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 One City, One Book

If Ever You Go...My Map of Dublin in Song

Bookcover: Noel Purcell: a biography by Philip BryanWhen I think of Dublin in song, the popular ballads that were the soundtrack to my childhood, spring to my mind, the songs I would have heard adults around me singing as they went about their work.

My favourite is The Dublin Saunter. I think of my parents, in their courting days on Grafton Street, when they had less cares in the world. This song was written by a Dublin man for a Dublin man. Leo Maguire (1903 –1985), a Radio Éireann broadcaster who ran weekly radio show, the Walton's Programme for thirty years.  He wrote over one hundred songs, including this one for Noel Purcell (1900–1985).  Noel is fondly remembered for his variations of the role of old sailor with a long white beard, in over fifty Hollywood films in 1950s and 1960s. He was given the Freedom of the city of Dublin where there is a road named in his honour. Read more »

My Daddy likes the Dubs

 One City, One book logoDublin’s Lord Mayor is called Carmencita,
Whose favourite food is tomato pizza.

So wrote Sarah Fallon from Malahide in 1988, in a poem included in an anthology called My Daddy likes the Dubs.  It is one of a number of collections of poetry written by Dublin children which are held in the Special Collections of Dublin City Library and Archive. As this year’s One City, One Book selection highlights poetry based on the theme of Dublin and Dubliners, we took a look at some of these child’s eye views of the city.

My Daddy Likes the Dubs is a collection of children’s verse compiled during the Dublin Millennium by Dublin Public Libraries. During 1988, the city celebrated its 1,000th birthday with a year-long programme of cultural events. At that time the Public Library Service encompassed all the Dublin regions, so the selection – chosen from over 3,500 submissions – includes the work of children from all over Dublin City and County. What is striking about the poems is the delight the children take in their city and their keen observations of their localities. It would be interesting to see if a collection like this, written today, would demonstrate this same knowledge of the geography of Dublin and the same pride in their local area. Read more »

Shortlist announced for International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award 2014

Novels by Irish author Donal Ryan and David Park from Northern Ireland have been shortlisted for the 2014 International IMPAC DUBLIN Literary Award, which was announced today, 9 April. The Spinning Heart by Donal Ryan has been described as the definitive novel of the downturn. Ryan perfectly inhabits each of a range of characters, capturing their voices and in doing so, expertly delineates life in small town rural Ireland.  In Light of Amsterdam David Park takes three pairs of characters to Amsterdam, where he gradually weaves their stories toward moments of epiphany. It is another great read from the author of The Truth Commissioner, which was longlisted for the award in 2010.

Also on the list is previous winner Gerbrand Bakker. Bakker won the award in 2010 for his beautifully understated yet moving novel, The Twin, which was also translated from Dutch by David Colmer.

Books shortlisted for International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award Read more »

Start Off - Start Up - Start Now - Start Here

Go for it - start a businessAre you thinking of starting a business?

Once again this year, Dublin City Public Libraries in association with Dublin City Enterprise Board will run the Start Your Own Business Spring Programme 2014, from Thursday, 10 April – 15 May, 6.30 pm – 8.00 pm with a different speaker delivering each workshop. This year the focus is on “Getting Started” and covers a diverse range of topics pertinent to starting a business – An Introduction to Self Employment , Ideas Generation and Market Research, Ethnic Minority Entrepreneurship, Digital Marketing Strategy, Financing Your Business and Writing the winning Business Plan.

What is ideal about this programme is that each lecture is a unit within itself and covers a different aspect of starting a business - this is great as it allows you pick and chose which lectures interest you. Read more »

Two Irish Authors on Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction Shortlist

Baileys Women's Prize for FictionTwo Irish authors, Eimear McBride and Audrey Magee have been shortlisted for the Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction for their debut novels, A Girl is a Half-formed Thing and The Undertaking

A Girl is a Half-formed Thing by Eimear McBride is a highly original novel that navigates complicated family relationships and memories using stream of consciousness. It was recently shortlisted for the inaugural Folio Prize and won the inaugural Goldsmiths Prize 2013, a literary award for fiction that "opens up new possibilities for the novel form". Audrey Magees's The Undertaking, a powerful first novel set in Germany and the Soviet Union during World War II, is an intense portrayal of ordinary people pushed to do extraordinary things, setting in motion events that will have horrific consequences.

Also on the shortlist is Nigerian writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche who won the award in 2007 for Half of a Yellow Sun

Here's the full shortlist (with links to library catalogue): Read more »

Books Are Fun Junior Infants Books Project

Oisín Quinn, Lord Mayor of Dublin with St Louis Infant School Rathminesi studentsA rather large and cuddly dog who loves reading books visited Rathmines library today (Monday 7th April) with the Lord Mayor of Dublin, Oisín Quinn, to launch the new Books Are Fun Junior Infants Books pilot project. The book dog is the mascot for the project and he enjoyed reading books with the children from St Louis Infant School in Rathmines.

The pilot Books Are Fun project will give two free picture books, a branded pencil and a library card to children in Junior Infants classes in ten primary schools in Dublin city. The project is an initiative of the Lord Mayor of Dublin and highlights the importance of books and reading for pleasure for children. This new scheme is funded and managed by Dublin City Public Libraries.

Right: Pictured at the launch: Oisín Quinn, Lord Mayor of Dublin with Junior Infants from St Louis Infant School, Rathmines and a book-loving dog! (see photos below) Read more »

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