Monthly Archives: February 2014

February 28, 2014

Join the STACKS Readathon

Posted by at 12:17 pm in News, Reads | Permalink

olympicsbanner130Winter Reading Games Readathon Tomorrow!

Gather all your books and snacks, and prepare for a live 4-hour reading marathon starting Saturday, March 1 at 12 noon ET.

Your goal for the Readathon is to read for 4 straight hours, but don’t worry. STACKS Staffer, En-Szu and I will be there to cheer you on with hourly challenges and inspiration to keep you going.

Sign up for the Readathon here and come back tomorrow at noon!
image from— Sonja, STACKS Staffer

February 28, 2014

Winter Reading Games Event 5

Posted by at 1:43 am in Reads, Trivia | Permalink

olympicsbanner130STACKS Winter Reading Games: Guess the Book

Although the ice has settled from the Winter Olympics, we’re keeping the torch alive with the STACKS Winter Reading Games. Every day, it’s a different event! Today’s main event is Guess the Book! We’ll describe a book in 1 sentence, and you have to guess the title.

Ready to go for the gold? Begin!

  1. The name of this book is so heavily guarded that even the author’s name is a mystery: Pseudonymous Bosch!
  2. Fone, Phoney, Smiley, and Gran’ma are some of the characters in this epic comic book series.
  3. In this deathly final book, Harry, Ron, and Hermione finally bring the battle with Voldemort to a conclusion.
  4. Percy first discovers he is the son of a mortal woman and the Greek god Poseidon in this book.
  5. This goth-girl-mad-scientist has a lab assistant named Igor, desires to take over the world, and once tried to eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches to “fit in” with her normal friends. (Hint: It’s a Jim Benton series!)
  6. After Greg and Rowley get into a fight, and Rowley ditches him, Greg tries to train Fregley to become his best friend.
  7. She’s a baby . . . she’s a mouse . . . and she has her own comic book series.

Do you have what it takes to be a STACKS Reading Olympian? Then leave your answers in the Comments below! We will reveal the answers tomorrow right before the Readathon!

—Ratha, STACKS Writer

February 27, 2014

Winter Reading Games Event 4

Posted by at 1:41 am in Movies & TV, Reads | Permalink

olympicsbanner130Cast your favorite stars in a movie based on your favorite book!

So many books I love have been turned into movies: Harry Potter, Hunger Games, The Chronicles of Narnia, Percy Jackson . . . The list could go on and on! And while it’s super-exciting to see how different directors and actors interpret the stories and characters I’ve loved on the page, I can’t help but wonder how things would turn out if someone else played Peeta, or Hermione, or even Grover. That’s why our next Winter Reading Games event is . . . drumroll,  please . . . Dream Cast! Which actors would you choose to play the characters in a movie adaptation of YOUR favorite book?

Right now I’m reading The Lost Hero from the Heroes of Olympus series. My dream cast?

rosslynch      zendaya      cameronboyce

What book are YOU reading right now? If it were turned into a movie (or if it already has been), whom would you cast to play the characters? Share in the Comments section below!

PS. Are you coming to the Readathon on Saturday? It’s going to be EPIC!

image from— En-Szu, STACKS Staffer

Image credits: Zendaya, Andrew Evans/PR Photos; Ross Lynch, Charles Edwards/PR Photos; Cameron Boyce, Disney Channel

February 26, 2014

Winter Reading Games Event 3

Posted by at 1:33 am in Reads, Writing Prompt | Permalink

olympicsbanner130Choose Your Fictional Character Dream Team!

While it’s awesome to see trained athletes tearing up the ice in a team sport like hockey, here at the STACKS, it is day 3 of the STACKS Winter Reading Games, and we have to wonder: what would it be like to have an Olympic team made up of characters from our favorite books?

Since hockey is probably the team sport on ice that I understand best, I’m creating my dream sports lineup as a hockey team. My picks?

  • 204-4426Percy Jackson, obviously, because he can control water and would therefore be a speed demon on ice.
  • Clarisse La Rue (of the Percy Jackson series) because she’s super-aggressive and would have no problem knocking out an opposing player.
  • Hagrid (of the Harry Potter series) because he’d be an amazing goalie.
  • George and Harold (of Captain Underpants) because they are fast thinkers and you need to be a fast thinker on ice!
  • Harry Potter because he’d probably discover he had the ability to do something awesome halfway through the game and totally take down the opposition.

How about you? What would YOUR fictional character dream team look like? Share in the Comments below! And come back tomorrow to participate in the next Winter Reading Games event!

image from kids.scholastic.comEn-Szu, STACKS Staffer

February 25, 2014

SPONSORED POST Island of Lemurs

Posted by at 12:55 pm in Movies & TV | Permalink

lemurs130This blog post is sponsored by IMAX Island of Lemurs: Madagascar.

If you love animal documentaries, then you will be excited to see the new IMAX movie about wild lemurs living in Madagascar. It’s called Island of Lemurs: Madagascar (rated G). We got to ask some questions of Dr. Patricia Wright, the primatologist who studies the lemurs in the film. Read on to learn more about lemurs and what it is like to work with them in the wild. Continue reading

February 25, 2014

Winter Reading Games Event 2

Posted by at 1:11 am in Reads | Permalink

olympicsbanner130It’s OK to judge a book by its cover!

There’s a complex system of rules that judges of events like figure skating use to score each performance. Technical skill, creativity, the number of tricks performed—all of these things factor into the number judges come up with in the end.

Now it’s your turn to be the judge. The event? Book Cover Judging! Choose 5 books and rank them from one through five. What makes the Gold Medal book worthy of the number 1 spot? Is it because the cover fits the book best, or because you like the illustration or photo? Do you like the character on the cover?

I picked the five books closest to me, and here’s my ranking:

captain underpants   cityoflightdark   infinityring   horses dawn   spirit animals wild born

  1. The Adventures of Captain Underpants: This is probably the most exciting, colorful, and silly book cover I’ve ever seen. It fits the book perfectly! I mean, it doesn’t get more goofy than a man shaped like an egg wearing a red cape and underpants!
  2.  City of Light, City of Dark: When you first look at this cover, the sunset scene seems pretty calm and serene, but when you look closer, you can see something strange is going on. I love a cover that makes me take a second look!
  3. Infinity Ring: A Mutiny in Time: With this cover, you know you’re in for a very special adventure. It is a little mysterious, and doesn’t give away much about the book, but that makes me think what’s inside is going to be very exciting.
  4. Horses of the Dawn: The Escape: Okay, I love a good horse book. This illustration is absolutely gorgeous. I kind of wish there was more going on, though, so I could find out a little more about the book.
  5. Spirit Animals: Wild Born: A panda, a leopard, and a wolf? I love all three animals, but this cover seems a little too crowded. It still makes me want to read the book, though!

What about YOU? Choose 5 books and rank their covers. Share your rankings in the Comments below! And participate in the other STACKS Winter Reading Games events all week long!
image from kids.scholastic.comEn-Szu, STACKS Staffer

February 24, 2014

Winter Reading Games Event 1

Posted by at 1:59 am in Reads, Writing Prompt | Permalink

olympicsbanner130Page 32 Writing Prompt

It’s day 1 of the STACKS Winter Reading Games and I am proud to present your first event! Reading competitors, on your mark! Turn to page 32 of the book you are currently reading (or the nearest page with text on it) and find the most entertaining phrase to complete the following sentence:

“It is more fun to read than to ________ !”
For example, my book is Gold Medal Winter, so taking a phrase from page 32, mine would say . . . 


Post your sentence in the Comments so everyone may enjoy! Don’t forget to include the title of the book you are reading. Come back tomorrow and every day this week for a new event in the STACKS Winter Reading Games!

–Sonja, STACKS Staffer

February 21, 2014

Winter Sports Books & Movies

Posted by at 12:13 pm in Olympics, Reads | Permalink

Winter sports book and movie recommendations!

Are you totally caught up in the excitement of the Winter Olympics? Winter sports are the greatest! But if throwing on a pair of skates and executing flawless flips and spins seems a little out of your range, we bring to you this list of winter sport books and movies (for those of us who are happy to spend our time indoors with a cup of hot cocoa instead). Continue reading

February 19, 2014

Gold Medal Winter Book Review

Posted by at 1:23 am in Reads | Permalink

Gold Medal Winter (for ages 10-14) by Donna Freitas

“It’s called the Kiss and Cry for just this reason — it’s the place where you potentially experience the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat, all caught on camera for the world to see.”

Gold Medal Winter book cover by Donna FreitasDiscovered by Olympic gold medalist Lucy Chen at age ten, Esperanza Flores has a natural talent for figure skating. Now at sixteen, Espi has earned a spot on the U.S. Olympic Team! A Dominican-American Cinderella story, dubbed Spiñorita, she is “America’s hope for gold at the Olympics.”

Being a new member of the Olympic team isn’t easy. She must work hard on her routine perfecting a secret trick – a quadruple Salchow which has never been attempted at an Olympic event by a female. There are also her teammates Stacie and Meredith, who make it clear that they don’t like her. And then, there are the boys . . . A gorgeous ice prince named Hunter is vying for her attention, but Espi can’t help but be drawn to a sweet and shy hockey player named Danny.

Does Espi land the quadruple Salchow? Can she choose between Hunter and Danny? Most importantly, does she win a gold medal? If you love the Olympics, then read Chapter 1 of Gold Medal Winter and see if you get hooked.

If you could pick an Olympic sport to compete in, what would it be? Comment below!

—Elysse, STACKS Writer

February 18, 2014

Sage Kotsenburg Answers Your Questions

Posted by at 2:56 pm in News, Olympics | Permalink

Sage KotsenburgSlopestyle Gold Medalist Sage Kotsenburg Answers YOUR Questions

The day after he won the gold medal in the Sochi Olympics, snowboarder Sage Kotsenburg offered to answer some of YOUR questions. So nice, right? You asked, and here are Sage’s responses!

Sage Kotsenburg snowboarding at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics

Photo credit: Chris Wellhausen

Elle asked: What is it like being in the Olympics?
Sage: Being in the Olympics is such an unreal experience. It was almost like a dream just being there. When I won, it was just . . .  I could not even comprehend what was going on. You feel like you’re in this fantasy world being there because it is just something you have watched on TV since you were a kid and then you show up there and you’re like, “WOW, I can’t believe we are actually here right now.” It was a really cool experience being there. Everyone was really nice and I met a lot of people from different countries.

CatBrain205 asked: How nerve-racking is it waiting for the awards to be announced? Who would you dedicate the medal to? Who do you appreciate the most for their support and enthusiasm?
Sage: Waiting for the award is almost the scariest part. It is just the biggest event of your life. Waiting up on the podium, it was like, my knees were just shaking; my legs were shaking. Mark McMorris, who got 3rd, looked at me and said, “My knees are shaking.” I was like, “ME, TOO! This is crazy!” And I would love to dedicate my medal to my mom and dad because I would not be where I am without all their support. So, just leave my gold medal at their house!

Sonja asked: Do you like swimming? I got 3rd place the first time I went to a swim meet.
Sage: I enjoy going to lakes and oceans. I do not swim too much in lap pools, but maybe you can be the next Michael Phelps and win a bunch of gold medals in the Olympics.

AmethystButterfly585 asked: The Olympics and everyone who competes in them inspire me so much. What inspired YOU to go for it?
Sage: I got inspired a lot from watching the 2002 Olympics. I was watching when I was in 3rd grade, so 8 or 9 years old. Watching Ross Powers, Danny Kass, and J.J. Thomas win there was eye-opening to me.

If Sage has inspired YOU to get involved in snowboarding, you can check out some incredible training programs offered by the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association (USSA). Maybe we will see you in PyeongChang for the 2018 Olympics!

image from— Sonja, STACKS Staffer