Blog post from the North – July 2013

A very warm welcome (to match the weather!) from our three libraries in the North.

Gingerbread men, crime and creepy houses at Kensal Library

National Bookstart Week at Kensal Library
National Bookstart Week 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.

Malorie Blackman display at Kensal Library
Malorie Blackman display at Kensal Library

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!

Natasha Chaoui, Senior Customer Services Assistant

Kensal Library

Crime and creepy houses at North Kensington Library

Crime on display at North Kensington Library
Crime on display 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
Gaynor Lynch

Gaynor Lynch, Lending Librarian

North Kensington Library

Bookstart Bear Club at Notting Hill Gate Library

Notting Hill Gate Library's first Bookstart Bear Club completer!
Notting Hill Gate Library’s first Bookstart Bear Club completer!
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.
Bookstart Bear Club logo
Bookstart Bear Club logo
 
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.
 
Ihssan Dhimi
Ihssan Dhimi

Ihssan Dhimi, Senior Customer Services Assistant

Notting Hill Gate Library

The Brompton Blog – June 2013

Brompton Library
Brompton Library

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

Books on Prescription
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!

There’s more information about this scheme on our Books on Prescription page on our website.

Stephanie Webb
Stephanie Webb

Stephanie Webb

Lending Librarian

Bear masks, Dear Zoo and a new Children’s Laureate

Goldilocks and the three bears
Goldilocks and the three bears

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.

Dear Zoo by Rod Campbell
Dear Zoo by Rod Campbell

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.

Elisabeth Brown
Elisabeth Brown

Elisabeth Brown

Senior Customer Services Assistant

Katie’s Corner

The Island by Victoria Hislop
The Island by Victoria Hislop

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.

Katie Collis
Katie Collis

Katie Collis

Senior Customer Services Assistant

World Book Night 2013

World Book Night 2013
World Book Night 2013

World Book Night 2013

Have you heard about World Book Night? It’s a celebration of books and reading and the people behind the initiative are passionate about books, bookshops and libraries but above all else about encouraging everyone to read.

They recruit  volunteers to help spread a love of reading in communities across the country. Each one of 20,000 volunteers gives twenty copies of one of twenty books which World Book Night has hand-picked and specially produced to people who don’t regularly read to encourage them to do so. Volunteer givers collect the specially printed copies of their books from their local bookshop or library. World Book Night is free to participate in for all.

There’s more information detail about World Book Night  and what they do on the World Book Night website.

World Book Night and Kensington and Chelsea Libraries

To celebrate World Book Night on 23 April 2013, there will be a special London black taxi at Kensington Central Library at 6pm. It’ll be stuffed full of World Book Night books that we want to give away. There will also be refreshments and a surprise special guest so do come along if you can.

Some of our staff applied to be one of the 20,000 book givers so over to them to tell us which books they chose and why….

A Little History of the World by E.H. Gombrich

A Little History of the World by E.H. Gombrich
A Little History of the World by E.H. Gombrich

It’s the third year running that I’ve been fortunate enough to have successfully applied to be a World Book Night giver and this time I’ve chosen a children’s book (but one that can be enjoyed by adults too!).

It’s the classic bestselling history of the world – Erst Gombrich’s “A Little History of the World” which has been translated into 25 different languages!  It covers the story of mankind from the Stone Age to the atomic bomb.

Previously I have elected to give out my books to a bus load of half-marathoners on their way to the Silverstone half-marathon, sat in a local pub, and given them out to my choir, Goldsmiths Choral Union – this time I’ve chosen to give out the copies at Canberra Primary School. Hammersmith and Fulham Libraries has worked with this school before on various projects and English is very much the minority language there.

Elin Jones
Elin Jones

Elin Jones

Tri- Brough Stock Librarian

Noughts and Crosses by Malorie Blackman

Noughts and Crosses by Malorie Blackman
Noughts and Crosses by Malorie Blackman

When I saw the World Book Night list for this year I immediately knew which book I’d like to give away if I was lucky enough to be chosen as a giver – ‘Noughts and Crosses’ by Malorie Blackman.

A few years ago I was given a list of novels for young adults to read for a course I was studying. ‘Noughts and Crosses’ was on this list and it just blew me away. I don’t want to give too much away (and spoil it for those of you that haven’t read it) Sephy is a Cross – a member of the dark-skinned ruling class. Callum is a nought – a ‘colourless’ member of the underclass who were once slaves to the Crosses. The two have been friends since early childhood but that’s as far as it can go.

I plan to give my twenty copies away to friends, family and neighbours and I hope they enjoy it as much as I did. Another great thing about this book is if they do enjoy it – it’s the first of a series so plenty for them to read!

Jodie Green, Lending Librarian
Jodie Green

Jodie Green

Lending Librarian

Why be happy when you can be normal by Jeanette Winterson

Why be happy when you could be normal? by Jeanette Winterson
Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal? by Jeanette Winterson

Jeanette Winterson brilliantly describes her nightmare childhood in the north of England with a matter of factness and humour that made me wince and laugh out loud, sometimes simultaneously!

I chose to give this book out on World Book Night as it is an amazing read and I have really enjoyed the author’s other books. I hope it will encourage people to try her other titles.

Sally Connew-Volpe
Sally Connew-Volpe

Sally- Connew Volpe

Tri- Brough Stock Librarian

The Reader by Bernhard Schlink

The Reader by Bernhard Schlink
The Reader by Bernhard Schlink

The reason I chose this book to give away on World Book Night is because when I read it I finished it very quickly – I just couldn’t put it down. I thought this mesmerising story of love and secrets, horror and compassion would be the ideal book to give away on World Book Night – the story is so engaging and the pages fly by.

Andy Norton
Andy Norton

Andy Norton

Tri- Brough Stock Librarian