Thursday, 24 December 2015

Library holiday opening hours

Christmas Eve 24 December - 9am-5pm
Christmas Day 25 December - Closed
Boxing Day 26 December - Closed
Sunday 27 December - Open 12-5pm
Boxing Day Holiday 28 December - Closed
Tuesday 29 December - Open 9-5pm
Wednesday 30 December - Open 9-5pm
Thursday 31 December - Open 9-5pm
New Years Day 1 January - Closed
Saturday 2 January - normal operating hours resume

24 hour returns available when libraries are closed.

Your virtual library - The Vault - is open 24/7 for you to browse eresources, renew items, search the catalogue, place holds and download ebooks.

All the staff at the Greater Dandenong Libraries would like to wish you a Merry Christmas and a safe and happy New Year.

Tuesday, 22 December 2015

ABC Radio National summer reading guide for 2015

Looking for something to read over the long hot summer? ABC Radio National has released a list of their presenter’s favourite reads from the past year. From biographies to thrillers, there’s something for everyone on the list.

Click here to view their list. If you see anything that piques your interest simply visit The Vault and reserve a copy for yourself. The library has copies of all listed titles. All holds are free of charge.

Happy reading!


Monday, 21 December 2015

Coming to a cinema near you…

Not interested in the latest Star Wars movie? Well here are 5 book to movie adaptions that are about to hit the cinemas in January. Before you buy your popcorn and hand over your $20 for the movie experience, may I suggest that you read the book first? And if the movie doesn't turn out to be as good as the book... please blame Hollywood, not us.

The Danish Girl by David Ebershoff
Loosely inspired by a true story, this tender portrait of marriage asks: What do you do when the person you love has to change? It starts with a question, a simple favour asked by a wife of her husband while both are painting in their studio, setting off a transformation neither can anticipate. Uniting fact and fiction into an original romantic vision, The Danish Girl eloquently portrays the unique intimacy that defines every marriage and the remarkable story of Lili Elbe, a pioneer in transgender history, and the woman torn between loyalty to her marriage and her own ambitions and desires.

This movie is already garnering some Oscar buzz for actor Eddie Redmayne.

Carol by Patricia Highsmith
A chance encounter between two lonely women leads to a passionate romance in this lesbian cult classic. Therese, a struggling young sales clerk, and Carol, a homemaker in the midst of a bitter divorce, abandon their oppressive daily routines for the freedom of the open road, where their love can blossom. But their newly discovered bliss is shattered when Carol is forced to choose between her child and her lover.

Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara shine in their roles of Carol and Therese. Both actresses are generating some serious awards buzz for their portrayals.

Room by Emma Donoghue
To five-year-old Jack, Room is the entire world. It is where he was born and grew up; it's where he lives with his Ma as they learn and read and eat and sleep and play. At night, his Ma shuts him safely in the wardrobe, where he is meant to be asleep when Old Nick visits. Room is home to Jack, but to Ma, it is the prison where Old Nick has held her captive for seven years. Through determination, ingenuity, and fierce motherly love, Ma has created a life for Jack. But she knows it's not enough...not for her or for him. She devises a bold escape plan, one that relies on her young son's bravery and a lot of luck. What she does not realize is just how unprepared she is for the plan to actually work.

Starring Brie Larson (Ma) and Jacob Tremblay (Jack), Room is another film that has a lot of Oscar buzz swirling around it, despite its dark subject matter.

The Revenant by Michael Punke
Based on a true story, The Revenant is an epic tale of revenge set in the Rocky Mountains. The trappers of the Rocky Mountain Fur Company live a brutal frontier life. Hugh Glass is one of the most respected men in the company, an experienced frontiersman and an expert tracker. But when a scouting mission puts Glass face-to-face with a grizzly bear, he is viciously mauled and not expected to survive. Two men from the company are ordered to remain with him until his inevitable death. But, fearing an imminent attack, they abandon Glass, stripping him of his prized rifle and hatchet. As Glass watches the men flee, he is driven to survive by one all-consuming desire: revenge. With shocking grit and determination, he sets out on a three-thousand-mile journey across the harsh American frontier, to seek revenge on the men who betrayed him.

Leonardo DiCaprio completely immersed himself in the role of Hugh Glass and actually slept inside animal carcasses and ate raw bison liver for the part. Surely he deserves an Oscar nomination for those feats alone!

The 5th wave by Rick Yancey
The 1st Wave: Took out half a million people. The 2nd Wave: Put that number to shame. The 3rd Wave: Lasted a little longer. Twelve weeks...Four billion dead. In The 4th Wave, You can't trust that people are still people. And The 5th Wave? No one knows. But it's coming. On a lonely stretch of highway, Cassie runs. Runs from the beings that only look human, who have scattered Earth's last survivors. To stay alone is to stay alive, until she meets Evan Walker. Beguiling and mysterious, Evan may be her only hope. Now Cassie must choose: between trust and despair, between defiance and surrender, between life and death.

This is the first installment in the young adult sci-fi trilogy and Sony has its fingers crossed that it will become as popular as the Hunger Games and Divergent franchises.

To beat the rush and avoid the queues I recommend that you place a hold now. Simply click on your chosen cover image and you will be transported to The Vault. Remember, all holds are free of charge.


Friday, 18 December 2015

Nona and Me by Clare Atkins

There are a lot of fantastic Australian authors but it’s really exciting to find a new and very talented one. Clare Atkins has worked as a scriptwriter for many successful televisions series including All Saints, Home and Away, Winners and Losers and Wonderland.

I was so impressed with this book I wrote an email to Clare congratulating her on her work. As I told her, I don’t fall into the Young Adult age range (by just a few decades), but this book was just as appealing to me as it might be to a 15 year old. In fact I felt 15 again: briefly, and with some angst.

One of the wonderful benefits of the books was an education of the traditions and the language of the Yolngu people from Arnhem Land. From a non-indigenous background, I found this very powerful as I reflected on my previous lack of knowledge.

Rosie and Nona have grown up together. Rosie is a Njäpaki (non-indigenous) kid and Nona is Yolngu. They have a wonderful understanding and appreciation of each other’s cultures and family traditions.

When Rosie goes to the High School in town and Nona goes to live in another area they lose touch. When Nona returns, all sorts of conflicts and complications arise for Rosie in her new friendship group. The story examines the pressures for teenagers at school and at home with friends and family. We also get a candid glimpse of the parents: the pressures on them and their attitudes and responses to the difficulties of being a parent.

The book manages to draw attention to quite a range of opinions and attitudes from those who have very prejudiced viewpoint to those who are far more inclusive and open-minded. Clare Atkins manages to be compassionate towards her characters that have racist attitudes or limited understanding of others. They are not conveyed simplistically as evil. She conveys the attitude as negative but the character as complex and flawed: as we all are.

It is a really honest account of life for a girl who is fortunate enough to have been brought up within an indigenous community and to have real insight into the lives of others.


Click on the cover image to place your hold

Wednesday, 16 December 2015

And the winners of the Prime Minister’s Literary Awards are…

Adult fiction:
The Golden Age | Joan London

Young Adult fiction:
The Protected | Claire Zorn

Children’s Fiction:
One Minute’s Silence | David Metzenthen

Established in 2008, the Prime Minister’s Literary Awards are Australia’s richest literary prize with a total prize pool of $600,000. The awards recognise and reward excellence in Australian literature and history.

Visit the Prime Minister’s Literary Awards website to see the full list of winners.

Thursday, 10 December 2015

New fiction for December

It may be a small list this month but there’s plenty to love about December’s crop of new fiction. Whether you’re looking for a chilling thriller, historical mystery or heart warming tale we’ve got you covered for your next great read.

Spider game Christine Feehan
Find her Lisa Gardner
Narrow bed Sophie Hannah
Cinnamon gardens Anna Jacobs
Song of the skylark Erica James
Akin to murder Alanna Knight
You and me, always Jill Mansell
Chance developments Alexander McCall Smith
Queen & country Shirley McKay
Let the good times roll Lynda Page
Brotherhood in death J.D. Robb
Bands of mourning Brandon Sanderson
Calamity Brandon Sanderson
Final seven Erica Spindler
Mothering Sunday Graham Swift
Dragons in the forest Peter Yeldham

Simply click on your chosen title/s and you will be directed to the Vault, where you can place your holds. Remember, all holds are free of charge.


Tuesday, 8 December 2015

Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards Shortlist 2016

The shortlist for the Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards 2016 has just been announced. Here are the nominees for best Fiction and Non-Fiction:

Fever of animals | Miles Allinson
The other side of the world | Stephanie Bishop
Clade | James Bradley
Forever young | Steven Carroll
The world without us | Mireille Juchau
The natural way of things | Charlotte Wood

Modern love: the lives of John and Sunday Reed | Lesley Harding and Kendrah Morgan
Thea Astley: inventing her own weather | Karen Lamb
Australia’s second chance | George Megalogenis
Second half first | Drusilla Modjeska
Something for the pain | Gerald Murnane
Mannix | Brenda Niall

In total there are five award categories, including fiction, non-fiction, drama, poetry and young adult. The winners of each category will receive $25,000 in prize money, and go on to contest the Victorian Prize for Literature. Worth a further $100,000, the Victorian Prize for Literature is Australia’s single richest literary prize. Click here for a list of all nominated titles in each category.

You can also participate in the awards by voting for your favourite shortlisted title. The winner of the People’s Choice Award will receive $2,000. Click here to cast your vote.

All winners will be announced at an awards ceremony on Thursday 28 January 2016.


Monday, 7 December 2015

The shepherd’s crown by Terry Pratchett

After hearing the sad news of the passing of Sir Terry Pratchett on March 15th 2015 (after his long battle with rare form of Alzheimer’s disease) I was happy to hear that there would be one final Discworld novel published. Unfortunately (for me) it was going to be a Tiffany Aching and wee free men book, as these were my least favourite Discworld novels.

When I started reading I was pleasantly surprised that it was not a Wee free men book but a Witches series book and that it was a really good read. The shepherd’s crown has Tiffany fighting the old enemy the Elves, who first made an appearance in Lords and Ladies, published in 1992. With the death of Granny Weatherwax the barrier that holds back the Elves from returning to the Discworld has weakened, allowing them to return. It is up to Tiffany and the other Witches to stop them.

In my opinion the most thoughtful part of the book was in the beginning, with the death of Granny Weatherwax. Death’s speech to Granny Weatherwax, which to me seemed that Death was speaking on the passing of Sir Terry Pratchett, was very touching. There were also appearances of many familiar Discworld characters, giving you a chance to catch up with them all. This was very well done, and while this book could have easy descended into a who’s who of Discworld, I am thankful to say it didn’t.

This book is a fantastic send off to a much loved author.


Click on the cover image to place your hold.

Friday, 4 December 2015

Top 10 eBooks for November

Its top 10 time again! This time we have the top 10 most downloaded titles in Overdrive and it’s no real surprise that romance novels make up 7 of the top 10 spots.

The list is in reverse order with number 1 being the most popular title.

10. The white rose: Lone City trilogy, Book 2 | Amy Ewing
9. Much ado about Jack: Shakespeare in love series, Book 3 | Christy English
8. The Bollywood bride | Sonali Dev
7. The maze runner complete collection | James Dashner
6. When a Scot ties the knot | Tessa Dare
5. Hidden in the Sheikh’s harem | Michelle Conder
4. Normal | Graeme Cameron
3. First season / Bride to be | Jane Ashford
2. The Duke’s guide to correct behaviour: Dukes behaving badly series, Book 1 | Megan Frampton
1. The Greek commands his mistress: Notorious Greeks series, Book 2 | Lynne Graham

Remember we have 1,000’s of eBooks available for loan to suit a wide range of readers of all ages. All titles can be downloaded directly to your mobile device through Overdrive iTunes & Android App. To download your free App just visit the Apple App Store or Google Play Store via this link. If you require help or more information, please speak with our friendly library staff at Dandenong or Springvale Library.


Thursday, 3 December 2015

The Gunman - DVD

A former Special Forces soldier and military contractor suffering from PTSD tries to reconnect with his long time love, but first must go on the run from London to Barcelona and across Europe in order to clear his name.

For his role in The Gunman Sean Penn bulked up and he looks the part. He's a solidly convincing actor whose work I always enjoy. He's good in this action role, looking weathered, tough and professional. The story is reasonably novel and the movie comes off quite well with some good action sequences. I particularly liked the staging of an attempt to kill Penn and his amour Jasmine Trinca while they were inside a fancy isolated mansion-villa in Spain.

Sean Penn wants a piece of Liam Neeson's action, as a lethal senior citizen. Neeson has carved out a lucrative niche since Taken, in which Director Pierre Morel took him into the Paris underworld to find his abducted daughter. Penn, who's 54, has not been very active lately, finally got his piece of action.

Any thriller with Sean Penn and Javier Bardem, shot largely in Barcelona, is going to amuse the eye, right? And it does: the city looks great.

If you want a thriller about architecture, this is the movie for you.


Click on the cover image to place your hold

Monday, 30 November 2015

Hot summer reads

Choosing your summer read requires a quick mood check: Do you want something light and inspirational or serious and engaging?

Casey Stoner: Pushing the Limits | Casey Stoner

PUSHING THE LIMITS is a distinctive and amazing account of self-sacrifice and determination to a goal against the odds. This is an inspiring and motivational story of a young Australian, Casey Stoner who is two-time World MotoGP champion.

Casey Stoner's story is an unbelievable journey in both life and racing. One thing I have observed in this book is that Stoner doesn’t like to give up easily. Even though he has had so many tough times, setbacks, injuries, pain,frustration and disappointments along the way, the determination was there. And that is the kind of sign you will only see in a great winner. When talent meets talent, I think it is determination and the mental approach that counts.

Passionately, he tells of his highs and lows in his life; winning two MotoGP championships, the sacrifices his family made so he could race, his battle with illness, rider’s hierarchy etc. He tells about his wife Adriana and their first baby Allessandra Stoner. Also explaining about Mr. Macro Simoncelli who was killed in a crash at the Malaysian MotoGP in 2011.

Anyone who reads this book will walk away inspired. His passion is contagious and that's an excellent thing. An excellent and a must read for everyone.

Laurinda | Alice Pung

LAURINDA by Alice Pung, is an interesting, not always enjoyable novel. Don’t get me wrong, I definitely recommend it, and I guarantee you will want to get to the end to see what happens. It’s just that Alice Pung is such a talented word wizard. Her vivid description of bullying and the effects it has on teenagers is, at times, difficult to handle. That being said, it’s an important read, especially for teenagers and ESPECIALLY for anyone involved in bullying – as perpetrator or victim.

Lucy Lam is our working-class heroine, coming from a Chinese-Vietnamese family that works hard to put her through school. When she receives a scholarship to an exclusive private girls school (the titular Laurinda), she finds herself mixing with a vastly different socioeconomic class, one that comes with privilege, wealth, and quite a lot of judgment. Through Lucy’s eyes we see the volatile dynamics of the school environment play out – students ruling over students and students ruling over teachers. Vile acts of bullying go largely unpunished when the girls involved are the daughters of powerful ex-pupils with large amounts of money. Lucy has to decide what is best for her – should she keep her head down and try to survive the school year? Or should she respond to the injustice, and in doing so, learn more about herself and what she is capable of?

Looking for Alibrandi meets Mean Girls; Laurinda represents an important experience in the Australian narrative. Fans of Australian young adult stories will appreciate this rich novel and anyone who has ever been to high school will no doubt recognize the risks and pitfalls of that environment. I look forward to Alice Pung’s next novel with great anticipation!

Friday Brown | Vikki Wakefield

Wakefield writes with a grit and passion that makes the ugliest parts of life somehow beautiful in print. Seventeen-year-old Friday Brown is on the run - running to escape memories of her mother and of the family curse. And of a grandfather who'd like her to stay. She's lost, alone and afraid. Silence, a street kid, finds Friday and she joins him in a gang led by beautiful, charismatic Arden. When Silence is involved in a crime, the gang escapes to a ghost town in the outback. In Murungal Creek, the town of never leaving, Friday must face the ghosts of her past. She will learn that sometimes you have to stay to finish what you started - and often, before you can find out who you are, you have to become someone you were never meant to be.

FRIDAY BROWN makes the reader nostalgic for a life they’ve never lived, and Friday and the people in her life will stay in your head long after the last page. Vikki Wakefield is definitely a writer to watch.

The Intern | Gabrielle Tozer

THE INTERN is simply wonderful and Josie is one of the most practical and fascinating characters I’ve ever read. Josie is a hardworking and intelligent young girl, she is bit shy and have a lack of life experience. Her dream is to become a world renowned newspaper journalist; she has worked hard in school and university to reach her dreams. She was allocated an internship to a Fashion Magazine Sash, which was very unexpected.

Struggling through her first days at Sash, she makes the best out of an odd situation. Making friends and enemies, she strives to achieve the best grade and she won the best intern award $5k. She did spend this money for her fashion hungry teenage sister and her mother who is still trying to get over their father walking out on them.

Josie was caring, hilarious, down to earth and so easily relatable. She was quite responsible despite always finding herself in embarrassing situations. She built a good relationship with Steph, Tim and James who were very supportive and welcoming.

I would recommend The Intern for those who look for fun, light and humorous read.

Fangirl | Rainbow Rowell

FANGIRL is a fairly straightforward story. It’s very real, fresh and exciting and fun story. Cath and her twin sister Wren are starting their college life. Since they were kids both are big fan of Simon Snow series. For Cath, being a fan is her life and she is really good at it. Each of them finds their own way. They make friends, boyfriends and work hard. Cath is a shy and introvert girl and she spend most of her time writing fan fiction for a book series about a boy magician named Simon Snow and she has thousands of passionate followers who read her award winning fan fiction on a daily basis on the internet.

Wren distances herself from Cath, professes to have outgrown fan fiction and Simon Snow, and goes out drinking and dancing with her roommate almost every night. Meanwhile, Cath is more interested in her Fiction-Writing Class. The professor is very impressed with her writing, plus Cath finds a writing partner and friend Nick, who she meets with weekly for writing sessions. However, Cath suffers an emotional and academic setback when the professor gives Cath for writing a fan fiction story for a class assignment, as she considers this to be plagiarism.

Cath becomes very stressed and reaches a point of giving up on school, on Wren, and on the complicated relationships she has forged at school with Reagan, Nick, Levi, and her Fiction-Writing professor. However, she decides to continue and starts to learn to deal with her various problems.

Can Cath make it without Wren holding her hand? Is she ready to start living her own life? Writing her own stories?
I strongly recommend this book to anyone interested in the construction of meaning in practice.


Click on the cover image to place your hold

Thursday, 26 November 2015

Prime Minister’s Literary Awards - Shortlist

On Monday the 23rd of October, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnball announced the shortlist for the 2015 Prime Minister’s Literary Awards. The awards recognise exceptional literary achievement by Australian writers in fiction, non-fiction, young adult fiction, children’s fiction, poetry and Australian history. The winner of each category will receive $80,000 in prize money and all the shortlisted writers will receive $5,000.

Here are the shortlisted titles for Adult, Young Adult and Junior fiction:

Amnesia | Peter Carey
In Certain Circles | Elizabeth Harrower
Golden Boys | Sonya Hartnett
The Golden Age | Joan London
To Name Those Lost | Rohan Wilson

Young Adult:
Are You Seeing Me? | Darren Groth
The Astrologer’s Daughter | Rebecca Lim
Tigers on the Beach | Doug MacLeod
The Minnow | Diana Sweeney
The Protected | Claire Zorn

Two Wolves | Tristan Bancks
My Two Blankets | Irene Kobald
My Dad is a Bear | Nicola Connelly
One Minute’s Silence | David Metzenthen
Withering-by-Sea | Judith Rossell

Visit the Prime Minister’s Literary Awards website to see the full list of shortlisted titles.


Wednesday, 25 November 2015

The Dead Tracks by Tim Weaver

If you love a good mystery with a handsome but lost hero, an evil madman and lots of twists and turns, The Dead tracks is for you.

Troubled ex-journalist and missing persons investigator, David Raker is hired by the parents of missing seventeen year old, Megan Carver. Meagan is an unlikely runaway, no boyfriend and a happy straight A student but she’s been missing for six months and the police say they have no further leads. In fact, the police seem to be hiding something and David’s getting in their way.

Despite being falsely implicated in Megan’s disappearance, the investigation leads Raker to a place with a horrifying history of brutal serial murder and missing girls known as the Dead Tracks. Could the long dead serial murderer have come back from the grave? How many girls are actually missing? Will Raker find Megan in time or is she already dead?

This is heart racing mystery at its best.


You can borrow this title in fiction, large print or audiobook format. Just click on the cover image to place your hold.

Monday, 23 November 2015

Cinnamon Roll Murder by Joanne Fluke

Hannah Swenson is a bakery owner and amateur sleuth from Lake Eden, Minnesota. In this story she, along with her many sisters, mother and friends, solve a murder mystery involving the Cinnamon Roll Six, a jazz band lead by a legendary artist Buddy Neiman. There are two deaths in this story, one happening on a snow covered highway and the other in the local hospital.

The story unfolds in a most delightful and charming manner along with a good mixture of humour, describing the death scenes with graphic but not overly morbid clarity. Joanne creates wonderful settings for the many scenes and adventures that happen in this tale. The story intertwines the dramas within Hannah's personal life mixed in with the solving of the two deaths.

A bonus for reading this book is that it contains many references to bakery delicacies' served at her shop, along with the actual recipe and cooking instruction, a must read for the sweet toothed reader.

This is a tastefully good mystery read and I would highly recommend it to anyone. The Cinnamon roll murder is book 15 of the Hannah Swenson series.


Click on the cover image to place your hold

Thursday, 19 November 2015

What’s not to love? (or the top 10 most popular romance novels for November)

Ah, the romance novel. It has the strange distinction of being the most popular but least respected genre of the literary world. I myself love a good romance novel. Sure, the plot generally remains the same but there are a lot of popular renowned fiction authors (who shall remain nameless) who consistently churn out book after formulaic book. I promise you, once you delve into the world of the romance novel you’ll never look back.

Need more convincing? Here are three reasons you should pick up a romance novel:
• a well written romance can pull you into the story and fire up your imagination
• there are so many different genres within the romance genre itself (they’re not all about vampires and werewolves you know)
• and most importantly; there is always, always a happy ending (who doesn’t love that?).

Here’s a list of the most popular romance novels read by our borrowers in November. The list is in reverse order with number 1 being the most loved title.

10. Earth Bound | Christine Feehan
9. The professional | Kresley Cole
8. Dangerous joy | Jo Beverley
7. A shocking delight | Jo Beverley
6. Wolf with benefits | Shelley Laureston
5. With this kiss | Janet Dailey
4. There all along | Lauren Dane
3. Stormy persuasion | Johanna Lindsey
2. Dark Skye | Kresley Cole
1. The hero | Robyn Carr

This list is a perfect example of the many sub genres offered up by romance authors. Included here are contemporary, erotic, historical, regency and paranormal romances.

Go on, reserve a copy. You know you want to!


Monday, 16 November 2015

Unusual Uses for Olive Oil By Alexander McCall Smith

When I first saw this book sitting on the display shelf at Dandenong Library I had no idea what to expect. But as I started to turn the pages I realised that it was quite mad. Yes, it was crazily entertaining in a madcap kind of way. It’s a curious and comical book written in colourful language and filled with many light hearted and funny anecdotes.

First of all there is the central character, the pompous Professor Moritz-Maria von Igelfeld, a Philologist who works at an institute in Germany. His equally strange colleagues include the professor’s arch rival, Detlev Amadeus Unterholzer along with Herr Huber, a babbling librarian. The constant ramblings of the librarian whenever he is addressed could only make me smile.

Then there is a time in the tale, when Professor von Igelfeld, being an eligible single man, is invited to a friend’s house to be introduced to a certain lady of high standing, with the view to a possible courtship. It is only after he arrives for the intimate dinner party that the foolhardy professor discovers that moths have got to his suit and that there are gaping holes in the back of his jacket and trousers. The reader will certainly begin to giggle at Professor Igefeld’s blundering attempts to conceal his dilemma during the evening.

As he stumbles on through further mishaps and as the witty innuendos unravel, you will no doubt continue to chuckle. And surely you will end up laughing uproariously in some of the more absurd moments!

The story is presented by Alexander McCall Smith in his inimitable style but is written quite differently to his more famous series, The No.1 Ladies Detective Agency for which he is better known. Whilst a little slow at the start, it soon draws you in and captivates the reader with the ridiculous scenarios that the various eccentric characters find themselves caught up in.

If you enjoy this book you would probably like others in this series by McCall Smith, such as Portuguese Irregular Verbs which also stars Professor von Igelfeld.

Unusual Uses for Olive Oil is such an insane and riotous work, I laughed ‘til I cried.


Click on the cover image to place your hold

Friday, 13 November 2015

New fiction titles for November

Looking for something new to sink your teeth into? Check out these new and upcoming fiction releases for November.

Heart and home Lyn Andrews
Sage’s eyes Virginia Andrews
Desperate measures Jo Bannister
House of dreams Fanny Blake
House of the rising sun James Lee Burke
St. Tropez lonely hearts club Joan Collins
That empty feeling Peter Corris
Promise Robert Crais
Wild cat Christine Feehan
Painted smile Frances Fyfield
Warheart Terry Goodkind
Chelsea strangler Susanna Gregory
Visitors book Sophie Hannah
Bitter season Tami Hoag
After she’s gone Lisa Jackson
Ashley Bell Dean Koontz
Secret sisters Jayne Ann Krentz
Lady’s command Stephanie Laurens
In the dark cold ground Stuart MacBride
Chocolate lovers’ wedding Carole Matthews
Coffin Road Peter May
Revelation code Andy McDermott
Rain dogs Adrian McKinty
On the bone Barbara Nadel
Little red chairs Edna O’Brien
Fairbairn fortunes Una-Mary Parker
Private Paris James Patterson
Constable on trial Nicholas Rhea
Friends of the dusk Phil Rickman
Chasing destiny Nora Roberts
Deathlist Chris Ryan
Precious gifts Danielle Steel
Sun in her eyes Paige Toon

Simply click on your chosen title/s to place your hold

Happy reading!


Wednesday, 11 November 2015

Must read Australian YA novels

Read on to find out more of the newest and hottest books for teens that are causing a racket among Young Adult novel fans from all over Australia.
#LoveOzYA is a grassroots social media campaign to promote Australian YA novels.

If you loved…
The Hunger Games try Sky so heavy
The Fault In Our Stars try Zac & Mia
Mortal Instruments try Mercy

Sky so heavy | Claire Zorn
The Sky so heavy is Zorn’s take on a post-apocalyptic world, and the struggles faced by those who seek to survive the initial madness that comes from society’s collapse. Fin, the average teenager, gradually evolves from high school bully to a leader and survivor, one who wrestles with the dilemma of how far an individual can go in the quest for survival and the protection of those they love while retaining their humanity.

Zac & Mia | A.J. Betts
Zac and Mia is an unpretentious novel exploring the effects of cancer in the lives of two young people. Written with subtlety and a gentleness of spirit that lingers with the reader long after the final page.

Mercy | Rebecca Lim
On the surface, Mercy appears to be another paranormal romance for young adults. Further exploration yields a more complex narrative, exploring themes of compassion, free will and identity. Mercy is another being, perhaps angel, who moves from human to human, taking over their lives for a time. In her present life, she develops a friendship with Ryan, joining him in his search for his twin sister, who went missing two years ago. The first instalment to the series, Mercy will appeal to both the paranormal reader, and those interested in something suspenseful


Monday, 9 November 2015

New eBooks and eAudio available now on BorrowBox

A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms | George R. R. Martin - eBook
Before Tyrion Lannister and Podrick Payne there was Dunk and Egg. A young, naïve but courageous hedge knight, Ser Duncan the Tall towers above his rivals—in stature if not experience. Tagging along with him is his diminutive squire, a boy called Egg—whose true identity must be hidden from all he and Dunk encounter: for in reality he is Aegon Targaryen, and one day he will be king. Improbable heroes though they be, great destinies lay ahead for Dunk and Egg; as do powerful foes, royal intrigue, and outrageous exploits.

The Lake House | Kate Morton - eAudio & eBook
A missing child… An abandoned house… An unsolved mystery…
June 1933, and the Edevane family’s country house, Loeanneth, is polished and gleaming, ready for the much-anticipated Midsummer Eve party. Alice Edevane, sixteen years old and a budding writer, is especially excited. Not only has she worked out the perfect twist for her novel, she’s also fallen helplessly in love with someone she shouldn’t have. But by the time midnight strikes and fireworks light up the night skies, the Edevane family will have suffered a loss so great that they leave Loeanneth forever. Seventy years later, after a particularly troubling case, Sadie Sparrow is sent on an enforced break from her job with the Metropolitan Police.

The Mountain Shadow | Gregory David Roberts - eBook
The end of the eighties was the beginning of everything. The Berlin wall fell on a ruined empire, and the Taliban took Afghanistan. Lin, on the run after escaping from prison in Australia, working as a passport forger for a Bombay mafia gang, finds himself standing on a tattered corner of a bloody carpet that would soon cover most of the world. But he can’t leave the Island City: not without Karla.
Two years after the events in Shantaram, Bombay is a different world, playing by different rules. Lin’s search for love and faith leads him through secret and violent intrigues to the dangerous truth.

The Crossing | Michael Connelly - eBook
Six months ago, Harry Bosch left the LAPD before they could fire him, and then hired his half-brother, the maverick Defence Attorney Mickey Haller to sue the department for forcing him out. Although it wasn’t the way he wanted to go, Bosch has to admit that being out of the game has its benefits.

Island Home | Tim Winton - eAudio
For over thirty years, Winton has written novels in which the natural world is as much a living presence as any character. What is true
of his work is also true of his life: from boyhood, his relationship with the world around him – rockpools, seacaves, scrub and swamp – was as vital as any other connection. Winton has felt the place seep into him, with its rhythms, its dangers, its strange sustenance, and learned to see landscape as a living process.

Grandpa’s Great Escape | David Walliams - eBook
Jack’s Grandpa… Wears his slippers to the supermarket, serves up Spam à la Custard for dinner and often doesn’t remember Jack’s name. But he can still take to the skies in a speeding Spitfire and save the day… An exquisite portrait of the bond between
a small boy and his beloved Grandpa – this book takes readers on an incredible journey with Spitfires over London and Great Escapes through the city in a high octane adventure full of comedy and heart.

These BorrowBox titles can be downloaded directly to your mobile device through BorrowBox iTunes & Android App. To download your free App just visit the Apple App Store or Google Play Store via this link. If you require help or more information, please speak with our friendly library staff at Dandenong or Springvale Library.


Friday, 6 November 2015

A Sequel to The Girl who Kicked the Hornet’s nest!! – Wow!

Who read and enjoyed the Millenium series by Stieg Larsson and wondered if there would ever be another sequel?? Well now there is. The Girl in the Spider’s Web by David Lagercrantz.

Well worth getting hold of this. Although it is not Larsson, Lagercrantz manages to light the fire. Once again we meet Mikael Blomkvist and his renewed connection with Lisbeth Salander . Just when Blomkvist and Millenium are seeking a much need boost a violent conspiracy relating to artificial intelligence is unleashed by Swedish scientist, Professor Balder.

Read the whole novel in a couple of days and couldn’t put it down. A long time since I have found a book that held my attention to the detriment of all else!

Please have a read and tell us if you have also enjoyed this read.


Click on the book cover to place your hold

Wednesday, 4 November 2015

Smouldering in Cornwall - Poldark Series One DVD

This eagerly anticipated new BBC costume drama is based on the historical novels by Winston Graham (there are 12 in total). The series has been much hyped due to its brooding male lead, Irish actor Aidan Turner and so popular that season two is already in production.

The first series opens in 1783 with Ross Poldark’s return to Cornwall from the American Revolutionary War; he is war wounded and finds his circumstances changed. Poldark’s father died in his absence, leaving his land and mine derelict and even his servants have taken over the master’s bedroom. In another blow, Poldark reunites with his Uncle’s family to discover that his cousin is newly engaged to his sweetheart, Elizabeth. Could things get any worse?

Instead of packing up his bags and running away to London, Poldark is determined to start again and rebuild his mine up from scratch. He finds loyal supporters among the local community and his father’s old employees. Along the way he takes in Demelza, a young girl who has fallen on hard times and her beloved dog. Eleanor Tomlinson plays Demelza with exactly the right mixture of feistiness and warmth. While the series focuses on Poldark and his family, the mines and struggles of its workers are always in the background. As well as the Poldark’s tense relations with the self made Warleggans.

One of the other standouts alongside its superb acting is the beauty of the Cornish countryside. The only drawback is the long wait until April for the next season.


Click on the DVD cover to place your hold

Friday, 30 October 2015

Preventing Violence Promoting Respect

Family and domestic violence is conduct that is violent, threatening, intimidating, controlling or intended to cause you to be fearful. It can include:
• physical violence
• verbal, emotional, sexual or psychological abuse
• controlling money
• stalking
• serious neglect where you depend on their care
• harm to an animal or property
• restricting your spiritual or cultural participation
Family and domestic violence is unacceptable in any form.

The library has a broad range of items across all levels covering family and domestic violence. Here are a few select titles:

A Mother’s Story Rosie Batty
The essential message instilled in Rosie Batty’s book is that family violence can happen to anyone. Ever since the death of her son Luke, at the hands of his father, Batty has tirelessly crusaded to bring attention to the epidemic spreading through Australian society that is family violence. Her story, co-written with journalist Bryce Corbett, details the painful lead up to Luke’s death and the failings within a system that desperately needs changing to protect the victims of family violence.

Eye of the Sheep Sofie Laguna
Jimmy is a boy who struggles to understand the world around him, and it’s only his mother who understands him and is able to protect him from a father who varies between love and abuse. When Jimmy’s mother dies, he is left to fend for himself against the dangerous currents of his household. This is a beautifully written story that draws the reader into Jimmy’s world and his unique point of view.

Beyond The Veil of Tears Rita Bradshaw
When 15 year old Angeline Stewart is forced into marriage with Oswald Golding, a man looking for a rich heiress to finance his gambling and womanizing, the nightmare begins. Dealing with the thorny subject of domestic violence in a historical setting, Bradshaw weaves an emotional tale of one woman’s fight for survival.

Stay with me Maureen McCarthy
Tess is trapped in a desperate situation - her violent partner is now threatening not just Tess, but their daughter as well. Written with surprising depth and insight, this novel tackles the subject of family violence in an Australian setting. When discussing family violence, the question often arises about why the victim remains in an abusive situation. McCarthy vividly illustrates the dilemma and danger faced by victims in deciding to leave, and how it impacts on those around them.

Bitter End Jennifer Brown
When Alex falls for the charming new boy at school, Cole, a handsome, funny, sports star who adores her, she can't believe she's finally found her soul mate. At first, Alex is blissfully happy. But as the months pass, Alex can no longer ignore Cole's small put-downs, pinches, or increasingly violent threats. This story successfully highlights to teens how easy it is to fall into an abusive relationship.

There are also a number of support services available, these include:

National Sexual Assault, Domestic Family Violence Counselling Service
1800 737 732

WAYSS Family Violence Crisis Service (Dandenong)
9792 1205 or 131 450 for an interpreter (8am to 11pm)

Men's Referral Service
1300 766 491


Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Top 10 Fiction reads for October

Are you curious about what your fellow borrowers have been reading this month? Well wonder no more. Here’s a list of our most borrowed fiction titles for October. Proving what a diverse and multicultural community we are, the top 10 includes titles in English, Chinese, Sinhalese and Vietnamese. Interestingly, all five of the English titles are from the suspense/mystery genre.

The list is in reverse order with number 1 being the most borrowed title.

10. Festive in death J.D Robb
9. Missing you Harlan Coben
8. The girl on the train Paula Hawkins
7. Jia you fu nü: 家有福女 Yiyilanxi
6. Finders Keepers Stephen King
5. Personal Lee Child
4. Bu qing chen: 步輕塵 Zheng Li
3. Sonduru suyāmaya Candi Koḍikāra
2. Vô tình kiếm Xinzailiulang
1. Không động kỳ án Long Gu

Remember – books come in multiple formats. You can borrow some of these titles in print or in their eBook, audiobook, large print or downloadable audiobook counterpart. Simply click on your chosen title to be transported to our online catalogue. From there you can place a hold on your preferred format.


Monday, 26 October 2015

The Casual Vacancy by J.K Rowling

Knowing of the success and fantastical wizardry of J.K Rowling’s Harry Potter series, I was keen to read the first of the English author’s novel for adults, The Casual Vacancy.

To say that the book is a huge departure from the Harry Potter series would be an understatement.

The novel begins with the death of the local Parish Councillor of an English Village. From there, in the lead up to the next election for the Parish Councillor role, a social drama ensues, revolving around the lives of characters so many in number that it was often hard to keep up.

The township of Pagford has a lower class habitation of destitution known as The Fields. Many characters such as the late councillor Barry Fairweather, social worker Kay, single Mum Terri are involved in the events, for example the imminent closure of the local drug rehabilitation centre.

Themes in the book include poverty, drug use, incest and social class differences.

This can be a dark novel at times and I had to persevere to get to the last few chapters, by which time the pace sped up and it came to its conclusion, with a tragic event which unites the township.

Not a book for the fainthearted, or one who likes a sense of hope and idealism in their reading, The Casual Vacancy is well written and shows the ugly underside of contemporary English Village life.


The library has copies of this title in fiction, large print, audio book CD & MP3 as well as the miniseries adaption on DVD. Click on the cover to place a hold on your chosen format.

Friday, 23 October 2015

Lucy [DVD]

When a boyfriend tricks Lucy (Scarlett Johansson) into delivering a briefcase to a supposed business contact, the once-carefree student is abducted by thugs who intend to turn her into a drug mule. She is surgically implanted with a package containing a powerful chemical, but it leaks into her system, giving her superhuman abilities, including telekinesis and telepathy. With her former captors in pursuit, Lucy seeks out a neurologist (Morgan Freeman), who she hopes will be able to help her.

Lucy is a sci-fi/fantasy action movie that feels a lot like a comic or graphic novel. At times it can be quite unbelievable and a little silly. It is rated MA15+ and there is a reason for this. Parents need to be aware that the violence is fairly graphic. After watching the movie, I had to seriously think about whether I liked it or not. In the end I decided that it is a good movie even though it is a little over the top.


Click on the DVD cover to place your hold.

Thursday, 22 October 2015

Reckoning by Magda Szubanski

Heartbreaking, joyous, traumatic, intimate and revelatory, Reckoning is the book where Magda Szubanski, one of Australia's most beloved performers, tells her story. In this extraordinary memoir, Magda describes her journey of self-discovery from a suburban childhood, haunted by the demons of her father's espionage activities in wartime Poland and by her secret awareness of her sexuality, to the complex dramas of adulthood and her need to find out the truth about herself and her family. With courage and compassion she addresses her own frailties and fears, and asks the big questions about life, about the shadows we inherit and the gifts we pass on. Honest, poignant, utterly captivating, Reckoning announces the arrival of a fearless writer and natural storyteller. It will touch the lives of its readers.

Are you waiting in the queue for Magda Szubanski’s autobiography? Well wait no more! We currently have downloadable copies available in eBook, on Overdrive and in eAudio via BorrowBox. Just follow this link to our catalogue and select your preferred format. Both apps are free to download and very easy to use. As always, if you require extra assistance please bring your device into the library and ask staff for a quick demonstration.


Wednesday, 21 October 2015

Looking for butter boy ~ Archie Roach [CD]

Archibald William Roach was born 8 January 1956 in Mooroopna. He was named after an Aboriginal word referring to a bend in the Goulburn River, near Shepparton in central Victoria. Archie's song lyrics draw attention to the hardship and humiliation suffered by many Indigenous Australians. While still a very young child, Archie and his sisters, along with the other Indigenous Australian children of the stolen generations, were forcibly removed from their family by Australian government agencies, and placed in an orphanage.

His music and songs are performed with strong emotions, with soulful lyrics that are both heart wrenching and evocative. The listener is drawn into the world and feelings of Archie through his songs. My favourite songs on this album are Beggar man, Mother's heartbeat and Watching over me. I have enjoyed listening to this album as I have of all of his other albums. He is a legend and a truly inspirational Australian artist and musician.


Simply click on the cover to place your hold

Monday, 19 October 2015

New biographies now available on BorrowBox!

Musicians, politicians, sporting heroes and everyday survivors. You can now read their fascinating stories, as well as many more, via downloadable eBook on BorrowBox.

Here are a few recommended titles to get you started:

Big Blue Sky by Peter Garrett
Peter Garrett's life has been fully and passionately lived. A man of boundless energy, compassion, intelligence and creativity, he has already achieved enough to fill several lives.
From his idyllic childhood growing up in the northern suburbs of Sydney, to an early interest in equality and justice; from the height of 1960s culture shock at ANU to fronting iconic Australian band Midnight Oil; from his time as a galvanising activist for the environment to being the only unaligned Cabinet minister in two Labor governments, Garrett has an extraordinary story to tell.

Chris Judd: the autobiography by Chris Judd
Few people know Australian Rules football better than Chris Judd. He's one of the game's out-and-out champions, having captained two of the greatest clubs in the league - the West Coast Eagles and Carlton - and taken the Eagles to premiership victory in 2006. He's won the Brownlow Medal twice, been a dual Leigh Matthews Trophy winner - awarded to the AFL's Most Valuable Player as voted by the players - and selected as an All Australian six times.
His autobiography is a unique journey into the game, describing with extraordinary candour what it's like to climb to the highest levels, to achieve the ultimate goal of your sport, and to experience the full measure of heartache and failure that inevitably accompanies more than a decade of playing at the elite level.

A mother’s story by Rosie Batty
Rosie Batty knows pain no woman should have to suffer. Her son was killed by his father in a violent incident in February 2014, a horrendous event that shocked not only the nation, but the world. Greg Anderson murdered his 11-year-old son Luke and was then shot by police at the Tyabb cricket oval.
In the wake of the tragedy, Rosie's advocacy work has forced an unprecedented national focus on family violence, with the Victorian Labor government establishing Australia's first royal commission into family violence, and committing a further $30 million over four years to protect women and children at high risk of family violence. The then Victorian Police Commissioner Ken Lay called it 'the Rosie Batty factor'. This is her story.

Body lengths by Leisel Jones
Leisel Jones is rightly regarded as one of the greatest breaststrokers ever. At just fifteen, she won two silver medals at the Sydney Olympic Games in 2000; she went on to win gold at Athens and Beijing, and at London 2012 became the first Australian swimmer to compete at four Olympics.
For the first time, Leisel candidly describes what it’s like to be thrust into the limelight so young. She reveals the constant pressure she was under – from coaches, from the media and from herself – to be perfect. Despite the highs of her swimming stardom, she suffered depression, and at one time planned to take her own life.
In London, criticised in the media for her weight, and appalled by the bulling and dysfunction in the Australian swim team, Leisel nevertheless handled herself with great composure. She has emerged with maturity and good humour, having finally learnt how to be herself and live with confidence.

These BorrowBox titles can be downloaded directly to your mobile device through BorrowBox iTunes & Android App. To download your free App just visit the Apple App Store or Google Play Store via this link. If you require help or more information, please speak with our friendly library staff at Dandenong or Springvale Library.