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YA Biographies: A Love Story

Nonfiction isn’t really  my go-to reading material. Give me Hogwarts, give me Narnia. Give me John Green or Sarah Dessen when I’m feeling less fantastical. I like the escape. As my one of my closest friends says, “Realistic is boring. Why would I want to read that?” But while reading reviews and selecting nonfiction for the Young Adult section, I’ve discovered a love for true stories, specifically the true stories of young people coping with things that I could not have imagined. .

This Star Won't Go Out by Esther EarlHeard of The Fault in Our Stars? Who hasn’t? This Star Won’t Go Out is the story of Esther Earl, the inspiration for Hazel Grace. This collection of stories, journal entries, and letters was assembled by Esther’s parents, Wayne and Lori Earl, after Esther’s death in 2010. She was sixteen years old. Esther was diagnosed with thyroid cancer as a young teen, and spent years in a battle with the disease. That didn’t stop her from living her life, making friends in online communities, and making a difference. She became good friends with John Green and a well-known Nerdfighter.  Reading her story was at once inspiring and heartbreaking. I definitely recommend having some tissues handy. Lori and Wayne Earl created a nonprofit organization in Esther’s honor called This Star Won’t Go Out to help families battling cancer. You can read more about it on their website.


Positive by Raige Rawls

Tissues might also be useful for Paige Rawl’s memoir, Positive. Paige was born HIV-positive. In Middle School, she trusted her best friend with the secret of her HIV status, and the result was catastrophic. Within hours, the bullying started. Other kids made up cruel nicknames for her, left nasty notes in her locker, and even framed her for writing a hate-filled letter to her former friend. When she tried to report the problems to administration, the adults told her to stop creating drama and to just deny having HIV. Finally, she left the school and began to heal. Having heard of so many students who completed suicide after being relentlessly bullied, Paige made it one of her missions to speak out against bullying and to try to get stricter anti-bullying laws passed to protect students from the harassment she faced. Paige is also very active in HIV/AIDS awareness, attends Ball State University, and is a youth speaker. Find out more on her website


Laughing at my nightmare by Shane BurcawFinally, toss out the tissues. Shane Burcaw will have none of that crap. In his book, Laughing at My Nightmare, Shane shares his method of dealing with his spinal muscular atrophy: humor. Shane has been in a wheelchair since he was two and depends on others to help him with everyday tasks, but he loves to laugh and won’t let his disease stop him from living a full life. While in college, Shane started a blog on Tumblr to share funny stories about his absurd life. He was amazed by how many people started following him and by the amount of supportive fan-mail he received from people thanking him for sharing his story and his positive attitude. Since then he has started a nonprofit organization (a popular thing to do, apparently) to “spread positivity and raise money for families affected by muscular dystrophy.” You can learn more about that at Shane is (sometimes uncomfortably) honest, witty, and absolutely hilarious. I highly recommend his book and his blog. Seriously, go there now.


Check out one or all of these amazing stories at Dover Public Library!

(Tissues not included)

– Liz

Teen Librarian

A Thankful Heart

DPL Staff Photo 2014As I write this on Thanksgiving Eve, I can’t help but ponder the blessings in my own life. My mother always said Thanksgiving was her favorite holiday because it is about being grateful for what we have: family, faith, friends, community. There is no gift-giving nor any retail bonanza; it is simply about breaking bread with family and being grateful. We have all noticed the Christmas displays at retail stores since before Halloween. It has always saddened me that such a humble and meaningful holiday such as Thanksgiving is lost year in and year out because of the spectacle of the modern Christmas. In protest, I challenge you to pause and to take stock of the blessings in your life. I mentioned family, faith, friends, and community but would like to add my library family–those men and women who I am blessed to work with nearly every day of the week. I am grateful to share their passion for the library and its meaning in the community. The library is not just a job but a passion for us. So when we say grace tomorrow at the supper table I will pray with a full and content heart to bless my library family in all that they do. I will thank God for blessing me with a group of complete strangers who over the last 5 years have become family.

-Jim Gill, Director

YA Crew Meeting

YA Crew LogoTuesday November 11 at 3:00 PM

Join the YA Crew for free snacks, a fun warm-up game, and a special advanced look at the somewhat top secret Big Project. Pick up forms early, find a critique partner, and get your questions answered at this meeting!


Did you know?

If you’re a member of the YA Crew, you get free books from our YA discards? Find out more!

U Create: Write On!

NotebookTuesday, December 2 at 3:00 PM

Just because NaNoWriMo is over, don’t think you should stop writing! Join us for games, writing exercises, and fun ideas to keep the words flowing at this fun event. Also enjoy snacks and learn about an exciting opportunity for teen writers and artists coming in the Spring.






Writing Websites


Christmas at the Library

Gingerboy's Search for Christmas by Joanne Kimberly
Saturday, December 6 from 10:00 AM-5:00 PM


Celebrate the gift of Christmas and community at the library at this fun family-friendly event. Children and parents are invited to come and join Miss Pat and Mortimer at 10:00 AM as they get ready for Christmas.  There will be Christmas songs, stories, games, and crafts.  Children’s author (Joanne Kimberly will read and sign her new kids book “Gingerboy’s Search for Christmas.” Throughout the day, families can come in to decorate Christmas cookies and to watch classic holiday films. The Dover Middle School choir will perform from 2-5 PM. Also at 2:00 PM, a free showing of a cool Disney movie will take place in the story room. At 5:00 PM, the Dover Christmas Parade kicks off downtown. Call 330-343-6123 for more information.


Tis the Season…for New Christmas books.

This is one of my favorite times of the year, because the new Christmas Fiction books are starting to come in.  They are usually inspiring, feel-good stories that leave you with that warm fuzzy feeling.  If you need help getting in the Christmas mood, they will do it.  They are also great books to read before you go to sleep.  They will lull you into peaceful, sweet dreams.  If you are having a bad day, just pick-up one of Debbie Macomber’s “Angels” books with Shirley, Goodness & Mercy in it.  These Angels are always getting in trouble for some of the shenanigans they pull.

There are many popular authors with Christmas series.  Karen Kingsbury has the Red Glove series, Donna VanLiere, author of “The Christmas Shoes” has several books.  If you want to read a series based on certain Towns, Thomas Kinkade has a series on a town called “Cape Light” and Susan Mallory has one on a town called “Fools Gold”.  If you like to read about beach towns, Sherryl Woods has a series called “Chesapeake Shores” and Susan Wiggs has a series called “Lakeshore Chronicles”.  If you like to read about cowboys, Janet Dailey has a Christmas series on them and Linda Lael Miller has a Christmas series on her “McKettricks”.  Richard Paul Evans has “The Christmas Box” collection along with several other Christmas books.  Melody Carlson and Mary Higgins Clark also have quite a few Christmas books.  There are also Christmas books with an Amish storyline.  If you need something with a little suspense, Heather Graham will give you some of the “edge of your seat” feel you crave.

Hallmark Channel has made a few books into movies.  Debbie Macomber’s “Mrs. Miracle” came out a few years ago and this year, Debbie Macomber’s “Mr. Miracle” and Sheila Roberts “The Nine Lives of Christmas” will come out.  So watch to see when these will be airing.

There are many more authors that I have not listed that have Christmas books.    Just come in and check some out, even if you don’t need any help getting in the Christmas mood.  They are fun, quick, easy reads for this hectic time of year.

I hope you have a wonderful Holiday Season,

Mary, Technology Room Manager


After-School Movie

Film ReelTuesday, November 25 at 3:00 PM

Join us for a fun teen movie chosen by the YA Crew.

No Registration Necessary.

Open to Teens in Grades 6-12

Movie will be rated PG-13 or Lower

Free Snacks Provided.

Call the library at 330-343-6123 for more information.