Girl Power Graphic Novels

If you like comics and love a great story full of action and girl power, you can’t go wrong with these three new graphic novels.

Princess with a crown

Princeless: Save Yourself by Jeremy Whitley

Princess Adrienne gets tired of waiting for a prince to rescue her and takes matters into her own hands. She escapes from her tower with the help of Sparky the dragon, and she sets off on an adventure to rescue her sisters.

Girl in rollerskates on book cover

Roller Girl by Victoria Jamieson

Astrid signs up for roller derby camp even though her best friend wants to go to dance camp. She works hard to master her skates while she makes new friends and finds a place on the roller derby team.

Ms Marvel book cover

Ms Marvel: No Normal by G. Willow Wilson

Start here to watch Kamala Khan morph from ordinary Muslim girl to extraordinary superhero while remaining true to herself. Two more issues are coming soon!

What are you reading this summer? We love to see your recommendations!

-Susan, Teen Services, Iroquois Branch

Hit the Road This Summer With Paper Towns

The next John Green phenomenon is here!  If you loved The Fault in Our Stars, check out Paper Towns.

Imagine the guy or girl you’ve been in love with since childhood shows up a month before your high school graduation in your bedroom window with black face paint in the middle of the night. They want you to go on a revenge drive with them.  Would you do it?

Quentin “Q” Jacobsen finds himself in this exact position when Margo Roth Spiegelman recruits him to be her accomplice on an epic night of pranking. Margo has devised a revenge mission on all of the people she feels have hurt her throughout high school.  There are eleven parts to the plot, and Margo needs someone (and more importantly, a car) to help her complete her plan.  However, the next day Margo disappears.  She leaves a trail of mysterious clues for Q and he sets out on hilarious and exhilarating road trip with his friends to find her.

The movie is coming to theaters on July 24th.  Be sure to read the book before you see the movie, so you can see what changes from the book to the movie.  Stop by any library location afterward and let one of our teen or children’s librarians know what YOU think of the changes. We love talking about books!

-Heather, Children and Teen Services, St. Matthews Branch

Summer Blockbusters @ Your Library

Did you know that many of this summer’s blockbuster movies are based on books and comics? The theater isn’t the only place to go to find an epic adventure over the summer.  The Louisville Free Public Library has comic books about The Avengers and the characters’ individual stories. We also have copies of Pitch Perfect, Jurassic Park, Terminator series books, John Green’s Paper Towns, and Fantastic Four comics.

Avengers Cover: Iron Man, Thor, etc.

Remember that in order to make a book into a movie the story and the characters are often changed so that it fits into a small time frame. This means that you are missing part of the story or a great character that you didn’t even know existed. Don’t miss out by only going to see the movie! Take the time to explore the book either before or after and see all the differences. For example, there are hundreds of Avengers comics with dozens of storylines that make it impossible to capture everything that happens to the characters on film.

While you’re checking out our selection of summer blockbuster books, don’t forget to join our Teen Summer Reading program. Starting on June 1st, go to any of our eighteen branch locations and pick up your folder to win great prizes. Just for reading six books and completing one activity, you will receive a backpack, coupon sheet to lots of local attractions, and U of L tickets. You will even be entered for a chance to win a tablet!

Visit your local branch of the Louisville Free Public Library this summer for awesome books and prizes.

-Lynn, Youth Services, Westport/St. Matthews Branches

The Glimmer of a Good Book

So, I was chilling at the Newburg Library one bright and sunny day, and something shiny caught my eye. I was looking at all the new books flooding the library after generous donations were made for us to receive tons of replacement books like The Giver, Holes, Mockingjay and Begging for Change. I couldn’t help but to look toward the glimmer again.

Silver book cover

Before I knew it, I was gazing at a popular Carolyn Mackler book that was covered in metallic silver, and the title read…The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big Round Things. Some of you who have read this book may recognize the older cover(s), but I came across this reflective beauty and loved the inside of it even more!

The story is centered on Virginia Shreves, and she is someone I can most definitely relate to growing up in the family that I did. Sometimes being the biggest one in the family photos can mess with a girl’s self-image, but Ginny doesn’t allow any of that to interfere with her getting what she wants–even after the unthinkable happens.

To read this and many more returning faves; or to fall in love with other classics altogether?  Check out your local branch now!

-Renesha, Youth Services, Newburg Branch 

Overcoming Test Anxiety

Are you stressed about the ACT? Upcoming finals in a little over a month? When I was a teen, I had mini-panic moments where I thought that if I did poorly on a test, I would fail school, not get into college, never get a job, etc….

You will be fine! Tests are important and can be stressful, but your life will not be ruined if you have a bad test day. Just take a deep breath, and read the following book! It will make you feel better about your school experience.

The Testing Cover Image
The Testing by Joelle Charbonneau

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Shake Up Your Reading with Fun Nonfiction

Need something new to read? Tired of all the fiction dystopias, teen romance and teen fiction that involves a beloved character dying and you end up a blubbering, hysterical mess at the end of the book? How about trying some fun nonfiction?

Underwater Dogs by Seth Casteel – need a book to cheer you up?  This is the one.  Nothing but awesome, adorable pictures of dogs underwater.  Really, it’s fantastic. Pure joy in a book.

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Starting Your Own Book Club

Winter weather keeping you hibernating indoors waiting for spring? Fight cabin fever while you’re trying to stay toasty by forming your own book club. Book clubs are a great way to try out something new with your friends and share ideas. The Louisville Free Public Library has many Book Discussion Kits to choose from with a wide range of authors, genres, and topics. These kits have a longer check out time, so your group has plenty of time to read the book.  The kits also come with discussion questions to help guide you. You can turn your book discussion into a party with a theme using decorations, costumes, and foods that reflect the story. The best part about book clubs is that you can express any opinion you would like to about a book.

There are many resources to help you find books for your club to read. Besides browsing the library’s catalog to see what book kits we carry, you can also turn to bestseller lists to see what’s currently popular or has been recently popular. The website Goodreads is an excellent source for book ideas. Many readers create lists of books on the site that you can search for by keywords, and they are often quite reliable. Goodreads is also a superb way to keep track of the books you’ve read and the ones you want to read.

An example of one of the book discussion kits the library carries for teens is Life as We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer. This book is written as journal entries from the point of view of Miranda, a sixteen year old who is struggling to survive after a meteor strikes the moon. This event causes worldwide disasters such as earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, and severe climate changes. How will she survive in a world with such an uncertain future? Have your book club read the book to find out.

-Lynn, Youth Services, St. Matthews/Westport Libraries

It’s Time Once Again for the SWON Teen Reading Challenge!


Every year from February through April, library staff in Kentucky and Ohio gear up for summer programming by reading as many young adult novels as possible. I have participated for several years, and I am ready to jump back into it. (Go Team Louisvillains!!!) For three months, I will be swimming in young adult titles.

I thought I would share some of the new books on my desk.

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Paving the Way for Equality

In honor of the 50th Anniversary of Bloody Sunday and in celebration of the latest historic film, Selma, I would like to dedicate my article to those who paved the way for equality. Bloody Sunday is a reference to the unprovoked attack on March 7, 1965 by state troopers on peaceful marchers crossing the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama, en route to the state capitol in Montgomery. Many of the lifestyles we live today would not be possible if it weren’t for these courageous, respectful and honorable individuals.

Mississippi Trial, 1955 by Chris Crowe

All of the known and unknown people who gave life and limb during the Civil Rights Movement 1954-1968 are heroes. Everyone involved were from different races, economic backgrounds, nationalities, ethnicities and religious denominations. It didn’t matter where you lived and how much money your family had, they all risked their lives in order for African-Americans to share in the same rights as everyone else and to be able to do so without fear of violence.

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Something for Everyone in Five Comics Books

Whether you have always loved comics or you never picked one up in your life, if you want to read about cape-and-tights heroes or curl up with something trendy and artsy, then this list has something for you.

The Arrival – Shaun Tan

The Arrival is proof that a good story doesn’t even need words. A stunning narrative of an immigrant’s experience in a new and alien land, it’s like having someone play solos about hope and isolation on your heartstrings.

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