Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Putting our money where our mouth is - the Guys Lit Wire Book Fair for Boys

In the very beginning GLW started with a mission to bring great books to the attention of teenage boys. We had read the data on boys reading less, heard stories from all over the internet of boys saying they just couldn't find good books to read and as reviewers many of us had ample evidence that more books are published aimed at teenage girls rather than boys. Our goal was to look both at new books and old and write about books we thought boys might like but could have missed. As our group of bloggers is so big (more than two dozen) and so eclectic, we aimed to write about all kinds of books for all kinds of boys and on that front, based on response to that blog, I think we are doing a pretty good job.

But in the grand scheme of things, we just don't think that's enough.

We are moving today into the second phase of GLW, where we put our money where our mouth is and physically act on getting books into the hands of boys that otherwise have none. Today we start the first two week Guys Lit Wire Book Fair for Boys to help the teens incarcerated in the LA County Juvenile Justice System. They have no books - at all - and they need them; they need them desperately.

Time magazine had an article on the juvenile justice system in March which discussed not only recent scandals in juvenile court but also how little attention is being given to recidivism. Here's a bit:
"Many advocates and academics argue that juveniles are not being given enough of a chance to turn their lives around after committing minor offenses. And officials at both the state and federal levels seem to be getting the message. Last summer, after reviewing a large swath of research literature, the Department of Justice concluded that "to best achieve reduction in recidivism, the overall number of juvenile offenders transferred to the criminal-justice system should be minimized." That came three years after the U.S. stopped executing minors, following a Supreme Court decision, Roper v. Simmons, that was largely based on new brain research showing that the full development of the frontal lobe, where rational judgments are made, does not occur until the early- to mid-20s. At the state level, Missouri is leading the country by phasing out its large juvenile-detention institutions in favor of smaller facilities, closer to kids' homes, that offer more specialized services, like mental-health and drug counseling and education. In the process, the state claims to have reduced recidivism rates for juvenile offenders to 10%, compared with a national rate of 40% to 50%. "We cannot incarcerate our way out of this problem of juvenile crime," says Shay Bilchik, director of Georgetown University's Center for Juvenile Justice Reform, who served as Clinton's point person on juvenile issues at the Justice Department."

There are currently about 50,000 incarcerated juveniles in the U.S. (About another 200,000 juveniles are incarcerated as adults.) In LA County (in 2007) there approximately 2,700 juveniles incarcerated. They are held in three jails: Central Juvenile Hall, Barry J. Nidorf Juvenile Hall and Los Padrinos Juvenile Hall. About 300 of those kids (between the age of 12 and 18) are enrolled in voluntary classes through the InsideOut Writers Program. InsideOut is the GLW partner in the Book Fair for Boys.

From InsideOut:

"In a classroom environment free of judgment, students are encouraged to write with clarity and authenticity without worrying about sophistication or grammar. Before each session ends, students are offered the opportunity to read their work aloud. As students’ ability to express themselves grows, so does their self-confidence and motivation to improve other aspects of their lives.

Studies conducted by the Rand Corporation for the L.A. Probation Department have shown that IOW students are less violent than the general population of incarcerated youth. (This finding is not because only non-violent youth are allowed to attend the classes. In fact, the opposite is true. Probation staff often hand-pick the most violent and emotionally distressed youth to take the classes, in hopes that the environment will provide an effective outlet for expressing sadness, depression and anger.) Probation staff and the court school system teachers add that IOW helps youth express their negative feelings through writing, rather than through violence, and that IOW students are better prepared to pass high school exit exams."

IOW is committed to reducing recidivism; it is their primary objective. One of the ways to accomplish that is by getting the boys interested in other things and helping them form goals for after they leave the system. As book lovers, we at GLW believe that books can go a big way towards helping achieve the goal of keeping the boys from returning to prison. In LA County there is no library for the teens held in the juvenile system. The boys can read as many books as they want - but someone has to give them those books. According to IOW they are desperate for books on all kinds of subjects and so, that is what we at GLW are going to try and give them.

The Book Fair for Boys is built around a wish list at Powells Books. We chose Powells because the GLW crew was very determined to use an independent bookstore for this endeavor (another example of putting our money where our mouth is). Everyone gave their ideas of books that teenage boys would love and so we have a wishlist of all kinds of titles. Some of the boys in LA County are reading at the adult level, others are new readers at the picture book level; some are very interested in nonfiction while others hope for novels. What we have built at Powells is a list that is, quite simply, all things for all boys. We've got science fiction and fantasy, history, biography, graphic novels, short stories, war stories, poetry, animal stories and on and on and on. We have put together what we think is the beginning of a library that will be available for any teens using the classrooms in the LA County system. We have, we hope, given them a larger piece of the world that is waiting for them to return to.

And this is just the beginning.

GLW intends to build a longterm relationship with IOW and run book fairs on a semi annual basis. We also have invited IOW to assist the boys in submitting book reviews to our site. We hope in this way to show them that their opinions are valued and to also give them a bit of writing and publishing experience. The book reviews are a way to show that this is not a vanity project - it's a long haul endeavor that hopefully will tie Guys Lit Wire, InsideOut Writers and the boys of LA County for a long long time.

The library will grow as we return to it, and as it grows so will the power of books for boys who have never experienced how magical and transformative books can be.

Going through Powells makes the wish list a little more complicated - they do not operate with a gift registry system yet (although I understand they are working on it). This means that everyone who wants to purchase books for the fair will need to enter the mailing address individually. We hope that the fact that we are buying books from a real independent bricks and mortar store will make up for the inconvenience. Please adhere to the list - the books MUST be paperback - no exceptions. If you want to buy a Standard Used copy that would be fine and hopefully, because of the great sale and used prices at Powells, we will sellout the entire list of 125 books.

You access the Book Fair for Boys list through the main wish list page. Enter our email: From there you can survey the list on one page and after you have made your selections, here is the mailing address:

Eve Porinchak

Eve is one of the volunteer teachers for IOW and while their offices move she has graciously agreed to use her home address for the fair. Please make sure that when you are prompted by Powells, you agree that the books are being bought for the wish list - this way they will tag the books as purchased on the main list.

The Guys Lit Wire Book Fair for Boys will run for two weeks and we invite everyone who buys a book to please comment on our site or send us an email and let us know your first name, where you are from and what you bought so we can run a list of how the Fair is going. We hope to be a sellout, but honestly any number of books will be most welcome. I am a big believer in changing the world in small steps by great masses of people and after seeing how effective Guys Lit Wire can be through the work of many bloggers, I am certain that a group effort can help the boys incarcerated in LA County in a big way. A book can be a small thing in some ways but in others, as so many of us know, it can be everything. We don't think it is enough to just talk about books we love; we want to do something more and we hope that our readers will help us help some boys that really don't know what they are missing.

Hit the wishlist, buy a book and please, let us know what you think of the Book Fair for Boys.

[Post pic at top from Time magazine; all book covers are on the Book Fair for Boys list.]


Eve Porinchak said...

GLW is the BEST! Thank you, thank you, thank you for helping us to build an amazing Inside Out Writers library.

Your generous efforts are so appreciated!


Seth Christenfeld said...

Just ordered a couple of titles--my daily mitzvah, as it were.

Kick ass, folks.

(My name is Seth and I live in the suburbs of New York.)

Kristopher said...

I got The Things They Carried, which felt synchronicitous since it's the topic of my next GLW post.

I also got the first Runaways TPB because telepathic velociraptors are awesome.

Colleen said...

"The Things They Carried" is one of my favorite books of all time - can't wait to read your post. And I just read (last night) the first Runaways trade - LOVED IT! And yes, the velociraptor was too cool.

Leila said...

I just ordered King's On Writing (must represent the Maine!), Mcnamee's Acceleration and It's Kind of a Funny Story.

Rock on, GLW & IOW.

Becker said...

I just ordered The Wednesday Wars, Geography Club, and Wide Awake. Go GLW!!

Charlotte said...

And I just got Holes and My Family and Other Animals, because they were the books that I enjoyed the most.

eluper said...

This is a great cause. Thanks for taking the helm on it. I'm on the board of a residential facility for troubled teen girls and they have a similar problem.

I ordered SEABISCUIT and DRUMS, GIRLS AND DANGEROUS PIE for your effort!


Michael Northrop said...

This is a fantastic idea! I just ordered Candy by Kevin Brooks. (I'm a big KB fan.)

I could also send a few copies of my debut YA novel, Gentlemen, if that's OK. Just let me know!

Colleen said...


It would be fine to send along Gentlemen - just be sure they are paperbacks. (I actually have a copy of your book right here - haven't read it yet.)

Michael Northrop said...

Oh, bummer: It is still only in hardcover. I will send another book from the list instead.

Anyway, thanks again. This is a great program!

Unknown said...

Great idea & using an Independent Bookstore instead of an Amazon wish list brought a little tear to my eyes!

I'm sending Walter Dean Myer's Fallen Angels & Autobiography of my Dead Brother as well as Christopher Paul Curtis's Bud, Not Buddy.


Eve Porinchak said...

WOW! I'm in tears over here reading all your comments..the generosity is incredible.

The boys will be so touched that random strangers across the country are so willing to help. They are always so shocked whenever I bring treats that I spent my own money on. I don't think they've ever been exposed to people taking time out of their busy days to do something nice for them. Which is part of the reason they end up in jail in the first place.

You book donors are wonderful. I would love to thank everybody personally. I'll work on tracking you all down through your links.

Good Karma to all.


Colleen said...


No worries - I'll send my ARC down to Eve separately when I'm done reading it!


Unknown said...

My wife and I just sent Looking for Alaska, Life of Pi, Ranger's Apprentice and Fast Food Nation.

Scott and Michelle from Kansas

Scott's Library Blog

Jen Robinson said...

What a great list, and a great cause! I just ordered The Giver, Young Bond #1, Heat, and Notes from the Midnight Driver.

Elisabeth said...

I just bought Tyrell and Tears of a Tiger, as well as its two sequels (Forged by Fire and Darkness Before Dawn). I couldn't find the latter two on the list, but it would be cruel and unusual punishment to read the first book and then not have the sequels available.

Colleen said...

Ah - thanks Elisabeth! You rock!

Jennifer Stanton Chapman said...

The Rose That Grew from Concrete- Just order. This so great!

Nephele Tempest said...

I think this is a wonderful thing you're doing. I grew up a reader and now work in publishing, and it always breaks my heart to hear about anyone who has no access to books. I've sent along a few titles and am also passing the word regarding this drive. Good luck!

Nephele Tempest said...

Oops. I live in Pasadena, CA, and the titles I sent were King Dork and The Alchemist.

Julie said...

Just purchased A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier for you. Best of luck to the Inside Out Writers Library! And thanks to GuysLitWire for helping us connect.

Julie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Julie said...

Sorry - forgot to say where I'm from - I live up in Seattle. I read about this project on Kelly Fineman's blog, Writing and Ruminating, and I'm familiar with Guys Lit Wire through students I teach in the low-residency MFA program at Vermont College of Fine Arts.

Anonymous said...

I'm a writer from Massachusetts and I purchased copies of National Geographic's FIELD GUIDE TO THE BIRDS OF CALIFORNIA, Sy Montgomery's SNAKE SCIENTIST and Steve Swinburne's ONCE A WOLF.

Kudos for birthing this magnificent initiative.

All best,
Loree Griffin Burns

jhedin said...

Just ordered The Golden Compass, The Subtle Knife and The Amber Spyglass. This is a great thing to be a part of - thank you!

Jamison in MA

Anonymous said...

Just purchased the graphic biographies of Jackie Robinson and Jim Thorpe for the wishlist. What a great thing you are doing for these kids.

Kelly (in Tucson, AZ)

Kerry Allen said...

Gregor the Overlander, Gorilla Doctors, Ultimate Spider-Man, Zombie Haiku, Looking for Life in the Universe, and Beginning Chess are on the way.

Kerry in FL

Christine said...

You guys are awesome! I ordered Ysabel.

Heidi Vornbrock Roosa said...

I just ordered Octavian Nothing and was wondering if I could send other books as well. I will email Eve separately.

I mentored an incarcerated writer for a while through the PEN Prison Writing program. It was a great experience. I think this is a wonderful idea, and I hope it spreads to others juvenile facilities in the country.

Colleen said...

Yep - best thing is to contact Eve direct and let her know what you are thinking - thanks for "Octavian" Heidi...and THANKS to everyone else for buying so many books!

(Loree we would have put your book on the list, "Tracking Trash", but it's not out in tpb yet. As you know, we are all big fans of that one.)

Calli said...

I found out about this through Pub Rants, and just placed an order for Fahrenheit 451 and Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.

(Kimberly, in South Dakota.)

Laura K. Curtis said...

Count me in...Laura from New York State.

I bought:
Sunrise Over Fallujah
Just So Stories
The Dark Is Rising Set're going to have to add some more books to that list, I think. I suspect your original list will be fulfilled before another hour or so passes.

Thanks for doing this. We'll be highlighting it on our blog tomorrow to try to drum up a few more people for you!

Colleen said...

I'm adding more books right now Laura - thanks for buying these and for linking to us tomorrow!

Cheryl said...

I ordered two of my favorite books of all time (it's like you guys read my mind) for your project: FEED and PRISONER OF AZKABAN.

I didn't see any prompt about the wish list while I was ordering, but I did try to add a note that I had bought the books from your wish list, so I hope they update the list to reflect that.

By the way, I heard about this project from the Pub Rants blog.

Good luck!

Cheryl said...

Oh, and I'm from San Jose, CA.

s65 said...

I ordered Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire from the wishlist.

I suggest adding Louis Sachar's sequel to Holes, SMALL STEPS, to the wishlist as well. It's about Armpit and X-Ray, post Camp Greenlake. It's a great book and I'm sure a lot of boys would enjoy it.

I'm Sarah and I'm from Austin, TX.

Colleen said...

Thanks Sarah - just added "Small Steps"!

Jodie said...

Hiya great project (and btw being in the UK I am absolutely stunned that anywhere in the US was still executing minors 3 years ago).

I ordered some books off the wishlist which are on their way to Eve but at no point did it ask me to say if it was from a wishlist. I don't know if it's because I shopped without an account?

Anyway I sent you:

The Legend of Coltant H Bryant
Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
Throne of Jade
Last of the Mohicans
From Baghdad with Love, a Marine, the War and a Dog Named Lava

Hope they show up as gone on the wishlist - will blog this later and try to pass the giving on.

misskate said...

Hi! I bought some books off the list (posted in the Friday post's comments section), but I would love to send some Richard Peck as he is one of my favorite authors as well as an atlas (my students love maps). Would that be okay?
Kate in Geneva, Switz

Lisa Cohen said...

Just sent:

The Perfect Storm
Baseball in April and other Stories
Summerland (One of our family's all time favorite books)

I'm the mom of 2 teenage boys. They are both huge readers and I want to pass along some of our favorites to these boys who don't have access to the wealth of books that we are able to read.

I am also a fledgling YA author, and if/when my book gets published, I will absolutely send along copies to IOW.

I hope you fill your entire wish list.

My name is Lisa and I live just outside of Boston, MA.

CC said...

I ordered THE PERFECT STORM, but didn't see anywhere to check off that it was fulfilled from the list...?

(I did send it to Eve's listed address.)

You might want to change THE PERFECT STORM to fulfilled?

Loved doing this.

Nerd. Geek. Hero. said...

Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs & Prehistoric Life, Found Dogs, The Dogs Who Found Me, LoTR 1-3, Shipwreck at the Bottom of the World, Hitchhikers Guide, Worlds to Explore, Winterdance, From Both Sides Now, and Two Fisted Science are all on their way.

I would have bought 'em all for the boys if I could afford it. Reading is what got me through the darkest days of my adolescence and provided a window into a world I didn't yet know I could claim.

This was a wonderful idea. I hope this catches on and can expand across the country.


Sherry Thomas said...

I heard this from Pub Rants, my agent's blog.

Just sent along DREAMS FROM MY FATHER.

Natalie said...

I'm in northern Virginia, and I just sent SMALL STEPS and HOOT. I teach ESL to 4th and 5th grade students who often come to us with no books at home. I wonder, do any of your kids speak another language? Would any of them prefer books in their home languages? If so, please let me know.

Kudos to you, Eve, for putting books in the hands of these kids!

Jessa said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jessa said...

Jessa, a writer in rural New Hampshire. A copy of Make Lemonade by Virginia Euwer Wolff. Thank goodness there's a place for female voices in a boys' library! Thanks to all the teachers at InsideOUT.

Unknown said...

My bookshelves are a little overstuffed with books (I read a lot). Would it be possible to mail in paperbacks that have been read once? Or are they order-only? I'd like to donate to the cause :)

Btw, this is a great list to check out new titles!

Jessica said...

Just ordered The Man in the Iron Mask, We Wish to Inform You...Stories from Rwanda, The Photographer: Into War-Torn Afghanistan, and My Side of the Mountain. This is such a great cause and I'm more than happy to help out.

Jessica, VA

Colleen said...

To everyone who has asked about sending something other than what is on the list, you need to contact Eve Porinchak directly at We are buying only off the list as we wanted to make sure books the boys would like were sent - Eve would know of anything different.


BassmanCO said...

I saw the link to your site on Pub Rants. I think this is a wonderful idea. I wish I could do more to help kids, especially those who are less fortuante than my own. I purchased Harry Potter #5 and American Shaolin (since I practice Kung Fu). Good luck with the rest of the drive!

Chris Scena

Anonymous said...

I ordered American Shaolin ... (the full title's pretty long) and Hero. I've also posted about this book fair on my own blog.

Jennifer R. Hubbard

Colleen said...

Thanks Jenn and Chris - you guys ordered "American Shaolin" at the EXACT same time. I was online when it happened. Too funny - and 2 copies means less waiting time for the boys!

We appreciate each and every book bought, guys - even one is an wonderful contribution!

Unknown said...

Great idea! Just saw this mentioned on Bookslut. Ordered Freak Show, Saints of Augustine and Rainbow Boys.

the daydreamer said...

I must have missed the "part of a wish list prompt" because the books I bought are still showing up as unfulfilled. Oh well maybe you'll get double!

I'm from Tucson, AZ and I ordered
Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince
A dog's life: diary of a stray
What a great cause!

Colleen said...

No worries Leigh - I updated it. I let Powells know we are having updating issues so hopefully they can figure out what is going on.

Thanks for the books!

Sherrie Petersen said...

What a wonderful outreach! I'll go buy a book for them right now!

cindyay said...

Hi Colleen,

WOW WOW WOW WOW! I'm so glad I heard about this program through omnivoracious. This program is awesome. I hope these young men will be touched by people's support and also by the books they read.

I would suggest you add Watership Down and Into the Wild to the wish list. Also, it would be easier if we could order through amazon or another site where the books are cheaper; I know you are trying to support an independent book store, but Powell's is a little difficult to use.

Please keep adding good books so more people can help and hopefully the process will be a little more streamlined so even MORE people will want to participate.


Hopefully, this program will expand to other areas.

cynthia, sophomore history major at UC Berkeley.

Colleen said...

Into the Wild is on the list Cinday - it was bought a couple of days ago. I will add Watership Down though.

We decided to support a bricks and mortar store - not because we hate amazon but because amazon seems to be doing just fine without us whereas Powells could use some support. I understand that it takes a little longer to go through the wish list this way and we do appreciate everyone who has stayed with it.

By the way - Powells just donated $50 worth of books to thank us for listing with them. So more books for the boys!

cindyay said...

Thanks Colleen for the quick reply. Other books: Black Like Me and Angela's Ashes. I'm not sure what the reading level is but some of the books on the wish list seemed a little too easy. I'm not sure if these books were picked on the fly because so many people wanted to participate/donate. After looking them up on amazon, they seemed to be for a younger than these teenagers' audience. Hope this doesn't sound mean or judgmental, but please take it as a suggestion to keep the standard of books high.

Thanks again. :)

Colleen said...

Thanks again for your suggestions!

The books were chosen after speaking extensively with Eve who works directly with the boys. As you can see from reading my post, some of the boys, although teenagers, read at a picture book level. Some of the boys are only twelve years old. And yes, some of them read at an adult level. There is a very wide range here in terms of comprehension and ability and what we sought were some simpler titles that would still be appealing (and not insulting) to teen readers.

There is a method to the whole thing, I swear - and we worked on this for well over a month before launching the project.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for doing this - found you guys through a Tweet.

On June 3rd, you should get The Martian Chronicles, Whales, Dolphins and Porpoises (Smithsonian Handbooks), Dogsong, Last of the Breed, Illustrated Book of Myths, Incredible Journey, and The Restaurant at the End of the Universe.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows will show up on July 7th.

Keep flying,
- Heidi in Texas

Kathleen said...

thank you for putting this book drive together - and for supporting Powells. (which I have almost always found to be cheaper than Amazon).

Off to make my own donation now!

Patty H. said...

Ordered Astronomy and Secrets of sound.

Heard about this through Pubrants.

May I suggest The Alex Rider series, Percy Jackson and Maximum Ride?

Patty in Michigan

Carol H Rasco said...

GLW, hurray for you! For several years Reading Is Fundamental has been working with juvenile detention centers and with adult prison facilities in order to assist in this issue of literacy for the youth detained as well as the children of adults in correctional facilities. I would be delighted to discuss this further with anyone who wishes through email or a phone call...let me know if you and/or IOW wish to have such a discussion. Keep up this critically needed, great work!

Colleen said...

Hi Carol - we will pass along your message to Eve and look forward to talking with you at RIF about getting more books to kids who need them!

Sara said...

This. Is. Amazing.

I was grateful for the chance to donate: Son of the Mob, 1984, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian,  American Born Chinese, Hole in My Life, and  I Am the Messenger

Kudos to you, Colleen, for rocking the world, one book at a time...


Colleen said...

Hey Sara!

So glad to see you stop by and help out! And don't forget everyone - without Sara's initial spark GLW never would have been created.

Awesome how all this has worked out, isn't it?

JackieG said...

What an excellent program! I'm very happy to contribute to the cause and send best wishes along to your boys.

Sent: In Darkness, Death

Julie of the Wolves


The Wonderful Flight to the Mushroom Planet

May I suggest adding Patrick Rothfuss to your list?

Jackie in Toronto, Canada

Colleen said...

Thanks Jackie - I'll get him added in the next round!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for coming up with this idea! I'm sure it will do a lot of good.

I'm sorry---I bought a couple books, but I never saw the wishlist prompt, so they're still marked as unfulfilled on the page. Maybe it's because I didn't create an account first? I went back and forth through the order form and couldn't find it.

I bought "Ball Don't Lie", "The Man Who Walked Between The Towers", and "Tamar". Maybe you can remove them from the list to avoid double purchases? Sorry again!


Colleen said...

Thanks Starrie - it's happened to several people and no problem at all to update the list manually. I've emailed Powells, so hopefully they can let us know what we are doing wrong.

Oh - and especially thank you for reaching down in the list to buy some books that had been overlooked!

susan said...


Someone dropped us your link for Little Lov'n Monday. Hope you get more traffic and please come by.

Are you accepting gently used books? I run a community library for girls. I don't have much cash but I have a ton of books. I'm always happy to share what I have. I've added your site to my blog, too.

Color Online said...

Color Online was created to support, mentor and empower young women. We have an exclusive women's lit library, a book loan program online and we have an in-house library. I understand the care and work that goes into making the lists, ensuring varying reading levels and interests are highlighted.

Still, like your organization, we have limited sources. We have no shortage of support and desire to give. We believe in activism so you'll get more than a wish of luck and admiration. We act.

Please let me know if you will accept books from us. I promise you won't get beat up or dated books the books aren't likely to embrace.

I look forward to hearing from you. You can contact me at

Colleen said...

Hey guys!

Any and all questions concerning books not on the list will have to be with Eve directly. She is reading the comments and should be in touch with all of you at some point (or you can follow the links to her blog and email her direct). Our main concern with used books is that they might not be of a subject matter/interest that will make them useful to the boys - we tackled that issue heavily with our wish list and it is something to think about before sending any other book Eve's way.

Thanks for stopping by and linking to us!

StillBenjamin said...

Fantastic project. Kids in the justice system are regularly overlooked, and yet they need this kind of assistance more than most. I'll be featuring this on the blog for Reclaiming Futures, an initiative dedicated to improving the lives of teens in the justice system struggling with alcohol and drug issues.

I bought Howard Zinn's *Young People's History of the United States."

I never saw the wishlist prompt either, though, so FYI.

Colleen said...

Sigh. Thanks Benjamin - I know the Powells tech folks are looking at our list to see what the scoop is. I've never had a problem with my personal list over there, so I have no clue what is going on. I did update the list manually though - and thanks so much for buying the book (a great book!) and for linking to us.

Nacho Lover said...

I'm a middle school English teacher in NYC and I am thrilled to support a project like this!

I sent The Afterlife, Redwall, Jarhead, and Joey Pigza.

--Julie, NYC

Unknown said...

I'm a newly graduated librarian student and read about this on the Fiction L readers advisory list. I ordered The Angel Experiment (Maximum Ride) and Firewatch since I think they are both fun reads for all ages.

Angela said...

Awesome project! I sent Life As We Knew It and Runaways #2: Teenage Wasteland.

Colleen said...

Awesome! Thanks guys!

Trish Ryan said...

Awesome idea...thanks for giving us the chance to help.

I purchased COOKED by Jeff Henderson, and TRAVEL TEAM by Mike Lupica.

Cheers from Ithaca, NY :)

Angela said...

Regarding the wish list prompt: I noticed that it didn't come up when I tried to checkout without creating an account. When I went back and created an account before checking out, the wish list prompt came up.

Michelle said...

I just ordered:

A Kiss Before the Apocalypse: A Remy Chandler Novel by Thomas E. Sniegoski

Warriors Series: Fire and Ice (Warriors #02) by Erin Hunter

Reign of the Sea Dragons by Sneed B. Collard III

Thanks for doing this - I'm glad to have the chance to help!

A few suggestions for the list if you're looking for more titles:

Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card; Tailchaser's Song by Tad Williams
The Memory, Sorrow, and Thorn series (The Dragonbone Chair, Stone of Farewell, To Green Angel Tower) by Tad Williams; Lois McMaster Bujold's Miles Vorkosigan series; The Eyes of the Dragon by Stephen King; Fat Kid Rules the World by K. L. Going; The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner. And if it's not too young: Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH by Robert C. O'Brien.

Oh and I'm Mikki (Michelle) from Brooklyn. :)

Lorie Ann Grover said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lorie Ann Grover said...

I just ordered Locomotion by Jacqueline Woodson! Thanks, GLW!

holly cupala said...

I sent Fat Kid Rules the World - love that book! Thanks, GuysLitWire!

Anonymous said...

Sent a copy of Project Ultraswan! What a great thing this is.

Kim Wier said...

Happy to contribute. I snagged the first one off the top, Percy Jackson series: The Lightening Thief, as I've just finished reading the series with my nephews and it's been a fantastic read-aloud for us and the boys can't get enough of it. Hope the other books in the series are added to the list as I'd hate to get kids hooked and then not have the others to read too!

I did store delivery (as I'm lucky enough to live in Portland!) and will mail it on.

Kim in Portland, OR

Colleen said...

Hey Kim - Thanks! I just added Books #2 and #3 in the series.

Michelle said...

Just wanted to let you know - got word from Powell's today that Warriors Series: Fire and Ice (Warriors #02) is not available (and can't be put on backorder for some reason).


Colleen said...

Thanks Michelle - how weird! It's probably being reissued by the pub with a new ISBN maybe - that would explain no backorders.

Mrs. F-B's Books Blog said...

GREAT project! I just sent Jeremy Fink and the Meaning of Life, The Titan's Curse and The Sea of monsters. All of these are super popular in my library!

~Erin from Portland, OR

Donna (Bites) said...

I've donated If I Die in a Combat Zone. I think I missed the step about attributing the book to the list so I don't know if it's going to come up as fulfilled. It's still being shipped to Eve though.

Colleen said...

No worries Donna - I updated to reflect your purchase.


Melanie said...

My name is Melanie from Nashville, TN. I found this on Carl V's Stainless Steel Droppings blog. I picked up Farthing and A River Runs Through it. It looks like the only Runaways volume was number 3? was the whole series supposed to be on there?

Colleen said...

Thanks Melanie! Vols 1 and 2 were already purchased in the Runaways series - they are much lower down in the list. Once the third one is bought, we'll be sure to add more.

Sarah Stevenson said...

A bit late, ordered Deogratias: A Tale of Rwanda. It's on its way!

Anonymous said...

A great project - I found you through Carl at Stainless Steel Droppings.

I ordered Bad Boy: A Memoir (I love Walter Dean Myers) and The Sword That Cut the Burning Grass.

Good luck building the library - I hope the boys enjoy.
(Milwaukee, WI)

Redraven said...

Looking for gripping yarns for teenagers? Try Australian author Christopher J. Holcroft’s Scott Morrow trilogy.
In the first book, Only The Brave Dare, events turn Scott Morrow is into the hero he never thought he would be.
He is a Venturer Scout on a Christmas holiday camp with his Unit when international drug smugglers try to pick up their prize booty that has the potential to turn thousands of Australians into drug addicts.
Follow Scott as he pits his bravery against the might of war experienced drug runners in a race to free his fellow Venturers who have been imprisoned in a Convict jail.
Join the race by Australian Defence and law enforcement authorities as they chase a mother ship believed to have dropped off millions of dollars in drugs off the coastline where Scott and his Unit are holidaying.
Only The Brave Dare is a novel full of adventure and cunning as a teenage boy grapples with his fears and rushes to understand a technology that provides the key to the final climax.
In Christopher’s second book, CANYON, Scott Morrow and his Venturer Unit take a canyoning trip that will pit them against the raging elements and force them to make a life and death decision nobody wants.
The actions of the deft teenager will unite a nation behind him as time starts running out to save both he and his best mate.
Take the journey with Scott and his Venturers as they hone their abseil skills with Army Commandos and go on a trip of a lifetime down a canyon that will be etched into the national psyche forever.
Follow the intrepid Venturers as they are forced to face a daunting challenge that only their bravery and skills will help them overcome.
Join Scott as he is forced to rescue his best mate in a life and death struggle against the canyon in a gripping exploit to keep them both alive.
Once again, the Australian Defence Force joins the fight against time in a perilous race to save Scott and his fellow Venturer from certain death.

Canyon is a novel full of adventure and daring do as a teenage boy comes to grips with staring death in the face in a vain bid to save his best mate and himself.
Both these books are available through Poseidon Books at http{//

Christopher’s third book in the trilogy, A Rite of Passage, will be published late 2009.
In the final book, Scott Morrow and his Venturer Unit organise a scuba dive and a special ceremony to welcome a new Scout into the Unit at a picturesque seaside setting.
All calm is shattered when a vicious war between two motor cycle gangs erupts at the dive site. Follow Scott, his Venturers and hundreds of Rovers as they battle to save a group of Girl Guides who become caught between warring bikie gangs.
Scott and his fellow Venturers are forced to answer questions of courage when the lives of the Girl Guides are threatened: Will they stand and be counted when their own lives could be at dire risk? Will they stand at all?
A Rite Of Passage is a novel showcasing the determination of teenagers who become young men when fate steps in.

More details are available at

Redraven said...
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