Tourists stop by all the time, but when was the last time you visited The Seattle Public Library’s internationally acclaimed downtown location?
If it’s been a while, we have good news: Starting Wednesday, Jan. 18, the Central Library will be open two nights a week until 8 p.m. (with the exception of the Faye G. Allen Children’s Center on Level 1, which will continue to close at 6 p.m. each evening). The Central Library’s nonfiction book spiral, located on Levels 6 through 9, also recently expanded its hours. It’s now open seven days a week, during all Central Library open hours.
If you need a refresher on what to explore at the Central Library, you can follow one of our self-guided tours, including this kids’ tour for families, chock full of fun facts. And below are floor-by-floor highlights.
Level 1, Fourth Avenue entrance
After you enter from Fourth Avenue, you can learn about the Rem Koolhaas-designed building at the displays in the lobby, then peruse the Peak Picks display (near the circulation desk) for the hottest new titles. Make sure to admire Ann Hamilton’s floor artwork of raised text in 11 languages.
Bring the children in your life to the spacious Faye G. Allen’s Children’s Center and cozy up with a book under the twinkling lights. Kids can browse books, play on filtered computers, and look for colorful artwork such as Mandy Greer’s Babe the Blue Ox. Or check out a Read-Aloud book, which comes with a built-in MP3 player.
What are the teenagers checking out these days? We were curious, so as a follow-up to our post on The Seattle Public Library’s most popular books for adults in 2022, we’ve compiled the top-circulated 10 fiction and nonfiction books for teen audiences. It’s a diverse, fascinating list, ranging from award-winning graphic novels to an Ojibwe coming-of-age story to a youth edition of Trevor Noah’s memoir. Maybe you’ll find a new book for your young adult reader — or for yourself.
Gothic horror has always been one of my favorite genres. Even through the holidays, I find myself turning to the gothic for a fun escape. I love the unsettling atmosphere, the haunted houses, the ghosts, and the element of mystery woven throughout the story. Here are some of my recent teen gothic-horror favorites:
Watch Over Me by Nina LaCour
After graduating from high school and aging out of the foster care system, Mila accepts a teaching job at a farm on the isolated California coast. It seems like a dream opportunity to Mila, but soon she discovers that not only is the farm is haunted, but her traumatic past is also following her more closely than she would like.
White Smoke by Tiffany Jackson
Mari and her family have just moved from California to a Midwestern city called Cedarville. Mari soon realizes that something is very off with her new house—and the town itself.
Each year, we ask library staff around the system for their favorite books published that year. Here are this year’s teen titles.
In The Charmed List by Julie Abe, Ellie and Jack, two teens with magical abilities, are forced to go on a road trip as punishment for a prank gone wrong. Along the way, Ellie realizes that Jack has been helping her cross off items on her senior year bucket list, including falling in love.
Akwaeke Emezi’s Bitter follows an art student who attends an art school and makes challenging art while revolution roils the city around her, but when anti-protest violence harms one of her friends, she makes her most provocative art as revenge.
Jenny Ferguson’s The Summer of Bitter and Sweet, a complex novel, follows Lou, whose secure summer job at her uncles’ ice cream parlor is threatened by her father’s letters from prison and his desire to return to her life, her boyfriend’s volatility, and the possibility that her uncles’ ice cream parlor may not make enough money to stay in business.
In celebration of Native American Heritage month, we’re featuring titles written for teens by Native American and First Nations authors. Some of these are realistic, some are fantasy, and some take the form of memoirs.
In Firekeeper’s Daughterby Angeline Boulley, science-oriented Daunis uses her Ojibwe knowledge of plants, medicine, and chemistry to help her uncover the maker and dealer of the meth that is killing members of her tribe.
The Marrow Thieves by Cherie Dimaline shows a dystopian future in which indigenous people are the only humans who can still dream, and that is why white “recruiters” are hunting them, believing that harvesting the marrow of indigenous people will restore this ability to them. After Frenchie loses his brother to the recruiters, he runs to the north to escape, but finds new friends and allies on his journey.
The sequel,Hunting by Stars, follows French after he is captured by recruiters and learns how they are programming captives to betray others. French must soon decide how much he is willing to reveal about his new family’s whereabouts.