November 17, 2017

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The Fast and the Feisty | “Insurgent” Film Review

After the heavy plot lifting in the first film based on Veronica Roth’s “Divergent” trilogy (HarperCollins) viewers are in for a smoother ride in the adaptation of her second installment, Insurgent. It speeds past intricate intrigues and sketchy characterizations, moving like a sleek roller coaster ride, free from clunky exposition.

Creating a School Library Makerspace: The Beginning of a Journey | Tech Tidbits

After chasing down the funding, and getting input from colleagues and adviser, Phil Goerner is about to launch a makerspace focused on the basics—with room to grow—in Silver Creek (CO) High School’s library.

A Focus on Diversity and Savvy Blogging Drive KidLitCon 2014

For the first time, the Kidlitosphere Conference (KidLitCon) had a theme: “Blogging Diversity in Young Adult and Children’s Lit: What’s Next?”

‘The Giver’ Movie and other Tales for Teens About a World Gone Wrong

First published in 1993, Lois Lowry’s The Giver makes its long-awaited big screen debut on August 15. Recommend these recent YA releases to fans of the unforgettable dystopian novel.

The Story Behind Adele Griffin’s Hybrid Novel, ‘The Unfinished Life of Addison Stone’

Librarian and blogger Liz Burns shares an inside look at YA author Adele Griffin’s format-bending faux biography of a teen artist, The Unfinished Life of Addison Stone.

A Teacher Librarian’s Path to Becoming a Google Educator | Tech Tidbits

Inspired by the recent Innovative Education in Colorado Conference, teacher librarian Phil Goerner set out to become a certified Google Educator this summer. Here’s what he learned.

Page to Screen: Kid & YA Lit Flicks to Look Forward to After ‘The Fault in Our Stars’

With the success of Divergent and The Book Thief, Hollywood continues to tap kid’s books, from classic fairy tales to the latest dystopian, for new ideas. To celebrate the highly the anticipated big screen version of John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars, starring Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort, SLJ has compiled a list of upcoming projects that will be coming to a screen near you.

‘300: Rise of an Empire’ Reinterprets Ancient History with 21st-Century Flair | Media Mania

Fans of 300, closely based on Frank Miller’s superb graphic novel, will be thrilled with the March 7 release of 300: Rise of an Empire (R), also inspired by a graphic novel by Miller (the not-yet published Xerxes). This time, the combat action moves to the high seas.

‘I, Frankenstein’: A New Creature Feature and a Selection of Monstrously Good Reads for Teens

Opening in theaters on January 24, I, Frankenstein (PG-13) provides a fresh take on a classic character set in an alternate modern-day world. Help teens make a connection between movie incarnations of this fearsome protagonist and the tale’s early 19th-century literary inspiration with a spine-tingling selection of graphic novels and reimaginings.

Page to Screen: A Year’s Worth of New Adaptations

As 2014 peeks around the corner, SLJ looks ahead to future releases in this latest installment of our roundup of the most highly anticipated franchise openers and long-awaited big screen versions of children’s classics.

Creature Feature: Fanciful Characters Drove this Transmedia Story

In an ambitious foray into transmedia, Razorbill has teamed with pecial effects company Framestore to produce The Creature Department (2013). The making of the new novel by Robert Paul Weston, starring a cast of fantastical characters, was a unique collaboration with Framestore (creators of the Geico Gecko), which played an active role in the book’s creation.

This article was published in School Library Journal's December 2013 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Into the Dragon’s Lair | SLJ Reviews ‘The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug’

Multiple beheadings, one impaling, and an omnipresent necromancer—these are just three indications that director Peter Jackson’s adaptation of J. R. R. Tolkien’s 1937 adventure/fantasy The Hobbit has taken a dark turn. The short novel has been expanded into what might amount to a nearly nine-hour-long trilogy—turning what seems a fireside yarn in print into an overlong saga on the screen.

Smoldering Glances and Hot-and-Humid Heroics | SLJ Reviews ‘Catching Fire’ Film

In this second foray into Suzanne Collins’s “Hunger Games” trilogy, the filmmakers approach Catching Fire’s dystopian derring-do with deadly seriousness. Though a new director, Francis Lawrence, has taken over the franchise from The Hunger Games’s Gary Ross, it has been a smooth transition.

Death Comes to the Multiplex | SLJ Reviews ‘The Book Thief’ Film

How does a filmmaker adapt Markus Zusak’s bestseller The Book Thief, written in Death’s candid point of view? Director Brian Percival tackles that question and more in this atypical family movie set in Nazi Germany. Starring Geoffrey Rush, Emily Watson, and Sophie Nélisse, the adaptation expands to theaters nationwide in the coming weeks.

Kissing Cousins, Killing Fields | SLJ Reviews ‘How I Live Now’ Film

For those who can’t wait two more weeks to see Catching Fire, relief is at hand. The taut How I Live Now offers a slimmed down dystopian world at its most bucolic—a survival tale meets hot-and-heavy first love with a punkish swagger. The screenwriters have tweaked the snarky-but-soft-hearted narration of Meg Rosoff’s absorbing novel (Random, 2004), but given the heroine a still-defiant voice.

Kids in Space, Trained to Kill | SLJ Reviews ‘Ender’s Game’ Film

There are moments in the sleek-but-not-too-flashy adaptation of Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s Game when the film takes flight. It feels like child’s play, and the audience forgets briefly that the on-screen kids, the smartest in the world, are being groomed to kill at a Battle School in space. The screenplay hews closer to the book than a potential franchise template.

Book App Alliance Aids Discovery of Kids’ Interactive Books

The Book App Alliance aims to help locate quality book apps amid the tides of Disney, Dora, and Dr. Seuss products. Alliance founders also want to foster best practices.

YA Novels Go to the Movies | Media Mania

From a soul-searing work of historical fiction to an array of dystopic tales that envision the not-so-distant future, four much-lauded young adult novels have been adapted for the big screen, all slated to premiere in November. Help teens make the connection between book and film by displaying, booktalking, and discussing these attention-worthy offerings.

Page to Screen: From YA Bestsellers to Big-Screen Blockbusters

While the jury is still out on the big screen adaptation of Cassandra Clare’s City of Bones, reviewers are raving about the surprise indie hit The Spectacular Now, based on Tim Tharp’s young adult novel. Children’s books continue to be Hollywood’s go-to source for inspiration, and librarians couldn’t be happier. As readers and movie fans await the book-to-film entries coming this fall, such as Suzanne Collins’s Catching Fire and Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s Game, SLJ looks ahead to future releases in this latest installment of Page to Screen.

Bedeviled, Besotted, and Bewildered | SLJ Reviews ‘City of Bones’ Film

The first movie adaptation of Cassandra Clare’s popular series, The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones, is out in theaters on August 21. Lily Collins as Clarissa “Clary” Fray and Jamie Campbell Bower as Jace star in the action-fantasy, which provides the thrill of the chase and a sprinkling of the romance for its core audience.