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October 9, 2012 > Teen Read Week October 14th - 20th

Teen Read Week October 14th - 20th

By Kathleen Hannon

If you've stopped by your local library in the fall, you'll find it a very busy place, and not just because students are going back to school. There are many special events that libraries promote at this time of year, such as National Library Card month and Banned Books Week in September. This October libraries will be encouraging teens to pick up a book just for fun during Teen Read Week, which runs from October 14th through October 20th. Begun by the Young Adult Services Association in 1998, the theme of this year's Teen Read Week is "It Came From the Library."

And, while librarians and teachers are very good at promoting reading, one of the best ways to encourage teens to develop a love of reading begins at home. In other words, having children see parents pick up a book to read instead of the remote can make a big impression. Certainly adult readers all have their favorite types of books to read, but in honor of Teen Read Week, perhaps parents could check out something from the teen section of the library.

Interestingly enough, a recent survey of those reading young adult literature found that thirty per cent of the readers were adults. That's probably not so surprising considering the recent popularity of the "Twilight" and "Hunger Games" series. Also, most books written for teens are very interesting and well-written because they almost have to compete with many other activities which can occupy young adults' time. A novel has to be very special to tear teens away from cell phones, Facebook, TV, extracurricular activities, and homework.

Here are some suggestions for books to read and/or share with your teens during Teen Read Week, or for the upcoming winter holidays:

"Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children" by Ransom Riggs is a great choice for October with its somewhat spooky plot that is part mystery, part fantasy, part science fiction, and a little romance. This novel is also a good example of a teen book read by adults, since it's on many adult reading clubs booklists. The author's use of old photographs as illustrations is very original.

How about sharing a book that is going to the big screen? "The Perks of Being a Wallflower" by Stephen Chbosky or a classic like "The Hobbit" by J. R. Tolkien , a prequel to "The Lord of the Rings," are two great examples of books coming out as movies this year.

If these books do not seem very interesting, check out the Alameda County Library website: www.aclibrary.org and go to the "Teens" tab, then "Books," and you'll find the "Teens Top Ten List," a great selection of young adult books for parents and teens to read and share.

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