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.
A very warm welcome (to match the weather!) from our three libraries in the North.
Gingerbread men, crime and creepy houses at Kensal Library
We celebrated National Bookstart Week with a special baby rhyme time at Kensal Library. After reading ‘The Ugly Duckling’ we read ‘The Gingerbread Man’, sang a few songs and then had a craft session where the children coloured in little gingerbread men cut them out and stuck them onto lolly sticks. Then the children made the gingerbread men run as fast as they could. Also we handed out the gingerbread man recipe from Bookstart and we’re hoping to try any that baked! If you’d like the recipe it’s on the Bookstart website.
As Malorie Blackman has been named as the Children’s Laureate for 2013-2015 we decided to display our lovely new copies of some of her titles. Leanne Bellot our Customer Services Assistant at Kensal Library helped put together the display.
We love the Creepy House theme for the Summer Reading Challenge and Ruth and I have set up the dump bin in readiness. We are putting aside lots of great titles and are gearing up for the expected rush of children!
Crime and creepy houses at North Kensington Library
This month we celebrated the National Crime Writing Month with displays of crime fiction in all our libraries. Pictured here is the crime book display at North Kensington Library complied by Customer Services Assistant, Irani Singh. We have excellent crime fiction collections which include:
Classic crime e.g. Agatha Christie mysteries
Modern European crime and nordic Noir e.g. Henning Mankell’s Wallender and Stieg Larsson’s Millennium series
Spooky crime e.g. Ben Aaronovitch’s Peter Grant Series
Celtic crime and tartan noir e.g. Ian Rankin’s inspector Rebus
Medieval crime e.g. Ellis Peters’ Cadfael mysteries
Light humorous crime e.g. M.C. Beaton’s Agatha Raisin and Elizabeth Peters Amelia Peabody Series
In fact we have something to suit all tastes. Even if you are not a hard core crime aficionado you will find something that will interest you. For more information visit the Crime Writing Month website
This year’s Summer Reading Challenge got off to a sprint start in our libraries and already we have lots of names on our progression boards. Enroll your children now and pick up a leaflet about our programme of Creepy Craft activities and events at your local library.
Children get prizes for reading library books and can engage in lots of fun activities and games on the Creepy House website. There is even an amazing, interactive book sorter to help your child choose books to read. If you don’t have a computer at home they can book time on one of the library computers.
Gaynor Lynch, Lending Librarian
North Kensington Library
Bookstart Bear Club at Notting Hill Gate Library
A big congratulations to our first Bookstart Bear Club Completer!!
Bookstart Bear Club is a free membership scheme for babies, toddlers and preschoolers that opens up an exciting world for parent and child to explore stories, books and rhymes together.
Children will receive a free membership pack when they are registered at the library, the pack will contain a membership certificate, bookmark, door hanger and a Bookstart Bear Club passport.
Every time a child visits the library to attend a baby rhyme time, storytime or borrow books, they will get rewarded. Some of the rewards are stickers, stamps, certificates and exclusive to Notting Hill Gate Library, three different teddy bears.
Another month has rapidly passed and we reach the mid-point of the year. As holiday season is approaching, students are cramming for final exams, people are preparing for their summer holidays and the British public look forward to the birth of a Royal baby, here is what has been happening at Brompton Library since we last posted.
(If you’re joining us for the first time, this is the monthly blog post from Brompton Library that highlights some of the events, activities and services that our library provides.)
Books on Prescription
June saw the launch of Books on Prescription scheme in which healthcare professionals welcomed members of the public into our meeting room and offered a range of free advice, health checks, head massages and free fruit deserts for the afternoon.
This was a chance to promote an initiative to help people to use self-help books to manage common conditions such as anxiety, depression and stress through reading books based on CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy). I got a chance to speak with a few patrons who were really impressed with the ideas and advice that was on offer. Another positive day in the library!
Bear masks, Dear Zoo and a new Children’s Laureate
The Brompton Children’s Library half term craft event was well attended. We read Goldilocks and the Three Bears and had colouring pictures of the bears out walking and another of baby bear discovering Goldilocks in his bed! We made bear masks so we could be pretend to be bears as well.
The first Saturday of every month we have a story and craft session. This month we read Dear Zoo by Rod Campbell. We made a surprise picture with a flap like the illustrations in Dear Zoo. Everyone liked the dog picture we had to go under the flap. We are very pleased to hear that Malorie Blackman is the new Children’s Laureate. We have displayed books of hers that we have in stock.
Senior Customer Services Assistant
Our monthly reading group met and discussed The Thread by Victoria Hislop this month.
Set in Thessaloniki, it is as much a biography of the city’s turbulent history as it is of the characters within the book. Set in the current time, a young man is considering relocating there or moving back to the UK. Surprised by his grandparent’s devotion to this city, they start to recount their own lives, through war, desolation, strife, and love.
This is a powerfully moving story and it was a gripping read. Victoria Hislop has really done her research into this place. The real events and politics of this country and the varying cultures of their land ripped into this city – its survival of all that happens to it is inspiring in itself. Everyone really enjoyed this book and it sparked off a debate about politics. That’s what I love about our reading group, we can dovetail into fascinating discussions – strong views are welcomed!
The only thing which we did find disappointing about the book was that it tended to go off into a Mills and Boon ending, where things got tied up very neatly. Overall though we all thoroughly enjoyed this book and would recommend it.
Next month we’ll be reading ‘Various Pets Alive and Dead’ by Marina Lewycka. I am really looking forward to this! Details of when and where we meet can be found on the reading groups page on our website.