Ulladulla Library and Visitors’ Centre relocated after water damage

The Ulladulla branch of Shoalhaven Libraries is currently relocating to the Milton Library due to water damage. Shoalhaven Council released the following media release this week:”Following the recent heavy rain event, Council staff has identified water damage within the Ulladulla Library and Visitors Centre.As a result it has become necessary to relocate the Library and Visitors Centre services to the Milton Library from Thursday 25 October.The Milton Library will operate between 9am-5pm Monday to Friday and between 9am-2pm on Saturdays.

The Visitors Centre operations at the Milton Library will operate in a limited role, providing customer service, some brochures and bookings.

This will be an interim arrangement while the Civic Centre damage is assessed in detail.

Once the full extent of the building issues are known longer term arrangements will be implemented.

The cause of the damage will be repaired as part of the redevelopment of the Ulladulla Library, Visitors Centre and Civic Centre site due to commence in early 2013.

Shoalhaven City Council apologises for any inconvenience caused by the relocation.

Please contact Noela Lim, Manager, Shoalhaven Libraries and Community Services on 4429 3702 or Ben Harnwell, Acting Tourism Manager on 4429 3248 if you have any queries.”


A gorgeous green and gold visitor at Nowra Library

The Green and Golden Bell frog outside Nowra Library today

We had a beautiful visitor today at Nowra Library- a gorgeous Green and Golden Bell Frog. These frogs are ground dwellers and native to Eastern Australia. They can reach up to 11cm in length, making them one of Australia’s largest frogs.

In recent times these frogs have experienced major population declines and, as a result, they are currently classified as globally vulnerable.

In 2011 Shoalhaven City Council launched a highly successful Green and Golden Bell Frog protection program, which enabled Council to manage the exploding local Bell Frog populations and protect the species’ natural habitat. Council worked with the Department of Environment, Climate Change & Water, frog experts and community members to ensure the continued well-being of this iconic frog species. The success of the project led to Shoalhaven City Council becoming a finalist in the 2011 Local Government Excellence in the Environment Awards.

It’s great to see the result of all that hard work enjoying the gardens here at Nowra Library.


Bring Up the Winner: Hilary Mantel Wins the Man Booker Prize- Again!

This week, Bring up The Bodies by Hilary Mantel was announced as the winner of the 2012 Man Booker Prize for 2012.  The novel is sequel to Mantel’s brilliant historical work Wolf Hall, which won the same prestigious prize in 2009.

The Man Booker Prize website announced Mantel’s win earlier this week: ‘The whittling has finished. The judges of this year’s Man Booker Prize started with a daunting 145 novels and have winnowed, sifted, culled, and in some cases hurled, until there was only one left: Hilary Mantel’s Bring up the Bodies.’

With the win, Mantel joins Peter Carey and J.M Coetzee as the only authors in Man Booker history to win the prize more than once. She is also the first writer ever to win the Prize for a sequel and the first to win within such a short time between books.

Wolf Hall and Bring up the Bodies will eventually be joined by a third book, forming a trilogy. Depicting the life and times of historical figure Thomas Cromwell, the books have been praised as ‘one of the great achievements of modern literature’ and for ‘resuscitating historical fiction’ (www.themanbookerprize.com).

As for whether or not Mantel will take the Prize a third time with the final installment of the trilogy, only time will tell…

Hilary Mantel with Bring Up the Bodies
Photograph: Ben Pruchnie/Getty Images http://www.guardian.co.uk

3rd Wednesday Book Club- September 2012

The National Year of Reading theme for September was Grow. Here at Nowra Library we explored HSC English texts that are currently under study. We also read:

Faces in the Crowd by Valeria Luiselli
The True History of the Kelly Gang by Peter Carey
Disquiet by Julia Leigh
The Nightmare by Lars Kepler
Atlantis and Other Places by Harry Turtledove
The Night Strangers by Chris Bohjalian
Fishing for Tigers by Emily Maquire
Autumn Laing by Alex Miller
Hannah & Emile by Belinda Castles
The Figtree by Arnold Zable
The Interrogator by Glen Carr
All My Enemies by Barry Maitland
The Secret River by Kate Grenville
London by Edward Rutherford
The Scottish Prisoner by Diana Gabaldon
Landscape of Farewell by Alex Miller
Looking for Alibrandi by Melina Marchetta
The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan
Mornings in Jenin by Susan Abulhawa
The Lost Girls of Rome by Donato Carrisi
Daughters of Mars by Thomas Keneally
Sibyl’s Cave by Catherine Padmore
What Makes Us Tick: The Ten Desires That Drive Us by Hugh Mackay
Next to Love by Ellen Feldman

Most Talked About Reads

Fishing for Tigers by Emily Maquire
‘Mischa Reese flees a destructive, violent marriage and goes to live in Vietnam, working as a translator in Hanoi. At 35 Mischa is cynical and although she has a group of friends, she feels alone and not involved with Vietnamese society. Then she meets Cal, the Vietnamese-Australian son of one of her friends who is visiting his father. Her relationship with Cal develops into a full blown affair that is both wonderful and destructive. There were also a lot of interesting stories about Vietnam and its culture and myths. ’ – Lynne

The Interrogator: A CIA Agent’s True Story by Glen Carle
‘A difficult book to read, because so much of it has been blacked out by the CIA! This book is about Carle’s role in the interrogation of CAPTUS, a man the CIA suspected of being involved with Osama Bin Laden. The book also gives insights into the way the CIA operates. A real eye opener!’ – Lynne 

The Night Strangers by Chris Bohjalian
‘Chip Linton, a former airline pilot, his wife and twin daughters relocate to an old Victorian house in New Hampshire after a tragic plane crash in which Chip had been the pilot. His PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder), the old house and the
new community combine to create even more horrors. This is a ghost story with a difference. Chilling!’ – Elaine  

Author Love-In: Alex Miller

Alex Miller is twice winner of Australia’s premier literary prize, The Miles Franklin Literary Award, first in 1993 for The Ancestor Game and again in 2003 for Journey to the Stone Country. He is also an overall winner of the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize, in 1993 for The Ancestor Game. His fifth novel, Conditions of Faith, won the Christina Stead Prize for Fiction in the 2001 New South Wales Premier’s Awards. In 2011 he won this award a second time with his most recent novel Lovesong. Lovesong also won the People’s Choice Award in the NSW Premier’s Awards, the Age Book of the Year Award and the Age Fiction Prize for 2011. In 2007 Landscape of Farewell was published to wide critical acclaim and in 2008 won the Chinese Annual Foreign Novels 21st Century Award for Best Novel and the Manning Clark Medal for an outstanding contribution to Australian cultural life. It was also short-listed for the Miles Franklin Award, the Christina Stead Prize for Fiction, the ALS Gold Medal and the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize. Alex is published internationally and widely in translation. Autumn Laing is his tenth novel. (Biography sourced from Allen & Unwin).

It’s been a little Grimm around here…

This December marks the 200th anniversary of the first edition of fairy tales collected by the Brothers Grimm, Kinder- und Hausmärchen (Nursery and Household Tales). In celebration, we decked out our display area here at Nowra Library with an enchanted forest, Rapunzel’s tower and yes, a real gingerbread house.

Our peg Rapunzel has a sad, sad face 😦

The display is getting plenty of attention from our borrowers (particularly children, which is a bit creepy, considering the purpose of the original gingerbread house) and the fairy tale based fiction and non-fiction displayed there has been seeing plenty of borrowing action. It’s no wonder, really. Fairy tales, ever enduring, have nonetheless been enjoying a resurgence in popular culture of late, as the 2011 Red Riding Hood film, soon to be released Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters and the two Snow White films released this year demonstrate. Just last month Philip Pullman’s re-telling of Grimm’s fairy tales hit the shelves, and you only have to browse the catalogue here at the library to see the range of fairy tale based books we keep in our children’s, young adult and adult collections. 200 years later, the Brothers Grimm live on…happily ever after, you could say.

Meet the Brothers Grimm…  

They look cheery, don’t they?

Jakob (Ludwig Karl) (1785–1863) and Wilhelm (1786–1859) were born in Hanau, Germany. They studied law at the University of Marburg and it was there that their interest in folk tales first began. They collected folk tales from storytellers and print sources in the years following university and  in 1812 they published Kinder- und Hausmärchen, now more often known as Grimms’ Fairy Tales. The second edition of the tales was published in 1816. The collection includes tales such as  ‘Little Red Riding Hood’, ‘Cinderella’, ‘Rapunzel’, ‘Snow White,’  ‘Rumpelstiltskin’ and ‘Hansel & Gretel’, among many other classic fairy stories. Up until 1857 the brothers continued to polish and refine the collection, ultimately releasing seven editions in all. The brothers also co-wrote a German dictionary, and Jacob, who was a professor of philology, wrote Deutsche Grammatick  (German Grammar) in 1819. It was the first historical study of German languages.

… and Mrs Grimm 

In 1825 Wilhelm married Dortchen Wild, a family friend. Dortchen (along with other female friends and acquaintances) was responsible for introducing the brothers to such tales as ‘Rumpelstiltskin’, ‘Hansel & Gretel’ and ‘The Singing Bone’. In her book, Clever Maids: The Secret History of the Grimm Fairy Tales, Valerie Paradiz explores the role upper class German women had in helping the brothers compile their fairy tale collection. According to Paradiz, more than half of the fairy tales were contributed by women such as writer Bettina von Arnim, Dorothea Viehmann, Annette von Droste- Hulshoff and, of course, Dortchen Wild.

Dortchen is the  focus of Australian fantasy author Kate Forsyth’s next novel, The Wild Girl. History and fairy tale merged beautifully in Forsyth’s 2012  novel Bitter Greens, a luminous re-telling of ‘Rapunzel’, and  fairy tale devotees will no doubt be looking forward to The Wild Girl’s April 2013 release.

And, while we’re on the subject… 

Kate Forsyth will be speaking about her take on fairy tales at the Fairy Tales Re-Imagined: Enchantment, Beastly Tales and Dark Mothers symposium at the University of Technology in Sydney this month.

Forsyth will be joined by fellow Australian writer Margo Lanagan (award winning author of Sea Hearts, a captivating selkie tale, and Tender Morsels, which is based on ‘Snow White, Rose Red’) as well as artists, academics, educators and media arts practitioners to examine the relevance of traditional fairy tales in contemporary culture and the motifs, themes and meanings within them.

The symposium has been initiated by media artist Sarah Gibson. Check out Sarah’s interactive online fairy tale project ‘Re- enchantment’ at www.abc.net.au/re-enchantment

Fairy Tales Re-imagined will be held on Saturday October 13th at UTS.

See you there!