OYAN Review: A Room of Their Own: Teens Get a New Space at The Dalles-Wasco County Library

This post is an article from the Spring 2017 issue of the OYAN Review and has been edited slightly for publication on the blog. It was written by Megan A. Hoak of The Dalles-Wasco County Library.

floor plan for a teen space in a public libraryThis summer, The Dalles-Wasco County Library will open a new teen area. This space has been specifically designed for students in 6th-12th grade. The library is utilizing a $40,000 Capacity Grant from Oregon Cultural Trust, in conjunction with matching funds from Google, in order to repurpose a 1,020 square foot section of the library’s second floor.

The library applied for the grant in April of 2016 after seeing an 87% increase in attendance at library programs for middle and high school students. This dramatic increase, along with the desire to help improve local high school graduation rates, served as the inspiration for this project.

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OYAN Review: Awarding Mock Printz!

This post is an article from the Spring 2017 issue of the OYAN Review and has been edited slightly for publication on the blog. It was written by Ian Duncanson of the Beaverton City Library and Lisa Elliot of the Tigard Public Library.

The cover of the book The Lie Tree by Frances HardingeLisa: On January 21, 35 folks attended the 2017 Mock Printz work shop at the Central Branch of Multnomah Public Library. Meanwhile, 100,000 people descended on downtown Portland for the Women’s March. That’s right, 100,000 demonstrators, 35 workshop attendees, and I still got a parking spot. For next year, we’ll work a little harder to anticipate political upheaval, thus avoiding major advocacy schedule conflicts. For this year, however, I was happy to spend the afternoon in a warm, dry room with 35 librarians and teens in solidarity over our love of good books. Ian, how was your day?

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OYAN Book Rave 2017 winners!

Lover Book by flickr user Hazel Marie. Shows a red heart held between the pages of a bookEvery year, OYAN members choose their favorite novels for teens from the past two years. Nominations depend upon what the nominator thinks teens in Oregon will like to read or have been reading with enthusiasm, and the final list is created based on a vote of the OYAN membership. (For details, see the official selection process.)

The votes have been counted; here are this year’s winners!

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Congratulations to OYEA winner Megan Hoak!

A photograph of a young white woman with red hair. She is wearing glasses and is looking up and to the left with her chin propped in her hand.Congratulations to the 2017 OYEA (OYAN’s You’re Excellent Award) winner Megan Hoak! Megan is the Teen Services Coordinator at the Dalles-Wasco County Public Library and, by the testimonials below from her teens, we’re convinced that she’s crushing it. She’s committed to her community, and it shows in both big and small ways. Read on to hear directly from her teens.

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Booktalk: Steeplejack by A.J. Hartley

This booktalk was written by Susan Smallsreed of the Northwest Library, part of the Multnomah County Library system.

The book cover for A.J. Hartley's SteeplejackIn an alternate South Africa, steeplejacks climb the highest chimneys & buildings to repair the bricks & mortar that hold them up. And the faster they work, the more money they make for their gang and themselves.

Anglet Sutonga has made a name and living for herself as the best steeplejack in the city. She works more quickly and more efficiently than anyone else. That status provides some protection from the brutality of her gangleader because he doesn’t want to risk losing one of his best sources of income. But if Ang doesn’t perform, all bets are off. And at 17, Ang could also be used for prostitution, a fate she wants to avoid at all costs.

So when she’s told to train a new apprentice, she agrees, even though she knows that this one is afraid of heights. When he doesn’t show at the right time, Ang goes looking for him. Unfortunately, the reason he didn’t show up? He’s dead.

The authorities think he slipped and fell. And since he’s just another one of those poor, lower caste Lani kids, why bother to investigate? Ang thinks he was murdered and that he deserves justice, the same as if he’d been a white Feldish kid. But what to do about it?

And then the Beacon, the source of energy and light for the entire city, is stolen. And it had to have involved a steeplejack … a really good steeplejack … someone as good or even better than Ang.

Are the theft and murder related? How will she keep the gang happy, protect herself AND solve two crimes? Read Steeplejack by A.J. Hartley.