The Incredible Gang of Excellent Readers - aka TIGERS of Finchley Church End Library
Earlier this year I volunteered to start a teen reading group at my local library to meet once month on a Monday. Our first meet was in April and I wasn't sure whether anyone would actually turn up, but to my surprise four teens did and we had lots of fun talking about books, sharing our favourite reads, and discussing which books we'd like to read in the group. I blogged about it on An Awfully Big Blog in May and you can read it here.
I promised an update on the group, so here it is. I'm happy to report that a few months on and the group is going strong! We're up to ten teens in the group, we've read lots of books, and we've even given ourselves a name! The kids came up with TIGERs, which they decided stands for The Incredible Gang of Excellent Readers. All we need is a logo for the group.
Initially the teens were a little shy about talking about books, and about writing review cards of the books they've read, but a few months on and they're all much more confident about talking about books and very keen to write reviews for our board in the library, sharing their favourite reads and recommending books.
We've been unofficially shadowing the Carnegie, and, as an author, it's been very interesting to hear what the teens have had to say about the books they've read, about the stories and their themes, book covers and illustrations, and characters and plots. The group have read and loved Buffalo Soldier by Tanya Landman. So well done, Tanya, for wowing your readers, and for winning the prized Carnegie Medal too!
One thing has been very clear - TIGERs enjoy hanging around bookshelves in libraries - at the end of our session they go and check out the library shelves - and I can't get them to leave! And they all enjoy a far more diverse range of books than most bookshops stock. They're hungry for choice, interested in recommendations and happy to try out different types of books. Luckily for them, Finchley Central still has a great local library!
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