The Future of Hertfordshire Library Service: Have your say
Hertfordshire Library Service is holding a public consultation from 21st October to 31st December 2013 and we would like to hear your views.
You can have your say by completing the online questionnaire on our consultation pages or by completing a questionnaire at a local or mobile library.
If you would like more information on the consultation before completing the questionnaire, you can:
Man Booker Prize 2013
New Zealand author Eleanor Catton has won the 2013 Man Booker prize for English fiction for her novel "The Luminaries" , and is the youngest winner in the history of the awards at 28 years old.
It is 1866, and Walter Moody has come to make his fortune upon the New Zealand goldfields. On arrival, he stumbles across a tense gathering of twelve local men, who have met in secret to discuss a series of unsolved crimes. A wealthy man has vanished, a whore has tried to end her life, and an enormous fortune has been discovered in the home of a luckless drunk. Moody is soon drawn into the mystery: a network of fates and fortunes that is as complex and exquisitely patterned as the night sky.
The Specsavers Crime Thriller Awards 2013
Winners of the 2013 Awards are:
CWA Goldsboro Gold Dagger for the Best Crime Novel of the Year: Mick Herron, Dead Lions
London's Slough House is where the washed-up MI5 spies go to while away what's left of their failed careers. The 'slow horses', as they're called, have all disgraced themselves. Some messed up an op badly and can't be trusted anymore. Others got in the way of an ambitious colleague and had the rug pulled from under their feet. Maybe they just got too dependent on the bottle. All have one thing in common: they all want to be back in the action and they'll do anything to get there, even if it means actually cooperating.
CWA John Creasey New Blood Dagger for the Best New Crime Writer of the Year: Derek B. Miller, Norwegian by Night
Sheldon Horowitz, an ageing ex-Marine, rescues a young Balkan boy - two strangers on the run, trying to survive against a strange and foreign landscape.
CWA Ian Fleming Steel Dagger for the Best Thriller of the Year: Roger Hobbs, Ghostman
The Ghostman isn't called the Ghostman for nothing - he makes things 'disappear', by whatever means necessary. This time he's tidying up the loose ends after a casino heist gone bad, with a million in cash up for grabs. But he has only 48 hours to get the job done and there's a guy out there who really wants the Ghostman's head in a bag.
The Crime Thriller Book Club Best Read : Malcolm MacKay, The Necessary Death of Lewis Winter
A twenty-nine-year-old man lives alone in his Glasgow flat. The telephone rings; a casual conversation, but behind this a job offer. He is an expert. A loner. Freelance. Another job is another job, but what if this organisation wants more? A meeting at a club. An offer. A brief. A target: Lewis Winter. It's hard to kill a man well.
The Film Dagger: Skyfall
Sam Mendes directs this James Bond adventure. Daniel Craig stars as Bond, whose loyalty to M (Judi Dench) is tested as her past comes back to haunt her, and Bond's own doubts about his life and livelihood start to creep in. As MI6 comes under attack and Bond is sent to Shanghai to investigate, he must keep his focus on tracking down and destroying the threat - no matter how high the personal cost. Ralph Fiennes, Javier Bardem and Albert Finney co-star.
As well as the Film Dagger, Adele and Paul Epworth won an Academy Award and Golden Globe for their song 'Skyfall' and the film also received BAFTAs for Outstanding British Film and Original Film Music (Thomas Newman) plus two Oscars for music and sound.
Mercury Prize 2013
Congratulations to James Blake who has won the 2013 Mercury Prize for his album Overgrown. The Mercury Prize honours the best British album over the past year, and the winner received a cheque for £20,000. James Blake beat the favourite David Bowie and others including Arctic Monkeys, Jake Bugg and Laura Marling.
Sense & Sensibility by Joanna Trollope
Joanna Trollope’s much-anticipated contemporary reworking of Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility will launch The Austen Project and be one of the most talked about books of 2013.
‘It’s hugely exciting to attempt the reworking of one of the best novels written by one of our greatest novelists. This is a project which requires consummate respect above all else; not an emulation, but a tribute.’ said Joanna Trollope
The Austen Project is a major new series of six novels teaming up authors of global literary significance with Jane Austen’s six complete works. Taking these well-loved stories as their base, each author will write their own unique take on Jane Austen’s novels. Other authors announced so far are Val McDermid, Curtis Sittenfeld and Alexander McCall Smith.
Two sisters could hardly be more different. Elinor Dashwood, an architecture student, values discretion above all. Her impulsive sister Marianne displays her creativity everywhere as she dreams of going to art school. But when the family finds itself forced out of Norland Park, their beloved home for twenty years, their values are severely put to the test. Can Elinor remain stoic knowing that the man she likes has been ensnared by another girl? Will Marianne's faith in love be shaken by meeting the hottest boy in the county? And when social media is the controlling force at play, can love ever triumph over conventions and disapproval?
Reading Well Mood-boosting books
Reading Well Mood –boosting books is a collection of uplifting titles, including novels, poetry and non-fiction that have been recommended by readers and reading groups. This complements our Reading Well Books on Prescription collections: self help reading for adults to help with a range of common mental health conditions including anxiety, depression, phobias and some eating disorders.
Here are 3 of the 20 titles for 2013 – click here for an overview of other titles.
A Sea Change by Veronica Henry
Jenna is known as The Ice Cream Girl. She doesn't mind the name one bit. After all, it's a happy name, and there are far worse jobs than selling ice creams on Everdene beach.
Craig spends as much time as he can at the beach hut in Everdene he rents with a few of his mates. As a policeman, it is a restful change from his daily life, and he's surfing mad. One weekend he's down there on his own when he notices a girl on the beach. He's young, free and single and she catches his eye.
But on this particular summer weekend, both Jenna and Craig's lives are about to change...
Soul Music by Terry Pratchett
This is a story about sex and drugs and Music With Rocks In. Well, one out of three ain't bad. Being sixteen is always difficult, even more so when there's a Death in the family.
After all, it's hard to grow up normally when Grandfather rides a white horse and wields a scythe. Especially if he decides to take a well-earned moment to uncover the meaning of life and discover himself in the process, so that you have to take over the family business, and everyone mistakes you for the Tooth Fairy. And especially when you have to face the new and addictive music that has entered Discworld. It's lawless. It changes people. It's got a beat and you can dance to it. It's called Music With Rocks In. And it won't fade away.
A Street Cat Named Bob by James Bowen
When James Bowen found an injured, ginger street cat curled up in the hallway of his sheltered accommodation, he had no idea just how much his life was about to change.
James was living hand to mouth on the streets of London and the last thing he needed was a pet. Yet James couldn't resist helping the strikingly intelligent tom cat, whom he quickly christened Bob. He slowly nursed Bob back to health and then sent the cat on his way, imagining he would never see him again.
But Bob had other ideas. Soon the two were inseparable and their diverse, comic and occasionally dangerous adventures would transform both their lives, slowly healing the scars of each other's troubled pasts. A Street Cat Named Bob is a moving and uplifting story that will touch the heart of anyone who reads it.
Which titles would you recommend? Tell us on Facebook.com/hertslibraries or Twitter @hertslibraries.
Is it too early to mention Christmas? We have a very small selection of books to help you get ready:
Kirstie’s Christmas Crafts by Kirstie Allsopp
Merry Christmas Sweaters to Knit by Sue Stratford
Christmas Crafts by Catherine Woram
Mary Berry's Christmas collection : over 100 of my fabulous recipes and tips for a hassle-free festive season