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Book Club Choices 2014

In 2014 136 book clubs attached to Dublin City Libraries enjoyed and discussed 553 different books! If you are short of reading inspiration the list is packed full of wonderful reads from the classics, crime, thrillers, literary fiction, autobiography, recent favourites, to the latest award-winning must-read.

The most popular titles were the 2014 Dublin: One City One Book choice If Ever You Go: A Map of Dublin in Poetry and Song edited by Pat Boran and Gerard Smyth; The Sound of Things Falling by Juan Gabriel Vásquez - the winner of the 2014 International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award; The Dinner by Herman Koch, Canada by Richard Ford and The Detour by Gerbrand Bakker.

The most popular authors were Benjamin Black, Anita ShreveJane Austen, Charles Dickens and David Park.

Bookcover: Canada by Richard Ford Bookcover: The Detour by Gerbrand Bakker Bookcover: The Dinner by Herman Koch Bookcover: The Light of Amsterdam by David Park

Junior Book Club Choices 2014

Our Junior Book Clubs are a very well-read bunch having devoured 100 books in 2014!

Jacqueline Wilson, David Walliams, Roald Dahl and Louis Sachar were the most popular authors among our Junior Book Clubs in 2014. Here are a few books that got a big thumbs up:

Bookcover: Rooftoppers by Katherine Rundell Bookcover: The Boy in the Dress by David Walliams Bookcover: Queenie by Jacqueline Wilson My Brother's Shadow by Tom Avery

Costa Book Awards 2014 Category Winners Announced

Costa Book Awards logoThe five category winners of the Costa Book Awards 2014, now in its 43rd year, have been announced and are as follows:

Children's Book Category - 'Five Children on the Western Front' by Kate Saunders.

The Novel Category - 'How to be Both' by Ali Smith.

First Novel Category - 'Elizabeth Is Missing' by Emma Healey.

Biography Category - 'H is for Hawk' by Helen Macdonald.

The Poetry Award - 'My Family and Other Superheroes', a collection by Jonathan Edwards.

Art and Architecture of Ireland, 5 Volume Set

Dublin City Library & Archive is delighted to receive a donation of the full 5 Volume Set of 'Art & Architecture of Ireland' from the Royal Irish Academy. The Volumes can be accessed in the Reading Room in the Dublin City Library & Archive in Pearse Street, Dublin 1.

5 Volume set of Art & Architecture in Ireland

(Click above image to view larger version)

'Art and Architecture of Ireland' is a five-volume scholarly work which spans the period from medieval times through to the end of the twentieth century. The complete set includes: Volume I: Medieval c.400-1600, Volume II: Painting 1600-1900, Volume III: Sculpture 1600-2000, Volume IV: Architecture, and Volume V: Twentieth century.

Feelgood films

Cat on couch January, eh? It’s dark, it’s cold, we’re all broke and under pressure to give up something we enjoy. Apparently it’s the worst time of year to make resolutions, and I second that. So leave those resolutions till the spring, and grab your poison, be it chocolate, single malt, or rasher sandwiches, then curl up on the sofa and watch some films that’ll give you a warm cosy feeling inside.

Liveline Listener's Top Irish Book of 2014 is...

Tom GilmartinIf you had been listening to Joe Duffy's Liveline programme on RTÉ Radio One today you would have heard Dublin City librarians Alison Lyons and Damien O'Shaughnessy contribute to a wonderful discussion on the top books of 2014. Ex-staff member Hugh Comerford also got a mention by Joe, well done all! 

The programme today of course was given over to a discussion of the candidate books and the selection of the Liveline listener's top Irish Book of 2014. The winner was finally announced at just before 3pm after the listeners' votes were in and counted and, with no further ado, we can reveal that the winner was... 'Tom Gilmartin' by Frank Connolly! Congratulations to Frank on a wonderful win and on producing a very compelling read.

In order of the Listeners' Votes (with links to library catalogue records):

Films for kids big and small

DVD iconChristmas is a good time to take out DVDs from the library, as you get some extra time to watch them instead of the usual week. So you can stock up on films to keep the kids occupied. Ideally, you want a film that you can watch as well without going crazy – so that rules out Barney. There are plenty to choose from, though, with great animation and top-notch humour, besides the obvious ones like Toy Story and Shrek. Here’s a few suggestions that appeal to both children and adults alike.

Our Children's Books of the Year

Bookcover: The Sleeper and the SpindleHere are just a few of the magical children's books we enjoyed reading both  to the children in our lives and ourselves!

The Sleeper and The Spindle by Neil Gaiman. Illustrated by Chris Riddle
"My favourite childrens book was Neil Gaiman's The Sleeper and the Spindle - a retelling of Sleeping Beauty/ Snow White."
Marc

Stay Where You Are and Then Leave by John Boyne 
"There have been many books about the First World War published this year but this book is a story told from a unique angle. A children's story that can be enjoyed as much, if not more, by adult readers."
Ronan

Irish comedians have been making children and librarians laugh this year!
Moone Boy: The blunder years by Chris O'Dowd and Nick V. Murphy and Danger is Everywhere by David O'Doherty, illustrated by Chris Judge

Christmas at the Front: Insights from the Monica Roberts Collection

Christmas CardThe Monica Roberts Collection Database is well-worth examining for insights into the personal stories of Irish soldiers fighting at the Front and their experiences at Christmas time. The letters have been transcribed and digitized by Dublin City Council and the user-friendly database allows for keyword searching across the collection and also searching by ‘month and date’. This allows researchers to explore different themes and topics.  A search using  key-words such as ‘Christmas’ and 'New Year' finds vivid pen-pictures of  different soldiers and their efforts to keep their spirits up during the Christmas period.

Arthur Brennan notes how Christmas day offers no respite from the War but that the soldiers are frequently fortified by memories of happier times at home

Stranger than Fiction: Our favourite non-fiction books of 2014

Bookcover: Hidden City by Karl WhitneyWe read a lot here in Dublin City Public Libraries and it's not just fiction that takes our fancy. There is so much to learn and discover when you open the covers of our favourite non-fiction reads. And when it comes to non-fiction, the varied interests of Dublin City Public Libraries' staff really become apparent! Here are our top non-fiction reads of 2014:

Two books about Dublin caught our eye this year:

Hidden City: Adventures and Explorations in Dublin by Foot, Bike, Bus, Train and Tram: In the Sewers and Underground Rivers; Along the Edges and Behind the Hoardings by Karl Whitney.
"Beautifully written book that takes you off the beaten track to journey through some of the secrets of our capital city. Just the right mix of scholarship and adventure"
Gill<--break->

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