Staff Picks

January 2024

Babble: And How Punctuation Saved It

by Caroline Adderson

A humorously written story about the town of Babble. No one could understand each other and they all talked all the time in monotone, but never listening. The first few pages are one long run on sentence because there is no punctuation. Luckily, a young girl comes along and begins to share strange objects with all the town people. With the period they can stop talking and listen. With the question mark they can have a discussion. Other punctuation marks are given out such as commas, quotation marks, apostrophes, and very importantly exclamation marks. A very fun way to emphasize the importance of using punctuation but also the importance of communication in understanding each other. 

Recommended by: Joan Stoiber, Youth Services Reference Librarian 

Posted in: Youth Fiction

Different: A Story of the Spanish Civil War

by Monica Montanes

With Francisco Franco in charge in Spain anyone who was different was in danger. Anyone who had fought for freedom had to flee the country. Different is told through the voices of seven-year-old Socorro and nine-year-old Paco who are siblings. Because their father had to escape Spain because of his political beliefs, the family must hide the truth and keep secrets in order to survive. They can’t ask for more food or better treatment because someone might find out why their father isn’t home anymore. After 8 years a letter finally arrives from the father reuniting them in Venezuela. Different is based on the author’s family history.  

Recommended by: Joan Stoiber, Youth Services Reference Librarian 

Posted in: Youth Fiction


by Samuel Sattin

Thoughts can overtake us sometimes but for Isaac his thoughts and worries never leave. He is constantly at war with his “buzzing” thoughts. Being diagnosed with OCD at such an early age has left him feeling very lonely, especially with his mom monitoring his every move. One day he is approached by a group of kids inviting him to be a part of their ”Swamps & Sorcery group.  And he’s felt so much better now that the bees aren’t bothering him so much but does his mom approve of his new friends and hobbies?

Recommended by: Ayla Franco, Youth Services Assistant

Posted in: Young Adult Fiction

Not My Problem

by Ciara Smyth

Not My Problem by Ciara Smyth is about high school student, Aideen, solving everyone else’s problems instead of her own. She has problems at home, problems at school, problems with friends, but when her best friend’s arch nemesis, Meabh Kowalski, propositions her with an unconventional way to help others, she can’t resist. Aideen means well, and she’s hilarious, but her business model could use some fine tuning. Through a series of mishaps and close calls, Aideen starts to make real friends, try at school, and even develops a crush. Fans of Becky Albertalli and Alice Oseman will be sure to love this one!

This book is available in the library and on Hoopla as an ebook.

Recommended by: Erin Cady, Youth Services Reference Librarian

Posted in: Young Adult Fiction

A Year of Good News

by Martin Smatana

This book was a pleasure to read as it is filled with happiness and positivity! These 52 true short stories are derived from all over the world.  Reading good news has a tremendous impact on both mental and physical health by increasing feelings of joy and hope.  It also demonstrates how kids can show kindness and make a difference in their own world! The illustrations are so creative and well done and made from recycled fabric.  If you want to put a smile on your face, read a few of these good deeds!
Recommended by: Lenore Garoufalis, Youth Services Assistant

Posted in: Youth Nonfiction


by Sibeal Pounder

Wow what a book! This is a fast paced novel packed with lots of adventure through Wonka’s wonderful imagination.  The story line takes place when Willy Wonka was a child and how he became to be a chocolate maker. Readers will immediately be drawn to the story line as there are many twists and turns along the way.  This book is based on the motion picture “Wonka”. Enjoy all of the creativity and adventure in this book!
Recommended by: Lenore Garoufalis, Youth Services Assistant

Posted in: Youth Fiction

December 2023

1913: Seeds of Conflict

This documentary movie, offers an illuminating look into the history of Palestine. Starting from the year 1913, historians are sat down and interviewed about different aspects of Palestinian civilization and how it changed during the waves of Jewish immigration to the region. The interviews are accompanied by brief re-enactments of important discourse, by notable leaders and residents, that led to the ongoing situation as we see it today.
Recommended by: Ghada Rafati, Patron Service Clerk

Posted in: Adult Nonfiction, Documentary

Transmogrify!: 14 Fantastical Tales of Trans Magic

Embark on a magical journey featuring 14 tales of Trans and Non-Binary characters written by Trans and Non-Binary authors! Each protagonist beautifully embraces what it is to be one’s true self and to love everyone despite the differences. The Anthology is written wonderfully with characters who are relatable and inclusive. Great for fans of Cemetery Boys and The Witch King!

Recommended by: Ayla Franco, Youth Services Assistant

Posted in: Young Adult Fiction

Tiger Daughter

by Rebecca Lim

Tiger Daughter is a middle grade novel about immigration, mental health, family, and feeling like the cultural other. Students Wen Zhou and Henry Xiao dream of going to a special academy to study but there are language barriers, patriarchy, and a death in the family in their way. Read it to find out what happens.

This book is available at the library and on OverDrive/Libby as an ebook and e-audiobook.

Recommended by: Jackie Boyd, Communications Manager

Posted in: Youth Fiction


by Julio Anta

Mateo, an undocumented immigrant teenager, embarks on a dangerous journey across the Sonoran desert to cross the border to the United States and seek the opportunities he once thought he had within reach. Strong willed and often defiant, he risks his safety multiple times along the way.  With determination and the crucial guidance of an unexpected new ghostly friend, he overcomes survival perils and some emotional struggles that many face on such a voyage. In this first graphic novel, Anta and Salcedo visually provide readers a captivating glimpse of the migratory trek many undertake through the hostile and deadly borderland territories. The artwork captures the natural beauty, as well as the desolation of the journey. Guillermo’s supernatural presence adds some historical context to the story in regards to the adversity and predicaments of the immigrant experience.

Recommended by: Fanny Camargo, Youth Services Reference Librarian I

Posted in: Young Adult Fiction

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