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North Strand Bombing, a Documentary

Why not pop along this Saturday (18 June) at 2.00 pm and view a screening of a new documentary on the North Strand Bombing at Charleville Mall Library? Entry is free and all are welcome.

About the North Strand Bombing

The bombing of Dublin's North Strand was the most serious atrocity inflicted on neutral Eire during the Second World War. Four high-explosive bombs were dropped by German aircraft on the North Strand area of Dublin City on 31 May 1941. The casualties were many: 28 dead and 90 injured, with 300 houses damaged or destroyed.

Chisellers – Childhood in Dublin through the Centuries

Chisellers 001View images from the Chisellers image gallery.

This image gallery incorporates a selection of material dealing with childhood in Dublin from the 18th century onwards.  Suggestions to improve the lot of the poor by sending ten year old boys out to work are shown side by side with informal photographs of children at play. Cosy family scenes stand in harsh contrast to the images of the regimentation in 19th century care institutions.  Health, well-being and education are the main themes of the gallery, which will be of especial interest to children themselves, underpinning the social history aspect of the Primary Level School Curriculum.

Swedish Crime is on the Climb! (Part Two)

In my first post on Swedish crime fiction I focused on Henning Mankell and Steig Larsson, the two best known and most widely read Swedish authors. But of course they are but two from a lengthy list of talented crime authors emanating from that country; given its relatively small population (9m), Sweden must surely rank as the bastion of fiction crime writing. In this second post I want to draw your attention to four more authors I think worthy of your attention, so I hope you won't be disappointed!

Håkan Nesser

Inspector and Silance

After Larssen and Mankell, the next Swedish crime writer to come to mind is Håkan Nesser, a multiple award winner whose books have also been turned to film (you might get the DVDs on Amazon). Nesser's books are well written with good plots, and have for me proved absorbing reads. The principal character, Chief Inspector Van Veeteren, might differ from most crime detectives you encounter; he likes good food, fine wines, owns an antique bookshop, and seems generally cheerful and untroubled. Top of my list is Borkmann's Point 5 star, where Van Veeteren assists in an investigation while on holiday. I can also highly recommend The Return 3.5 star (where he investigates a murder from his hospital bed); The Inspector and Silence 3.5 star (a girl goes missing from a religious sect and the inevitable body or two shows up); Woman with Birthmark 3 star (a woman seeks revenge following the death of her mother); and The Mind's Eye 2.5 star (dead woman with husband accused - guilty or not?). This last is the one I liked the least, but you may well disagree, I have read some reviews that rate it very highly.

Terry Pratchett

cover of Mort the Graphic NovelIn a moment of blink and you might miss it moment, Terry (or Professor Terry or Sir Terry or Sir Terence) Pratchett met the Queen when she met some of the Staff of Trinity College. (He is an adjunct professor in the Department of English) Irish resident Fantasy Author Diane Duane put the video up on her site.

I have read most of Terry Pratchett's books and enjoyed them mightily.  Though when I first met with them I didn't enjoy them as much and many people I know have said that they didn't like the first few either.  Many fans would suggest you try Mort.  There is quite a good suggested reading order.

Ceramics for the Senses

Visit  “Ceramics for the Senses”, a tactile exhibition by ceramic artist, Eleanor Swan at the Dublin City Library & Archive, 138-144 Pearse St. Dublin 2. Eleanor’s work comprises of ceramic pieces based on the portraits of Francis Bacon. They offer the opportunity to experience art through touch, and challenge our perceptions of art and how we display and experience it. These portraits can be enjoyed by everyone including blind people and people with all levels of visual capability.

Memory Lane: 'Dublin in the 'Rare Oul' Times

Moore Street StallView the Memory Lane Image Gallery.

The Digital Projects Section of Dublin City Public Libraries presented a series of events at public libraries during May 2011 as part of the Bealtaine Festival. Members of the public were invited to share their memories of the City through a selection of images from the Dublin City Council Photographic Collection. The images prompted much debate and craic among the participants and are presented here online so that all members of the public can take a ‘stroll down Memory Lane’.
Sincere thanks to all who participated!

iFestival at the Central Library

iFestivalThe annual iFestival will be held in the Central Library, Ilac Centre from the 10th to the 30th of June 2011. This interactive exhibition will showcase the highly innovative ICT and multimedia projects undertaken by pupils in primary and secondary schools, as well as young people from community centres in Dublin's inner city. The festival, involving the work of 800 young people, will be launched in the Central Library on Friday June 10th at 12pm.

Projects will include comic making, animation, robotic lego, podcasting, computer games and multimedia. Prizes are awarded for the best entry in each category. The projects represent the culmination of a year's work by these young pupils, their teachers and facilitators under the CLIC programme - the Computer learning in Communities programme, run by the DIT Foundation. The programme co-ordinator is Ian Roller. This initiative encourages teachers to integrate information technology into the curriculum not only to enhance their IT skills but also to make learning fun and enjoyable. Students involved have shown an improvement in attendance at school as well as increased concentration and motivation. The CLiC programme is just one aspect of the DIT Community Links programme whose main objective is to alleviate educational disadvantage and to allow individuals to reach their maximum potential.

"Bloomsongs"

UlyssesTo celebrate Bloomsday, June 16th,  which is the day made famous by James Joyce in his novel "Ulysses", the Music Library in association with Winedark Productions will present "Bloomsongs", a selection of songs associated with the life and works of James Joyce. Songs featured include, "Down by the Sally Gardens", "The lark in the Clear Air" and "Love's Old Sweet Song" (Just a song at Twilight).

James Barry (Baritone) with Margot Doherty on piano will provide the music on the day. James has made a few appearances at the Lunchtime Recitals and has gone down a treat with the audiences.

May is Busy Month for Childrens Book People

October is the month for Children's Book Festival, and Christmas is the time most children's books are bought, but May is shaping up to be the busiest month in the calendar for people interested in books for children and young people - at least in Ireland - it's been a whirl of award ceremonies, book launches and 'talking heads' events and I've been lucky enough to attend many of them. I'm even getting used to seeing lollipops served alongside the wine - though I haven't tried that mixture yet!

It started with the announcement of the Bisto Children's Book of the Year Awards in the National Library on 16th - which I've already blogged about - congratulations again to Chris Haughton for winning the overall award with 'A Bit Lost' and to Sheena Wilkinson for receiving the Children's Choice award for her novel 'Taking Flight'. Sheena also gets the prettiest coat award for her lovely floral affair - sorry I don't have a picture!

Swedish Crime is on the Climb! (Part One)

Map of SwedenSwedish crime writing has always had a good reputation, and its popularity is greater now than ever, largely because of the movie and TV spin-offs which have served to highlight two writers in particular, namely Henning Mankell and Stieg Larsson. There are several others, but I will write a second post soon where I will focus on those other fabulous writers. There is just too much material for one post! So in this post I am going to concentrate on the two biggies, introducing you (as if I need to) to the books that give us those now famous characters, Liz Salander and Kurt Wallander.

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