If the last few weeks have taught us anything it is that we should be lifting black voices, authors, artists, etc every day of the year, not just when there’s a protest or when it is Black History Month. With that in mind we searched through our online catalogue to find the best in black literature and over the next few weeks we’ll be highlighting different genres from non-fiction to Young Adult. We’ve chosen four books this week that look at antiracism and help us understand race, bias, and privilege. Continue reading “Celebrating black voices in literature – non-fiction”
Category: Online Resources
Our Book of the Week is The Handmaid’s Tale, by Margaret Atwood. This novel deals with the themes of feminism and dystopia, so we have put together a list of similar titles we hope you will enjoy. Continue reading “Recommended Reads”
This week’s Book of the Week is The Sense of an Ending by Julian Barnes. Narrated by retiree Tony Webster, The Sense of an Ending is a portrayal of human struggle, examining decisions, friendships, and closure. Our Recommended Reads this week deal with similar themes- we hope you enjoy looking through our suggestions! Continue reading “Recommended Reads”
The Windrush Betrayal and Sitting in Limbo
How would you feel if all of a sudden you are told by authorities that are you an illegal immigrant, that you can no longer have a job and that you will be deported to a country you have not lived in before? Amelia Gentleman’s The Windrush Betrayal and the BBC’s Sitting in Limbo cover some of the stories and facts involved in the biggest UK political scandal of the century so far. Continue reading “The Windrush Betrayal and Sitting in Limbo”
Our Book of the Week is Chan Ho-Kei’s Second Sister. This novel deals with the themes of crime, family, and investigation, so we have put together a list of similar titles we hope you will enjoy. Continue reading “Recommended Reads”
Books we love
Join us every Sunday for our new series, Books We Love. We will be sharing staff reviews off all the books they have been catching up with lately. This week Marion from Chelsea Library and Fiona from Brompton Library talk about this week’s book of the week, Normal People by Sally Rooney.
Marion from Chelsea Library:
A coming of age novel about two young people who begin a relationship in their last year at school in the west of Ireland before leaving to go to university in Dublin. Even though the writing is mostly the two main characters talking about their feelings for each other, I was hooked on the first page ‘til the end of the book. Amazing writing and a very good read.
Fiona from Brompton Library:
I wasn’t sure that I was going to enjoy this book but it totally captured my interest both through the narrator and the storyline. Marianne and Connell are both flawed and very human characters and their relationship takes many interesting twists and turns. Funny, honest and sometimes heartbreaking. Sally Rooney knows how to tell a great story.
Normal People is available on Cloudlibrary to download. Click here to download your copy. You just need your library membership number and don’t worry if you’re not a member, you can join our library service here.
Musical anniversaries 2018
This month’s display of books from the Biography Collection at Kensington Central Library showcases musicians with significant anniversaries in 2018. Those we have most books on in the collection are Leonard Bernstein (born 1918), Claude Debussy (died 1918), and Gioachino Rossini (died 1868), but we include many others.
Other hard copy resources for music in our libraries are:
• Scores in at Kensington Central Library’s store
• CDs at Kensington Central Library
• DVDs of operas, shows etc and books on music, across all all our libraries
• A special collection of music reference books at Kensington Central Library
All these can be looked for on our library catalogue
We also have resources online:
• Naxos Music Library – we have a workshop about using this music streaming service, more details below
• Biographical and newspaper online resources useful for musician biographies and performance and recording reviews
Naxos Music Library workshop
Naxos Music Library workshop
Friday 26 January
2 to 3pm
Kensington Central Library
Come along to our workshop to find out more about the Naxos Music Library, the music streaming service which is free for library members. You will be shown how to:
- Access the service
- Find the sort of music you are interested in
- Find multiple recordings of a work, or all the recordings available on the site by one recording artist or composer
- Put together a playlist of your favourite music
- Share your favourite tracks or albums
This event is free, no need to book – just turn up.
The Biography Store Team at Kensington Central Library
Mental Health Awareness Week – Surviving or Thriving?
Read, learn and connect with us during this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week –
Libraries’ positive contribution to the mental well-being of the population is well documented – see the Arts Council’s publication on ‘The health and wellbeing benefits of public libraries.’
I say population and not just customers or residents as it has been said that living near a library and, indeed, just walking past a library has a positive effect on one’s emotional and mental well-being.
Of course we in libraries are keen to invite people to come through the doors and experience the well-being benefits first hand. The theme of this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week is ‘Surviving or Thriving’ which encourages us to look at our physical and mental well-being.
Some of our offers are more obviously health focused, our health information displays encourage us to feed our brains with the right food and suggest ways to be more active, as well as giving information on managing and living well with chronic conditions. Poor physical health can be a drain on our mental and emotional strength and poor mental health can lead to inactivity, poor diet and so the cycle continues.
One way to break cycles of unhelpful thoughts and behaviours is cognitive behavioural therapy and in the West London Clinical Commissioning Group area there is Time to Talk, a free psychological therapy service.
In order to help people decide whether this service is for them or for support while waiting for a referral, or during, or after therapy, the libraries’ Reading Well Books on Prescription collections are recommended by GPs and health promotion specialists. A new collection put together to support those living with chronic conditions will be launched in July this year.
The Reading Well Books on Prescription initiative is part of our Bibliotherapy offer. Our libraries host read aloud groups in partnership with The Reader Organisation. These facilitator led Book Break groups meet every week and give members the opportunity to join in reading aloud from good literature and discuss what has been read over a cup of tea or coffee or just sit back, listen and enjoy the company.
It is encouraging to look at how we in libraries contribute to what is called ‘the wider determinants of health’ All the things in our lives that support us, family, work, employment, housing, finances, education, lifelong learning, English classes, coffee mornings, knitting groups, activities for children and teenagers, employment advice, business information points for entrepreneurs old and young, all these available in libraries.
Libraries have always been inspirational and aspirational encouraging us to ask for more learning and knowledge and skills to create meaningful lives for ourselves and our families.
There are also some very good enjoyable fiction books available free to borrow hard copy or online! See our new book displays or see what eBooks and eMagazines we have. Did you know that reading for as little as six minutes can improve mental well-being?
See what you can do this Mental Health Awareness week to look after your own mental well-being, eat well, sleep well, go for a walk in one of our gorgeous parks and yes, visit your local library.
Health Information Co-ordinator
New Arrival – Naxos Music Library!
Naxos Music Library (NML) is now available for RBKC library members!
With an unparalleled depth of classical music content, extensive background information, and improved search facilities that remain simple and effective, NML is a pleasure to use regardless of your prior music and/or technical knowledge.
#MondayMotivation – Learning Online
Your library membership is access to a world of information.
We are encouraging you to get the most from your local libraries, by making use of our great range of free online learning courses. Getting access to quality training materials can be expensive – but you can get them for free from us and once registered, you can have access to these materials whenever and wherever you want.
Let me introduce you to Learning Nexus, Universal Class, Go Citizen, and Driving Theory Test Pro!