Author Archive for Allison Smith

ICPL Teen Instagram Scavenger Hunt

by Allison Smith on May 31st, 2016

Have you all signed up for the Teen Summer Reading Program? Because you should. The grand prizes are awesome.

One way to earn a point for the Summer Reading Program is to participate in our Instagram Scavenger Hunt! Post pictures of 10 of the following items:

  1. A yearbook from the year you were born
  2. A bicycle repair book from the Adult Nonfiction section
  3. A library book with a battle on the cover
  4. A library book with people kissing on the cover
  5. Your favorite book from the library
  6. A CD you like in our music collection
  7. A shelfie (a picture of your bookshelves)
  8. A library card in a strange place
  9. You with your library card
  10. A posted rule in the library
  11. Your favorite piece of the Art-to-Go collection
  12. A recipe from one of our cookbooks
  13. your favorite movie from our DVD collection
  14. someone reading in a park
  15. A #bookface selfie (look it up if you don’t know what I’m talking about!)
  16. A librarian flexing his/her muscles
  17. A selfie with your favorite library staff member
  18. A librarian with a copy of a book they’ve been meaning to read
  19. You or a friend eating fruit
  20. You or a friend looking cool in sunglasses
  21. You or a friend on a bike
  22. You or a friend performing a skateboard trick
  23. You or a friend picking up trash to throw away
  24. A newspaper headline from your birthday
  25. You or a friend listening to an audiobook

Tag those images using #ICPLteens and #ICPLscavengerhunt and let Brian, Lillie, or me (Allie) know what your username is so we can see your awesome pictures!  Every participant will be entered into a drawing for a super neat prize at the end of the summer!

#flashwrite: Teen Poetry

by Allison Smith on March 1st, 2016

IWP-flashwriter-slider-1-webThe International Writing Program is offering their fist Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) designed for teens! #flashwrite: Teen Poetry is an online class designed to help teens improve their poetry writing skills! No prior experience necessary and you have the opportunity to earn UI college credit!

By signing up for #flashwrite: Teen Poetry you have the opportunity to learn the basics of poetry from Daniel Khalastchi, a man who has made money by writing poetry! You also get to work with other teens around the world!

Registration is free! The class starts on March 30 and is entirely online!

For more information click here!

Dying to sign up? Click here!

D&D with Teens: Lost Mine of Phandelver part 2

by Allison Smith on February 9th, 2016

dndAfter our intrepid adventurers defeated the four ferocious goblins, they discovered a trail in the woods northwest of the goblin ambush. Hits Stuff and the Wizard Myself used their keen sense of survival skills to noticed that the path was frequented by goblins and that two human-sized items had recently been dragged along the path. Upon closer inspection of the two dead horses (mentioned in my previous account), Duncan aka Meatshield, noticed that one of the horses belonged to his cousin, Gundren Rockseeker. Gundren and his companion Sildar Hallwinter were the very souls that sent our adventurers on their journey to Phandalin. By making a logical leap, our party decided to tread carefully along the goblin path.

Their care paid off! With the fighters Dylan of Dylan and Hits Stuff in the lead, the party handily avoided two goblin traps set for wayward travelers. The path led to a cave with a clear stream flowing out of its mouth. Our clever warriors quieted their movements and crept across the stream to the path into the cave. Hiding in the thicket next to the cave mouth were two dozing goblin guards. The Wizard Myself took care of them by casting Magic Missle before they had a chance to respond!

As our party entered the cave, the Wizard Myself and Meatshield took the lead, as they have darkvision and the troop wanted to maintain their element of surprise. Entering the cave, they came to a room set off the main passage. The Wizard Myself whispered to the rest of party that there were 3 wolves in the room. WIth the aid of his fellow travelers, Meatshield successfully handled the wolves and made them friendly. Out of harms way for the moment, our merry band was able to explore the room, revealing a fissure! The party climbed up and squeezed through the crack in the wall and discovered a Bugbear, his pet wolf, and two goblin henchmen relaxing around the coals of a smouldering fire. After a long battle, our heroes emerged victorious and burdened with loot.

If you’d like to join our merry band of adventurers, we’ll be meeting on February 27th in the Teen Center from 1-3 and I’ll figure out a way to add you to our journey.

D&D with Teens: Lost Mine of Phandelver

by Allison Smith on January 19th, 2016

wizardsofthecoast_dungeonsanddragons_logoWe of the Teen Center started a foray into Dungeons and Dragons this past weekend. Here is our adventure log:

Our adventurers, Dylan of Dylan, Ducan aka Meatshield, and Myself the Wizard (with Hits Stuff and Takes Stuff tagging along) began their journey to Phandelver where Gundren Rockseeker asked our adventurers to meet him with his supplies. Only a half day after turning off the High Road and on to Triboar Trail, our intrepid travelers discovered the bodies of two horses, their saddle bags empty and an empty map case. With the exception of Takes Stuff, all party members gaze into the forest and notice 4 goblins (wearing numbered jumpers) primed for attack. A battle ensues! Hits Stuff slices the first goblin in twain, immediately killing her, the goblin with a 3 on his sweater moves to attack Dylan of Dylan with his scimitar and misses. Takes Stuff, unaware of the approaching goblins, takes no action, but halts the wagon to see why her sister jumped off. Meatshield barrels towards the goblin labeled 2 with his warhammer and sends him hurtling towards a tree, dead. Myself carefully moves to the side and shoots ray of frost at the Goblin labeled 4. 4 shivers and can’t move as quickly as she expected. Dylan of Dylan swings his mighty axe at the hopeless 3 and strikes him dead. Moving to the other side of the road, Hits Stuff slices at the frosty goblin 4 and ends the combat.


Tune in after our next meeting on January 30th!


by Allison Smith on December 19th, 2015

So, I just saw Star Wars: The Force Awakens, (which was everything I wanted in a Star Wars movie, but that isn’t what this post is about) and it has officially made me excited about movies again. Which is great because we’re showing Ant-Man in the Teen Center next week!

I didn’t go see Ant-Man this past summer. I’m not sure why since I’ve seen almost all of the other MCU movies, but Ant-Man didn’t excite me. Now, I’m excited to see it! Come join us on Tuesday, December 22 at 2pm.

Here’s some suggested reading:

Ant-Man vol. 1
This is the newest run of Ant-Man and features Scott Lang, the second Ant-Man and the one featured in the movie. Scott Lang makes for a delightfully flawed hero with lots of humor and moral dilemmas. Available on  the 2nd Floor New Shelf.



The Irredeemable Ant-Man
The Irredeemable Ant-Man features the third Ant-Man, Eric O’Grady. Again, Ant-Man is portrayed as the “world’s worst super hero” so humor is abound. Find this on the 2nd Floor (741.592/Ant-Man)

Stories of Imagination

by Allison Smith on November 28th, 2015

On March 12, 2015, one of my favorite authors died. On November 23, 2015, I finished reading the last book of his most famous series.

I’m a bit at a loss.

I’m speaking, of course, about the late, great Sir Terry Pratchett and his marvelous Discworld books, the last of which was published posthumously and I just finished reading it. There aren’t going to be any more of them ever. I will never find out about Moist von Lipwig’s next big challenge, or see if anyone ever tries to overthrow Lord Vetinari. I won’t see Young Sam grow up or see Sam Vimes retire from the Watch. I won’t know what happens with the witches, if Tiffany Aching and Preston finally settle down in the same place. It’s all a bit devastating.

But, I can always go back and visit them. Terry Pratchett left behind great stories of imagination, one of the most lasting legacies one can have. I can always go back to the Disc and visit my friends, and there are 41 novels, so I can stay there as long as I want.


A great reading guide from Krzysztof Kietzman

Now, discworld is an intimidating series to start. There are 41 books! But, there are a couple of ways that you can approach the series. You can read them chonologically, starting with The Color of Magic and The Light Fantastic or you can start with any of the starter novels in the lovely graphic provided by an avid Pratchett fan.

I read them (mostly) chronologically, because that’s the way I roll, but you really don’t have to. Discworld is more of a universe in which stories take place instead of just a series. They are hilarious and they poke fun at everything from commonly used fantasy tropes to racism. As Terry Pratchett said “G.K Chesterton once said that the opposite of ‘funny’ is not ‘serious’; the opposite of ‘funny’ is ‘not funny’…” And that rings very true in all of his writing.

Included in the purple blobs in the lovely graphic is my favorite series within Discworld, the Tiffany Aching books. Tiffany grew up reading fairy tales and knew she could never be a princess since she was practical, and had brown hair and brown eyes, so she decided to become a witch. The Shepherd’s Crown, the very last Discworld book is a Tiffany Aching book, and it doesn’t tie up loose ends or end happily ever after. That isn’t Pratchett’s style. It ends like stories end in real life, with tons of unanswered questions of where to go next.

Check out Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series in Science Fiction on the first floor and the Tiffany Aching books in YA.