February 23, 2018

The Advocate's Toolbox

Adult Books 4 Teens Blog Relaunches

Starting today, November 15: a revamp of SLJ’s Adult Books 4 Teens blog, with a new focus and an additional co-editor.

Originally a print column for the SLJ magazine, Adult Books 4 Teens (AB4T) debuted on SLJ.com in October 2010. Since then, the widely read blog has provided reviews of books published for the adult market that also appeal to a teen audience.

What’s different now? The blog will still push out up to three review posts a week, one with multiple titles. But it will also keep readers up to date on new trends and feature curriculum correlations, award-related news, author interviews, and more.

Remaining at the helm of AB4T is Angela Carstensen, head librarian at the Convent of the Sacred Heart in New York City and former committee chair of the Alex Awards—a distinction awarded annually by the American Library Association to adult books that can be enjoyed by young adults. She will be joined by co-editor Mark Flowers, a longtime AB4T reviewer.

Flowers, a young adult librarian at the John F. Kennedy Library in Vallejo, CA, will help oversee the blog’s 16 reviewers—school and public librarians working with teens—, review titles, and liaise with publishers. “AB4T is a tremendously useful resource for teen librarians and I’m excited to continue the great work the blog has accomplished,” he says.

While the duo will post mostly positive reviews, they will also explain why certain books didn’t make the cut. Carstensen anticipates that the new format will spark some lively debate, and she’s looking forward to the new partnership. Adult Books 4 Teens will also feature occasional in-depth pieces on stand-out books, particularly those by debut authors.

Other AB4T staples will remain the same. “We will continue to provide our popular Best of the Year So Far and Best of the Year lists in June and December,” Carstensen says.

Many past AB4T picks have later garnered accolades, including the Alex Award-winning Girl in Translation (Riverhead, 2010) by Jean Kwok; Emma Donoghue’s best-selling Room (Little, Brown, 2010), shortlisted for the Booker Prize; and Hugo and Nebula award-winning, Among Others (Tor, 2011) by Jo Walton.

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Shelley Diaz About Shelley Diaz

Shelley M. Diaz (sdiaz@mediasourceinc.com) is School Library Journal's Reviews Team Manager and SLJTeen newsletter editor. She has her MLIS in Public Librarianship with a Certificate in Children’s & YA Services from Queens College, and can be found on Twitter @sdiaz101.

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