Guest post by Henry (the librarian)

July is officially midsummer! Of course, our big summer library event is the Summer Reading Challenge, where we challenge children (4-11) to read six books over the school holidays and they can win prizes! There is also an abundance of creativity workshops, singers, and storytellers to enjoy. Are your little ones getting involved?

As well as the reading challenge, this summer is filled with a range of fantastic sporting events (the Euros, the Paralympics and Olympics, and of course Wimbledon). To celebrate, choose a Big Sporting Read and maybe look into joining local sporting clubs in your area! It’s a great way to meet new people and of course, keep fit.

Find out more about your local library and how to make the most of it this summer (and beyond)!

Pretend I'm Dead book coverTop fiction chosen by Siobham

Pretend I’m dead by Jen Beagin

Mona is 23, emotionally adrift and cleaning houses to get by.

While handing out clean needles to drug addicts, she falls for a man she calls Mr Disgusting, who proceeds to break her heart in unimaginable ways.

In search of healing, she decamps to New Mexico for a fresh start, but always lurking just beneath the surface are the ghosts of her past, and the crushing legacy of a chaotic, destructive childhood. It seems running further away from her problems could just leave more inventive ways for them to find her.

Reserve the pBook of ‘Pretend I’m dead’


The Hard Parts: A Story of Courage and Triumph book coverTop non-fiction chosen by Leanne

The Hard Parts: A Story of Courage and Triumph by Oksana Masters

The remarkable and inspirational story of Oksana Masters, who was born with radiation-induced birth defects. Sadly, Oksana then went on to suffer appalling abuse as an orphan, before being adopted and moving to the US. She went on to triumph over her challenges, winning seventeen Paralympic medals in four different sports.

This is Oksana’s astonishing story of journeying through a series of dark tunnels – and how, with her mother’s love, she finally found her way into the light. Her message to anyone who doesn’t fit in: you can find a place where you excel and where your worth is acknowledged.

Reserve the eBook of ‘The Hard Parts’

Reserve the pBook of ‘The Hard Parts’

Is This OK? One Woman's Search for Connection Online book coverTop audio chosen by Ian

Is This OK? One Woman’s Search for Connection Online by Harriet Gibsone

Music journalist, self-professed creep and former winner of the coveted ‘Fittest Girl in Year 11’ award, Harriet Gibsone lives in fear of her internet searches being leaked.

Harriet spent much of her young life feeding neuroses and insecurities with obsessive internet searching (including compulsive googling of exes, prospective partners, and their exes), and indulging in whirlwind ‘parasocial relationships’ (translation: one-sided affairs with celebrities she has never met).

Suddenly, with a diagnosis of early menopause in her late twenties, her relationship with the internet takes a darker turn, as her online addictions are thrown into sharp relief by the corporeal realities of illness and motherhood. A very funny read!

Borrow the eAudio of ‘Is This OK?’

Borrow the eBook of ‘Is This OK?’

Reserve the pBook ‘Is This OK?’

Albert Talbot: Master of Disguise book coverTop children’s fiction chosen by Alan

Albert Talbot: Master of Disguise by Ben Manley and Aurélie Guillerey

Albert’s mum is calling him to get out of bed, but he doesn’t want to. Maybe if he pretends not to be Albert, and someone else instead, then he won’t have to! Albert’s imagination springs to work: will he be Clate Stouderhoofen, notorious desperado? The Man With No Name! Yes!

Full of outlandish names and imaginings, humorous detail and verve. If you enjoy offbeat oddness, you’ll adore this book about imagination and adventure.

Reserve the pBook of ‘Albert Talbot’

Big Bad Wolf Investigates Fairy Tales book coverTop children’s non-fiction chosen by Nala

Big Bad Wolf Investigates Fairy Tales by Catherine Cawthorne, Sara Ogilvie

Join the Big Bad Wolf as he debunks your favourite fairy tales with science!

Did a princess really feel a tiny pea through a mountain of mattresses? And could a pumpkin actually turn into a carriage to carry Cinderella to the ball? Of course not! It’s all a load of fairytale nonsense! Or is it…

The Big Bad Wolf is on a mission to find the truth behind these tales, and clear his name in the process. Combining STEM topics with classic stories children know and love, this hilarious non-fiction picture book is perfect for inquisitive children always asking big questions!

Borrow the pBook of ‘Big Bad Wolf Investigates Fairy Tales’


Looking for more book recommendations? Check out last month’s Good Books article:

Get in our Good Books – June 2024