Chris Riddell was appointed Children’s Laureate in June in recognition of his prolific body of work as an illustrator and writer of children’s literature. Originally a political cartoonist for The Economist and currently The Observer (check out his drawings of Putin on the Iron Throne and other disturbingly accurate caricatures of our politicians), he is now best known for his beautifully detailed illustrations of strange characters, monsters and fantastic creatures in books for kids, most notably theEdge Chronicles by Paul Stewart.
We wanted to pay our respects to this home-grown talent with a humble display showcasing some of the books available in our libraries that feature his work. Resident library assistant and fellow illustrator, David Bushell created the poster and found a great selection of titles which have proved to be popular with the younger readers.
Katie Collis, Brompton Library, writes: Here at Brompton Library we thought it would be fitting to celebrate the life of Sir Terry Pratchett, whose books were loved by millions of people all over the world.
I asked the staff at Brompton which books they particularly liked and, not surprisingly, I had very different responses.
Christian: “As a kid I loved comedy shows on TV, everything from Fry and Laurieto Red Dwarfand The Detectives but when it came to reading, I was only interested in dark horror books by Stephen King and James Herbert or science fiction comics. Terry Pratchett changed all of that for me.
When a friend introduced me to the Discworld novels I became addicted to the series, as it seemed to capture the kind of Monty Python humour that I loved, but in a fantasy novel setting. I really connected with the sarcasm and humour of the characters, especially Rincewind the Wizard and Death who seemed to possess very human qualities despite such a fantastical setting. Terry Pratchett should rightly be remembered as a national treasure, whose quintessentially British wit and incredible imagination will be enjoyed by young and older readers for a very long time to come. RIP Sir.”
Elisabeth: “There is nobody quite like Terry Pratchett. His books could be sly and tongue-in-cheek, but always witty and warm too. The first book I read was ‘Guards! Guards!’ after which I wanted to read more about this fantastic world he had created. There were so many enjoyable characters: Captain Vimes and Constable Carrot – and not forgetting the Librarian!”
Katie: “At school, I watched lots of children devouring Pratchett’s books but it wasn’t until my early twenties that I randomly picked up ‘Good Omens’(which he co-wrote with Neil Gaiman) and instantly loved the world and characters they both created. I really enjoyed the TV productions of ‘The Colour of Magic’ and other Discworld programmes which led me onto reading his books. I really admired his unflinching and unsentimental approach to his illness and his contributions to developing treatments for Alzheimer’s and dementia. In this he has left a legacy and a legion of books that will be loved again and again.”
Kensal Library is looking very festive: we have our tree and snowflakes up and some wonderful winter displays for our stock (which we have had to top up several times!). A Westminster resident who came into the library commented that Kensal was lovely, bright and fresh (thanks!).
Leanne Bellot, one of our Kensal CSA’s, has created a very cosy looking winter fireplace design to showcase some of our favourite festive reads. Thanks to Laryssa, one of our regulars, who helped Leanne with the display.
Last Friday saw our special Winter Baby Rhyme Time party: we read some Christmas stories, sang some classics like ‘When Santa got stuck up the chimney’ and ‘Christmas Pudding’ (accompanied by noisy rattles and bells!) and had a craft session making Santa beards. All the children went home with a colouring book, a puzzle and a big smile.
Our last Crochet Diva session was on Monday 16 December. The ladies who come regularly to this event really enjoy the session and the company and have produced some lovely pieces of work. For a couple of sessions they made jewellery and this proved to be very popular so watch this space for future sessions of jewellery making – perfect if you want to learn a new skill in 2014! The next Crochet Diva session will be on Monday 6 January at the usual time of 1.15 to 3.15pm.
All the staff at Kensal wish our customers a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.