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  • January 2020
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Your Book to Movie Guide For Fall!

Although Summer is wrapping up and school has begun, there’s an upside to the cold weather that’s coming.   Fall movies are on the horizon and this season is shaping up to be pretty exciting.

One movie I’m really excited about isn’t what you would call a typical Blockbuster although it is filled with stars!  The notoriously reclusive, aloof and wonderfully talented author J.D. Salinger is featured in a new documentary due out in September. Salinger published beloved classics filled with teenage anguish and alienation such as The Catcher in the Rye, Raise High the Roof Beam, Nine Stories, and Franny and Zooey.  The new documentary features huge stars of Hollywood and of the publishing world talking about how Salinger’s work affected them.   It also seems to hint at some answers to the mystery of Salinger’s life…

Meg Rosoff’s amazing 2004 book, How I Live Now is getting the Hollywood treatment this Fall as well!  This Printz prize winner tells the story of Daisy an American teen visiting family in England.  At first Daisy feels homesick but quickly falls in love with her new family.  Her experiences in England start out idyllic but the peaceful countryside is soon shattered by a fictional Third World War.  The film is mostly supported by newcomers but Daisy is played by the talented Saoirse Ronan
I have recommended The Book Thief by Markus Zucak to more people than I can count.  I can’t tell if its the beautiful language and description, the charming and lovable characters or the triumph over dire circumstances that makes it so great but it has become on of my favorite books.  That’s why I’m excited and nervous for the film version to debut.   The singular grace of the book may not be matched by the movie but if its even half as good we’re all in for a good ride. 

I’d tell you to keep a lookout for the second installment of the Hunger Games Series, Catching Fire in November, but I have a feeling the buzz surrounding this one is gonna be huge.  Things get a little more complicated in Suzanne Collins‘ second book and it’ll be interesting to see how it plays out on the big screen.  If the trailer is any indication it looks like another exciting ride.

Happy viewing!

~Brooke, CLP-South Side

Road Trip?

Summer is here and many of us will be traveling. Nothing makes me happier on a long drive than a good audiobook. Personally, I like to grab a few from the library shelf in case I don’t like the narrator’s voice!

Even if you aren’t traveling this summer, try listening to a good book by a city pool for a much needed escape. Check out a few of our most popular audiobooks for teens below. The Library has audiobooks available on CD, MP3 Playaway, and for download on Overdrive and OneClick.

Libba Bray’s self narrated “Beauty Queens” has all the makings of a perfect road trip audiobook! In the story, a plane full of beauty queens on the way to the Miss Teen Dream Pageant crashes on a desert island. With little food, water and practically no eyeliner who will survive?

Read the books? Seen the movie? Now it’s time to listen to the Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins.

Tina Fey’s self narrated memoir is one of my personal favorites. Last year, during a road trip, I listened to Bossypants and loved every second of it. From her time as a high school actor in Upper Darby, PA to portraying and meeting Sarah Palin on Saturday Night Live, you will feel like you are sitting with a friend.

If you loved reading Harry Potter and watching the movies then you should try listening to it too! Best of all, it is really easy to get a copy of Harry Potter since we have lots of copies of the series. They are probably sitting on your local library’s shelf right now.

Now it’s your turn to share! What’s your favorite audiobook?

-Michael B. (CLP Hazelwood)

A Night in Panem: Hunger Games Movie Anticipation Party @ CLP Main

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you have probably heard of the ultra popular “Hunger Games” series by Suzanne Collins and upcoming film release.  If you haven’t read the books yet, then get thee to the library this very instant and pick up a copy!  Everyone and their mother and their mother’s mother seems to be riding the wave of “Hunger Games” super fandom these days.  And for good reason too!  The books are action packed and full of heart, with characters that are completely fleshed out- including a strong female lead, and the dystopian setting seems eerily too close to full realization.  The highly anticipated film version of the first novel in the series will be opening Friday, March 23rd.  In anticipation of the film’s release, the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh’s Main Library will be hosting “A Night in Panem”, an after-hours event for hard-core fans of all ages on Thursday, March 22.  Test your Hunger Games knowledge in trivia, train like a tribute for the battle in the arena, enjoy baked goods and cookie decorating in honor of Peeta, make a bow and arrow like Katniss’ and Gale’s, experience a Reaping with prizes instead of imminent death, and so much more!

A Night in Panem: Movie Anticipation Party
May the Odds be every in your favor

Thursday, March 22
8:30 pm to 10:30 pm
Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, Main
4400 Forbes Ave.

Hunger for more?  Check these books out:

The Girl who was on Fire: Your Favorite Authors on Suzanne Collins’ Hunger Games Trilogy

edited by Leah Wilson

The Hunger Games: The Official Illustrated Movie Companion by Kate Egan

The Hunger Games Companion: The Unauthorized Guide to the Series

by Lois H. Gresh

The Hunger Games Tribute Guide by Emily Seife

Jennifer Lawrence: Star of the Hunger Games by Katherine E. Krohn

Hunger Games: Katniss Madness!

After finally reading the Hunger Games a few weeks ago, I am totally hooked!

With the release of the Hunger Games movie on March 23nd, this blog post is a guide to all the wonderful Hunger Games related titles and upcoming library events!

First, it is not too late to read the book. And don’t forget the Hunger Games is a trilogy!

Have you already read the complete series? Check out the recently released Hunger Games Tribute Guide!

The Hunger Games starring Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen is going to be released at the stroke of midnight on Friday, March 23rd. Have you seen the trailer yet?

Before you head to the theater for the midnight release come to the library for a night of trivia, crafts and a chance to win two free movie tickets! You simply cannot miss A Night in Panem: Movie Anticipation Party at Main Library, March 22nd, 8:30-10:30 PM! Open to teens and adults!

The Teen Kindle Book Club at the Hazelwood Library will be reading and discussing the Hunger Games every Tuesday at 5:00 PM for the rest of March! Open to all middle and high school students!

Last but not least, Carrick  and West End Library also have special events planned for March!

-Michael (CLP Hazelwood)

First official Hunger Games trailer!

I know you’re not expecting a post from me today, but I was so excited to share this with everyone I just couldn’t wait!


So, what do you think?

Haven’t read The Hunger Games trilogy? There’s still time to catch up before the movie is released!

-Julie, CLP Beechview

The Sexy Kitten Shakedown: Happy Halloween

Halloween was originally a Celtic (Druid) holiday, called Samhain (pronounced Sow-in), celebrated more than 2,000 years ago. It was a festival to celebrate the death of the earth, taking place at the end of summer, and its eventual rebirth, in spring. The Celts celebrated by creating huge bonfires, which were said to discourage the sun from disappearing, as well as burning crops and performing animal sacrifices. The Druids also believed that the veil between the worlds was at its thinnest on this day, leading to more accurate divinations, and to more ghosts and spirits roaming the countryside.  For the latter reason, the Druids dressed in costume to prevent being possessed by any of these meandering spirits. By dressing as ghosts, witches, goblins, as well as sporting animal skins and heads, they were said to fool the spirits into believing they were already one of them.

This celebration has persevered through the millennia. In the 19th century, Halloween was a day for skullduggery, mischief-making, and general scariness. Eventually, in the early to mid-20th century, Halloween evolved into a community oriented event (ala trick-or-treating). The country started seeing more block parties and community events associated with this holiday. It became a day for children, teens,  and adults to celebrate youthfulness and fun (Halloween party at the library, anyone?).

Which brings me to my next point, or not…really, but I still need to ask– where did the sexy kitten come from?  Today’s Halloween has this uncanny knack for turning things that aren’t typically attractive into something suggestive. For example, pirates. What is sexy about a group of people who lived on a ship, didn’t bathe regularly, surely didn’t brush their teeth (if they had any) and habitually came down with bouts of scurvy?—not much.  Then why does nearly every costume for women, and even men now, turn into sexy witch, sexy devil, sexy gangster, sexy nun (wait, nun? NUN?!?).

One of the best things about Halloween is the chance to use your creativity to its max! So put away the ears, tail, and eyeliner whiskers, because there are tons of really groovy costumes out there that just require some time and TLC.  Here are a few of my personal favs (click on then for DIY instructions).


Of course this post wouldn’t be complete without me telling you how awesome and gratifying it is, to me as a librarian, when people go dressed as their favorite literary character. If you’re finally sick of dressing like Edward Cullen or Hermione Granger, check out this awesome article (thanks Joseph!) which tells you how to channel your inner Clay (from 13 Reasons Why) or Katniss Everdeen: Girl on Fire. If none of these grab your attention, try one of the books below that can be found at or ordered to your local Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh!


Happy Hauntings– Julie, CLP Beechview

Teen review (modern classic edition) : The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

My name is Jenna. I go to a high school where I’m part of the marching band and the cheerleading squad. I’m pretty busy, but I always find time to read. I’m also very creative and I like doing little crafts out of random things I find.

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

I decided to read the Hunger Games because I kept hearing how good of a book it was. When I first read the description, I didn’t think I would even like it or actually end up reading the book. This book definitely deserves all of the hype it’s getting because it’s an excellent story!

Katniss Everdeen is the main character. She lives in District 12, the poorest district of all 12 districts. They are the coal-mining district, and they are looked down upon by the rest of Panem (their country). She is a very independent girl. Katniss is the one who takes care of her mother and sister by hunting illegally in the woods and trading what she hunts for items that she can put on the table at dinnertime. She is rough and probably stronger than most boys in her district.

But, the Hunger Games is right around the corner. Every year, two tributes from each of the 12 districts of Panem, 24 kids in all, are taken from their homes and put into a game where they have to kill each other to win. Whoever is the last person standing, wins, and becomes rich after. And the whole thing is broadcast on television throughout Panem.

Against all odds, Katniss’ little sister is picked to participate in the Hunger Games, and Katniss is so surprised and appalled that she offered to take her sister’s place.

Throughout the book, you are taken on this crazy wild journey to the Hunger Games with Katniss and the other District 12 tribute, Peeta. Read the book to experience the frightening and fast-paced game that these two teens have to go through.

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