I’ve been reading teenreads.com since the beginning of this course and have found it to be a great resource for the books I have read to date. Although I’m a strong proponent for objective information (must be my Stats and Science background), I have come to realize that in this field, subjectivity is the one valued way of evaluation. To ground the subjectivity of the reviews available on this blog, you can view the bios of the reviewers. This gives the Blog reader a better sense of the where the reviewer is coming from.
Teenreads.com provides a variety of material to assist readers, professionals, librarians and teachers alike to select the right book. Browsing the Authors tab provides you with an author Biography, a listing of the books that particular author has written and an interview script if it exists. I personally find the interviews fascinating, sometimes giving us great insight to why the author approached a particular novel the way he/she did. I was particularly interested in Nancy Werlin’s interview and discussion surrounding her “Impossible” book and Scott Westerfeld’s thoughts on his Uglies series and his latest book “Extras”. Ok – having just reread S. Westerfeld’s interview it has me curious to the point where I might seriously consider reading Extras now… hmmm – author’s mission accomplished I guess.
The Ultimate Reads section is another great resource to find great books – I’ll admit this is where I found “Impossible” before I went out to the bookstore. I took advantage of the material from teenreads.com, compiled a list of books that I was curious about then hit Chapters. I’ll admit price was the ultimate decision-maker though. There was one book, and I can’t find it now – that really peaked my interest – but only available in Hard Cover and price deterred me from purchasing it. But I used teenreads.com to find it!
Now there’s a downfall to using a great webpage as a resource – updates. I found this book title only 2 weeks ago – and now it’s … somewhere. I remember it being a new book and now without remembering a title or author name – I’m lost. I’ll have to resort to returning to the Bookstore to find it again. Although this is a great resource – and yes it is clearly being updated on a regular basis – which is a HUGE plus! It can also be a problem – as my example above.
Personally I will continue to use teenreads.com because I find the information available so invaluable. I may need to keep my lists somewhere though and not rely on my memory or on the webpage to remain stagnant. I’ve also signed up for their Newsletter – so looking forward to receiving these on a regular basis. I would highly recommend this resource to help librarians develop their YA collection. I would also recommend it to young adult readers to help them decide on a good book to read.