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Teen Tastemakers: March Picks

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Reading + Entertainment

  • Teen Tastemakers
    The Teen Tastemakers

Teens, Idea Exchange | March 1, 2019

We’re inching closer to Spring and March Break is coming up fast. If you’re looking for some great entertainment to enjoy while waiting for the season to change, you will LOVE our March recommendations:

BOOKS (GEMMA)

Today I’ll be talking about some fantasy books and series I’m reading right now, which I’m sure you’ll love as well.

Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake
“Three Dark Crowns” is set in a fantasy world where each queen will have triplets, each with their own magical power, destined to fight for the throne when they turn sixteen. The book's main characters are Mirabella, Katharine, and Arsinoe-one of whom is destined to be the next queen. By the end of the book, you’ll be invested in each of the three queens and their storylines.

Tess of the Road by Rachel Hartman
“Tess of the Road” is about a young girl named Tess Dombegh, who, fed up with the restrictive future ahead of her, runs away to search for ancient creatures of legend. This book isn't just about adventure - above all, it's about Tess on the road to accepting and loving herself for who she is. And as a character, she's interesting enough that you'll want to be right there with her. This book is a loose sequel to Seraphina and Shadow Scale, but it’s definitely not required reading if you want to jump in now.

Circle of Magic series by Tamora Pierce
The Circle of Magic series centers around four young children - Sandry, Tris, Daja, and Briar - who each have undiscovered magic they learn to hone alongside a large supporting cast of characters. Though this series is intended for a younger age group (9-12), it’s still a very enjoyable read with strong worldbuilding and character development.

 

GAMING (BENJAMIN)

Videogames make people happy and challenge you mentally with puzzles and various objectives.

This month I picked a videogame off the shelf at one of the Idea Exchange libraries called Skyrim Elder Scrolls V.

 It’s a game for the Xbox 360 which is a vast open world medieval magical game where you play as a character called the Dragonborn. Your job is to collect different spells and defeat mystical creatures and foes such as wizards, knights, goblins, ghouls, and most impressively dragons. As you progress through the games story you become more powerful and unlock different weapons and armor by looting your slain foes and trading with the local villagers in different towns to aid you on your journey to defeat the final dragon boss.

I recommend this game because it gave me hours of fun and enjoyment to figure out how to play and complete all the plentiful side quests and missions after I completed the main storyline.

 

TELEVISION (CHARLOTTE)

Britain has brought us some awesome things throughout history. Tea, royal family gossip, and of course, television shows.

Derry Girls: Although actually Northern Irish, this show stars a group of teenage girls (and one male cousin) as they navigate their life in the small town of Derry in the 90s during religious conflicts. Released last year, after being put on Netflix it’s risen in popularity, with a second season set to drop in March.  It’s extraordinarily funny, with lots of new Irish slang to learn, and the teenage portrayals are actually realistic!

Doctor Who: Of course we have to mention this, a show that first aired in 1963 and is one of Britain’s biggest pop culture phenomena. But, the latest season, starring Jodie Whittaker as the first female Doctor, is great for new fans to start the show, and is incredibly well-done. Whittaker steps easily into the (admittedly hard to fill footsteps) as a new Doctor, among a supporting cast that certainly holds their own. The plots are easy to understand, too, which is a breath of fresh air after several Steven Moffat-led seasons.

The IT Crowd: Jen is starting a new job, and she has a great CV with lots of computer experience. But, she doesn’t actually know anything about computers. Leading the IT department with hilarious and eccentric coworkers Roy and Moss, this TV show is hilarious as it captures all the pain of being an adult, and all the pain of working in the IT department.

 

APPS (MADELEINE)

Learning other languages can be really fun, and also useful! There are so many languages to learn, and so many ways to learn them. One of those ways is using apps. Here are some apps have used:

Rosetta Stone is very useful. It teaches 24 languages, and it’s free until you get so far in your learning. It takes you to the very basics of a language, and you learn in a very similar way to how an infant learns a new language.

Signing Savvy is free for members of the Signing Savvy website (If, like me, you don’t want to become a member you can just use the website). Signing Savvy is specifically for learning American Sign Language. It’s basically an ASL dictionary! Search for a word, then watch a GIF to see how to sign it!

Mondly is another free fun app for learning languages. It teaches 33 languages. While only so much of the app is free, like with Rosetta Stone, every day you get a free five-minute lesson!

Duolingo: This is my favourite! I’ve learned more with Duolingo than any other app, and guess what? It’s completely free! You can pay extra to get rid of ads, but the ads are not annoying or invasive. Duolingo uses different techniques, and after you level up in a specific lesson, you get more challenging learning content so you can learn even more. Oh, and by the way, it teaches 30+ languages … including High Valyrian and Klingon!

Okay, so here’s the thing: You have to find what works for you. Duolingo works for me, but might not work for you. If an app you’re using isn’t working for you, try something else. And remember, the library carries lots of books for learning other languages, as well as free access to the Mango Languages app

 

MOVIES (ZENA)

My favorite movie is “Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron.”

As an amateur learning animation, I think that animation is created, not drawn. I am more accustomed to seeing animation in the eyes of the creator, so "Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron" does match my taste. After finishing this animation, you will feel how valuable and fun the animation is.

This film is different from other similar cartoons, since the animals in the film do not speak. Executive producer Jeffrey Katzenberg said, "If we let the animals talk, then no matter how hard you try, it will make the film more like a funny comedy." This is in conflict with the theme he is trying to express. Therefore, DreamWorks accepted the challenge: a protagonist without language, showing its inner world through its expression, simple narration and timely music.

There are two aspects in the film that appeal to me most. The fact that the horses will never give in, as well as those beautiful pictures and wonderful soundtrack: When the wild horses are taking us through the vast expanse of grassland, when the horse's hair is transformed into tender grass, when the pony is sucking breast milk.

What is the true meaning of life? I think I realized it when I saw the horse returned to freedom: I saw that she had gained love and friendship, and I heard the call of us. The goal of freedom, and the search for freedom in the process of harvesting love and friendship; the perfect ending makes us happy and fascinated.

 

Do you have exceptional taste? Do you love books, movies, and music? Would you like to be involved with the library, gain valuable resume experience, AND earn volunteer hours? If you would like to join the Teen Tastemakers, please join us at one of our upcoming meetings.