Be Not Far from Me by Mindy McGinnis

Book Review by Mia

I’ve never read any of Mindy McGinnis books before, but “Be Not Far From Me” made a very impressive first impression for me. A survival book that follows Ashley Hawkins and her adventures through the forest, fighting to stay alive after finding her boyfriend with another girl. As she has to stay warm, make a shelter, and find food in the forest alone, many other obstacles slow her down, putting her at risk for her future as a running athlete.

I would recommend this book to anyone really, mostly teens as there’s lots of swearing and drama. I don’t want to spoil anything but this book is also about  95% in the forest and just talking about Ashley because she only has herself in this, so if you are a fan of survival and a little bit of gruesome this book would be for you. Throughout this book she goes through some setbacks that causes her to make really risky decisions, such as cutting off part of her own foot which is a concern because she doesn’t know how she will ever race again. The detail in this story is very well written. The author does a good job of describing Ashleys past life and the people in her life, then smoothly comes back to the present story, keeping you entertained and engaged about the book. I couldn’t really say anything bad about the book except for the fact that it seemed a little unrealistic, like cutting off her own foot. I know she had supplies and things to help her but I could have never done that, even if that’s all it came down to.

This is a great book that will keep you wanting to read until the end. Through Ashley’s adventures to find home, you will be on the edge of your seat the whole time. Such a great read!

Interested in borrowing this book? Place Be Not Far from Me on hold now!

EXAMPLE REVIEW: Today Tonight Tomorrow by Rachel Lynn Solomon

This book has immediately given me so many feelings. From page one, I couldn’t put it down! Today Tonight Tomorrow by Rachel Lynn Solomon came out this summer, and I knew that I wanted to read it.

Rowan Roth has been competing with Neil McNair since freshman year. They’ve competed for highest grades, student government positions, extracurricular activities, and more, all while bickering back and forth. But the ultimate prize is up for grabs in their senior year: valedictorian. But before they can officially graduate, they get to compete in the Howl, a yearly tradition combining assassins with a scavenger hunt. Although reluctant, they put their intense rivalry aside to work together. As the day wears on, Rowan realizes there’s more to the freckly, nerdy Neil than she thought, and he may be just what she needs.

The banter between Rowan and Neil is infectious, and had me smiling the whole book. From the goofy nicknames to using Neil’s last name in clever ways (McMystery), I was a gooey mess from the start. This is the perfect enemy-to-lovers teen book. This book centres on a strong female character who stresses the importance of good, female-cantered representation in media (especially those we find in romance books!) as well as highlights double standards between boys and girls. Neil’s character is loveable, open to learning, and vulnerable about his own past and insecurities. The book also touches on anti-Semitism and how it is still prevalent today, and the profound affects it has on members of the Jewish community. I like that the author didn’t shy away from bringing this topic front and center, even in a romance book.

And this book has sex-positivity all over it!

If you can’t tell, I loved this book, and I would definitely recommend it for anyone who loves teen romances, comedy, and contemporary teen fiction.

Picture Frame Lanter

Check out our easy teen craft this week, a picture frame lantern! A great place to put candles, plants, or anything to display.


  • Four identical picture frames
  • Screwdriver
  • Hot glue or super glue

Music: “Love” from


Want to make an easy, rustic craft? Try our teen craft this week and make your own luminary!


  • Can
  • Spray paint
  • Hammer
  • Nail
  • Tea light

Music: “Once Again” from

Bubble Wand

Get outside and blow some bubbles! Make your own bubble wand from the supplies available in this week’s craft kit. Reserve your kit today by calling your local branch or emailing

We also have a limited supply of previous craft kits available at each branch! Available kits include: styro-bowl snail, DIY spinner, paper bumble bee, and the cloud and rainbow. Get them before they’re gone for good!


  • Pipe Cleaner
  • Pony beads

Music: “Buddy” from

Chain Link Caterpillar

Another week, another craft kit is available for pick up! Reserve your kit at any of our branches for curbside pick up. To reserve, call your local branch or email


  • Colourful strips of construction paper
  • Black and white circles
  • Glue
  • Paper cutter
  • Scissors

Music: “All That” from

Bubble Art Tutorial

Beautiful weather means we can do crafts outside! Watch the teen craft tutorial to learn how to make art out of bubbles.


  • Small containers of bubbles with wand
  • Canvas
  • Washable, non-toxic paint
  • Straws

Music: “Perception” from

Cloud and Rainbow Kit

Check out this week’s kids craft! This week’s kit is a cloud and rainbow. Reserve your kit(s) for curbside pick up from the Centennial Branch or Crystal Ridge Branch. Call or email to reserve.

Phone: 905-871-2546, extension 300


  • White and black paper
  • Colourful rainbow paper
  • Scissors
  • Hole puncher
  • Paper cutter
  • Glue
  • Cotton balls

Music: “Pop Dance” from