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New Middle-Grades Trilogy: The Brightstone Saga

14 Aug

The Brightworking: Book I of the Brightstone Saga

The Brightworking: Book I of the Brightstone Saga by Paul B. Thompson

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

The Brightstone Saga is a forthcoming fantasy trilogy from Enslow Publishers. The Brightworking was a relatively light story that was easily digestible and takes place in a world of ancient magic, which I can see appealing to middle-grade students. This could certainly pass as a read-alike for the youngest Harry Potter fans, but lacks the depth those fans may be used to. The story does not waste much time with background and setting details and gets right into the action of the story, but the trade-off here is that the characters seemed undeveloped and it was difficult to tie the story to any larger, meaningful themes, so it fell a bit flat for me. At the same time, there are political sub-plots in this story that are glazed over and may be confusing to the intended (ages 10 and up) audience, and as an adult reader it was unclear to me if those factions were important to the story. For it’s pacing and appealing subject matter, I am reluctant to score The Brightworking with only 2 stars, but I am also hesitant to bump it up to 3 without some more developed literary elements that seemed to be lacking.

On a promising note, there was a preview of the second book in the trilogy, The Fortune Teller, and that seemed as though it may have more intrigue and will go deeper into the characters than the first effort. I’m interested to see how the second installment may or may not fill out the larger story of The Brightstone Saga.

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The results are in!

2 Apr

Thanks for voting in the New Librarian Pinterest contest!  Brooklyn Biblio took top honors!  If you didn’t get a chance last week, check out the Elite 8.  I’m so proud to be in the new generation of librarians with a vision for what librarians can and should be.

Don’t worry, I didn’t forget about the Women’s History crowdsourcing project! I’ve been a busy little bee applying to jobs because holy wow, I’m finishing my MLS in a month!  Stay tuned…

Let’s Catch Up! Teaching, learning, networking and advocacy

17 Feb

Hello! It has been a shamefully long time since my last post.  Brooklyn Biblio really got a shot of adrenaline from my classes last semester, which integrated Web 2.0 into the coursework.  Since the Fall semester ended, I have been busily wrapping up my MLIS and it is high time I let you all know what I’ve been up to.

Most significantly, I completed my first practicum at a high school in lower Manhattan.  The high school specializes in Science and Math, and the students are high performers from all around New York City.  Yesterday was my last day and I find myself already feeling quite nostalgic about it.  The thing about student teaching (or fieldwork assignments), is it seems that just as you are hitting your stride and getting to know the students, it is time to leave.  I suppose that is not altogether bad, because you are forced to leave your comfort zone before it gets too comfortable, and therefore to stretch your skills and challenge yourself in new environments.  My high school practicum included a lot of library managerial tasks, but I really focused a lot on getting hands-on teaching experience.  I’m so grateful for that and I think it has done a lot for my confidence as an instructor.

My commute to that part of the city afforded me an easy opportunity to finally go see the Battery City Park branch of NYPL.   Continue reading