Well, in the big scheme of things, WE ALL MAKE A DIFFERENCE….and following that universal advice, the launch meeting of the SPL  Teen Advisory Group (for lack of a final decision of nomenclature) met Saturday, Sept. 19.  This is the beginning of what I hope can be a true participatory opportunity for teens (6th-12th grades) to make a difference in their public library.  Form follows function so as the group (and future attendees) develops our mission, goals & form, we’ll keep you posted.  I am very excited about the input a TAG can make on the Teen Reads Area, programming, and outreach.  I’ve already got the word that YES, the Sandwich Teen Reads SHOULD have a Facebook account.  Just an aside, the benefits of being on a TAG (besides a fine free library life) could be but are not exclusive to…making an impact on your community, meeting others involved in making the library a better place for teens, improving services for your friends and others at the library…well, I can go on, but how about just checking out some of the links over to the right for Library TAGS, TABS, TFL.  I thank the teens who came Saturday.  There is a lot of depth there already.  Thanks for tuning in.  I promise the next entry will be about books.  By the way, what have you read, listened to or heard about lately?  I’d love to know.


What just happened…Summer?


Yup…no hellos, hi’s, how you doin’s since July 10th…that’s just impolite.  Of course, that does not mean I haven’t been here and it certainly doesn’t mean YOU haven’t been here (the library) does it?  My apologies.  Doing a blog requires discipline and wordage.  Wordage I have, getting to the blog to put in a few words is different.  I just want to thank  ALL THE SUMMER READERS WHO SIGNED UP ONLINE- 64 this summer – 274 books read – 154 reviews!  AND, the most incredible group of TEEN VOLUNTEERS!  Over 500 hours of teen power  helped the Children’s Room and the Adult Desk sail smootherly this summer.  Thank you to Kiwanis Levreault Trust, too, for all their $$ donated to make programming possible this summer.




teenstoptenBack to the books, though.  TEEN READ WEEK IS COMING UP…October 18-24…THEME – READ BEYOND REALITY @ YOUR LIBRARY.  That sets readers up for a lot of choices like The Hunger Games, City of Ember, Enders Game, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Universe, and many, many more.  You decide your version of  ‘beyond reality’ (What is reality?) and you will find a story, book, graphic novel, poem, etc. to fill in the reality part.  I am also issueing a call to vote for the Teen Top Ten via this link and then click on the vote link. These books are great and YOU can help choose the best of the lot.

WANT TO BE AN INFLUENCER?  Saturday, September 19th at 3 pm I am holding a gathering for those teens (12-18 years) who would like to be in on creating teen policy, programs, atmosphere and more.  This is the ground work for a Teen Advisory Council here at SPL.  If you need community service hours, if you like to run the show but know how to collaborate, if you just like the library and get frustrated because you have a better idea, please stop by.  Stop by for a refreshing dose of something and see if this might be for you.

In the meantime, welcome back…I promise to be more timely AND I am STILL LOOKING for COMMENTATORS, BOOK REVIEWERS and even ART FOR THIS BLOG…see me at the library or email Thanks.  :O) Kathy Johnson

Summer Wrap-up hoola hoop challenge

Summer Wrap-up with Ooch...

FIND WHAT’S OUT THERE AT YOUR LIBRARY…what’s that all about?


Registration is up and running for the summer reads online program for readers entering grades 6th thru 10th.  The link is next to the posts.  You can keep your book list up-to-date, submit reviews and be entered in an end of summer drawing for a MP3 Player, Itunes cards and other good stuff.  Take a look at upcoming Teen Events starting with the July 2nd Mehndi for Teens with returning Mehndi artist, Su Coburn.  Last summer both the girls and boys enjoyed getting this ‘temporary tattoo’ art. Check this site out for info:

As for the books, I just finished reading The Other Side of the Island which was great.  I received a lot of good reads  recommendations at the schools when Mr. Parsons and I visited to sell the summer reads programs.  There is so much out there, TOO MUCH OF A GOOD THING?  I don’t think so, you just have to learn how to make choices because, frankly, you’ll probably be  doing more than just reading this summer.  But I do want to promote the ‘Just Show Up’ Teen Book Discussion on July 16th (Down the Rabbit Hole) and August 6 (The Other Side of the Island).  Copies are still available for those early signer uppers.
I’ll be accessing some new titles this week, so keep an eye out for them.  In the meantime, if you are reading this blog, send some comments/reviews/suggestions in….I’d love someone else’s opinion other than my own.  See ya. 



The library staff (Children’s & Teen) are in full swing readying  for the summer theme.  For kids it’s ‘Starship Adventure at your Library’; for teens it is ‘Find What’s Out There at your Library.’  Maybe you wonder why the jedi thing is up there in the title….well, glad you asked.  As I read the Cape Cod Times article on Sandwich High School’s graduation, there was Kevin Jumper (or is it Peter?), valedictorian, mentioning Yoda and Master Luke Skywalker.  AND Mr. Parsons & I have been featuring some of those same Star Wars icons in our presentations to the younger grades.  So, what is it with the Star Wars motif?  Is it the hero aspect, is it the amazing special effects of the movies, is the iconic story of good versus evil or is it just commercialism with a really long shelf life?  I don’t know.  There is something to be said about science fiction and the way a good sci-fi novel tells a story.  So, what is the point of this paragraph?  Just to entice you to check out the pages on the 2 books we’ll be doing for the ‘Just Show Up’ Teen Book Discussions:  Down the Rabbit Holeby Cape author, Peter Abrahams and The Other Side of the Island by Allegra Goodman.  The 1st book is a mystery and the 2nd is science fiction.  The cool thing about these 2 discussions (7/16 & 8/6) is that the first 10 readers who sign up receive a copy of the book to keep.  You don’t HAVE to register to come, just show up if you like.  Take a look at the page entitled ‘Just Show Up’ for a simple expose of the 2 books. 

If you are a reader entering 6th grade through 9th grade, register online at, click on ‘S’ for Sandwich, for the ‘Find What’s Out There’ at your Library summer read program for teens.  Just registering gets you nifty flying thing as a gift at the end of the summer.  If you complete the task of reading 5 books (graphic novels & manga/anime count as does non-fiction) you get an invite to the summer wrap-up party with Brett ‘YoYo Man’ Outchcunis on August 13th, Thursday. If you register, read the five books AND submit a book review or two (or three, four, five…there is no cutoff) that fits the review criteria, THEN your name is entered to win decent MP3 player,  I Tunes cards and/or cool something.  Hope you do.  Anyway, more about that later.  Always, if you have questions you can email me at  More later, I have to find that article to make sure I have the SHS valedictorian and salutatorian correct.



    I know that this is mainly a book blog but I have to tell you about this anyway…For four Wednesdays in May, 6:15-7:00 pm in Room 2 at the library, Cyndi Denmat will be doing a yoga program for teens in 7th-9th grades.  Cyndi offered to do this (her daughter is a senior this year at SHS I think.) as a way to reduce the stress of transition (junior high to high school), dealing with life’s little dramas and as a healthy choice for pressurized (or those who don’t want to be so) teens.  There is no cost and you don’t have to go to all four sessions.  Registration is recommended online at, Events Calendar.  I suppose you could even learn to read a book while doing the ‘tree’ but maybe not.  OK, that’s it.



Do you ever listen to NPR, probably (?) not BUT nevertheless I have to mention something I heard on “This American Life” with Ira Glass.  It was Brent Runyon reading the first chapter from his book The Burn Journals.  I  have never read this book though have heard about it.  When Brent was 14 years old he stepped into his bathtub at home, wrapped in a bathrobe soaked with gas and, yes, lit a match.  He lived.  And he is continuing to live on Cape Cod.  So, what do I do?  I go to our YA non-fiction section and pull the book to read.  I also pull a fiction book  Brent has written (Maybe) and Jack Gantos’ A Hole in My Life.  That last book I have read.  So, none of these books are the pretty kind.  They are the kind of reading you might take up when the world sucks hasn’t been kind and you need someone else’s story to take your mind off your own.  You know you will never BE this person, but you could be a friend, an acquaintance, an enemy or just a passerby and there is something in THIS person’s story you hear loud and clear.  Everyone has a story.  Everyone doesn’t write their story.  And everyone who writes their story certainly doesn’t get it published.  Going back to Brent Runyon, though, he didn’t get through this life changing event alone, and he didn’t write the book alone.  Read the dedication.  What is your prompt to pick up a book, to go looking for it.  This time mine was the radio.  I am looking forward to reading this story even if it doesn’t feature gorgeous vampires, extraordinary powers or really big words, just a kid who survived real life.

Look to Your Computer Right….


Please check out the links to your computer right.  Highly recommended are the Readrgirlz & Guylitwire for recommendations.  Also, the book reviews – so far – are all mine (but I feel I’m fairly decent at doing this) but WOULD I LIKE TO HAVE LOCAL TEENS REVIEW BOOKS ON THIS BLOG? For sure, so please contact me via the email if you even want to take on one book you highly recommend.  Other than that, I’ll just keeping keyboarding away and searching for great links and great books for Sandwich teen readers.  Thanks.

Andy Fish & Veronic Hebard inspire future cartoonists & manga artists!