Archive for the ‘Book Clubs’ Category

tom gates

It really is a brilliant book according to the Trim Library Junior Book Club. 

Caoimhe thought it was the best book she’d ever read.  Both Erin and Emma read it twice.  All the children plan on reading the next two books featuring Tom Gates.  They loved the doodles and the book cover and definitely think this is one book that should be judged by its cover!

About the Book

Tom Gates is the master of excuses for late homework: dog attacks – spilt water – lightning.. Tom’s exercise book is full of his doodles, cartoons and thoughts, as well as comments from his long-suffering teacher, Mr Fullerton. After gaining five merits for his CAMPING SUCKS holiday story, Tom’s work starts to go downhill – which is a pity, as he’s desperate to impress Amy Porter, who sits next to him…

In recent months, Liz Pichon has won, for The Brilliant World Of Tom Gates, the Roald Dahl Funny Prize, the Red House Book Awards ‘Young Readers’ book category and the Waterstones Children’s Book Award in the 5-12 age group. Tom Gates, said Michael Rosen, is a book that “will appeal to anyone who doodles, likes to wind up their sibling and has a serious caramel wafer habit.”

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11 Birthdays 11 Birthdays by Wendy Mass is the latest book that the age 11~12 junior book club read and it went down a treat so much so that the children immediately wanted to read the following book ‘Finally’

Reminiscent of Groundhog Day this is a refreshing book that both boys and girls will enjoy. The book tells the story of Amanda and Leo, on their first birthday, they learned to walk. On their fifth, they planted seeds in handmade pots. On their tenth, they learned there are some words you can never take back.

Amanda’s eleventh birthday should have been a happy occasion. Instead she’s dressed in an itchy costume her mother picked out for her Hollywood-themed party (Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz, even though the flying monkeys have always creeped her out). Meanwhile, across town, her ex-best friend Leo is celebrating their joint birthday with a huge bash including a hypnotist, a football star, a giant iguana, and a rock band. SO not fair!

Amanda can’t wait for the day AFTER her birthday so she can stop thinking about the fight that led to her and Leo having separate parties for the first time in their lives. There’s just one problem. The next day is her birthday all over again. 

This is what some of the children had to say about the book.

‘I thought the book was brilliant, I loved the sense of magic in it.’ Eva (12)

‘This book has a great twist to a friendship story, when friends become frenemies! It is a creative story that I would recommend to everyone with a best friend.’ Jennifer (12)

 ‘I thought the book was really good, I really enjoyed it and I hope the author’s next books are as good.’ Meabh (11)

 ‘I thought that the book was brilliant, I would hate if something like that happened to me. I will definitely read the next book.’ Katie (12)

 ‘I think 11 Birthdays is a great book, it is funny and brilliant. I would definitely recommend it to a friend. It was a very good story of friendship and I think that it is a very creative book.’ Ciara (12

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The Third Pig Detective AgencyHarry Pigg, the only surviving brother from the Big Bad Wolf attacks, has set up business as a private detective in Grimmtown, only things aren’t going too well. Down on his luck, with bills to pay and no clients in sight, the outlook is poor. But then in walks local businessman Aladdin who needs someone to help him track down an old lamp. What follows is far from an open-and-shut case. Funny, thrilling, and always entertaining, Harry Pigg is an old breed of hero for a new generation. Although written for older children, Harry Pigg will appeal to grown ups as well with plenty of in-jokes for all ages.

Here is what some of the children from the Navan Book Club Thought of it.

‘I thought the book was brilliant and very funny. I would recommend it to other readers, I love the way Bob Burke brought in characters from other stories.’ Ciara (12)

‘I really liked the book because it involved lots of fairytale characters, I really enjoyed it.’ Molly (11)

‘I thought this was a great and funny fantasy. I would recommend this to anybody, it was brilliant.’ Jennifer (12)

‘I think it was the funniest book I’ve ever read.’ Eadaoin (11)

‘I thought the book was hilarious, with lots of jokes only adults would get. I loved the stlye of the writing it reminded me of old black and white detective movies.’ Susanne (40)

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CBI Book of the Year Shortlist 2012!

The CBI Book of the Year Awards, now in their 22nd year, identify, honour and promote excellence in books for young people by Irish authors and illustrators. The awards are the most prestigious in Ireland and offer one of the few opportunities for national and international recognition of Irish authors and illustrators.

This year’s list features some incredible titles from the cream of Irish writing and illustrating talent.

Each of the nine titles will compete for six awards, including the Children’s Choice Award voted for by ten junior juries located across the country. The winners will be announced at a ceremony to be held in May. 

Trim Library Junior Book Club are delighted to be one of the junior juries this year.  The children aged between 10 and 12 will be reading through the shortlist over the coming weeks and voting for their favourite title.  All titles can be borrowed from Meath County Council Library Service.    

The nine shortlisted titles for the CBI Book of the Year Award 2012 are as follows:



A book about twelve-year-old Mary, her mother Scarlett, her grandmother Emer and her great-grandmother Tansey. Emer is dying in hospital, and the ghost of her mother Tansey, who died when Emer was three, arrives on the scene to assure her that everything will be alright. She also has plenty to say to the two younger members of the family, and soon all four women find themselves on an unforgettable road trip. Funny, moving, thought-provoking and featuring one of the most likeable ghosts since Casper, the characters and events in this story will stay with you long after you have finished reading.


BRUISED by Siobhán Parkinson

‘How does bruising start; is it the booze, the neglect or the slap?

14 year old Jono loves his little sister Julie and would do anything to protect her. The problem is that his mum has some problems with alcohol, meaning that she can’t bring up Jono and Julie the way she should. Once the children’s Gramma passes away, Jono and Julie are left alone, and forced to run away in order to survive. Can Jono still keep his little sister safe?


INTO THE GREY by Celine Kiernan

Set in the 1970’s, Into The Grey tells the story of identical teenage twins Patrick and Dominic who are forced to move after a fire destroys their family home. Along with their little sister Dee, their parents and their senile grandmother they struggle to adjust to life in a temporary house. Soon after the move a series of frightening nighttime events begin to worry Patrick and he watches as his beloved twin brother struggles to retain control of his body. Previous inhabitants of their temporary home are struggling to come to terms with their own history and the boy’s fragility allows ghosts and spirits to take hold of them.

MAITRÍÓISCE by Siobhán Parkinson

Nuair a shroicheann Mara trí bliana déag d’aois tá sí ag súil go mór lena bronntanas ach nuair a osclaíonn sí é, athraíonn an scéal. Ní iPod nó seodra atá ann ar chor ar bith ach sraith bábóg maitríóisce ón Rúis. Séad fíne óna sheanmháthair atá ann agus ar dtús níl suim dá laghad aici sa bhronntanas páistiúil seo. Ní hamháin sin ach tá ceann de na bábógíní ar strae!

De réir a chéile, tuigeann Mara go bhfuil stair taobh thiar den bhábóg caillte agus téann sí sa tóir ar an fhírinne faoi bhrí agus scéal na bábóige seo. Lena cara Dorota lena taobh, glacann Mara ról an bleachtaire agus í ag iarraidh níos mó a fhoghlaim faoina gcúlra agus faoi stair na bábóige.

When Mara reaches her thirteenth birthday she looks forward to her present but when she finally opens it, it’s a different story. It is not an iPod or jewellery but a series of Russian dolls. They turn out to be an heirloom from her grandmother and at first Mara has no interest whatsoever in this seemingly childish present. If that weren’t bad enough, one of the dolls turns out to be missing.

As time progresses, Mara begins to understand the history surrounding the missing doll and she intuitively goes in pursuit of the truth behind the Russian dolls. With her friend Dorota by her side, Mara assumes the role of detective in an attempt to track down the missing doll and to uncover more about her own interesting heritage.


‘His name is Jimmy. They told us not to call him Dad any more. It might freak him out. More than he’s already freaked out, if that’s possible.’

 Eala’s dad has had an accident. My Dad is Ten Years Old is the story of how she and her family tackle the aftermath. After a brain injury leaves him with the mental age of a ten year old, it is up to Eala and her brother to discover their dad’s past to begin rebuilding their future. Filled with honesty and heartbreak,My Dad is Ten Years Old takes you to the darker reality of personal tragedy.

Ó CHRANN GO CRANN le Caitríona Hastings agus Andrew Whitson (illus.)

Tá cailín óg d’arbh ainm Nia chun bogadh óna teach álainn faoin tuath chuig teach nua sa chathair mar go bhfuair a Dhaid post nua ansin. Níl sí róshásta faoi seo mar go mbeidh uirthi a chairde sa phobal agus sa scoil go léir a fhágáil. Faighimid amach gurb iad na préacháin ag bun an ghairdín an dream a mbeidh níos brónaí fúthu agus í ag fágáil. Léirítear dúinn go mbíodh na préacháin agus súgradh le Nia i gcónaí agus go raibh sí in ann bráth orthu nuair a bhíodh sí faoi ghruaim.

A young girl named Nia is about to move from her idyllic home in the countryside to a new house in her city, where her father has just been offered a new job. She is rather upset about this as she will be forced to leave her friends, her community and in particular her precious crows who congregate in the oak tree at the bottom of her garden to play with her every day.

STUCK by Oliver Jeffers

 “A tale of trying to solve a problem by throwing things at it.”

Stuck tells the tale of Floyd, who has managed to get his kite stuck up a tree. To try and get it down he throws his shoe at it and…that gets stuck too! Oh dear, what will he do next? The answer might surprise you as Floyd’s unusual response to the problem gets way out of hand!


 This is a lyrical story from the butterfly heart of Africa. Sisters Bul-Boo and Madillo are worried about their friend Winifred, who has lost her gentle smile and no longer puts up her hand in class. Then the twins discover her secret: she is to be married off to her uncle’s friend, who drinks heavily and is old enough to be her grandfather. While Winifred has become resigned to her fate, her friends are determined to put a stop to the marriage. But what can they do? They ask the advice of Ifwafwa, the snake man, who promises to think about the problem. Ifwafwa is wise and has a gift with snakes, but he does not like to hurry and Bul-Boo becomes impatient. Will he be too late to save their friend?


Will Gallows is a young elfing sky cowboy who is riding out on an dangerous quest. His mission? To bring Noose Wormworx the evil snake-bellied troll, to justice. Noose is wanted for the murder of Will’s pa, and Will won’t stop until he’s got revenge!


 Text courtesy of CBI


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Scholastic and Red House have launched the Big Book Babble . They’re going to be bringing top children’s authors straight to the classroom or library – LIVE!Big_Book_Babble_logo

The aim of Big Book Babble is to encourage children to enjoy reading, so each programme will feature popular children’s authors interviewed by comedian James Campbell. The programmes will also highlight work submitted by children and include a profile of a second author, illustrator or poet, plus a Q&A session involving both the live and the virtual audience.

Andy Stanton, author of the hit Mr Gum series, was featured in their first show on Tuesday 24th January. He was joined by Liz Pichon, author of The Brilliant World of Tom Gates which won the Roald Dahl Funny Prize 2011. Interviews with Jacqueline Wilson, Nick Sharratt and Charlie Higson are also up online. Authors scheduled for the coming months include Francesca Simon, Anthony Horowitz and Steve Cole.

It’s a great opportunity for children to see books come to life with their favourite authors. You can prepare them in advance with free teacher resources or even submit questions to the authors! It’s absolutely FREE – all you need to do is register and you’ll be able to watch all the programmes.

 The Big Book Babble show will be streamed live promptly at 11am and lasts approx. 30 minutes.

The programmes are aimed at primary school children aged 7 to 11

You can sign up to the Big Book Babble newsletter and you’ll be kept up-to-date with news of the authors, illustrators and poets who are being featured in each show.

You can submit a question for the live Q&A session by filling  out an online form.

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because of winn-dixie

Kate Di Camillo’s “Because of Winn-Dixie” was this month’s book choice for the Trim library junior book club. 

Kate  Di Camillo’s debut novel won the 2001 Newbery Honor and is a firm favourite with this librarian!

The summer Opal and her father, the preacher, move to Naomi, Florida, Opal goes into the Winn-Dixie supermarket–and comes out with a dog. A big, ugly, suffering dog with a sterling sense of humor. A dog she dubs Winn-Dixie. Because of Winn-Dixie, the preacher tells Opal ten things about her absent mother, one for each year Opal has been alive. Winn-Dixie is better at making friends than anyone Opal has ever known, and together they meet the local librarian, Miss Franny Block, who once fought off a bear with a copy of War and Peace. They meet Gloria Dump, who is nearly blind but sees with her heart, and Otis, an ex-con who sets the animals in his pet shop loose after hours, then lulls them with his guitar.

Opal spends all that sweet summer collecting stories about her new friends and thinking about her mother. But because of Winn-Dixie or perhaps because she has grown, Opal learns to let go, just a little, and that friendship–and forgiveness–can sneak up on you like a sudden summer storm.

Recalling the fiction of Harper Lee and Carson McCullers, here is a funny, poignant, and utterly genuine first novel from a major new talent.

An unforgettable first novel about coming of age one sweet summer–and learning to love what you have.
Courtesy of Candlewick Press
Some comments from the Trim library book club members
Minh liked the dog character and would recommend the book to a friend
Hannah thought the book was good and liked it
Anna M didn’t enjoy the book or the movie-she thought the story was boring
Annelise loved it, loved everything about it
Erin thought it was a brilliant book and gave it 5 stars!  She says “You should read it”
Emma loved it.  She’s a dog lover and has 2 dogs herself
Daniel really liked it
Donal liked it too.  He particularly liked the opening scene in the supermarket. 
Jack thought it was a good story
Anna S liked all of the story
Sophie didn’t like the book.  She was disappointed with the ending as she felt nothing really happened
Caoimhe thought it was an excellent story-she just liked it
Una also thought it was an excellent story-she loved all of it

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books into movies 

Each year an average of thirty novels are made into movies for the big screen. Authors watch tensely as their stories are filtered through the hands of screenwriters, directors, and cinematographers. If they’re lucky, these film adaptations do the original story justice. However, it is often the case that the book is significantly better than the movie. Here are some to watch out for in 2012.

Anna Karenina

This classic novel by Leo Tolstoy’stells the story of Anna, the wife of a high government official, who escapes her loveless marriage in favour of Count Vronsky. How the 800+ page classic will be transformed into a two hour movie remains to be seen. The movie stars Keira Knightly and Jude Law.

Life of Pi

Yann Martel’s best-selling novel follows  Pi and his family as they move from India to Canada, following a shipwreck Pi finds himself  in the middle of the Pacific Ocean with a boat full of hungry zoo animals. Directed by Ang Lee and staring Tobey Maguire the movies tells how Pi survives for the better part of a year through faith and guile.

One for the Money

one for the money 

Based on the novel by Janet Evanovich, One for the Money introduces us to Stephanie Plum played by Katerine Heigl a down on her luck ex-lingerie buyer who blackmails her cousin Vinne for a job as a bounty hunter when she loses her job, only one problem she’s the worst bounty hunter imaginable.

So what has been your favourite book to movie adaption, or what book would you like to see on the silver screen?

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January is traditionally a time of change, of resolutions, of giving up one thing and taking up another. This New Year, why not resolve to read differently?

  • Read outside your usual choice; we’ve all got particular tastes, subject areas and genres that we know we enjoy. But some of our best reading experiences can come from stepping away from the norm and trying something different for a change. So for every book you read this year within your comfort zone pick one from outside it.
  • Read alphabetically; begin by picking a book by an author whose surname begins with A (Austen, Amis) continue until you reach Z (Zola, Zimmer). Using this method will equate to one book a fortnight and can result in all sorts of reading surprises.
  • Keeping a reading diary allows you to look back at everything you have read, plan to read, want to recommend or wish to read again. It can also expand your overall enjoyment of reading.
  • Read more; this is a bit of a given but we all have moments when we waste time that could be spent reading; at the school gates, in a waiting room or playing games on an iPhone. So don’t waste time instead fill it with amazing stories.
  • Give up on a book if you are not enjoying it; obviously don’t give up after a few pages, give a little time to settle in 50-60 pages perhaps but don’t persevere if you are really not enjoying it.
  • Get over ‘reading guilt’. Reading is an incredible pleasure but too often we find ourselves feeling guilty about all manner of things from whether we’re reading enough to whether we’re reading the right books, so whilst you try to read more, read out of your comfort zone and keep track of what you read remember the cardinal rule: reading is a great joy and whatever you read or don’t read don’t let any guilt get in the way of really enjoying reading in 2012.

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The Trim library junior book club put together a list of the best books they’ve read this year.  Harry Potter is still proving to be a firm favourite with our group of 8-10 year-olds.  But the big hit this year was undoubtedly The Diary of a Wimpy Kid series by Jeff  Kinney and the latest offering, Cabin Fever, in particular. 

All books can be ordered online and borrowed from any of our Meath libraries


Anna, aged 10, loved Diary of a lottery winner’s daughter by Penelope Bush

Molly, aged 8, loved the entire Diary of a wimpy kid series and Harry Potter and the philosopher’s stone

Minh, aged 9, chose Harry Potter and the goblet of fire as well as Chinese Cinderella by Adeline Yen Mah

Sophie, aged 9, is a big fan of the Diary of a wimpy kid series and loved Mr. Stink by David Walliams

Caoimhe, aged 9, chose this month’s book club choice, Running Wild by Michael Morpurgo, as her favourite book of the year

Donal, aged 8, is another Harry Potter fan and loved Harry Potter and the prisoner of Azkaban

Daniel, aged 8, is another Wimpy kid fan and also chose a Michael Morpurgo book, Billy the Kid, as his choice of the year

Jack, aged 9,  also loved Billy the kid and the Wimpy kid series

And finally, Hannah, aged 9, loved Goodnight Mr Tom by Michelle Magorian

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Once again, Michael Morpurgo proved to be a big hit with the Trim library junior book club.  This month we read Running Wild and the kids loved it.   It got a massive thumbs-up from all the children, bar one.  You can order your copy from Meath libraries today.   

running wild When 10-year-old Will’s father dies in the Iraq war, his mother surprises him with a trip to Indonesia. But little could she have known what awaited them both there.

At first Will knows that something is wrong is when Oona, the elephant he is riding along the beach, begins to spook. Then, suddenly, she takes off into the jungle with Will on her back. And that’s when Will sees the wave come crashing in! With his mother almost certainly drowned, with nothing to cling on to but an elephant and nothing to help him but the clothes on his back, Will faces a terrifying future. But maybe the jungle and Oona the elephant, can help him!

An epic and heart-rending jungle adventure.

Taken from Michael Morpurgo’s website

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