Young Readers League

Young Readers League is a reading program designed to inspire kids 8-14 to talk, read and interact with books and their community. Presented in partnership by Pasadena Public Library and Vroman’s Bookstore. Sponsored by The Friends of the Pasadena Public Library.

Help us choose our 2019 Young Readers League book!

Apply to be on the selection committee!

Are you:

·         Between the ages 8-14 and attend school or live in Pasadena

·         An educator who works with children between ages 8-14 and live or teach in Pasadena

If you fit one of the qualifications above, fill out an application and turn it in at Pasadena Central Library (285 E Walnut St) or email it to Jane Gov at

Applications for EDUCATORS are due April 17, 2019 and can be downloaded HERE

Applications for KIDS are due April 24, 2019 and can be downloaded HERE

Selection Committee members will be required to read 3-5 books within a month (likely in May for educators and June for kids) and attend a committee meeting.


Young Readers League 2018

We are pleased to announce the 2018 Young Readers League book: A Long Pitch Home by Natalie Dias Lorenzi.


Ten-year-old Bilal liked his life back home in Pakistan. He was a star on his cricket team. But when his father suddenly sends the family to live with their aunt and uncle in America, nothing is familiar. While Bilal tries to keep up with his cousin Jalaal by joining a baseball league and practicing his English, he wonders when his father will join the family in Virginia. Maybe if Bilal can prove himself on the pitcher’s mound, his father will make it to see him play. But playing baseball means navigating relationships with the guys, and with Jordan, the only girl on the team—the player no one but Bilal wants to be friends with.


Click HERE for a pdf of the brochure


Writing Contest

In the spirit of this year’s Young Readers League selection, A Long Pitch Home by Natalie Dias Lorenzi, kids ages 8-14 years old are invited to enter this writing contest. In 300 words or less, tell us a story about a new journey.

Entry Categories – Ages: 8-11 • 12-14

Entry Deadline: Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Contest Guidelines:

  • Stories must be 300 words, writer’s choice, and must be legibly hand-written or typed
  • Stories must be original and the student’s own work
  • All entries must be accompanied by a completed application form
  • Stories may be submitted to any Pasadena Public Library site or emailed to Jane Gov at
  • Winners will receive a gift card to Vroman’s Bookstore, and have their stories featured on the library and Vroman’s blogs.

First prize ~ $100 gift card

Second prize ~ $50 gift card

Third prize ~ $25 gift card



Art Contest

Submit a one-frame drawing, illustration or photograph (must be flat) on the theme “A New Journey.” Digital art is acceptable but must be printed already – no email submissions accepted.

Entry Categories – Ages: 8-11 • 12-14

Entry Deadline: Wednesday, October 31

Contest Guidelines

  • Open to kids ages 8 to 14 years old
  • You are encouraged to use pencil, pen, ink, acrylic, digital illustration or flat collage to create your one-frame picture, with the theme “A New Journey”
  • Size can range from 8” x 10” to 22” x 28”
  • Submission must be the applicant’s own original work


  • Submit to any Pasadena Public Library by Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2018
  • Paperclip the entry form to your illustration for submission. Be sure to make your contact information legible. Entry form will be removed before judging and a number assigned to the design. Entries will be judged based on creativity, technical skill and execution.


  • First-, second- and third-place winners for both categories (8-11 years and 12-14 years) will receive a bag of art supplies and will be featured on the Kids Blog and other library social media sites.
  • All winning entries and honorable mentions will be honored at An Evening with Author Natalie Dias Lorenzi on Thursday, Nov. 8 and displayed at Pasadena Central Library through November 2018.
  • Original artwork will be returned to the artist.



Special programs: 

An Evening with Author Natalie Dias Lorenzi

Meet Natalie Dias Lorenzi, author of this year’s Young Readers League selection,
A Long Pitch Home. Have your book signed, join in activities and games. Enjoy
photo opportunities and snacks. Win prizes. Winners of the art and writing
contests will also be announced.
Thursday, Nov. 8 • 6:30 p.m. • Central Library/Studio on 4th • 285 E. Walnut St.

Young Readers Passport Journey


Complete the Young Readers League passport journey and go to any Pasadena Public Library or Vroman’s Bookstore site to have your passport stamped and receive an entry into an opportunity drawing.
Monday, Oct. 1-31 • Pasadena Public Libraries & Vroman’s Bookstores

Vroman’s Bookstore’s Teacher’s Night Out!

You are cordially invited to join us for our annual Teacher’s Night Out! Join us for an evening that celebrates you – the incredible teachers and librarians of our community! We will have snacks and beverages, plus a bunch of goodies (including books!) to give away. Our knowledgeable staff will be on hand to recommend great new books for your classroom discussions and libraries and share some services we offer to teachers. We will have publisher sponsored tables full of reading and classroom recommendations. We will have all of the information you’ll need for this year’s Young Readers League pick, A Long Pitch Home by Natalie Lorenzi. Browse the table of recommends, speak with our booksellers, mingle with fellow educators and enjoy some treats. PLUS our Penguin Kids Rep, Nicole White and our Random House Kids Rep, Nic Dufort, will be here to discuss new titles you might enjoy. You’ll also receive a 20% off coupon to use for any personal shopping that night. To sign up, call (626) 449-5320.
Saturday, Oct. 6 • 7-9 p.m. • Vroman’s Bookstore • 695 E. Colorado Blvd.

Kids’ Writing Workshop: Interactive Fiction

Do you love “Choose Your Own Adventure” books? Learn how to write your own “Choose Your Own Adventure” story, using a fun, computer program that will help you to organize your story into an “interactive” hyperlinked experience for your reader. You’ll get a link to share your story with your friends and family. To sign up, call (626) 744-4066, option 4.
Saturday, Oct. 13 • 2:30-4 p.m. • Central Library/Children’s Story Room • 285 E. Walnut St.

Young Readers League 3D Pen Design

Join us as we make sculptures with 3D pens inspired by the 2018 Young Readers League book A Long Pitch
Home by Natalie Dias Lorenzi. For ages 7-14.
Tuesday, Oct. 23 • 3-4 p.m. • San Rafael Branch Library • 1240 Nithsdale Rd. 

Tween Book Club

Read great books and make new friends in this special book club just for tweens. For ages 9–12. To sign up,
call (626) 744-7262.
Tuesday, Oct. 23 • 4:30 p.m. • Hastings Branch Library • 3325 E. Orange Grove Blvd.

Make a Family Tree Craft

Explore your family history and create a Family Tree withus, inspired by the 2018 Young Readers League book.
Wednesday, Oct. 24 • 4-5 p.m. • Lamanda Park Branch Library • 140 S. Altadena Dr.

Young Readers League Cricket Bats & More

Join us as we decorate & create cricket bats plus some other fun activities inspired by the 2018 Young Readers League book A Long Pitch Home by Natalie Dias Lorenzi. To sign up, call (626) 449-5320 by Oct. 12.
Friday, Oct. 26 • 6 p.m. • Vroman’s Bookstore • 695 E. Colorado Blvd.

Create a Family Scrapbook

Celebrate your family by making a special scrapbook, inspired by the 2018 Young Readers League selection.
Saturday, Nov. 17 • 11 a.m. • Santa Catalina Branch Library • 999 E. Washington Blvd.

Borrow the book from the Pasadena Public Library

Buy the book from Vromans Bookstore

Our past selections:

2017: The Key to Extraordinary by Natalie Lloyd

2016: Circus Mirandus by Cassie Beasley

2015: Rump by Liesl Shurtliff

2014: El Deafo by Cece Bell

2012: Savvy by Ingrid Law

For more posts about Young Readers League: young readers league tag