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Children's Art in Libraries

Seamus Heaney, RIP

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Seamus HeaneyIt is with great regret that we learned today of the death of Nobel Poet Laureate, Seamus Heaney.

Seamus was a most gifted writer and a life-long friend and supporter of the public library service.

He was very generous with his time and talents. He supported Dublin's application for UNESCO City of literature status and also took part in the "Dublin Swell" event in March 2011 which celebrated the awarding of the designation.

Just this Spring, Seamus donated some copies of his work in translation to the Dublin Public Libraries Literature collection, adding to the library's extensive collection of his work.

As this time of sadness, it is comforting for readers to know that his words will live on through his printed books and recorded readings. Read more »

The Dublin Festival of History Launched!

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Dublin Festival of History 2013 Programme coverToday sees the launch of the Dublin Festival of History 2013 website and programme of events. The festival is an initiative of Dublin City Council's library and archive service, and it will run from 26th September until the 9th October.

Right: Programme cover, click to enlarge.

The Lord Mayor of Dublin, Oisín Quinnn, has this to say about the festival: "In this inaugural year, it’s wonderful to see such a stellar line-up of Irish and international historians contributing to the Festival. There are debates on historical fiction, the Great Irish Famine, and the Irish revolutionary period, as well as lectures by Roy Hattersley, Jung Chang, Simon Schama, Tom Holland, and Patrick Geoghegan to name but a few.All of these fantastic events are free and I am sure that Dubliners and visitors alike will find lots to interest them in the programme. Read more »

Anniversary of the 1913 Lockout

Abbey Street, 1 Sept 1913Monday, 26th August, marked the 100th anniversary of the beginning of the strike in Dublin of 700 tramway-men belonging to James Larkin’s Irish Transport and  General Workers’ Union (IT&GWU), a strike that developed into a general lockout of union members. On 30th August 1913 there were riots in Ringsend, Beresford Place and Eden Quay, during which the police baton-charged the crowds. One hundred years ago next Saturday (31st August) James Larkin, wearing a beard as a disguise, spoke to striking tramway workers from the balcony of the Imperial Hotel, O’Connell Street (now Clery’s Department Store). A riot followed Larkin's arrest at the event, and over 600 people were treated in hospital for injuries. That day became known as "Bloody Sunday". Read more »

Latest Crime Writers' Association Shortlists Announced!

Crime Writers' AssociationToday the Crime Writers’ Association announced the shortlists for the remaining three CWA 2013 Daggers. Great to see Stuart Neville make the shortlist for the steel dagger (thriller) with Ratlines, which explores the lives of Nazis who were harboured in Ireland. Doug Johnstone a book critic for the newpaper described Ratlines as a "seriously impressive piece of crime fiction, that lingers long in the memory".

The shortlisted authors are:

For the CWA Goldsboro Gold Dagger:
Belinda Bauer for Rubbernecker (Bantam/Transworld)
Lauren Beukes for The Shining Girls (HarperCollins)
Mick Herron for Dead Lions (Soho Crime) (not yet in stock, sorry!)
Becky Masterman for Rage Against the Dying (Orion) (not yet in stock, sorry!) Read more »

The Romance of air travel

Where has the romance gone? There was a time when it was a great adventure to fly, it was very glamorous, you dressed the part, and your luggage did not cause major grief. The role of air hostess was a top job for attractive young women. The Flying Boat Museum at Foynes, Co. Limerick, captures the excitement of the early days of passenger flight.  

  Read more »

Nordic Crime Catch-Ups

Redemption and Light in a Dark HouseWith the prospect of some added free time coming my way over the next couple of weeks, a chance to catch up on my reading beckons. So no better time than the present to have some good luck, with two recently (18 July) published crime novels landing on my desk just today! The two are: 'Redemption' (US title: A Conspiracy of Faith) by Denmark's Jussi Adler-Olsen and 'Light in a Dark House' by German-born but Finnish-based Jan Costin Wagner. Having read and enjoyed both authors before, I can now look forward to reading these two new titles in the near future. Read more »

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