teens

Picture Book Wins 2015 Waterstones Children's Book Prize

Blown Away

Meet Penguin Blue! Meet 'Blown Away', the 11th winner of the Waterstones Children's Book Prize and the debut work of Rob Biddulph! 

It's a windy day, and Penguin Blue has a brand new kite - but where's he going on this maiden flight? In this fun and enjoyable picture book written and illustrated by Rob Biddulph, Penguin Blue and his friends go on a gloriously illustrated adventure full of good ideas, homesickness and the perils of kites. 

The Waterstones Children's Book Prize has three categories, from which the overall winner is selected. Biddulph's 'Blown Away' had won the Best Illustrated Book category; other category winners were: Sally Green, winner of the best book for teenagers with 'Half Bad', and Robin Stevens, winner of best young fiction with 'Murder Most Unladylike'.

First Ever Young Adult Book Prize Shortlist Announced

YA Book Prize 2015It's so nice to see books written specifically for young adults getting due acknowledgement. Here, in the inaugural Bookseller YA Book Prize, ten such titles by ten different authors have been so acknowledged by their inclusion on the shortlist, with the winner to be announced on the 19th March 2015.

The ten shortlisted titles (with links to the library catalogue where we have them) are:

Goose – Dawn O'Porter (Hot Key Books)
Salvage – Keren David (Atom/Little,Brown)
Only Ever Yours – Louise O'Neill (Quercus)
Ghosts of Heaven – Marcus Sedgwick (Orion)
Trouble – Non Pratt (Walker)
Lobsters – Lucy Ivison and Tom Ellen (Chicken House)
Finding a Voice – Kim Hood (O'Brien Press)
Say Her Name - James Dawson (Hot Key Books)
A Song for Ella Grey - David Almond (Hodder Children's Books)
Half Bad – Sally Green (Penguin)

Jonathan Stroud - The Bartimaeus Trilogy. A Must Read for Every Fantasy Fan

Post by Fabienne Sauberlich.

The Amulet of Smarkand"The temperature of the room dropped fast. Ice formed on the curtains and crusted thickly around the lights in the ceiling. Then two yellow staring eyes materialized in the smoke. "Hey, it was his first time. I wanted to scare him"."

This is the beginning of Jonathan Stroud's Bartimaeus Trilogy, a fantasy series that is all at once fantastic, thrilling and funny, with two main characters that will immediately capture your heart.

So what's it about? The story is set in a world where wizards are the most powerful people, and humans without magical powers are lower class people. Wizards conjure up demons to work for them, but they treat them like dangerous slaves knowing that a demon will take every chance he gets to kill his master.

Vampires - From Dracula to Twilight and everything in between

Dracula (Christopher Lee)Post by Fabienne Sauberlich.

Are the Acheronian Dracula and the sparkling chick magnet Edward Cullen one and the same? Definitely not. But they are both vampires. Maybe there is not "That Vampire" anymore but a few very different types of vampires? And that is exactly how it is; they kind of spread over the whole media market placing themselves in different genres with different attributes. So if you think you know vampires, vampires fiction and vampires movies you might have missed some. What vampires do you like? The creature of human nightmares, the pitiless hunter of the night longing for your blood? You can find them with famous horror authors like Stephen King in Salem’s Lot, hunted by brave people like Van Helsing, Buffy and so on, or in classics like Dracula and Nosferatu.

Christmas Holidays - time to curl up with a book...

I love the long, warm, bright summer evenings - but the long, chilly, dark winter evenings have their charms too, as long as I have something good to read. The girls in my house have stored up some special reads for those lazy days between Christmas and New Year. We've had to banish the chosen books from sight so we're not tempted to start reading immediately - there lies grave danger of no present buying, pudding making, tree trimming or other essential ingredients of Christmas.

Brilliant Mid-term Reads from Book Festival Authors

Children's Book Festival PosterDark days, and even darker nights - autumn is the perfect time to curl up with a good book. You might already have a toppling pile of books beside the bed, or sitting on a bookshelf just waiting for you to pick them up and bring the story to life by opening that first page. But if you are finished everything interesting in your 'to read' pile and are looking for a good book to keep you company over this mid-term break, perhaps you will find inspiration in the work of some of the authors who have been visiting Dublin City Libraries during October for Children's Book Festival. Some, like Judi Curtin are very well-known and don't need any introduction from me, while others, like Michael Carroll, who writes science fiction / fantasy novels, are less well-known, but equally engaging writers.

If you were lucky enough to be at Cabra Library or Drumcondra Library to meet popular author Judi Curtin, you will have heard all about how she started writing and how moving schools often as a child helped her become observant and made sure she always had good stories to tell. Judi's most recent book is 'Leave it to Eva' the third book in the 'Eva' series. There are seven books in Judi's earlier 'Alice and Megan' series, as well as a cookbook, so no need to run out of your favourite reads.

Grimm on Film - new versions from Germany

Snow WhiteDuring Culture Night 2012 the Goethe-Institut Irland gave Dubliners the opportunity to see new film versions of Grimms' Fairy Tales - shot on location in Germany in old castles, monasteries and forts and starring well known German film and television actors. Now, both Rathmines Library and Cabra Library can offer the same opportunity to their patrons with screenings of three of the most well-known titles during the mid-term break, between Tuesday 30th October and Friday 2nd November.

The films follow the original stories as collected by the Brothers Grimm and retain many elements that have been lost in up-dated or shortened versions - for example, the Wicked Queen in Schneewitchen (or Snow White as it is known in English) tries to kill Snow White three times, first with a belt that tightens around her waist, next with a poisoned comb for her hair, before hitting on the (almost) successful plan of tempting her with a poisoned apple. The real castle setting in Dornroschen (Sleeping Beauty) lends an authenticity to the tale - which turns it into a charming love story. In Rapunzel, there is plenty of background on how the young girl with the fabulously long hair came to be shut up in the tower - though the film doesn't quite go into how she notices her dress getting tighter after the secret visits from the Prince, as told in the original story. Perhaps he was bringing her chocolates?

Fab Four for Phizzfest!

No, it's not a Beatles tribute band - but I couldn't resist the alliterative headline - the 'Fab Four' are four fabulous Irish writers for children and young people; Pauline McLynn, Conor Kostick, Brian Gallagher and Anna Carey, all appearing in the Phibsboro' area during Phizzfest, the voluntary community arts festival running 1st - 9th September 2012.

Cabra Teen Book Club on TV3

On the 6th June last, TV3 visited Cabra Library where they filmed the teen book club discussing 'The Hunger Games' by Suzanne Collins! The five minute piece was broadcast on Tuesday, 26th June on Ireland AM at approximately 9.20am.

Cabra Library Teen Book Club

The Reading Room - what would you put in?

Have you ever speculated which books you would bring with you to a desert island? (I've always thought that should be 'deserted' not 'desert' but perhaps it's an obscure grammar point I don't get?) As part of the Re Think + Re Act Exhibition, Pivot Dublin have set up a Reading Room in Filmbase in Temple Bar, Dublin. They invited readers in Dublin to submit their favourite book to be displayed in the Reading Room during the exhibition. 

My choice? 

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