Author Archives: valerie

ACT Practice Test at Bon Air and Main THIS SATURDAY!

Anyone needing to prep for an upcoming ACT Test is welcome to join us THIS Saturday for a practice round! The practice test at Main/Bon Air will start at 9:30/10AM, but participants are encouraged to arrive fifteen minutes early to get signed in, and people who arrive after the start time will not be able to make up the time they missed. Bring two #2 pencils, an ID, a calculator, and a small snack to enjoy during the fifteen minute break. The test will last four hours, until about 1:30/2:00. If you are interested, PLEASE CALL THE LOCATION TO SIGN UP. Bon Air’s phone number is (502)574-1795 and Main’s phone number is (502)574-1724.

If you feel like you need to do some ACT prep, but don’t want to do a Practice Test right now, Newburg will be hosting an ACT Basics class on Saturday from 10 to 11:30, which will include what will be covered on the test, strategies for studying, and how to approach test day. Please call 502-479-6160 to register for that.

If you want to take part in some ACT prep but are unavailable THIS Saturday, Fairdale and Middletown will be hosting more ACT Practice Tests on Saturday, January 26th, and you can just call those branches to sign up! Middletown will also be hosting an ACT Basics class on Monday, January 14th from 6 – 8pm!

Have a good one, and good luck with any standardized testing in your future! 😀

Cover of the Virago Modern Classics edition, with the title in gold above bright red flowers.

Teen Book Review: Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier

Page Count: 386

Genre: Crime, Gothic Romance, and Mystery

Series or Standalone: Standalone

Reading Level: High school and beyond

Review by: M.L., a local high school junior

            Rebecca is bursting with mystery and suspense throughout the book. The main characters are Rebecca, the Narrator, and Maxim, who is the owner of Manderley. Rebecca’s mysterious death still haunts Maxim. The Narrator speaks in the novel, in chapters 1-2 is present day, while the other Chapters are foreshadowing the past that leads into Chapters 1-2 as you re-read the first two chapters which gives you a better understanding. I found Rebecca more and more intriguing as I read it.The mystery of the book kept unraveling as I kept reading which made me want more and solve the mystery. Rebecca is a Gothic romance novel which is my favorite genre. I like the way the early chapters are set up to urge you to read on. At first the set-up was weird but suspenseful. I love this book and I’ll read the novel again.

            I thought that the Narrator was naïve , I wanted to slap her into common sense and for her fight, but she is younger than Maxim. It was a new experience for her throughout the book. The Narrator doesn’t have a name in the book. I felt as the book can show you to grow in different ways in life and to never judge a book by its cover. Including learning about a person first before you jump into something serious or conclusions. I would recommend this book to readers that want mystery, dark romance, and suspense. I’ll rate Rebecca as a 4/5, because there are some parts that vaguely explain what’s going on in the novel but overall, a great novel that readers would love and enjoy.

Cover of "A Raisin in the Sun"

Guest Book Review: A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry

M.C., the reviewer, is a Junior in high school.

Book stats:

Number of pages: 151

Genre: Realistic fiction

Included in a series:  No

Estimated reading level: grades 8-high school

Summary:

This play, whose title is derived from the poem “Harlem” by Langston Hughes, depicts the lives of the Younger family who live in Southside Chicago. Set in the 1950s, the family of five—Mama (Lena) Younger, Walter Lee Younger, Beneatha Younger, Ruth Younger, and Travis Younger—face a family crisis as a life insurance check of $10,000  is placed in the family’s possession from the deceased Walter Senior. Walter—son of Mama and Walter Senior, father of Travis, husband of Ruth and brother to Beneatha—works as a chauffeur for white men and wants to use the money to invest in a liquor store. Beneatha attends college and wants to become a doctor; to her, the money would be best spent paying for school, however she isn’t as forceful with the check as Walter is. Mama works as a housemaid for rich white families and would like to spend the money on moving out of their less-than ideal home into a bigger home. Ruth is a housewife and would also like to spend the insurance check on a bigger home.

With this crisis at hand, the family must decide how the money should be spent to benefit the family as a whole; along the way, many obstacles arise which need to be overcome by the family in order to thrive.

Personal opinions:  

I felt that many obstacles in this play were quite realistic and relatable; the issue of an undesirable financial status—an underlying theme in this play—is experienced by many across the world, while the desire to fulfill one’s dreams is the ultimate wish of many. All in all, this play was a short, light, and easy read which is always well-appreciated. Try it, who knows? You might like it!

Rating:  4 – better than most

Bon Air Science Fair!

This upcoming Tuesday at 6pm, Bon Air Library will be hosting a program full of science experiments for teens, all supplies provided! Experiments will include Elephant Toothpaste, Silly Putty, Ice Cream, and building a wave machine. Come check it out!

What’s Elephant Toothpaste? Here’s a more extreme demonstration!

STRONGLY Recommended: Children of Blood and Bone

When I first got my library copy of Tomi Adeyemi’s debut novel Children of Blood and Bone, I groaned a little. I had been excited about it because I had seen the hype surrounding its release – Adeyemi had publishers fighting for the chance to print it, the title has been *heavily* advertised in the book world, and there’s already a movie deal! – but I had missed that it was over 500 pages long! Usually that’s not too much of an issue for me, as I am a bookworm (heck, I work at the library!), but for whatever reason I just wasn’t feeling a long book. But I knew if I didn’t read it when I got it the first time, I probably wouldn’t be able to get my hands on it again anytime soon (as of my writing this, there are 20 people waiting on LFPL’s 5 copies). So I forced myself to check it out. And immediately got sucked in. I am so glad I read this book, and now I’m going to gush about it because no one else has had the chance to read it yet and I need to talk about it!

So, to start off, know that the author, Tomi Adeyemi is a 24 year old (!!!) Nigerian-American who LOVES anime, especially Avatar: The Last Airbender, and has said that her main inspiration for this series (that’s right, it’s the first book in a series) comes from that love of anime, the beauty of Yoruba culture, and the constant feelings of fear and hopelessness she has due to the reality of police brutality that’s so prevalent in the United States. So. That’s definitely a REAL and interesting combination of things, but it honestly does all come together in an amazing way.

Here’s the blurb that’s on the back of the book, and it does a much better job at summarizing it than I did when I tried (I tend to get distracted and go on tangents, which can be fun sometimes but not the best for summaries).Cover for Children of Blood and Bone

THEY KILLED MY MOTHER.

THEY TOOK OUR MAGIC.

THEY TRIED TO BURY US.

NOW WE RISE.

Zélie Adebola remembers when the soil of Orïsha hummed with magic. Burners ignited flames, Tiders beckoned waves, and Zélie’s Reaper mother summoned forth souls.

But everything changed the night magic disappeared. Under the orders of a ruthless king, maji were killed, leaving Zélie without a mother and her people without hope.

Now Zélie has one chance to bring back magic and strike against the monarchy. With the help of a rogue princess, Zélie must outwit and outrun the crown prince, who is hell-bent on eradicating magic for good.

Danger lurks in Orïsha, where snow leoponaires prowl and vengeful spirits wait in the waters. Yet the greatest danger may be Zélie herself as she struggles to control her powers—and her growing feelings for an enemy.

If you can’t wait to get started reading it, here are the first 6 chapters of the book, made available in a Sneak Peek by the publisher! And, once you finish it, please come talk with me about it at Bon Air Library!