Tip of the Day: Carry an umbrella. One that won't flip inside out with a sudden gust of wind. (It's just embarassing.)
I decided to do a Book Talk for the teens at my library. I read tons of books, so it should easy to pick a novel to discuss, right?
I realized that in order to appeal to the largest number of teens, I had to really think about what book to pick. I needed a novel that:
1) Appeals to boys and girls (so probably a boy MC)
2) Isn't too depressing
3) Is out in paperback (so I could afford to buy a copy for 15 teens)
4) Isn't too old/dated (so not too many teens read it already or think it's "old fashioned")
5) Appeals to readers 12-18 (though most of my participants will probably be 12-14)
6) Isn't about too controversial a topic (so parents won't yell at me)
7) Has an author who is contactable online (so I could ask for autographed bookplates for the books)
I posted my question and my list of requirements to the YA Librarian Listserv for my county, and got lots of helpful replies (thanks, all!), and some suggestions of what books worked for them (though many successful novels were definitely "girl books"). Some of the suggestions were for books I'd read and liked, but wasn't passionate about. Others were for books I hadn't read yet and now will read. But time was ticking for me to decide what book to talk!
With all the advice, I thought and branched out on my own. I chose NOTES FROM THE MIDNIGHT DRIVER by Jordan Sonnenblick.
It fit all the requirements and is funny, too! The author has also agreed to send me bookplates! An extra plus is that JS's first novel, DRUMS, GIRLS, AND DANGEROUS PIE is on the local required summer reading list. Hopefully teens will love that book as much as I did, and jump at the chance to read his next.
Of course, all of this made me think about if any of my books fit my own list of Book Talk requirements.
Oh no! They do not! I have all girl MCs! Crap.
What about you? Do you wonder if your book will be talked? Or chosen as a summer reading requirement for a school?
Deena, Miss Recently Repped