Guest post by Henry Young.
Did you know November is International Games Month?
Each year people all over the planet join together during International Games Month to celebrate the mutually-reinforcing power of play and learning in libraries around the world. To celebrate we are holding Open Games Sessions in our libraries. A selection of games will be available to play, from Scrabble to Pass the Pigs!
November is also Movember or Men’s Health Month – some men grow moustaches during the month of November to raise awareness of men’s health issues, such as prostate cancer, testicular cancer, and men’s suicide.
Libraries are also hosting Kevin Day and Kieran Maguire, presenters of the hugely popular football podcast, The Price of Football – Adrian Chiles’ favourite podcast! – in Hastings Library Wednesday 13 December. This event is free but must be booked.
This month male Librarian Henry, chooses his top Man Books, celebrating the best a man can get!
Top Fiction: ‘One Good Turn’ by Kate Atkinson
Research has shown that women are prepared to read novels by men, but men are much more reluctant to pick up novels by women.
Which is a great shame – because they’ll never discover Kate Atkinson’s Jackson Brodie!
Jackson Brodie is a private investigator, originally from Yorkshire. A former soldier and policeman he now makes his money working from investigating infidelity and finding missing cats. Jackson’s tough-guy exterior belies a deeply empathetic heart. He is the ultimate survivor himself – a bruised optimist, compelled to help others.
Top Non Fiction: ‘Kind of Blue : Miles Davis and the making of a masterpiece’ by Ashley Kahn
In the early spring of 1959, six blokes went into a disused church (the 30th Street Studio in New York).
Nine hours later, they had recorded one of the finest albums of the twentieth century.
In my opinion, Miles – with all his contradictions – is one of The Pivotal Cultural Figures and the most beautiful looking man that ever walked the earth! He was mean, occasionally nasty, probably bisexual, and produced the most beautiful, bruised, sensitive trumpet tone. Where other musicians were called Satchmo, Cannonball, Dizzy or Fats, Miles’ nickname was ‘The Prince of Darkness’!
Kind of Blue traces Miles Davis’s development into an artist capable of making such a masterpiece, and explores the careers and struggles of the musicians who shaped him and played alongside him. Using interviews and pictures, studio dialogue and outtakes, the great jazz historian Ashley Kahn follows Miles and his group into the studio, to show precisely how the greatest jazz record of all time was made, how it was introduced to the world, and how it changed music forever.
Audio: ‘Solar’ by Ian McEwan
I love an antihero! A really bad fella who you find yourself rooting for!
Michael Beard is a Nobel prize-winning physicist whose best work is behind him. Trading on his reputation, he speaks for enormous fees, lends his name to the letterheads of renowned scientific institutions and half-heartedly heads a government-backed initiative tackling global warming.
When Beard’s professional and personal worlds collide in a freak accident, an opportunity presents itself for Beard to lie, cheat, reinvigorate his career and save the world from environmental disaster!
Solar is a comedy and also a serious and darkly satirical novel, read by Roger Allam (Peter Mannion MP in The Thick Of It.)
Children’s Fiction: ‘All the way down’ by Stewart Foster
When three eleven-year-old ‘problem children’ are thrown together at summer camp, they’re challenged to build a place to live together for the next week. But after a trip to a disused tin-mine goes awry, Milo and his new friends, Oscar and Effie, soon find themselves split off from the group and trapped underground. Can they work through their individual issues and come together as a team to find their way to freedom?
Stewart Foster has been shortlisted for the East Sussex Children’s Book Award! The East Sussex Children’s Book Award promotes reading for pleasure to children aged 8 – 11 years. It introduces children and adults to new or less established children’s authors.
Children’s non fiction: ‘Where’s Wally?’ by Martin Handford
The Where’s Wally? series has sold over 75 million copies worldwide. Deservedly famous and well-loved. These books are perfect! Hours of eye-boggling entertainment.
If you don’t know, Where’s Wally is a sort of picture book hide and seek – every page is mindscramblingly detailed, and you must find Wally! Brilliant! Highly addictive!
“Handford’s settings vary from the humdrum to the hallucinogenic” Sean French.