About Us

My name is Michelle Scroggs. I am currently a Sophomore English teacher at Lebanon High School. When Stephanie came up with the idea to create this blog, I was really excited! From the time I was a baby up until high school, my mother read books to me every night. I started reading books on my own as soon as I was able. I didn't go through the struggles of which books to pick out because everything seemed like a new and somewhat mysterious adventure. As a teacher, however, I have seen my students struggle over which books they should read for their independent novels, afraid that they will not find something that will interest them, searching for the shortest books possible because they hate reading. I hope that blogging YA fiction reviews will give me more to work with when I give them suggestions. 

The other reason I became a part of this blog is the teacher advisories. Stephanie, Nicole, and I realized that very often YA books have material in them that may not be suitable for a classroom or that some parents may object to their students reading. By laying it all out on the table, other teachers and parents and even students can see what their getting into before they read the first page. From the bottom of my heart, I hope that you enjoy this blog and find even more books to fuel your passion for reading!

Hello, I promised myself that I would not look at Michelle's before I wrote my own About Me paragraphs. However, truth be told, if I really meant that I would have just gone first! My name is Stephanie Hasty and I have taught at Lebanon High School since the Fall of 1999. Until I started blogging I had really put reading to the waste-side. Blogging has given me an outlet for expressing my reading and writing taste. When talking to a fellow teacher on Goodreads, we realized that there were a lot of blogs out there about YA fiction, but none really geared towards reviewing books with a teacher in mind. As a parent I can tell you that I will not mind what my daughter reads in the same manner that my mother didn't mind what I read (more about that here and here), but I've gotten burned a couple of times assuming that other parents felt this same way. Hopefully this blog does two things 1] give parents, students and teachers what I hope are unbiased advisories to explore in their own homes what books they want their children to read and 2] helps me catch up on all the YA fiction I've been missing and meaning to read!

As a first year teacher at Lebanon High School, I have to force myself to make time for one of the things I love most: reading. One of the reasons I wanted to contribute to this blog was because I want have more knowledge of YA literature so that I can make recommendations to my students. So often, I make recommendations based simply on what I have heard, but I know that I need to read more of these books to make myself more credible. This way, I can really cater my recommendations to the reading needs of my students. Of course, this may mean that I will have to read more sports books or graphic novels, but I am willing to try anything. It's all about expanding my horizons!

It is important for me to instill in my students the understanding that there is a difference between academic and recreational reading. Yes, kids, reading is fun! This is not to say that academic reading cannot be fun, but even I am guilty of sometimes thinking that I have to be reading a certain kind of book, and other kinds of books don't have their merit. I know, though, that this kind of thinking is flawed. All reading has its merit, and I want to give my students opportunities to find those books that can be fun to read.