Latest from our Blog

Conversation Exchange at the Central Library

Conversation ExchangeIf you are currently learning a language or want to maintain your speaking skills in a particular language,  then come along to one of our conversation exchange sessions in the Central Library.

Dublin Literary Award Winner Colum McCann Reading and Q&A

Colum McCannTo mark the occasion of Colum McCann winning the 2011 International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award with his book Let the Great World Spin, Pearse Street library played host to a reading by Colum McCann and a question and answer session between Niall MacMonagle and the author.

(Photo: Jason Clark Photography)

In this fascinating session Colum talks about his personal experience of 911, and how he chose to confront it obliquely in his writing, rather than head on as Roth and DeLillo chose to do. He discusses the process of developing and managing the many characters, voices and narrative strands of Let the Great World Spin.  The conversation then turns to the issues of identity and place and a familiar motif in Irish writing, the writer leaving home to live and write abroad.

Elemental Stories of India

‘Elements’ is a trilogy of films set in India, by Deepa Mehta, an Indian-Canadian film director.  The three films Earth, Water, and Fire are a loose trilogy in that they follow an elemental theme – Earth deals with territory, Water (nominated for an Academy Award) with purity, and Fire with passion -  but they are each standalone stories, and don’t need to be watched in sequence.  All are available on DVD.

EarthEarth (1998) is set in Lahore, in the run-up to the partition of India in 1947, and is told through the eyes of Lenny, a Parsee girl of about ten. Her Hindu ayah, Shanta, is the focal point of a group of friends, of different religions, whose friendship is shattered as partition takes its toll on the community and different faiths turn on each other.



Springboard? What is it. 

Springboard is a new initiative by the Government to re-train and upskill free of charge, those looking for work, whether they are long term unemployed or those who have lost their jobs quite recently.  This training is available free of charge.

The advantages of this initiative is that applicants can still keep all their current benefits and also receive a small stipend while training continues...

Summer Holidays!

beachGoing on Summer Holidays? Why not save yourself some spending money and pick up some travel guides at your local library. We have a wide range of up to date travel guides e.g. Lonely Planet Guides, Rough Guides and Timeout travel guides, as well as lots of info on places to go and things to see.

With Basic info such as how to get to and from the airport plus maps of the areas and recommended activities, accommodation etc. that will suit all the family, these guides are a must have for all you holiday makers looking to make the most of your stay.

Laos Coroner is Crafty Crime Solver

Colin CotterillLondon-born writer Colin Cotterill has lived and worked in various countries, but he has spent most of his latter years in either Thailand or Laos, and it is in the latter that his series of novels starring coroner Dr Siri Paiboun are based.

The first thing to say about this series is that humour is bountiful and makes this mystery series a joy to read. As the state coroner, and an unwilling one at that (the position being foisted upon him as he was about to retire, and being the country's only remaining doctor), he nonetheless is in the ideal situation to get involved in investigating curious deaths. Siri is in his early seventies, and though a communist and well connected, he has a rather sardonic view of his country's regime and the everyday effects of its societal changes.

Dublin Revealed: author readings in the Central Library

Paul Murray, Carlo Gébler, Kevin Barry Dublin City Public Libraries and Ireland Literature Exchange presented a series of talks and readings, 'Dublin Revealed' in the Central Library in May 2011. Three of these talks and readings are available to listen to here.

Right: Paul Murray, Carlo Gébler, Kevin Barry

County Development Plans? What are they?

dublin development planAre any developments happening in your area? How does your environment impact on you?  Are you interested in urban renewal? What planning if any is proposed for your county? If so, pay attention!

The County and City Development Plans are plans that each Local Authority in the republic must produce by law, every 6 years.  As one Development Plan is produced the draft of the next is underway. A continual process. These documents are pricey for an individual to purchase costing in excess of €200 per Plan, but do not fret.

Dublin City Public Libraries have available a full collection of County and City Development Plans in the Business Information Centre. Just come in and ask us!

Book Awards

Go Wild In The Country!

Who could ignore the sage advice of Bow Wow Wow? A rainy, muggy Summer Solstice day reminds me that books are one of the cheapest and most potent transportation devices we have. There are few better things in life than getting out into the open air. Work/life commitments means this happens less often than we would like. So grab a copy of one of these books, find your favourite chair, crack open your favourite tipple (a nice bottle of Summer Lightning or Old Peculiar maybe), and let your mind go a-wandering.  Altogether now: ‘Summer Is Icumen In!’…or maybe not….

Akenfield by Ronald Blythe Akenfield, Portrait Of An English Village by Ronald Blythe (1969)

Akenfield was a publishing sensation when it first appeared in 1969. The journalist Ronald Blythe compiled a series of interviews with a variety of farm labourers, blacksmiths, farmers, teachers, district nurses and other village folk from Sussex. Akenfield cut through any misty romanticism about rural life and showed a way of life that was often more about subsisting than anything else. An incredibly moving book, Akenfield reminds us just how hard some people had it.