Where it all began...

Monday, August 30, 2010

Librarian: Thank you all for playing!

This is only the 2nd year that we have launched an online game in conjunction with our Summer Reading program and I want to thank all of you for playing (and being our Guinea pigs)!

We hope to see you again next year!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Caroline: Feel bad for our supervisors/Goodbye!

Hey guys!

Sorry for being M.I.A. part of this summer, but I really was trying to figure out who this freak was (no offense, MH!). Guess it doesn't matter now that he made a break out. That's right; when we came in this morning, our literary intruder was nowhere to be found. And while the librarians say he's gone back to his book, I have my doubts.

Thanks for playing this summer and be sure to feel bad for the librarians who had to supervise us!!!

Kitty: ILY

Goodbye, everybody
I've got to go
Gotta leave you all behind and face the truth.

Bye guys! I had fun this summer. I'll miss you all and if you see a person in strange clothes running around the county be sure to post.

(Also, if you see an anvil laying around the library, DON"T TOUCH IT!! I have to leave it there untill I can find a way to get it back to it's owner. I really hope he's forgiven me about his garage.)

<3 Kitty


Both Katie and Matt T. came up with our Mystery Guest's identity!  Congratulations and spend those golden $100 Library Bucks wisely :)

The Mystery Guest was: the Mad Hatter from Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll.  

Even though he was protesting madly (ha!), once we knew who he was, and Caroline found his hat, he had no choice but to get back in his book! Whew!

Although the volunteers swear they saw him sneak back out ...

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Librarian: Examining the Clues

First, let's look at the logo for the Mystery Guest game...

The web address is written in a circle and slightly resembles a hole in the ground. Inside the circle, there is a pocket watch that has stopped at 6:00 and the logo that looks a little like the letters M & H mashed together.

Kyra mentioned his old fashioned clothes and "proper" speech. Indicating that the character is well... not from around here. And is most likely from another time period.

Alyson dropped a hint when she talked about the lure she used for her box trap. She mentioned that he likes tea ... a lot.

Challenge #2 was important because of the setting: Victorian London. Somewhere you might find old-fashioned clothing and proper speech... unless you are Scarper from Montmorency.

The clue that I dropped was that he sang the wrong lyrics to Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. He was singing: Twinkle, twinkle, little bat! How I wonder what you're at!

And lastly, Caroline is on the hunt for a specific hat. Something like this:

But it is missing one major piece, something that can be seen in the original logo for the game:
Do you see it? That little card stuck in the hat that has a 10/6 on it? That's important!
If you think you know the Mystery Guest, please email me! There is still time to get $100 Library Bucks!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Librarian: A really BIG hint

Here is one last hint to the Mystery Guest's identity.

This was the original logo for the game:

Monday, August 16, 2010

Caroline: I found it!

I found the Mystery Guest's hat but he insists it is still missing something ...

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Librarian: 2 Little Hints

It's your friendly neighborhood librarian here, just sharing two more hints to the identity of our Mystery Guest.

First, you may have noticed (or maybe not) the use of clocks and mention of time in several of our videos and blog posts. These have not been random comments or images.

Second, the old fashioned clothes and the talking proper (that Kyra mentioned here) indicates that the character may be ... well, classic. So you might want to check out this list. (And just so you are not confused the titles in red are ones that Wikipedia highlighted not me.)

Good Luck!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Librarian: The Grande Finale Challenge a.k.a. the $100 Library Buck Challenge

Throughout the game, we have been dropping clues about the Mystery Guest. I can't tell you what the clues are specifically, but here are some things to think about:

The logo for the Mystery Guest game...

Kyra mentions his old fashioned clothes here.

Alyson drops a few hints when she tries to capture the Mystery Guest in a box trap.

Challenge #2 was important. And while something about the book is important, it is not necessarily the title, author or character.

Oh, and I dropped a clue in my Clues, Clues, and More Clues post.

And lastly, Caroline is on the hunt for a specific hat. That's a big clue!

When you think you have the name of our Mystery Guest, email me for a chance to win $100 Library Bucks. And if you give me the author and title too, I'll throw in some extra prizes too!

REMEMBER: You only get ONE chance to guess! So make sure you consider all the clues carefully!

Caroline Returns!

Where has Caroline been? On the search for something specific...

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Librarian: Choose Your Own Ending (aka Challenge #5)

Summer Reading is almost over! Can you believe it? And since answer to Challenge #3 had to do with one of my favorite authors, Neil Gaiman, I thought we might do something similar to what Neil Gaiman did on Twitter (but we won't be using Twitter). He started a story on Twitter by only writing the first sentence. He then asked others to continue the story. If you have ever used Twitter, you know that you are limited to 140 characters. So basically, each person added a sentence to the story. Pretty groovy, right?

So I'm going to start a story here.  You can add a sentence (or two) through the comments. Again, prizes will be award to random posts/commenters. Since it is almost the end of Summer Reading, and I want to make sure you would get your prizes/Library Bucks, I think I'll close the story on Wednesday 8/11.  Let's see what kind of weird story we can create in that time. And for this challenge, you can comment more than once (that also increases your chances of winning something!).

So here it goes:
When I woke up on Thursday morning, my cat was speaking to me.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Librarian: Winner for Challenge #3

Congrats to Katie for winning Challenge #3!

The answers are:
Character: Nobody "Bod" Owens
Book: The Graveyard Book
Author: Neil Gaiman

Another Challenge done... now what's next, do you suppose?

Monday, August 2, 2010

Librarian: Clues, Clues and More Clues!

But no blue clues :)

First, we have no winner for Challenge #3! Can you believe that? In case you've forgotten, Challenge #3 went something like this:
This missing character grew up in a strange place and learned things no normal kid knows. His friends and family may be scary to us, but he's safer withthem than anywhere beyond the walls of his home. Someone in the his book is still looking for him, so if you see him, tell him Jack called.

So here's the first clue: this book can be found on the Newbery Award winners shelf in the Young Adult Fiction section.
Next, for Challenge #4, only Matt T. and Gracie S. participated! So both of you get a $10 gift card to iTunes! Let me know via email what Carroll County Public Library branch you visit & I'll send it to you there.
And the last clue is that the last time I saw the Mystery Guest, I would swear that he was singing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star ... but I don't think he knows the right lyrics.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010


If you are looking to earn more Library Bucks and are a writer or film maker, do not forget to enter the Carroll County Public Library Summer Shorts contest. The last date to accept entries is July 31st, so you will have to work fast! But you get $50 Library Bucks for submitting an entry and if you win, then you get real bucks as prizes! It's a win-win!

We now return to our regularly scheduled alternate reality game.

p.s. I had to go through the hassle of changing my password to the blog. Apparently the one I was using didn't work... hmmm... maybe the girls were right. Our Mystery Guest is trying to hack the blog.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Kyra- Hello From Camp

I have absolutely no idea what is going on right now (what else is new?), but I do know like five new campfire songs! My leader person- ish thingy really dislikes me and I don't know why. Well, I did accidentally barf all over her after eating waaay too many smores but besides that I haven't done anything to upset her. Well I hope everything is going all right, and if Caroline is reading this, where the heck are you?!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Alyson: Silence is Golden, Duct Tape is Silver

But Silent creepy guys in suits are frightening...

As you can probably tell from the title of this post, "The Dude" (yeah, I'm conforming :P ) is starting to freak me out with the whole "Don't speak even if you're spoken to" attitude... He's getting pretty weird whenever we get on the blog to post stuff. It's almost like he's trying to figure out what the password is.... I'm starting to think that The Dude really did do something to Caroline.

Maybe it's time that we start putting up boundaries or something.... Kitty seems to scare him a lot so maybe she should do some guard duty whenever we go to login to the blog... Knowing Kitty she'll be pretty gung ho about it.

Anyway, back to Caroline. Maybe she figured it out, who knows, she always has the best ideas for science fair projects... I have no idea what happened to her but sure as books have spines I'm gonna figure out where Caroline went!

SLFN, Alyson!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Librarian: Random Origami Challenge

While the other 4 challenges up until now have included some clue or hint about our Mystery Guest (aka the Dude), this one is just because it's the middle of summer and we're a bit bored :) The Mystery Guest seems to be in hiding, Caroline has disappeared and Kyra is at camp. That leaves me with just Kitty and Alyson and Kitty scares even me!

Besides why not give everyone an opportunity to earn more Library Bucks?

This idea came to me because the Finksburg Library currently has an awesome display of origami in the lobby area:
And as you have probably seen, the volunteers (the ones trying to put the Mystery Guest back in his book) also love origami and have always folded the Summer Reading game invites into simple origami shapes:

The hat is for this year's game The Mystery Guest and the boat was for last year's game Find Chesia. And yes, we folded every single one. It took a really long time... and the girls are extremely chatty. So it seemed to take forever in my opinion! But now is your chance to get in on the fun!

So here is Challenge #5:
Fold any origami shape that you want and bring it in to your Carroll County Public Library branch and get Library Bucks for it. It's that simple!

How many Library Bucks? Well that's where it gets a little complicated. Here's the system that we have devised. We picked 4 different origami books that the library owns and created 4 options for you to earn Library Bucks.

If you want to earn:
$10 Library Bucks = pick an origami shape out of Easy Origami by Mary Meinking
$20 Library Bucks = Not Quite So Easy Origami by Mary Meinking
$30 Library Bucks = Sort-of-Difficult Origami by Chris Alexander
$40 Library Bucks = Difficult Origami by Chris Alexander

Three rules:

  1. You only get to turn in one shape. So make it a good one.

  2. It has to be folded by you.

  3. If you want to fold something else (not in the books listed above), than count how many times you have to fold the paper to create the shape. We will pay you according to this number. (Here's a hint: the more folds it has, the more Library Bucks it is worth.)
And yes, we know the books listed above are in the children's section (at call no. 736.982 in the children's nonfiction section to be exact) but the titles cracked us up! Not Quite So Easy and Sort-of-Difficult ... heehee :) Have fun with this one!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Kitty: Dude Isn't as Innocent as We Think

This guy is good. This guy is really, really good.  He's hiding from us, but because he's afraid or because he needs to be alone for his dastardly plotting? And does this seemingly random destruction of library books have a pattern? If it does, is it important or just Dude taunting us?  And what is up with Caroline? I think Kyra is right, she was on to him so Dude took her out of the picture.

Nothing seems to be working. And, if we're to believe the last message Dude left us, "time is running out." So what can we do to stop it?

Ominously yours,
<3 Kitty

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Librarian: Winner for Challenge #2

Congratulations to Katie! She guessed Challenge #2 correctly.

To refresh your memory, here's the clue for Challenge #2:
This book is not about Humpty Dumpty but the main character did have a great fall. Fortunately for him, he had a doctor instead of the King's horses and men trying to put him back together. The character knows his way around London, both the side that everybody sees and its newly constructed underbelly.

So the correct answer to this is (drum roll, please!):
Character: Montmorency
Book Title: Montmorency: Thief, Liar, Gentleman
Author: Eleanor Updale

Way to go Katie!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Librarian: Challenge #4

So here's the next challenge:

Use the letters from the sentence TIME IS RUNNING OUT and rearrange them. What else can it spell? Try to use as many letters as possible. Post to the comment section and I'll pick a couple of random winners for prizes! (If you are commenting using the "anonymous" post option be sure to include your first name and/or your initials. Thanks!)

Your Suggestion! Rearranging the Letters

Friday, July 9, 2010

Kyra- My Attempt at a Dramatic Blog Post

Caroline. Did she have good reason to fear "The Dude"???  Did she know something we don't??? Do you think I am making this post sound dramatic by using three question marks??? But seriously, I've got this theory....

I think "The Dude" abducted Caroline. No one knows where she is, and when we tried to call her house her mom just said that she wasn't home. It sounds suspicious.... Alyson doesn't believe "The Dude" has anything to do with Caroline's strange disappearance but maybe if she knew some way to get him back into the book and he didn't want to go (even though he looks pretty miserable here). If she posed a big enough threat to him maybe he just decided to get her out of the way for a little while.... or PERMANENTLY!!!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Librarian: Challenge #3

No one has guessed Challenge #2 correctly!?! Here's a big clue for that one: the book that the Mystery Guest (or as Kitty calls him "the Dude") ripped the character out of was on display at the library. The display was for the 2010 Recommended Reading books for Middle School. Anyone have a guess now? Email me.

So here is Challenge #3:
This missing character grew up in a strange place and learned things no normal kid knows. His friends and family may be scary to us, but he's safer withthem than anywhere beyond the walls of his home. Someone in the his book is still looking for him, so if you see him, tell him Jack called.

Please email me with the answers. Silly bandz for the first person to answer it correctly. I'm looking for both title and author, and if you know the character name, I'll throw in an extra $10 Library Bucks!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Kitty: Hereafter the Mystery Guest Will Be Called the Dude

I wonder where Caroline is? I haven't seen her in forever.... I wonder if something happened. Maybe I should go try to find her. I bet she's fine, though. She's tougher than she looks. Don't ask me how I know. I still have no idea what's up with her,though, she's so scared of the Dude.

It's probably his clothes. They stink.

<3 Kitty

Alyson: Caroline found the end of the Earth?

I have no idea where Caroline has dissapeared to. She responded to an email but we haven't seen her at the library... I asked Kitty if she "accidently" hit Caroline in the head with the anvil... She denies everything (of course)

Kyra thinks that Caroline is just ducking out of her responsibilities with our Mystery Guest. I think that she (Caroline) is just super afraid of him.

Maybe our Guest found out that she was really phobic about him and decided to freak her out so that we'd have one less great mind on our side. Or she got sick.

I think that our Guest is bouncing from Library Branch to Library Branch. It's getting harder and harder to find him, Kitty wants to put a GPS locator on his jacket but nobody will give her one (thank goodness!!) Fingers crossed that we can find our Mystery Guest and Caroline!!

TTFN, Alyson! (@)--}----

Friday, July 2, 2010

Kyra- Man Goes Psycho

I am scared.... Mystery man is getting more and more crazy, and less sane (he's still not as scary as Kitty....). Yesterday when Alyson tried feeding him he said it wasn't time yet. Of course, she flipped (she has been in a bad mood ever since.... well she has been in a bad mood) and then told him that it was dinner time. He looked so confused, and later that day I caught him staring at a clock. Evertime it ticked his head would twitch! Weird, right?? Well, I gotta go now, bye!! :)

~ Kyra

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Kitty: Evil, EEEEVIL Thoughts

Wow. I'm starting to really not like this guy. And you don't want to be a person I really don't like.

Trust me.

He's becoming destructive! And I LOVE destruction! As long as it's ME doing the destructing!!!! AND IT'S NOT ME!!!!
I'm getting separation anxiety from my destruction.

And he had this really weird sleep talking thing... he was like,
"ABTDEFGHIJKLMNOTQRSTUTWXYT" He did it six times. I was counting.

<3 Kitty

Monday, June 28, 2010

Librarian: Winner! Winner! Chicken Dinner!

OK, so the winners of Challenge #1 won't get a chicken dinner. But you get Library Bucks and that's even better!

Drum roll, please! The winners of Challenge #1 are:
  1. Operation Anvil by Taylor
  2. Rearranging the Letters to Form a Word by Matt
  3. Transporter Spray by Thomas
You can pick up your Library Bucks at your Carroll County Library Branch. There should be an envelope with your name on it waiting for you there.

As for Challenge #2, it is not Sherlock Holmes! But it is set in Victorian London, so keep trying!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Librarian: Challenge #2

As you saw in Alyson's video, our Mystery Guest is becoming rather destructive. He's ripped some pages out of various books and I, for one, would like to get those pages back in their books. So here's what I can gather from the pages:

This book is not about Humpty Dumpty but the main character did have a great fall. Fortunately for him, he had a doctor instead of the King's horses and men trying to put him back together. The character knows his way around London, both the side that everybody sees and its newly constructed underbelly.

Wouldn't it figure that our Mystery Guest ripped out pages from a book with a mystery character in it?

Does anyone know to which book these pages belong? Please email me. The FIRST person to respond in an email with the book title and author wins a pack of Silly Bandz. Second and third place winners will win Library Bucks ($20 for 2nd place, $10 for 3rd place).

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Alyson: Trap Failure.....

Hello virtual people! Long time no type. So, I attempted to trap him in a box..... Needless to say, Epic Fail. He's such a slippery fellow!!

I even put his favorite thing (I think) in the box! Tea! He totally flips out whenever we mention it!! (Reminds me of my dad...)

He's starting to hide from us way more than he used to. Caroline says good riddance (she's such a chicken) but I think that he's just catching onto us. What if he doesn't want to go back in!?!??!!! Then we're stuck taking care of him til we all die or he does!!!!!!!!!!!

I think Kitty's getting to me X[
At least we're getting somewhere, we found SOMETHING he likes.... I guess........

Alyson: Box Trap

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Librarian: What to Try Next?

I have received some great suggestions on how to try to get the Mystery Guest back into his book. You probably know about the Operation Anvil suggestion. But since Kitty no longer has access to an anvil, we're going to have to let that idea go.

Alyson tried to catch the Mystery Guest over the weekend but I'll let her tell you what happened.

So here are some other ideas that you've suggested:


Rearrange the letters that fell out of the book to form a word. That word will activate either the book or the character. If it's the book, then the book will glow & suck the man into it. Or if it activates the character, he will start to disappear back into his book.

Thank you Matt T!

Spray the character with Transporter Spray and spray the book. He will then be transported back into the book.
Thank you Tom S!

What do you think we should try next?

Friday, June 11, 2010

Kitty- Long Story Short

First, I wanted to say I am not giving up on my plan. I just need more of a running start. He's been harder to corner lately though. Or maybe it's just me, I think he's been avoiding me. I think I scare him. I wonder why....

At least I'm not afraid of him, like Caroline is. She refuses to even see him. (Stranger Danger!)

Oh, and I found that anvil. I'm not allowed to use it, though. Well... I was until I burnt down the dude's garage. Long story....

<3 Kitty

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Kyra: Anyone Know Where to Find a Really Old Looking Suit?

Hello all! Nice weather today, don't you agree? Hehe, I'm mocking our strange little friend! He talks sooooo proper! In fact, now that I think about it, everything about him screams outdated. Especially his clothes. Oh, and if you haven't already figure it out, ironing him in didn't exactly work.... but we did find out something useful!! .... Okay it's not that useful.... his clothes are flammable! .... And, we owe him a new suit...

Librarian: Found in the Stacks

What do you think it means?

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Plan #592 Operation Anvil

Why do I not find it comforting that Kitty knows where to find an anvil?

Friday, June 4, 2010

Librarian: We've Got Golden Tickets!

Did I mention that helping us send the Mystery Guest back home is the only way to earn the limited edition GOLD $100 Library Bucks?

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Librarian Here: First Challenge

Ahhh... the voice of reason. Finally.

As you can see, several of our volunteers have managed to shake a character (and some random letters) out of a book. I'm not sure how it happened; I just know that now the library has to fix it.

So I am asking you to help us by sending us ideas on how to get a character back into his book. Please draw a picture of what you think is the best way to get a character back into his book and bring it in to the library. And FYI, before you all rush to suggest reading him back into the book, I already tried it. I'm a librarian, remember? I read Inkheart too. And I hate to break it to you, but reading characters back into books only happens in ...well, books.

So this picture, it can be a stick figure diagram, or a drawing of a machine you invented, a flip book to show the steps you need to take, or any other way you can imagine (and draw!) to get a character back in a book.

When you're finished, take your drawing to any Carroll County Public Library branch & you'll get some library bucks & other stuff. And if you haven't signed up for the Summer Reading program, then it's a good time to do that too.

Oh, and if you sign the library's Consent to Use form, then I can post your artwork to this blog. Kyra, Alyson, Kitty and Caroline will vote on the best drawing/ides and we will award the top 3 artists with library bucks!! Awards will be $40 - 1st place, $30 - 2nd place, and $20 - 3rd place!!

p.s. If you've read this far (all 5 posts), you've read at least 20 minutes, maybe more. You can count that on your Summer Reading gameboard!

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Caroline: OMG

OMG OMG OMG (deep breathing). Alyson can make fun of me as much as she wants, but I think Kitty and I are the only ones acting normally. I mean, what would you do if some guy fell out of your book? We don't even know the title! It's not physically possible! Yes, I realize I'm using too many explanation points!!!! I just want him back where ever he came from....... any ideas?


Kyra: Insert better title later

My friends and I are in waaay over heads... This guy is our responsibility and we have no idea what to do with him! Kitty was going to take him to her house, but her parents really wouldn't have let her bring a complete stranger home. Caroline decided to leave him in the library and feed him vending machine food, but he is getting REALLY grumpy...

Well, what would you do if your friend (Kitty) shook a random guy out of an old dusty book? Alyson wanted to ditch Kitty completely and just forget about the whole thing, but I told her we needed to stick together. After all, we are her friends. Well, at least this summer isn't going to be boring...

~Kyra ^_^

Alyson: Kitty's annoying freak out

Whatever Kitty told you about all of us freaking out, she was only right about her and the others. I think that the guy that fell out of the book is the start of an amazing adventure.

The really big question is where did he come from? Yeah, I know, he fell out of the book, I was kinda there remember? But still, I'm really curious, the book's title was so worn and dirty that you couldn't read it...

Another big question, how do we get him back in? Maybe we could drop him into it because he fell out of it? I really don't know. Oo! Maybe we could press him into it! We can try that later, but for now, we can just try to figure out what to do with him... Any ideas on what to feed him?? We tried pizza and soup and stuff like that, but he doesn't look like he likes it...

Well, I'll see what the girls think we should do. Draw up some ideas then take them to your nearby library; they Librarians are helping us get him back into the book.

I'll post more later, ta ta for now, Alyson


I'm not going to sugarcoat this or anything, but I'm TOTALLY FREAKING OUT. We all are. I mean, what would you do if you just saw something fall out of the sky? Or, in this case, a book? We're all in chicken-with-the-head-cut-off mode, just a little less bloody.

We're also really confused. Who the heck is this guy? Why is he here? Why did he fall out of a freaking book?

By the way, I'm Kitty. In the video, I'm the person screaming in the background. I also found the book. Introductions are important and all, but the only question I'm thinking about right now is what do we do next?

<3 Kitty