Thursday, August 16, 2012

Palmer's Picks: Gimmie Some Manga! Review of Dororo by Osamu Tezuka

Hi guys! My name's Palmer, and I work in the Young Adult Services department of the Charleston County Public Library. I love graphic novels, root beer floats and thunderstorms (and flip glasses). I also love finding truly awesome books and sharing them with you avid readers! Remember to click on any title to put it on




Is is cheesy for me to describe Dororo as a super-sweet story of adventure, friendship, and family that mixes in some amazing Japanese supernatural lore? What if by super sweet, I mean super awesome, super action-packed, and super funny (although Dororo does have a few tender moments)? The hero of Dororo is a young ronin (a masterless warrior) named Hyakkimaru who was born with some serious issues. Our story opens with Hyakkimaru's father, quite the power-hungry guy, offering up fourty-eight parts of his yet unborn son to fourty-eight demons in exchange for control of the region. As a result, Hyakkimaru is born without things like eyes, ears, arms, legs, a nose, and a voice. Fourty-eight missing parts in all makes Hyakkimaru quite unlike your typical infant and unlikely to survive, so his grieving mother sends him downriver in a basket to his fate. Lucky for Hyakkimaru, a kindly doctor discovers him in the river and raises the child as his own, discovering that despite his fourty-eight disadvantages, Hyakkimaru has developed senses beyond the abilities of a normal human and can function quite well without his missing parts. As Hyakkimaru grows into a boy, the doctor begins to construct prosthetics to help the lad appear a little less unusual to the outside world. The prosthetics make Hyakkimaru's life easier for a while, but the growing boy seems to be attracting some unwanted supernatural attention...

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

August Author of the Month: John Green

Hiya, readers! This month we're kicking off a new series of posts and displays at the Main Library: Author of the Month. YA regular and devoted nerdfighter Chloe W. got first pick, so August's author is the extra-fantabulous John Green. Check out what Chloe has to say about Monsieur Green below. All of the books will be on display in the teen space at the Main Library for the month of August, so come on by to check them out!

Also, if you've got a favorite author you'd like to see featured, shoot us an email, comment on this post, or give us a call at (843) 805-6903.
--Staffer Sarah

Why John Green is My Favorite Author
By Chloe W.

There is a difference between merely liking an author’s book a great deal and calling him or her your favorite author. When someone is your favorite author, you don’t only like his books, but you like him as person, you’re interested in his life, and you really care about him (or her). That is why John Green is my favorite.

I first found out about who John Green was last year when I started watching the vlogbrothers videos. John and his brother Hank have a hugely successful YouTube channel where they have been making vlogs since 2007. Watching the videos and seeing how awesome they are caused me to go get his books from the library as fast as I could.

The style of John Green’s writing is very realistic according to a teenager’s perspective--so incredibly smart and thoughtful yet humorous and filled with adolescent shenanigans.
It’s difficult to choose which of his books I like best. From Looking for Alaska--the story of Miles, the boy obsessed with people’s last words who goes to boarding school where he meets Alaska (which manages to be both filled with pranks and heartbreak)--to An Abundance of Katherines (the story of Colin the child prodigy who has dated 19 girls named Katherine), John Green’s writing never fails to be enjoyable.
The Fault in Our Stars is my personal favorite of his books. This book means a great deal to me not just because I love the story of Hazel and Augustus so much, but also because the experience of seeing an idea become an actual book is a beautiful thing. I was there with all the other nerdfighters (a community dedicated to “decreasing world suck” that was started by the Green brothers) watching when the title was announced, when the cover was released, when the vast amount of pre-orders was so great that the publisher agreed to move the release date up three months. I understood the little things in the novel you can only get when you know a lot about an author, such as the goat soap references, because any well-versed nerdfighter knows that John and Hank’s parents make goat soap. And I was lucky enough to attend the Tour de Nerdfighting, where I met John and Hank and got my book signed and inscribed. All these things are a part of my love for The Fault in Our Stars, or TFiOS, as it’s commonly called.

But it isn’t only John Green’s books I like. John Green is someone I look up to. I’m interested in his opinions and what he has to say. I love watching his vlogbrothers videos as well as his video series The Miracle of Swindon Town, which can be seen in the YouTube channel HankGames, where John plays FIFA 11 as Swindon Town F.C. and discusses a different topic or shares a story in each match. His videos on the YouTube channel crashcourse, where John teaches World History, are informative but still manage to be funny and so distinctly John-esque that they’re always a joy to watch.

Whether I’m reading his books or watching him play video games, John Green is someone I find interesting, someone I can really look up to, and someone I would call not just an author but a friend.