Here are some of the most popular titles borrowed by you in 2022, our book-loving Dublin City library members. It’s great to see the One Dublin One Book choice, the Dublin Literary Award winner and some short-listed titles making the list. And always great to see Irish writers featuring so strongly as well.
The shortlist for the An Post Irish Book Awards 2019, features a diverse mix of exceptional writing from new and established writers across sixteen categories, including Novel of the Year, Children’s, Cookery, Crime Fiction, Popular Fiction, Nonfiction, Sports, Short Story, Poetry, Teen and Young Adult and Irish Language. Shortlisted writers include Kevin Barry, Edna O’Brien, Joseph O’Connor, Cecelia Ahern, Emma Dabiri, Fintan O’Toole, Samantha Power, Emer McLysaght and Sarah Breen, Jamie Heaslip, Andrea Corr, Vicky Phelan, Diarmaid Ferriter, Sinéad Gleeson, Mary Costello, Rosita Boland, Joe Duffy and Freya McClements.The An Post Irish Book Awards 2019 Shortlist is as follows (with links to our catalogue):Eason Novel of the YearNight Boat to Tangier – Kevin Barry (Canongate Books)Girl – Edna O’Brien (Faber & Faber)Shadowplay – Joseph O’Connor (Harvill Secker)This is Happiness – Niall Williams (Bloomsbury Publishing)The Narrow Land – Christine Dwyer Hickey (Atlantic Books)The River Capture – Mary Costello (Canongate Books)National Book Tokens Popular Fiction Book of the YearOnce, Twice, Three Times an Aisling – Emer McLysaght and Sarah Breen (Gill Books)Filter This – Sophie White (Hachette Ireland)Postscript – Cecelia Ahern (HarperFiction)When All is Said – Anne Griffin (Hodder & Stoughton)Schmidt Happens – Ross O’Carroll-Kelly (Penguin Ireland)Seven Letters – Sinéad Moriarty (Penguin Ireland)Bookselling Ireland Non-Fiction Book of the YearElsewhere – Rosita Boland (Doubleday Ireland)Heroic Failure – Fintan O’Toole (Head of Zeus)Republic of Shame – Caelainn Hogan (Penguin Ireland)Constellations – Sinéad Gleeson (Picador)The Border: The Legacy of a Century of Anglo-Irish Politics – Diarmaid Ferriter (Profile Books)The Education of an Idealist – Samantha Power (William Collins)Ireland AM Popular Non-Fiction Book of the YearMy Crazy World – Christy Dignam with Damian Corless (Simon & Schuster)Overcoming – Vicky Phelan with Naomi Linehan (Hachette Ireland)Barefoot Pilgrimage – Andrea Corr (HarperNonFiction)The Personals – Brian O’Connell (HarperNonFiction)Live While You Can – Fr Tony Coote (Hachette Books Ireland)The Making of a Detective – Pat Marry (Penguin Ireland)Sunday Independent Newcomer of the YearLeonard & Hungry Paul – Ronan Hession (Bluemoose Books)Last Ones Left Alive – Sarah Davis-Goff (Tinder Press)When All is Said – Anne Griffin (Hodder & Stoughton)Show Them a Good Time – Nicole Flattery (The Stinging Fly Press)Minor Monuments – Ian Maleney (Tramp Press)Don’t Touch My Hair – Emma Dabiri (Allen Lane)TheJournal.ie Best Irish Published Book of the YearThe Great Irish Science Book – Luke O’Neill, illustrated by Linda Fährlin (Gill Books)Children of the Troubles – Joe Duffy and Freya McClements (Hachette Books Ireland)Dare to Dream – Irish People Who Took on the World (and Won!) – Sarah Webb, illustrated by Graham Corcoran (The O’Brien Press)Beautiful Affair – Mike Hanrahan (HarperNonFiction)Ireland Through Birds: Journeys in Search of a Wild Nation – Conor W. O’Brien (Merrion Press)A History of Ireland in 100 Words – Sharon Arbuthnot, Máire Ní Mhaonaigh and Gregory Toner, illustrated by Joe McLaren (Royal Irish Academy)Irish Independent Crime Fiction Book of the YearRewind – Catherine Ryan Howard (Corvus)Cruel Acts – Jane Casey (HarperFiction)The Chain – Adrian McKinty (Orion)Twisted – Steve Cavanagh (Orion)The Wych Elm – Tana French (Viking)The Hiding Game – Louise Phillips (Hachette Ireland)Avoca Cookbook of the YearCornucopia: The Green Cookbook – Tony Keogh, Aoife Carrigy, the Chefs of Cornucopia, Deirdre and Dairine McCafferty (Gill Books)Clever Batch – Susan Jane White (Gill Books)One Pot Feeds All – Darina Allen (Kyle Books)Clodagh’s Suppers – Clodagh McKenna (Kyle Books)From the Oven to the Table – Diana Henry (Mitchell Beazley)Donal’s Super Food in Minutes – Donal Skehan (Yellow Kite)Bord Gáis Energy Sports Book of the YearAbout That Goal – The Official Autobiography of Seamus Darby – Seamus Darby with PJ Cunningham (Ballpoint Press) - on order, please reserve in person in branch.Recovering – Richie Sadlier with Dion Fanning (Gill Books)All In – Jamie Heaslip with Matt Cooper (Gill Books)Something in the Water: How Skibbereen Rowing Club Conquered the World – Kieran McCarthy (Mercier Press)Camouflage – My Story – Eoin Larkin with Pat Nolan (Reach Sport)The Dublin Marathon – Celebrating 40 Years – Sean McGoldrick (The O’Brien Press)RTÉ Radio One Listeners’ Choice AwardNight Boat to Tangier – Kevin Barry (Canongate Books) – Championed by Joe DuffyGirl – Edna O’Brien (Faber & Faber) – Championed by Sean O’RourkeShadowplay – Joseph O’Connor (Harvill Secker) – Championed by Ryan TubridyOvercoming – Vicky Phelan with Naomi Linehan (Hachette Books) – Championed by Ray D’ArcyOnce, Twice, Three Times an Aisling – Emer McLysaght and Sarah Breen (Gill Books) – Championed by Miriam O’CallaghanSpecsavers Children’s Book of the Year (Junior)The President’s Surprise – Peter Donnelly (Gill Books)Boot: Small Robot, Big Adventure – Shane Hegarty, illustrated by Ben Mantle (Hachette Children’s Group)Don’t Worry Little Crab – Chris Haughton (Walker Books)Tiny and Teeny – Chris Judge (Walker Books) - can be reserved through other local authorities123 Ireland! – Aoife Dooley (Little Island Books)Take Five – Niall Breslin, illustrated by Sheena Dempsey (Gill Books)Specsavers Children’s Book of the Year (Senior)Family Fun Unplugged – Peter Cosgrove (Penguin Ireland)The Lost Tide Warriors – Catherine Doyle (Bloomsbury Publishing)A Strange Kind of Brave – Sarah Moore Fitzgerald (Hachette Children’s Group)Gordon’s Game – Gordon D’Arcy and Paul Howard (Penguin Ireland)Shooting for the Stars – My Journey to Become Ireland’s First Astronaut – Norah Patten, illustrated by Jennifer Farley (The O’Brien Press)Lily at Lissadell – Judi Curtin (The O’Brien Press)Dept 51 @ Eason Teen / Young Adult Book of the YearToffee – Sarah Crossan (Bloomsbury Publishing)All the Invisible Things – Orlagh Collins (Bloomsbury Publishing)Perfectly Preventable Deaths – Deirdre Sullivan (Bonnier Books UK)Other Words for Smoke – Sarah Maria Griffin (Titan Books)The M Word – Brian Conaghan (Bloomsbury Publishing) -can be reserved through other local authoritiesAll the Bad Apples – Moïra Fowley-Doyle (Puffin)Listowel Writers’ Week Irish Poem of the YearSalt Rain – Audrey Molloy (Mslexia, September 2019)The Kerchief – Christine Broe (Poetry Ireland and Trócaire Poetry Competition 2019)Pine Box in the Flea Market – Dean Browne (The Stinging Fly, Summer 2019)Dear Sean – Paul McMahon (The North – Special Irish Issue)Writing.ie Short Story of the YearParrot – Nicole Flattery (The Stinging Fly, Issue 39, Volume 2, Winter 2018-19)A Real Woman – Orla McAlinden (Full of Grace, published by Red Stag)Mother May I – Amy Gaffney (HCE Review, Volume 3, Issue 1)Sparing the Heather – Louise Kennedy (Banshee, Issue 8)Balloon Animals – Laura-Blaise McDowell (Still Worlds Turning, published by No Alibis Press)The Lamb – Andrea Carter (Counterparts: A Synergy of Law and Literature, The Stinging Fly Press)The Love Leabhar Gaeilge Irish Language Book of the YearGáire in Éag – Seán Ó Muireagáin (Éabhlóid)Gráinne Gaiscíoch Gael – Siobhán Parkinson (Cois Life)Mar a Bhí ar dTús – Joe Steve Ó Neachtain (Cló Iar-Chonnacht)Tairngreacht – Proinsias Mac a’Bhaird (LeabhairComhar)Cití na gCártaí – Réaltán Ní Leannáin (Cois Life)An Tromdhámh – Feargal Ó Béarra (Leabhar Breac)Votes may be cast until 13th November, visit the Award website to register your vote. The winners will be announced at the gala ceremony in the Convention Centre Dublin, Spencer Dock, on Wednesday 20th November.
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? The three girls in my family got together to raid our groaning bookshelves and share our favourite books with Dubliners at the Reading Room. Come along and see if you can find them.Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood and the Story of a Return, by Marjane Satrapi - all three of us love this book. It's a graphic novel that tells the story of one girls experience in pre and post revolution Iran. It's funny and sad and infuriating and brilliant. It was made into an excellent animated film by Vincent Paronnaud and Marjane Satrapi.An Chanáil, by Marie-Louise Fitzpatrick - one of the very few children's books that depicts an accurate, modern (relatively) urban Dublin. This is a very special book, unfortunately now out of print. If you live anywhere between the two canals, take a close look at this and inhabit the streets along the Grand Canal in a new, virtual way, while sharing the story of a child and a lost dog. The Tin-Pot Foreign General and the Old Iron Woman, by Raymond Briggs - we show this book to everyone who comes into our house, and then sit back and watch their reaction. Have a look yourself and see the genius of the creator of the (much more famous) Snowman in a much darker mood in this savage political satire and heart-breaking anti-war picturebook that defies categorisation, but is definitely not for young children. The book was created in reaction to the Falklands War and the two main characters are thinly disguised versions of the Argentinian General Galtieri and Britain's Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. A perfect example of 'Re Think, Re Act'. This is Ireland, by M. Sasek - This is part of a series, which includes 'This is London', 'This is Paris', 'This is Edinburgh' and 'This is New York' - published over fifty years ago but re-issued in the original format with some updates at the end. They are a kind of time-warp Pathé News style 'best bits' travelogue of each place. For some strange reason 'This is Ireland' highlights Kilbeggan and its distillery as one of the highlights of Ireland - maybe the writer had a granny from Westmeath! Mister Magnolia, by Quentin Blake - almost anything by Quentin Blake could have been included here, but Mister Magnolia has a special place in our hearts. When children are very young they often insist on the same story being read again, and again, and again, and ag...you get the drift. This is when a well written, brilliantly illustrated and consistently amusing story is worth anything you have to pay for it. This is one I never got bored with - even when daughter number one would ask for it just 'one last, last, last time'. Quentin Blake is probably best known as the illustrator of Roald Dahl's stories, but he has proved time and time again that he can write his own stories too.Horrible Histories: Ireland, by Terry Deary - this one was chosen by the younger members of the household, but who am I to argue with them? History with all the good bits left in! And, unlike one or two of my other choices, at least it's easily available.A Monster Calls, a novel by Patrick Ness, from an original idea by Siobhan Dowd - this book has been deservedly chosen by so many people as one of the best childrens books of recent years, in fact, one of the best books of recent years. It's about facing up to impending bereavement and making the best of flawed but emotionally 'good enough' relationships. I got my (adult) Book Club to read it last year and they were stunned by its integrity and emotional power. It may be written for children, but it doesn't talk down to anyone. Kissing the Witch, by Emma Donoghue - Dublin born, Canada based writer Emma Donoghue had a small but loyal following until the Booker Prize-winning novel 'Room' catapulted her to international literary stardom. Emma wrote 'Kissing the Witch' in 1988, long before 'Room' - it's a collection of fairy tales, re-worked from a feminist perspective. Sound dull? I suppose it's not everyone's cup of tea, but I really, really love this book. Actually, this is a perfect 'Re Act, Re Think' book too because each story completely re-imagines a well known fairy tale; Sleeping Beauty, The Little Mermaid, Cinderella etc. Emma retells each story in her elegant, exact, poetic prose, but this time we go beyond the archetypes of the stories to the reality of their situations, for example, in this version the Little Mermaid ends up, not as foam on the waves, but as a 'ruined woman' when her prince rejects her love for a more suitable match. Each linked story has a 'pivotal moment', usually when the heroine rejects the advice of her older and wiser sister - now, if she'd only listened to that witch... We are all doomed to ignore the witch though - until we become her!That's all folks! Well, you didn't really expect me to choose just one book, did you?Now...what would you choose?
Part 3 of my three part comments on my own reading during 2011. Non-Fiction was the first in the series with Adult Fiction second. This is my Children's and Young Adult or Teen reads. Some great fantasy is being published in the Teen section and I do enjoy the reads.I read a lot of books over the last year, approximately 290 of which I noted from the library.Of all the books I read from the library some stood out, I couldn't pick a small number but I'm going to put them into themes and pick the best of that theme. Sometimes it's hard to pick just one, the first listed is my favourite, the rest are in no particular order. This isn't a definitive list, it's a list of books that are readable alone or are the start of a series, that I read during 2011, that stood out above the others and that I would recommend to others.ChildrensThere are no cats in this book - Viviane Schwarz - a charming picture book about cats trying to escape the book.Young Adult - a variation on Cinderella that surprised me and that I did really like. Ash is a well-rounded character and her choices aren't obvious.Ingo - Helen Dunmore - what if your family was descended from the merfolk and what if you got a chance to go visit the sea, which world would you stay with? Excellent readImpossible - Nancy Werlin - complicated re-telling of a fairy story that requires the heroes to research the stories to save themselvesBeing - Kevin Brooks - a boy discovers what he thinks he knows about himself isn't the truth, an interesting exploration about life and living.Foundling - D M Cornish - half of the book is taken up with an encyclopedia about the world, the rest is an interesting start to a series with an orphan boy trying to find out his role. The Real Rebecca - Anna Carey - a girl tries to define herself when faced with a badly drawn version in her mother's fiction.If I stay - Gayle Forman - a girl lies close to death and has to make the choice between life and death. Touching and very readable.Dragonfly Pool - Eva Ibbotson - a lovely story about an eccentric boarding school and war in Europe.Re-ReadsOrdinary Princess - M M Kaye - this was a childhood favourite and illustrated by the author. A look at what would happen if a princess was gifted with being ordinary. A lovely story.