books & reading

Lost in the Stacks/recommendations for ages 6+

logoWelcome to the fourteenth entry of our blog series 'Lost in the Stacks' - with recommendations by Dublin City Libraries staff. This one was submitted by Jessica from Cabra Library. The ability to read independently arrives like a moment of alchemy into a child’s life - all the hard work of sounding out words phonetically and learning lists of tricky words pays off and comes together when they are suddenly able to make sense of the sentences in front of them. It is a magical moment that opens up so many possibilities for each child.

A recipe for disaster - Kingsley Amis versus Joe Wicks

authorMuch loved writer Kingsley Amis, author of Lucky Jim, The Green Man and The Alteration certainly was ‘yer man’ for the booze. A belief that the societal benefits and profound joy of alcohol greatly outweighed the personal disasters that the gargle may precipitate, informed his life and writing.

Tips for making the most of your read alouds

read aloudReading aloud to your child is one of the most powerful ways to boost your child's vocabulary and set them up for reading success. Play around with these tips and see which ones work for you and your family. You may find that your kids love silly character voices but lose interest when you ask too many questions about the book. This is just fine!  Use the tips that work for you, and come back to the others later. Enjoy your read aloud time with your little ones.

A Brief History of Dublin Coddle

CoddleA traditional Irish cold weather treat, (all year round basically in Ireland), Dublin Coddle is considered food for the working class. Dubliners will tell you coddle is best enjoyed with a pint of Guinness and plenty of soda bread to soak up the juices. It was reputedly a favourite dish of the writers Seán O'Casey and Jonathan Swift, and it appears in several references to Dublin, including the works of James Joyce.

Human Sacrifice in Ancient Ireland

CeltsBog bodies suffered violent and grisly deaths. Of these bodies, the most famous, Cashel Man was discovered near Portlaoise in 2011, and at over 4000 years old, is said to be the oldest European bog body ever found with skin intact; then there is Old Croghan Man from Co. Offaly, and Clonycavan Man from Co. Meath.

A Summer Adventure with Summer Stars

Stars readingGet Reading! Now that school is over you can still spark your imagination, join in activities and take part in our exciting Summer Stars challenge. This year you can do a marathon read, a sprint read or a read from your couch! 

If you would like to register for the Summer Stars reading challenge, contact your local library.  

Summer Stars Quiz

Wondering what to do on a rainy day?  Then have a go at our Summer Stars quiz. This competition is for ages 6 – 12.  The closing date is August 31st.  A draw will be made from all the correct entries to win a prize. Email your completed entry form to  If it’s easier, you can email us your answers but please include the details required at the end of the quiz. 


Jaws. Book versus Film

Jaws‘The book is better’ is a well rehearsed librarian’s film review. Well usually the book is better, but in this case, ‘Jaws’ is the original summer block busting film and a watershed (pardon the pun) in cinema history. You can’t turn on the television these days without ‘Jaws’ or the sequels being screened on one station or another. Everybody can quote the lines, wear the t-shirt, and play the theme tune on the piano. But what of the book from which it originated?

Normal People by Sally Rooney

readingNow that you have seen almost every movie and TV show ever made you have probably realised that it is no coincidence that great books, in the right hands, often make great movies and television.

Hitler's Irish Nephew

HitlerWilliam Patrick Stuart-Houston (né Hitler; 12 March 1911 – 14 July 1987) was the half-nephew of Adolf Hitler. William Patrick was the son of Alois Hitler - Adolf Hitler's half brother, and his Irish wife Bridget Dowling and was born in Liverpool, Lancashire, England.

His mother Bridget Dowling, met Alois when he was a waiter in the Shelbourne Hotel in 1909; in 1910 they eloped to London, where they married. William Patrick was born the following year.