Congratulations Naomi!

Sebastopol- Congratulations Claire!

Sonoma Valley - Congratulations Y. Valezquez!

Windsor - Congratulations Eliana!


  • image of Sather Tower with text [A Path to College Sonoma County Library]

More Path to College Workshops Announced

The Sonoma County Library is continuing our popular Path to College workshops supporting college-bound high school students and their families. With these workshops the Library seeks to meet the needs of students through all stages of the college preparation and application process.

“Preparing for college can be a stressful time for high school students and their families. We’re proud to support these students and give them the information they need to achieve their higher education goals. Best yet, all our workshops are free!” said Petaluma Library Teen Services Librarian Diana Spaulding.

The Library will be providing workshops this fall on writing compelling college application essays and answers to the UC prompts; approaching the college application process with confidence and a plan; paying for college and completing the online FAFSA; and planning ahead for the transfer from a Junior College to a 4-year University. All workshops are led by qualified local experts and are free and open to high school students and their families.


Path to College Fall 2017 Workshops include:

  • How to Tackle the Essay & UC Prompts (pre-registration required)*:

    • Wednesday 10/4 from 6:30-8:00pm – Rohnert Park-Cotati Regional Library

    • Monday 10/9 from 6:30-8:0pm – Petaluma Regional Library

    • Saturday 10/14 from 11:00am-12:30pm – Central Santa Rosa Library

  • Demystifying & Simplifying the College Application Process

    • Saturday 10/7 from 11:00am-12:30pm – Central Santa Rosa Library

    • Wednesday 10/11 from 6:30-8:00pm – Rohnert Park-Cotati Regional Library

  • Paying for College

    • Saturday 11/4 from 10:30am-12:00pm – Petaluma Regional Library

    • Monday 11/20 from 6:30-8:00pm – Central Santa Rosa Library

  • The JC Transfer Option

    • Saturday 11/4 from 10:30am-12:00pm – Rohnert Park-Cotati Regional Library

    • Saturday 12/2 from 10:30am-12:00pm – Central Santa Rosa Library

*How to Tackle the Essay and UC prompts workshops require pre-registration due to limited space because it is a hands-on class for students rather than families. It will be taught in English only. All other workshops have bilingual staff and support for Spanish speaking attendees.

 For more information, contact Teen & Adult Services Librarian Diana Spaulding at 763-9801 ext. 0731 or dspaulding@sonoma.lib.ca.us.