Wednesday, August 18, 2010


Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater
17-year-old Grace has been fascinated with the wolves that live in the woods near her Minnesota town ever since she was attacked by the pack as a child and then rescued by a single wolf.

18-year-old Sam has been fascinated by Grace since the day of her attack--the day that he, in the form of a wolf, rescued her and returned her safely to her home.

Grace and Sam finally meet up in human form when he is injured by hunters. The teens quickly fall in love...but how long can their love last? Soon, the winter cold will force him back into the shape of a wolf...and this time, the change may last forever.

This tale of star-crossed lovers is a natural choice for fans of Twilight as well as readers who want a supernatural romance with better writing than most of the vampire books currently available. There is some implied (off-page) violence when local hunters decide to kill the wolves, and some tactful Star Trek sex scenes between Grace and Sam.

Shiver is the first in a series; book #2 Linger was released July 20th, 2010.

Recommended for readers ages 12 to adult.

This is Aarene's review of this book. To read Mary Jo's review of Shiver, click HERE.

Monday, August 16, 2010

"Star Trek Sex" - what is it, and how can I get some?

In our Sex In the Library programs in schools and at library conferences, we sometimes identify books as containing "Star Trek Sex."

So, what the heck is Star Trek Sex, anyhow?

Star Trek Sex is....


you know....

Captain Kirk is making eyes at some alien lady who just wants to suck all the salt out of his blood or turn him into a green-skinned demigod or something.

They get closer, and closer. And closer.

Then the music comes up, the focus goes soft and....


After 180 seconds of commercial interruption:
Captain Kirk is pulling on his boots and the alien lady is brushing her hair. Pretty soon the Red Alert will sound, the dilithium crystals will deteriorate in some unexplainable manner, and some guy in a red shirt will disappear mysteriously....

THAT is Star Trek Sex:

We all know what happened during the commercial break, but nobody saw a thing!

A lot of teen books contain the literary equivalent of Star Trek Sex. It's all romance and soft music leading to the end of a chapter.

Turn the page...and suddenly, the protagonists are passing notes in algebra class.

Sometimes, the Star Trek Sex is so subtle that readers can miss it entirely.

Such was the case with Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater. Mary Jo read and reviewed this book along with 7 others in a single week...and she read so quickly that she completely missed the Star Trek Sex, and her review reported "no sex in this book."
Thankfully, the author alerted us to the mistake.

"...there IS sex in Shiver!" she wrote in the blog comments.

She's totally right. It took me a while to find it, but there it was, on page 294 (paperback edition): Star Trek Sex. Subtle, pretty, and sexy. (It's a terrific read, by the way. I loved this book!)

Our apologies, Maggie Stiefvater. There IS sex in Shiver.

No aliens, though. Unless I missed them?

Saturday, August 14, 2010

We *heart* Victoria BC

We'd like to thank the organizing committee of the PNLA/WLA conference of librarians in Victoria BC this past weekend for putting on a terrific shindig.

We'd also like to thank all the librarians who showed up for our program, asked questions, and proudly wore the "I HAD SEX IN THE LIBRARY TODAY" badges after.

We brought a huge box of the most fascinating, exciting, controversial

and passionate new books written for teen audiences.

Here are a few photos from our journey:

The view from our bathroom window at the Empress.

In the morning, there was tapping at the window. "Hey lady!"

I was hoping that the gull was there to deliver my Hogwarts letter, or at least The Daily Prophet. But no. He just wanted some cashews and cranberries.
Ah, well. The window was a good place to finish reading a few more books for our presentation.
Out in the harbor, we saw dragonboat races!

Around the edge of the harbour, we saw live music and met craftspeople.
We saw the horse-drawn carriages (the horse photo is here for the benefit of the readers of my other blog!)

I saw beautiful flowers at the Buchart Gardens. and, of course, enjoyed the food.
Thanks again, everyone!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Sex on the Road

We're all packed up and ready to hit the road to Victoria BC for the Washington Library Association/Pacific Northwest Library Association conference.

Join us for steamy booktalks and hot giveaways at the Friday afternoon session at the Empress. It starts at 2:15, not 2:30 as originally advertised.

See you there!

The Sky is Everywhere

Sky is Everywhere (The) by Jandy Nelson

Lennie (named for John Lennon) is trying to recover from the sudden heart attack of her 19 year old super-star sister, Bailey. She is also falling for the new kid in school, Joe.

In trying to help Lennie and himself, Bailey’s boyfriend Troy, (they had agreed to be married) makes advances toward her. This natural effect of death leads both of them down a very guilt-ridden and ultimately destructive path, especially in the light of Lennie’s new found romance.

The main characters are believable, lovable, and quirky, as are Lennie’s grandmother and “Uncle Big.”

You will love this novel: just beware of language, underage drinking, and sexual exploration.

Will Grayson, Will Grayson

Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan

This collaborative novel brings together two people both improbably named Will Grayson: one straight, best friend of Tiny (soooo not- think Refrigerator Perry) who is the most “out” gay student you have met in a long time; the other Will is also gay, but having a difficult time dealing with it.

Told in alternating chapters of the two very different Wills, who ultimately answer the questions “what is a friend? What is love?”

You will love this funny, quirky novel, but be careful of the sexual language- inappropriate for middle school, although this is needed there.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Goth Girl Rising

Goth Girl Rising by Barry Lyga

Sequel to The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl, told from Kyra’s point of view.

While we wanted a sequel, this isn’t it.

Goth Girl in this one is mad at the world, just out of a mental institution, with all of the vitriol and none of the zest. There are some great letters to her idol, Neil Gaiman, and readers will want to listen to her, but will also want the “old” alive Kyra, and she just isn’t there.

In addition, this one is squarely in the high school category while the first was accessible for middle school.

Very LeFreak

Very Le Freak by Rachel Cohn

Very (Veronica) has always been a “love ‘em and leave ‘em” kind of gal. She is also techno-obsessed. She is always plotting a playlist based on what is happening to her at any moment. So far, her roommate has not just put up with her, but helped her out of problematic situations, until she not only ditches her best friend after having sex, but to show that they have really broken up, she goes down on him while (unknowing to her) her roommate watches.

There is an intervention, and Very is forced to a 12-step techno camp.

As with other Cohn books, we love the heroine, and will only find her in a public library…


Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater

Tired of the Twilight hoopla?

Try this- Grace has always been drawn to the wolves, even as a six year old when she was pulled into their pack to be eaten- only to be saved by “her wolf.” When they finally meet, the romance just sizzles.

The characters are wonderfully drawn and alive. The plot is complex, and the sequel Tremor Linger will be out in July.

While there is no sex in the first novel, we can only hope for the second!

This is Mary Jo's review of Shiver. To read Aarene's review of the same book, click HERE.

My Parents are Sex Maniacs

My Parents are Sex Maniacs by Robyn Harding

Louise has great plans for her 11th grade year with her best friend Sienna. Then her brother walks in on her father “inflagrante” with Sienna’s mother during his 40th birthday party. She and Sienna vow to be friends; this will not deter their friendship.

However Sienna grabs a chance to be part of the “in crowd,” and when Louise’s mother becomes pregnant- with their Algebra teacher, Sienna abandons her. Louise thinks the world has gone mad and is sick of it all.

The scene with her brother and Siena aside- oh, and the fact that her mother and her Algebra teacher are not yet married- this is a great junior high novel.

Monday, August 9, 2010


Falling by Doug Wilhelm

Matt and his brother Neal were both star basketball players. Neal was not offered the scholarship he wanted, and decided to “take the year off.” This means that Neal began a life of selling and using drugs. Matt reacts by dropping out of everything and walking after school to avoid going home, to avoid his basketball friends, to avoid his life. He finds his life online a pseudo-life, meeting Katie, a girl who accidentally goes to the same high school, and they become friends after the usual trauma of finding out who each other is.

The brothers have the usual set of clueless parents, caring friends, and problems finding the right path. The story however, is satisfying in a problem-solving, suspenseful plot. Told alternately by Katie and Matt, so we get their viewpoints as well as their friends. The email link can be problematic enough to talk about.

While there is an obvious romance, there is no sex.

The Deadly Sister

The Deadly Sister by Eliot Schrefer
Abbey is jogging and finds the body of a popular fellow classmate. Jefferson. She also finds her sister’s cell phone next to the body. Her sister Maya is a known stoner, school dropout, and unpredictable character. And Abbey’s only thought is to save her and find the real killer.

The plot twists nicely, leading us down many paths, through Maya’s tattoo artist and cross-dressing friends, past Jefferson’s obvious need to have sex with and control every girl, through his drug dealing, into his trailer home and nerdy brother, who is set up by a panicking Abbey as the killer.

There is enough suspense to make this a completely satisfying story – one where the suspense follows all the way to the last word. 8th graders will love this. The high school crowd will own it completely.


Sea by Heidi Kling
After her mother died in a plane crash in the Indian Ocean, Sienna has had a hard time dealing with anything related to her mother : surfing, (and the boy who surfed with her) airplanes, and of course, her father’s new girlfriend. In fact, she has constant nightmares.

Her parents have long been involved with international relief after disasters, and for her 15th birthday, her father gives her (read that forces her to go with him ) to Indonesia for two weeks. There she meets Deni, a boy who has lost his entire family, and with whom she instantly falls in love. Deni is convinced that his father is still alive, searching for him, especially after he has heard of someone asking for a Deni.

The horrors of the 2004 tsunami are downplayed for a young audience, as are the cultural differences- most of the children, including Deni, are Muslim. Deni acts more like a modern US teen, and he and Sienna fly back to his hometown (on her credit card) to find his father- alone.

The story is implausible, but compelling. More problematic is the lack of ability to inform a young audience about the Indonesian or Muslim culture, making one wonder if the author understood them.

The ending is satisfying and surprising, and Sienna is found by her father, who is only happy to see her, and they fly home, no questions asked, and no consequences for her actions. Aside from this typical TV style California family, the story is appealing on many levels and teens will enjoy it. It is too bad that it missed so many chances to be a great story.

Appropriate for middle school through high school.

The Carrie Diaries

The Carrie Diaries by Candace Bushnell

Ever wonder what happened to Carrie before the “Sex in the City” movie? OK, I didn’t either. But teens have seen the movie, and will jump at the chance to read this.

Carrie is growing up in a small town and wants nothing more than to be a writer and live in New York City. Into her senior year walks Sebastian Kydd, and predictably turns the year upside down. Carrie falls in love. Sebastian is the typical flawed character that Carrie finally understands at last.

The plot is predictable, and clearly written for teens who have watched the movie and know Carrie as an adult. Carrie clearly is the only virgin in the world, finds smoking and drinking just what teens do, has a single father who is just plain silly, and friends who have all the trauma of high school.

I found the constant smoking and drinking out of place, the attitudes toward sex only worthy of a book, and Carrie herself just annoying. By the time she finally stands up for herself, I just didn’t care. If you haven’t gone to the beach this summer, and you loved the move, take this along- and leave it. If your summer is over, just move on too.

Before I Fall

Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver

Samantha has always been part of the popular crowd. Freshmen don’t dare speak to her. Sam is looking forward to Valentine’s Day, where she expects to come close to winning the competition- who receives more roses. Later she will have to go to Kent’s party (her childhood friend) because everyone is. And she has promised her popular boyfriend that they will also have sex later. It is obvious that all is not perfect in Camelot, but what else could you want in high school?

This perfect life is thrown upside down when Sam is in a car accident with her friends after the party, and dies. She relives the day over and over, in fact, herself alluding to the movie “Groundhog Day.” And following that same movie plot, she figures she is immune to repercussions, even going so far as to seducing her math teacher- in school. But gradually, of course, she understands that not only does she have a chance to change her behavior and attitudes, but also that she is caught in this endless loop until she does figure it out.

Very predictable, but still entirely enjoyable. The situations are very realistic, nicely paced, and even fun. Because of the sex, this should be placed in high school, but could be given to that 8th grade girl who loves those “edgy” books.

This review was written by Mary Jo. To read Aarene's review of this book, click here.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Come to Canada and have Sex with us!

High Tea and Sex! What could be better?

(ummmm, those little sandwiches for after, maybe?)
Join the Two Sexy Librarians at the 2010 PNLA/WLA conference, August 11 - 14 in Victoria, British Columbia.

Our conference session is scheduled for Friday afternoon, 2:30 to 3:45 pm.

We'll talk about the newest and steamiest titles in teen lit, and we'll have plenty of HOT giveaways as well, including the always popular badge sticker, which proudly proclaims:


We know you want it.

See you in Canada, eh?