Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Loggers, Vampires and Werewolves

Did you know
Forks, WA is the new North Bend?
I just put in a request for Twilight by Stephenie Meyer at the local library, but I'm number 326 so it could be awhile before I'm down. All I've been told is, there are vegetarian vampires and tweens flocking to Forks, the former "Logging Capitol of the World" a.k.a. the town where it doesn't stop raining....and they are looking for Werewolves.


saralibrarian said...

i can report from here in public library land that stephanie meyers is pretty much the current j.k. rowling of the "teen zone" (public library's awesomely un-hip term). the newest book in the series, "breaking dawn," currently has 352 holds on it but if you come in to the library very soon you may be able to grab one of the 17 "browsing only" copies of it that went out on the floor today. the friends of the olympia library bought these copies for the olympia branch. "browsing only" means that these copies do not fill holds... they are only for people who are lucky enough to come into the library and stumble across one. they cannot be renewed. "vegetarian" in this context means they don't eat human meat (makes the central romance between the human and vampire easier). if i remember correctly they eat wild animals instead. review from the stranger here:
i've actually the read the first 2 in this series and am currently reading her sci-fi book called "the host." this is the sort of book that makes me feel like i'm watching trashy t.v. when i'm reading it. i harbor an unhealthy love for trashy t.v. my mom loves these books. she's also a buffy fan though.

saralibrarian said...

i should add that the stranger review is annoying. the male author of the review is concerned at how unfeminist the novels are but he doesn't seem to be concerned about assuming that all the teenage girls he sees in the bookstore are there to buy the book and that all the teenage boys there are simply boyfriends who are just tagging along. i suppose this is a possibilty but at the library girls AND boys are going gaga over these books. (not that i'm trying to imply it's a 50-50 split or anything.)
also his description of the "40-something" women standing off to the side of the room and "looking mildly embarassed" about being the oldest people in the room is highly suspect. journalistic observation or dudical assumption? i wonder.

Tabitha Says said...

hi sara-- that's funny that it was in the stranger this week. I actually heard about it because some family friends are in town from Santa Barbara and the two teenage girls demanded to be taken to Forks! thanks for your feminist analysis of the dude analysis! i was wondering if you had read her as I heard the jk rowling comparison and i know how you feel about harry potter!
it's interesting that people always make the assumption that girls can read books "for boys" but that boys shouldn't want to read books "for girls"--are there librarian strategies for dealing with this problem of perception--the idea that some books are "for girls" and others "for boys" seems so absurd--as if gender identity is set in stone and determines your interests entirely is just so old fashioned, yet i know teachers and people who work with kids (as well as parents) who are struggling with this stuff, so it seems worthy of further discussion

saralibrarian said...

there is definitely still a major divide in what kinds of books are marketed to (assigned to, given as gifts to, recommended to) boys and girls and there is still this annoying assumption that it's alright for girls to read something with a male protagonist but a boy would never want to read something with a girl protaganist. at the library we can make suggestions as librarians but we don't tell kids what to read or tell their parents what their kids should be reading. we do give advice, of course, when we're asked. so i do see a lot of boys reading "boy stuff" and girls reading girl stuff.
there is a chapter of the ALA (American Library Association) though called the Feminist Task Force (FTF) and one of their projects is a yearly booklist of books for children (not just girl children) that have strong women characters and/or break gender stereotypes...
i think i'll do a whole seperate post on it but here is a link to the lists:

as an aside i actually love the stephanie meyer books the exact same way i love watching horrifying amounts of the o.c. on dvd. it wouldn't be any fun if it was a regular habit (kind of like how it sucks to have cable but it's awesome to watch it at your parent's house or in motels) but i love how distracting and engrossing these kind of things can be.

Tobi Vail said...

so I just spent the evening with the Californians I mentioned before and they said their trip to Forks, WA was well worth it! They also said I better put the rest of the Twilight books on hold or I'm going to regret it, as you can't read just one. In fact, a mom of the teenage girl told me even she has read them all twice! wow.