Teens, think of this week’s article from A. K. Smiley Public Library as a mullet: a “business up front, party in the back” piece of writing. Read on to experience the world’s first—and probably last— literary version of a 1980s hairdo.
Of course, it is logical to begin with the business end of this mullet-essay, so first, let me introduce you to an indispensable database available through A.K. Smiley Public Library’s online resources: the Gale Testing and Education Reference Center.
It’s hard to imagine a more anxiety-producing database title than one that includes the words “testing,” “education,” and “reference,” but I promise you, this digital resource has a little something for everyone, especially teens. From SAT and Advanced Placement (AP) prep and practice tests to career advice and work-related exams and e-courses featuring cosmetology, firefighting, nursing, massage therapy, nail technology, real estate, military, and more, the Gale Testing and Education Reference Center is at your service. Need help writing a resume? Check. Want to know what college scholarships you may be eligible for? Check. Need a hand creating a customized list of dream colleges based on criteria that are important to you? Yep, that too.
With so much of the school year still cloaked in unknowns, rest-assured that this virtual test, college, and career-prep database is here for you whenever you need it. You can access it via A.K. Smiley Public Library’s website through the eLibrary tab or the Teens’ page, located under the Services tab. The first time you use it, you will create a free account, which will grant you access to all the aforementioned goods. But before you run off to check it out…
No self-respecting mullet manuscript would be complete without its “party in the back” component, so let’s get to it. This party takes the form of two hair-raising, must-read YA mystery recommendations: “One of Us is Lying” by Karen McManus and “A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder” by Holly Jackson. You can’t go wrong with either of these books—that is, unless you want to go to bed early and get your recommended eight hours of sleep.
In “One of Us is Lying,” four teens—a jock, a brain, a popular girl, and a bad boy— find themselves plunged into the heart of a murder investigation when their classmate and creator of their school’s most salacious gossip website dies under mysterious circumstances. The four, whose secrets were about to be exposed in the dead teen’s next post, are the obvious prime suspects, but which one of them is capable of murder? “One of Us is Lying” is a roller coaster ride of the most thrilling variety, with plenty of unexpected revelations and some final heart-pounding moments that make for delicious up-all-night reading.
Would you like to pull two all-nighters in the same weekend [disclaimer: this practice is not recommended]? “A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder” is equally suspenseful, especially if you enjoy true crime podcasts. For Pip’s senior capstone project, she decides to open her own investigation into a suspected murder/suicide that happened at her high school four years earlier.
Pip never believed the official police report: that high school student Sal Singh murdered his beautiful and popular girlfriend Andie and then killed himself. She is determined to get to the bottom of what really happened, and as she digs deeper into the past, Pip exposes major gaps in the evidence and clues that point to other possible perpetrators. With help from Sal’s brother, Pip begins to unearth a string of secrets that someone wants to remain underground. And they’ll stop at nothing to keep them that way.
Both of these titles are available as physical books using our Books-to-Go program, or downloadable eBooks via OverDrive.
And there you have it. The world’s first mullet-inspired newspaper article. Be sure to join me next month for the world’s first literary man-bun. Or will it be a bowl cut? Stay tuned…