Greta and Valdin: Our latest eLibrary promotion

Greta and Valdin cover against a photo of Auckland City

 

The modern world is too much for me. I feel like I’m George of the Jungle. —Greta

At the moment, for personal reasons, I don’t like reading things about people being in love with each other. —Valdin

Since its release in 2021, Greta and Valdin by Rebecca K. Reilly has become one of the must-read New Zealand novels. Its ultra-modern intelligent humour, often delivered in a razor-sharp pointed fashion, makes for a totally compelling read. Now, thanks to Libby, we are excited to offer unlimited access to the eBook.

The plot revolves around the smart and slightly quirky brother and sister co-narrators Valdin and Greta. They share an apartment in Auckland where they dissect the modern world; its ups and downs but especially each other’s personal lives. Both are seeking love: Valdin is still in love with his ex-boyfriend, whilst Greta is in love with her fellow English tutor Holly. The resulting observations and dialogue are pure comic gold. As one critic put it, the novel reads like “the strange love child of Shakespeare and Tinder”. What is even more remarkable is that Greta and Valdin is Reilly’s debut novel, which went on to win the Hubert Church Prize for Fiction for Best First Book at the 2022 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards.

Now is your chance to grab an electronic copy of the book and laugh and cry with Greta and Valdin! Simply login to Overdrive or Libby with your library card to access a copy. Unlimited copies of these eBooks will be available from Monday the 27th of June to Sunday the 10th of July.

Big Library Read: Questlove’s Music is history

Music is History Big Library Read

 

This month’s Big Library Read, Libby’s “global ebook club” , showcases his fourth book called Music is history. In Music is history, Questlove uses his encyclopaedic knowledge of music and history as a lens to examine American history. Specifically, he examines how specific tracks and albums encapsulate certain moments in time in American history over the past fifty years. Questlove is in a truly unique position to tell this history; he’s part of the story and a student of both music and the wider reaches of cultural history. Big Library Read is an opportunity for library users around the world to read the same digital title at the same time. So, from April 4th to April 18th, you can participate in this global ebook club, without any wait lists or holds.

Questlove is one of the most high profile and well-known musician/ producers around. as well as being an author, music journalist, and award-winning  film director. A self-confessed obsessive music crate digger and music historian, over the course of the last thirty years or so he has played a key role in the hip hop and sampling scene. He’s also gone on to produce countless artists, such Amy Winehouse and Al Green to name but two.

In Music is history, Questlove selects tracks from his birth in 1971 to the present day to illustrate how music and American history reflect each other. It is a hugely informative and entertaining work, and the tracks Questlove selects are wide ranging, eclectic and fascinating. They really demonstrate his formidable knowledge. It’s all done in a highly readable and personable style, certainly a must read for music buffs and cultural historians.

To learn more about the Big Library Read, follow this link. You can borrow Music is history via ebook here or audiobook here

To give you a flavour of the book, below is just a tiny selection of the albums containing some of the tracks Questlove uses to illustrate his points.

The head on the door [deluxe] / Cure
“Contents CD1: Inbetween days — Kyoto song — The blood — Six different ways — Push — The baby screams — Close to me — A night like this — Screw — Sinking.CD2 (Rarities 1984-1985): Notes Originally released in 1985 – includes bonus disc.” ( Adapted from Catalogue )

 

It takes a nation of millions to hold us back [3 CD]. / Public Enemy
“It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back, a record that rewrote the rules of what hip-hop could do. That’s not to say the album is without precedent, since what’s particularly ingenious about the album is how it reconfigures things that came before into a startling, fresh, modern sound. Public Enemy used the template Run-D.M.C. created of a rap crew as a rock band, then brought in elements of free jazz, hard funk, even musique concrète, via their producing team, the Bomb Squad, creating a dense, ferocious sound unlike anything that came before.  ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Maggot brain. / Funkadelic
“It starts with a crackle of feedback shooting from speaker to speaker and a voice intoning, “Mother Earth is pregnant for the third time, for y’all have knocked her up” and talking about rising “above it all or drown in my own sh*t.” This could only have been utterly bizarre back in 1971 and it’s no less so decades later; though the Mothership was well on its way already, Maggot Brain really helped it take off. ~ Ned Raggett” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Parade : music from the motion picture Under the cherry moon / Prince
“Undaunted by the criticism Around the World in a Day received, Prince continued to pursue his psychedelic inclinations on Parade, which also functioned as the soundtrack to his second film, Under the Cherry Moon. Originally conceived as a double album, Parade has the sprawling feel of a double record, even if it clocks in around 45 minutes. — If it had been expanded to a double album, Parade would have equaled the subsequent Sign ‘o’ the Times, but as it stands, it’s an astonishingly rewarding near-miss. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine” (Adapted from Catalogue)

The Police. / Police (Musical group)
“To coincide with their 30th anniversary reunion tour in 2007 the Police released the anthology The Police, the first two-CD retrospective ever assembled on the group. They may not have had a double compilation to their credit, but they had single discs and box sets, which may raise the question of whether they need a set like this — and the answer is yes, but this set falls just a bit short of being the definitive Police double disc. At only 28 tracks, this feels a little too slim.  ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Creative quest / Questlove
“Questlove – musician, bandleader, designer, producers, culinary entrepreneur, professor, and all-round cultural omnivore – draws on a life-time experience to offer insights into how to build the best creative life, and how to let the best creative life build you. Questlove has worked with or around hundreds of other artists, and engaged in dialogue with them regarding the creative process, whether in person or from an appreciation of their work: musicians like D’Angelo and Björk, filmmakers like Ava DuVernay and Mike Birbiglia, comedians, chefs, designers, writers, and more.” (Adapted from Catalogue) Also available as an eBook.

Mo’ meta blues : the world according to Questlove / Questlove
“Mo’ Meta Blues is a punch-drunk memoir in which Everyone’s Favorite Questlove tells his own story while tackling some of the lates, the greats, the fakes, the philosophers, the heavyweights, and the true originals of the music world. He digs deep into the album cuts of his life and unearths some pivotal moments in black art, hip hop, and pop culture.”–Book jacket.” (Catalogue)

 

Soul train : the music, dance, and style of a generation / Questlove
“From Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson of the award-winning hip-hop group the Roots, comes this vibrant book commemorating the legacy of Soul Train—the cultural phenomenon that launched the careers of artists such as Tina Turner, Stevie Wonder, the Jackson 5, Whitney Houston, Lenny Kravitz, LL Cool J, and Aretha Franklin. Questlove reveals the remarkable story of the captivating program, and his text is paired with more than 350 photographs of the show’s most memorable episodes and the larger-than-life characters who defined it: the great host Don Cornelius, the extraordinary musicians, and the people who lived the phenomenon from dance floor. Gladys Knight contributed a foreword to this incredible volume. Nick Cannon contributed the preface.” (Adapted from Catalogue) Also available as an eBook.

A reminder – Libby and the Overdrive app

Borrow eBooks, audiobooks & magazines. Libby, the library reading app from OverDrive

This is a quick reminder that change is coming to OverDrive’s apps in 2022 — with the retirement of the original OverDrive App and its replacement with the Libby App.

Current users will be able to continue using the Overdrive App throughout the year but it will be removed from all App Stores (Google, Microsoft and Apple) on 23 February 2022. This means that it can no longer be downloaded.

For more information about this upcoming change, read:

This change does not affect the OverDrive website

Please note: this change only affects the OverDrive app — users can still browse, borrow, and enjoy titles from the library’s OverDrive website (best suited to a desktop browser).

eReaders

If you use a dedicated eReader, you will still be able to download and transfer eBooks using our Libby website or OverDrive website and Adobe Digital Editions (ADE).

Devices compatible with direct borrowing of OverDrive ebooks will continue to work as expected.

Have concerns or questions? Get in touch

We’re in the process of updating our website to support the coming changes, and we will continue to do our best to support your use of OverDrive and Libby throughout this time period. If you have any issues or concerns with either app, please make sure to get in touch:

Email us — enquiries@wcl.govt.nz

New Accessibility Features on Libby

Person with headphones that form an exclamation mark. Text: Libby supports screen readers

Some changes have been made to the Libby app to improve eLibrary access for everyone. These new features improve accessibility by creating more customisation options, improving screen reader and voice control compatibility and changing the presentation of menus.

Here at Wellington City Library we are very excited for these changes given the upcoming retirement of the Overdrive app.

Continue reading “New Accessibility Features on Libby”

Important update regarding Libby and the OverDrive app

Borrow eBooks, audiobooks & magazines. Libby, the library reading app from OverDrive

Change is coming to OverDrive’s apps in 2022 — with the retirement of the original OverDrive App and its full replacement with the Libby App.

The original OverDrive App will be removed from all App Stores (Google, Microsoft and Apple) on 23 February 2022, but current users will be able to continue using it throughout the year until it is retired completely later in 2022.

We know many users of the original OverDrive app use it for its accessibility features compared to Libby, and we’re happy to report that throughout 2021, OverDrive’s primary focus has been on improving accessibility in Libby. You can read on their website about accessibility improvements for Libby as of December 2021, as well as more improvements coming in January 2022.

We’re in the process of updating our website to support the coming changes, and we will continue to do our best to support your use of OverDrive and Libby throughout this time period. If you have any issues or concerns with either app, please make sure to get in touch:

Email us — enquiries@wcl.govt.nz

Summer reads from our Overdrive comic collection

Make the most of your downtime this summer and catch up on a series you’ve been putting off with our comic collections on Overdrive. We’ve got a range of long-running series for all ages and fans, as well as some recent graphic novel hits from 2021.

Just download the Overdrive app to your device of choice, find Wellington City Library in the library listings, sign in with your library card number and PIN (the last four digits of your phone number), and download a great comic like one of these!

Omnibus Editions 

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The best way to get into a long-running series is to grab an omnibus. These collections have anywhere from 20 to 50 issues apiece to keep you covered for any long rides or beach reading. For fantasy fans, we’ve got the first four Omnibuses of Mike Mignola’s beloved Hellboy, five collections of Stan Sakai’s celebrated Usagi Yojimbo saga, and an omnibus of the The Witcher comic series. If you’ve just caught up on The Boys on Amazon or rewatched Avatar The Last Airbender or Buffy over the lockdowns, why not check out the comics as well?

TV and Film 

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Speaking of film and TV, 2021 was a huge year for comic-to-film adaptations. The first season of Invincible dropped and rocked viewers with its epic battles and family melodrama; if you can’t wait until the next season, you can read the entire series in three big compendiums on Overdrive. For the Marvel fans, we’ve also got collections of Shang-Chi, the original Eternals series by Jack Kirby, and the first four volumes of the most recent Venom comic. Tales from the Umbrella Academy: You Look Like Death continues the Umbrella Academy story from the hit comic and Netflix show. And if the recent Denis Villeneuve film wasn’t enough for you, you can also check out Dune: the Graphic Novel, Book 1

Finally, you can also catch up on the Marvel Star Wars books, including the first four volumes of Star Wars and all five volumes of the acclaimed Darth Vader run by Kieron Gillen and Salvador Larocca.

Superheroes

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If you’re looking for a sizeable superhero story to tide you over this summer, why not check out Brian Michael Bendis’ Avengers, starting in Avengers: Disassembled and continuing in the first four volumes of his New Avengers run, which has Spider-Man and Wolverine join the team for the first time. For the MCU fans, we have the Young Avengers Ultimate Collection, collecting the first twelve issues of the teenage heroes inspired by the Avengers, some of whom started appearing in this years’ Disney+ shows. And for more Marvel-set teen drama, there’s The Runaways, the hit comic by Saga writer Brian K Vaughn and Ms Marvel artist Adrian Alphona, about a group of teenagers who go on the run after learning that their parents are supervillains.

We have the first six volumes of both Ta-Nehisi Coates’ run on Black Panther, and the first six volumes of Al Ewing and Joe Bennett’s The Immortal Hulk, both critically-acclaimed series that revitalised their respective characters and came to a close this year. On the DC side, we’ve got Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo’s opening issues on Batman, the ‘Court of Owls’ storyline, and Grant Morrison and Frank Quietly’s beloved All-Star Superman. And to put you in the Christmas mood, what better book than Klaus, the secret superhero origin of Santa Claus himself?

Graphic Novels 

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For mature readers, there’s a number of long-running graphic novel series on Overdrive as well. For the history nerds, there’s Shigeru Mizuki’s Showa, a four-volume series cataloguing the history of Japan during the era of Emperor Showa from 1926 to 1989. From Image Comics, we have the first nine volumes of both the pop-god urban fantasy series The Wicked + The Divine, and the space epic on love, war, and parenting Saga (which is coming back from hiatus in January, so now’s the best time to catch up!). And with Taika Waititi announced to direct the film of Jodorowsky and Moebius’ acclaimed space epic The Incal, why not check out the original comic?

We’ve also acquired a number of new graphic novels to read digitally, including cartoonist Andi Watson’s dark comedy The Book Tour, Tania Ford and Nnedi Okorafor’s sci-fi immigration parable (and winner of the 2020 Hugo Award for Best Graphic Work) LaGuardia, Alison Bechdel’s newest comic The Secret to Superhuman Strength, and Emei Burrel’s political biography We Served the People: My Mother’s Stories.

Manga 

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Overdrive is the place to be to get your manga fix, whether to catch up on a series or check out a classic from the long history of Japanese comics. For starters, we’ve got the first six volumes of Kousuke Oono’s recent hit The Way of the Househusband, which follows a yakuza giving up the criminal life to pursue the path of quiet domesticity. Plus, the first 10 volumes of Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba, the first 10 of Naruto, the first six of Bloom Into You, and all 27(!) currently published volumes of My Hero Academia.

When you’ve caught up on your series, why not check out a classic manga as well? We have the first 8 volumes of the original Astro Boy series by ‘god of manga’ himself Osamu Tezuka, two omnibuses of the ‘magical girl’ series, Cardcaptor Sakura, and the whole series of 90s sports manga Ping Pong in its two volume ‘Full Game’ editions.

Children’s Comics

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We have comics to keep kids of all ages and interests entertained this summer. Our Overdrive collection has 24 volumes of the long-running Pokémon Adventures manga, which goes through all the Pokemon games and generations in comic form, and every volume of both Dav Pilkey’s beloved Dog Man, and the Eisner award-winning Lumberjanes.

For lovers of magic and mythology, we have all the collections of The Magical Adventures of Phoebe and Her Unicorn, as well as George O’Conner’s hit comic of Greek mythology retellings The Olympians and the Dragon Kingdom of Wrenley series, starting with The Coldfire Curse.

And while Comicfest sadly didn’t come to pass in 2021, you can read the comics of New Zealand comic artists on Overdrive, like Johnathan King’s new mystery comic The Inkberg Enigma and Kay O’Neill’s Tea Dragon series, starting with The Tea Dragon Society.

Lockdown Distractions: eLibrary materials

 

book GIF

For our latest Library Lockdown Distraction, we are pointing our search light at our most popular, free online lockdown distraction –  Overdrive/ Libby (Libby is Overdrive’s simplified site and app).

We have several other free electronic eBooks, eAudiobook and eMagazine services, including:

PressReader: Same day access to full-page replicas of newspapers & magazines from NZ and around the world in 60+ languages.

BorrowBox: eAudiobooks & eBooks (mainly eAudiobooks) from Australia’s leading provider — over 3500 titles

Bridget Williams Books: Over thirty years of award-winning NZ history and social issues publishing from Bridget Williams Books, in four collections.

However, Overdrive / Libby is our largest free electronic eBook, eComic, eAudiobook and eMagazine collection with over 50,000 titles available. There is a wealth of wonderful content contained within this electronic wonder; it almost goes without saying that there is enough thrills, spills, entertainment, education, and enlightenment contained within this site for years of distraction and it is constantly updated. It also has specially curated lists and easy to follow introductory videos for newbies.

The service is aimed at the very widest possible library audience from pre-schoolers to  adults, from fans of Peppa Pig to scholars of the works of Yuval Noah Harari ( and all points in-between). By design it has something for everyone, and in the widest variety of e-formats. All you need to access this vast free resource is a valid library card. Below is a selection of just eight totally unconnected titles which we hope will illustrate this fabulous service’s diversity and depth.

 

Overdrive cover Peppa Pig’s Family Computer, Peppa Pig (ebook)
“Mummy Pig is working at home on the family computer but Peppa and George want to play ‘Happy Mrs Chicken’. Can Daddy Pig come to the rescue and fix the frozen computer? Read more in this charming piggy tale.” (Overdrive description)

 

 

Overdrive cover Homo Deus, Yuval Noah Harari (Audiobook)
“Yuval Noah Harari envisions a near future in which we face a new set of challenges. Homo Deus explores the projects, dreams and nightmares that will shape the twenty-first century and beyond – from overcoming death to creating artificial life. It asks the fundamental questions: how can we protect this fragile world from our own destructive power? And what does our future hold?”(Overdrive description)

 

Overdrive cover The Infinity Gauntlet, Jim Starlin (ebook)
“Collects Infinity Gauntlet (1991) #1-6. The Mad Titan Thanos has seized control of Infinity Gauntlet and with it near-omnipotent power! Who can stop this deadly new overlord? All of Marvel’s top heroes star in this epic of cosmic proportions!” (Overdrive description)

 

 

Overdrive cover National Geographic Magazine, undefined (Magazine)
“Amazing discoveries and experiences await you in every issue of National Geographic magazine. The latest news in science, exploration, and culture will open your eyes to the world’s many wonders.” (Overdrive description)

 

 

Overdrive cover The Fall of Light, Sarah Laing (ebook)
“Rudy is a successful architect, but life is not as happy as it should be. His work leaves him artistically frustrated, his wife and two young daughters have moved out of the house he designed for them, and his pushy young associate is vying for design supremacy. When a Vespa accident puts him into hospital and forces him to recuperate at home, he looks in danger of losing everything, but it is then that his repressed artistic yearnings start to make their presence felt, not just in the glass creations he begins to craft, but also in his strange, vivid dreams.” (adapted from Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover North & South, undefined (Magazine)
“North & South is New Zealand’s premier monthly current affairs and lifestyle magazine, specialising in long-form investigative journalism, delivered by award-winning writers and photographers. North & South also showcases New Zealand ingenuity and creativity, explores the country and profiles its people. It is a touchstone of New Zealand life.” (Overdrive description)

 

Overdrive cover Charlie Tangaroa and the Creature from the Sea, T K Roxborogh (ebook)
“On a beach clean-up, thirteen-year-old one-legged Charlie and his half-brother, Robbie, find a ponaturi – a mermaid – washed up on a beach. An ancient grudge between the Maori gods Tane and Tangaroa has flared up because a port being built in the bay is degrading the ocean and creatures are fleeing the sea. This has reignited anger between the gods, which breaks out in storms, earthquakes and huge seas. The human world and realm of the gods are thrown into chaos.”  (Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover The Hobbit, J.R.R. Tolkien (Audiobook)
“Dwarves, elves, goblins, trolls, dragons and wizards – these are the ingredients of J.R.R. Tolkien’s wonderful fantasy. The hero of the tale is Bilbo Baggins, a home-loving unambitious hobbit who is suddenly thrust into what turns out to be the biggest adventure of his life. Guided by Gandalf the wizard, Bilbo and a company of dwarves set out to destroy Smaug the Magnificent, a ferocious dragon who guards a treasure hoard. Their journey contains many dangers, and in facing them the reluctant Bilbo’s great resourcefulness and courage surprises everyone – not least himself!” (adapted from Overdrive description)

New Together We Read title: Scrublands by Chris Hammer

Wellington City Libraries joins hundreds of public libraries and thousands of readers across New Zealand and Australia in offering the latest Together We Read: AU/NZ digital book club selection, Scrublands by Chris Hammer. From 1-15 September, patrons can enjoy Australian author Chris Hammer’s award-winning crime novel, Scrublands, as an eBook or eAudiobook for free.

 

Readers can access the digital book with no waitlists or holds by downloading the Libby app or by visiting wcl.lib.overdrive.com. You can also participate in an online discussion with other readers across both countries.

In Scrublands, a charismatic and dedicated young priest calmly opens fire on his congregation, killing five parishioners before being shot dead himself in an isolated country town. A year later, troubled journalist Martin Scarsden arrives in Riversend to write a feature on the anniversary of the tragedy. But the stories he hears from the locals about the priest and incidents leading up to the shooting don’t fit with the accepted version of events his own newspaper reported in an award-winning investigation. Martin can’t ignore his doubts, nor the urgings of some locals to unearth the real reason behind the priest’s deadly rampage.

Just as Martin believes he is making headway, a shocking new development rocks the town, which becomes the biggest story in Australia. Wrestling with his own demons, Martin finds himself risking everything to discover a truth that becomes darker and more complex with every twist. But there are powerful forces determined to stop him, and he has no idea how far they will go to make sure the town’s secrets stay buried.

Try the opening chapter here. Scrublands is available to lend as an eBook and also as an audiobook from this Wednesday 1 September!

Book Club “Always Available” eBooks

Kia ora koutou — Jonny from Wellington City Library here. We know that a lot of you are reading or listening to books using Overdrive or Libby, but sometimes it can be frustrating dealing with wait times for popular titles. That’s why I’m here to talk about “The Book Club”. Have a watch (or read) below!

The Book Club is a curated selection of over 200 titles that are always available. We’re talking eBook AND eAudiobooks, fiction AND non fiction, from around the world AND right here in Aotearoa. Big name authors too, winners of local and international awards as well as some in te reo maori and international languages. They’re always available — which is especially helpful right now, and in the future, if you can’t get to the library for whatever reason.

To see this collection, head to either Libby or Overdrive on the eLibrary page. On overdrive you’ll find The Book Club under “Collections”, in Libby they’re called Unlimited Book Club Loans (go to ‘More guides’, then ‘The Book Club’). They’re also available on their respective apps.

Remember, if you have any questions about any of our services, you can fill out our online support form, or reach us on social media (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram), or email enquiries@wcl.govt.nz. Ka kite!

RBDigital Magazines have moved to Overdrive/Libby (24 February)

RBDigital Magazines coming to Libby

On 24 February, our RBdigital magazines moved to Libby/Overdrive. This change massively increases the number of magazines available, from 130 to several thousand.

What is different? What is the same?

  • The user experience is similar to borrowing an ebook
  • Magazines can be issued for 21 days, then will automatically be returned from your account with the option to renew issues before they go
  • Magazines issues are continuously available — it should be easy for you to borrow again as needed
  • Up to 3 years of back issues are available to borrow for some titles
  • Auto check out of new issues is no longer available
  • You will no longer get email alerts when new issues are available

The RBdigital platform will remain for a short time, and then be discontinued. This change is a vendor-driven change.

FAQs about the change from Overdrive