This spring children in Dublin are urged to keep their eyes peeled for mysterious aliens at their local library as Bumpfizzle – the Best on Planet Earth by Patricia Forde, has been chosen for the 2019 Citywide Reading Campaign for Children.Bumpfizzle is an alien, sent to Earth from Planet Plonk on a research mission. Or is he really just a ten-year-old boy who is feeling a bit disgruntled at all the attention his parents are lavishing on The Baby? It is up to readers to make up their own minds. The author, Patricia Forde, has published numerous books for children in English and in Irish, two plays, in addition to several television drama series for children and teenagers. She has worked as a writer on both English and Irish language soap operas. In another life, she was a primary school teacher and the artistic director of Galway Arts Festival.The illustrator Elīna Brasliņa is an illustrator from Riga, Latvia. She has illustrated fifteen titles to date, most of them picturebooks, children’s books and young adult novels. Her work has been nominated for many local awards as well as the prestigious Kate Greenaway Medal. She has twice received the Zelta Abele Award for Book Design, as well as the Janis Baltvilks Baltic Sea Region Award (2017).This is the eighth year of the city wide reading initiative. Previous books selected for the Citywide Reading Campaign in previous years include; Arthur Quinn and the World Serpent by Alan Early, The Nightmare Club series featuring Annie Graves, The Powers by Kevin Stevens, Danger is Everywhere by David O’Doherty and Chris Judge, The Book of Learning by E.R. Murray, Knights of the Borrowed Dark by Dave Rudden and last year’s book was Making Millions by Erika McGann. The aim of the campaign is to encourage children to read for pleasure. There will be author visits to many Dublin City Council branch libraries as well as city-centre based events in bookshops, the National Library of Ireland and Dublin City Gallery – Hugh Lane. The campaign ends with fun events based on the book, as part of the St. Patrick’s Festival’s in Merrion Square. Copies of the book are available in all Dublin City Public Libraries as well as in all good bookshops. Dublin City Council Library stock can be borrowed from libraries nationwide.Key Events;• Author visits to Dublin City Public Library branches between January and March. Class visits booked locally at branch libraries.• Cabra Library, Navan Road, Dublin 7, Tuesday 29th January at 3.30pm (Booking Essential; [email protected] or ph. 8691414).• The National Library of Ireland, Kildare St, Dublin 2. Thursday 7th February at 10am (Booking required: Contact Bríd O’Sullivan [email protected])• Dublin City Gallery - The Hugh Lane, Charlemont House, Parnell Square North, Dublin 1 Saturday 16th March 11am-12pmAuthor Patricia Forde says: “I am delighted and very excited that Bumpfizzle The Best on Planet Earth is the 2019 Citywide Read. Bumpfizzle is an alien- which may attract some funny business from other planets - but I think Dublin children are up for that. I sincerely hope so. We may need heroes before this is over.”(Dublin City Public Library Staff, Patricia Forde and Kids at Launch)(Photo Credit Fennell Photography)You can download a Reading Guide to the book, suitable for teachers and parents at http://www.dublincityofliterature.ie/projects/citywide-read/The campaign is run by Dublin UNESCO City of Literature and Dublin City Council Public Libraries, in partnership with Little Island Books, and is funded by Dublin City Council’s Public Library Service and the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.
Ardmhéara Bhaile Átha Cliath Mícheál Mac Donncha, launches the 2018 Dublin: One City One Book programme of events today on the eve of International Women’s Day.The Long Gaze Back – An Anthology of Irish Women Writers edited by Sinéad Gleeson, joins a long list of illustrious titles as this year’s featured book in the Dublin: One City One Book Festival. As suggested by the title, this book is rooted in the present with emerging writers, while looking back to the flag bearers of Irish women’s writing.The month-long festival will feature dramatised readings, music, song and poetry, discussions with the featured authors, walking tours, talks on topics such as the tradition of women’s short fiction in Ireland, gender balance and anthologies, writing workshops, exhibitions and much more. Many of the events are free. Check out Dublin: One City, One Book events on in our libraries.The flagship event of this year’s festival is ‘Our Stories Ourselves’ an evening of music, readings and discussion in The Great Hall, Royal Hospital Kilmainham on Wednesday 25th April. Madeleine Keane will chair a discussion panel comprising Anne Enright, Lisa McInerney, Christine Dwyer Hickey and Sinéad Gleeson. Actor Cathy Belton will read excerpts from the book and critically-acclaimed musician and singer Lisa Hannigan will perform. This event is free but booking is essential at https://www.eventbrite.ie/e/our-stories-ourselves-tickets-43606189286Speaking at the launch an tArdmhéara said “It is very fitting that this year’s book choice for the Dublin: One City One Book Festival is an anthology of Irish women writers. In the year in which we celebrate the centenary of the Suffragette movement, it is important to highlight women writers’ contribution to the arts, both historically and at the present time. The book spans four centuries of women’s writing and brings voices from Ireland’s past together with contemporary writers.”Sinéad Gleeson said: “I’m thrilled and delighted on behalf of the 30 writers, past and present, that The Long Gaze Back is this year’s Dublin: One City One Book choice. Anthologies are a platform for telling multiple stories and so many of the writers and their work included here are intrinsically connected to Dublin and its people. The book arose from a desire to amplify the voices of women who write, and being chosen for Dublin: One City One Book will help to introduce these talented writers to all kinds of new readers.”Dublin City Librarian Margaret Hayes added “This collection of stories embraces writers of the past, present and of the future, an anthology of diversity and talent. With themes universal and contemporary, and settings urban and rural, it includes some of our best writers in a genre much loved by the Irish reader and storyteller. Dublin City Libraries wishes to showcase the full catalogue of these women writers, many of whom will be well known to readers but others who may have slipped a little from view and who deserve to be looked at anew.”The Long Gaze Back, a collection of thirty stories from writers past and present, from the 18th Century to now is available to borrow from libraries and to buy in bookshops. Taken together, the collected works of these writers reveal an enrapturing, unnerving, and piercingly beautiful mosaic of a lively literary landscape. This year's Festival, which runs during the month of April, offers an opportunity for readers to engage with the book, and the city, through music, readings, walks and talks at various venues.Programme details are now available online. Pick up a copy of the printed programme of events in libraries and bookshops across Dublin.The Festival is organised by Dublin City Council’s Public Library Service. Dublin: One City One Book is supported by New Island Books, the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, and RTÉ Supporting The Arts.