Staff Review: The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey

Fifth WaveWhy I Checked It Out: The 5th Wave” has been constantly flying off the shelves here at the library. I’ve picked it up a few times, but not checked it out, mainly due to my fear of alien invasion stories (I think they are scary, yes, and tend to avoid things that scare me). But when I heard that “The 5th Wave” was a Gateway nominee, I decided it was time I read it.


What It’s About: “The 5th Wave” starts off inside the head of Cassie, a 16-year-old who has survived the first four waves of the alien invasion. She is lost, confused, and very alone, her mission to save her younger brother the only thing keeping her going.

Cassie has come to believe she’s it. There might not be anyone else alive on the planet. But then she meets a boy who changes her world, and helps her survive right when she considers herself out of options.

What I Liked About It: I mean, really, this was one of the best books I’ve read in a long time. The writing was fresh and the characters felt real. I breezed through the entire book. And, don’t worry, the blurb makes it sound a little heavy on the romance, but it’s really not. It’s more about survival than anything else.

Similar Titles: Not a Drop to Drink” by Mindy McGinnis, “Enclave” by Ann Aguirre and “All Our Yesterdays” by Cristin Terrill.

Don’t forget that “The 5th Wave” is the first in a trilogy, so be sure to check out the other books in the series. The second title has already been published, “The Infinite Sea,” and the final book, “The Last Star” comes out in September.

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Registration Deadlines for Upcoming ACT & SAT Exams

Exam by Flickr User Alberto GThe registration deadlines are fast approaching for those planning to take the next round of ACT and SAT exams.

  • Registration for the October 24 ACT exam is due Friday, September 18. Sign-up online.
  • Registration for the October 3 SAT exam is due Friday, September 4. Sign-up online.

If you would like to know more about testing locations, exam costs and fee waivers, please visit our online guide to ACT/SAT preparation. The library also has a wide selection of printed ACT and SAT test guides for you to borrow.

Our most popular resource for test-takers, though, is LearningExpress Library. Through this website, you may take free online practice tests for the ACT or SAT exam. To access LearningExpress Library, you will need to login using your DBRL library card number. Your PIN is your birthdate (MMDDYYYY).  If you have questions or encounter difficulties logging in, please call  (800) 324-4806.

Finally, don’t forget to subscribe to our blog updates for regular reminders of upcoming test registration deadlines!

Photo by Flickr User Alberto G. Used under Creative Commons license.

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Staff Review: Monstrous Affections

Why I Checked It Out: This book is an anthology–it’s a bunch of short stories by a variety of different authors published in one book. I checked it out because I am always looking for new authors, and this specific anthology was geared toward fantasy and speculative fiction, which is what I love to read.

What It’s About: Well, that really depends. Which story are you talking about? One story is about a group of girls who call forth a demonic mom ghost. Another is about a demon whose friend is going insane. There’s even a story about a girl who falls in love with a robotic boyfriend. I loved most of the stories, a few weren’t for me, but either way, I checked out books by some the contributing authors that had stories I loved.

What I Liked About It: The variety! It was nice to get a bunch of different voices in one book, and story idea was unique. The nice thing is, if you don’t like one story, you can skip ahead to the next, and if you do fall in love, then you can explore more work by that author.

Other Anthologies: If you enjoyed this anthology, then definitely check out some others the library has. Here are some to get you started: “Firebird: An Anthology of Original Fantasy and Science Fiction“, “What We Remember, What we Forget: The Best Young Writers and Artists in America: A PUSH Anthology“, “The Starry Rift: Tales of New Tomorrows: An Original Science Fiction Anthology“, and “Geektastic Stories: From the Nerd Herd“. There are loads more, so be sure to check them all out.

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Summer Reading Extended Until August 19!

Comic Book Bam 1Because the Columbia Public Library was unexpectedly closed part of last week, we still are welcoming Summer Reading finishers through Wednesday, August 19! We’ve gotten some great book reviews so far, and we look forward to hearing what you have to say and seeing what free book you choose when finished!

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Voting Begins for 2015 “Teens’ Top Ten”

The “Teens’ Top Ten” is a list of recommended reading sponsored by the Young Adult Library Services Association. In fact, it’s the only reading list with titles nominated and voted on by teens.

How does it work?

Vote for the “Teens’ Top Ten!”

  • Sixteen young adult book clubs from libraries nationwide are responsible for narrowing down a list of nominees for teens to consider. (Does your book club want to get involved? Learn how.)
  • Based on the recommendations of these teen book clubs, the list of this year’s 24 nominees was announced in April during National Library Week.
  • Throughout the summer months, teens are encouraged to read as many of these titles as humanly possible.
  • Readers ages 12-18 are invited to vote online through October 17.
  • After Teen Read Week, October 18-24, the 10 most popular titles will be announced as the official 2015 “Teens’ Top Ten” list. Don’t forget to subscribe to our blog updates to have this and other teen book news delivered to your email inbox!
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ACT/SAT Test Prep Resources @ Your Library

Do you have questions about the ACT OR SAT exam? Well, DBRLTeen has answers.  We have compiled a list of resources to help you prepare for these college entrance exams.

  • How much does the ACT OR SAT exam cost?
  • Where are the testing centers in Boone and Callaway counties?
  • What are the deadlines to register for the ACT OR SAT exam?
  • Most importantly, how can I prepare for these tests?

Learn more by reviewing our online guide to ACT/SAT preparation. Young adults are also encouraged to borrow one of our many printed ACT or SAT test guides, or take free online practice exams through LearningExpress Library.  And, don’t forget to subscribe to our blog updates for regular reminders of upcoming test registration deadlines!

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Program Preview: Wii U Family Game Night

Mario Kart 8Wii U Family Game Night
Thursday, August 27 • 6:00 p.m.
Columbia Public Library

Try out the library’s Wii U game console. Become a dancing superstar in “Just Dance 2015″ or a gold cup winner in “Mario Kart 8.” Snacks provided. Ages 10 and older. Parents welcome. Registration required. To sign up, please call (573) 443-3161.

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Books for Dudes – Stranger

StrangerDid you grow up learning the “Stranger danger” rule? That phrase is given a whole new meaning in “Stranger” (#1 in The Change series) by Rachel Manija Brown and Sherwood Smith.

After a planet-wide cataclysm, the entire world was changed by radiation. Many gained a mutation, referred to as “the Change,” which grants people various powers. (Think X-Men, except the Change occurs not only during puberty but also when hormones may be high such as in pregnancy.) Glass trees kill with flying shards, pit mouths swallow whole groups of people…it’s a pretty dangerous place.

The setting for this story is a town called Las Anclas. The sheriff has super speed and strength, the mayor and his family are suspected of hating non-normals, and the community gets completely changed when a new stranger, Ross Juarez, comes to town. The teenage prospector has found an ancient relic – a book – that causes first a  bounty hunter and then many more people to come after him.

Really enjoyed the descriptions of unusual powers and mutated creatures in this book. Like many good books, each chapter features one of a rotating cast of characters, so you get more than one character’s perspective in the story. Despite being the first in the series, this book on its own is a satisfying read. But if you want to keep reading to see what happens…”Hostage” is the next book in the series, with a third book, “Rebel,” coming soon.

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