OYAN Review: Jason Reynolds Talks Like an Author

This post is an article from the Spring 2018 issue of the OYAN Review and has been edited slightly for publication on the blog. It was written by Kristy Kemper Hodge at the Corvallis-Benton County Public Library.

It was Saturday night of the OASL Fall Conference, and Jason Reynolds towered on stage. He regaled us with the story of how he went from an obstinate non-reader to the author powerhouse he is today. The story begins with a much younger Jason, who grew up in a neighborhood that was dangerous and full of perils like gangs, shootings, drugs, and death. Where young men walked on one side of the law or the other, dealing and gang-banging or keeping their heads down, going to school, and staying out of trouble. Jason was able to keep out of trouble, and focus on school, but he was no reader. Why read? Why bother when there were no books about people like him? Who looked like him, talked like him, walked like him, lived like him? Or about people like his friends, family, and the people in his neighborhood? What could books possibly offer?

Then came Queen Latifah. Continue reading

OYAN Review: 90 Seconds of Fame

This post is an article from the Spring 2018 issue of the OYAN Review and has been edited slightly for publication on the blog. It was written by Sonja Somerville at the Salem Public Library.

A momentary hush fell over the room as the screen sprang to life. It was a big moment for seven members of the Salem Public Library Teen Advisory Board — a moment months in the making. They were about to see all 90 seconds of their creative retelling of Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine on the big screen, during the official screening of the annual 90-Second Newbery Film Festival.

They were ready, and perhaps a bit sheepish, as the audience met their Ella (played by an eggplant with glued-on googly eyes) and Prince Charmant (a poblano pepper with with glued-on googly eyes). But as it turns out, this madcap creative effort was a good fit for the 90-Second Newbery Film Festival, an annual project organized by James Kennedy, author of The Order of Odd-Fish.

Continue reading

OYAN Review: Better Than a Bio: Meet Greta

This post is an article from the Spring 2018 issue of the OYAN Review and has been edited slightly for publication on the blog.

OYAN Review – spring 2018

Recently I spoke with Greta Bergquist, Youth Services Consultant at the State Library. Here’s what she had to say for herself.

What’s your deal?

I love kids and libraries. And chocolate and dogs.

Tell me about a book you didn’t finish.

Cinder by Marissa Meyer. I tried to like the Lunar Chronicles because my teens did, but I just couldn’t get into them. A few of my YA favs are Angie Thomas, Nicola Yoon, Jason Reynolds, John Corey Whaley, Deborah Heiligman, Sharon Draper and Sharon Flake. I just started Saints and Misfits by S.K. Ali.

What would I find in your fridge?

Butter, lemons, eggs, spinach. And a door full of condiments.

Are you more a hunter or gatherer?

I’d rather be a gatherer but I think I’m more of a hunter.

In the movie about your life, who would play you and what genre would it be?

A comedy starring Amy Poehler.