New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults 2021: Children’s Finalists!

The announcement of the finalists for the New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults is always an extremely exciting time of year for us! This year saw a truly huge number of books entered by authors and illustrators from around Aotearoa — and the suite of books chosen for the shortlist are by turns beautiful, quirky, profound, funny, and all-in-all could only have come from here.

To help you make up your mind about which books you think should win their categories, we thought we’d share the full list with here, with links to all the books on our catalogue. Just click on the title and you’ll be able to reserve the next available copy to read. But get in quick — we don’t think they’ll stay on the shelf for very long!

PS — head over to the Teen Blog to find out about the books that have made the shortlist in the Young Adult Fiction category!

Picture Book Award

Judges’ comments: “This year’s Picture Book Award shortlist beautifully combines delicate illustrations that connect to and enhance sometimes delicate themes. There are laughs, tears, sighs (both contented and wistful) to be had in equal measure.”

Hare & Ruru : a quiet moment / Shallcrass, Laura
“This is the story of Hare, who struggles with an un-named mental malady self-described as ‘noise’. Noise could be runaway thoughts, voices in Hare’s head, or loud feelings and general anxiety. Hare goes on a journey to try and find a solution and finally gives up. Just when Hare thinks there’s no hope a friend, Ruru, flies calmly down and gives a suggestion. Hare ultimately feels better after doing three things: * Talking to someone; * Focusing on breathing; * Connecting to nature.” (Catalogue)

Read this book in te reo Māori!

Hound the detective / Andrews, Kimberly
“Meet Hound, a brilliant detective who ALWAYS solves his case. But this latest trail of clues has him perplexed … what has he missed? This gorgeous, multi-layered and engaging whodunnit by an award-winning writer has a delightful surprise at the end. Readers will love studying each action-packed illustration, poring over the details of Hound’s secret passages and map, spotting the adorable animals lurking in the pictures, and finding the caterpillar hidden on every page.” (Catalogue)

Kōwhai and the giants / Parker, Kate
“Kōwhai first appeared from the golden glow of a beautiful flower … and the voice was the rain and the sea and the cry of a bird. Follow Kōwhai as she discovers a tiny seed of hope and rebuilds a great forest.” (Catalogue)
The hug blanket / Gurney, Chris
“A heartfelt exploration of the unconditional love between a child and their grandparent. A book to help children understand grief. It smells like sunshine. It sounds like whispers. It looks like rainbows… It feels like love.” (Catalogue)

Read this book in te reo Māori!

This is where I stand / Werry, Philippa
“Provides a glimpse into the life of a soldier immortalised as a statue, reflecting the passage of time. The soldier on a war memorial tells the story of what he has seen over the years. Although the soldier is based on the ‘Untidy Soldier’ statue in Devonport, it could be any statue in any town. The story begins in a modern day setting, then moves back to WWI, WWII to finish again in contemporary times.” (Catalogue)

Wright Family Foundation Esther Glen Award for Junior Fiction

Judges’ comments: “The books vying for the Wright Family Foundation Esther Glen Junior Fiction Award presented the judges with eclectic plotlines and endearing characters, and they struggled to narrow down to a shortlist from the well-crafted titles.”

Across the risen sea / Bren MacDibble. / MacDibble, Bren
“Across the Risen Sea is an action-packed, compelling and heartfelt middle-fiction adventure, set in a post-climate change landscape, from the multi-award winning author of How to Bee.” (Catalogue)

Charlie Tangaroa and the creature from the sea / Roxborogh, Tania Kelly
“On a beach clean-up, thirteen-year-old Charlie and his brother, Robbie, find a ponaturi, a mermaid, washed up on a beach. An ancient grudge between the Māori gods Tane and Tangaroa has flared up because a port being built in the bay is polluting 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 ponaturi believes Charlie is the only one who can stop the destruction. So begins Charlie’s journey to find a way to reunite the gods and discover why he is the one for the task.” (Catalogue)

Also available as an eBook!

Red edge / Hunt, Des
“Twelve-year-old Cassi Whelan and her dad have just moved into a repaired house on the edge of Christchurch’s Red Zone. Although Cassi was only four when earthquakes decimated Christchurch, her memories still haunt her. An obsessive runner, she finds the wide-open spaces of the cleared Red Zone suit her perfectly. However, she becomes suspicious about strange comings and goings at the broken-down house next door. A chance meeting with a boy who lives on the other side of the house, who is a tech geek, leads to them setting up a surveillance system to investigate what’s happening.” (Catalogue)

Also available as an eBook!

The Inkberg Enigma / King, Jonathan
“Miro and Zia live in Aurora, a fishing town nestled in the shadow of a mysterious castle. Miro lives in the world of books ; Zia is never without her camera. The they meet, they stumble upon a secret. With Zia determined to discover more, a reluctant Miro is pulled into a real-life adventure” (Catalogue) Also available as an eBook!

The tunnel of dreams / Beckett, Bernard
“In an abandoned house at the end of their street, twin brothers Stefan and Arlo discover a young girl hiding in its dusty shadows. Alice needs their help as her twin sister is locked in a cage suspended high above a mysterious mine in a strange parallel world and she asks an impossible favour. Will they meet her on the next full moon at the entrance to a tunnel they both know doesn’t exist? Except that it does…” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Also available as an eBook!

Elsie Locke Award for Non-Fiction

Judges’ comments: “The judges found the Elsie Locke Award for Non-Fiction a particularly strong category this year, stating ‘to say there is something for everyone is an understatement; this list has everything, for everyone!'”

Egg & spoon : an illustrated cookbook / Tylee, Alexandra
“A beautiful illustrated cookbook for children–and their families–that celebrates imagination and pleasure in cooking. A fun and modern cookbook for families packed with recipes for meals, snacks, treats, and a whole lot of humour. Alexandra Tylee’s lively inner ten-year-old knows exactly what food appeals to children and how to talk to kids about food. She trusts them to choose flavours and handle equipment in this joyful book that will set them on a lifetime love of healthy cooking and eating. Giselle Clarkson’s illustrations are salivatingly delicious and subversively playful.” (Catalogue)

Mophead tu : the Queen’s poem / Marsh, Selina Tusitala
“Selina is invited to perform for the Queen at Westminster Abbey. But when a colleague calls her a ‘sellout’, Selina starts doubting herself. Can she stand with her people who struggled against the Queen … and still serve the Queen? From the sinking islands in the South Seas to the smoggy streets of London, this is a hilariously thought-provoking take on colonial histories and one poet’s journey to bridge the divide.” (Catalogue)

New Zealand disasters : our response, resilience and recovery / Gill, Maria
“Inspiring stories of courage, resilience and determination in the face of disaster New Zealanders have endured phenomenal natural and human disasters throughout the ages. This inspiring book documents some of these key moments in our history and, more importantly, how we responded and grew stronger; what changes/improvements were made as a result. Cyclones, tornadoes, earthquakes, landslides, floods, volcanic eruptions, fires, aeroplane crashes, pandemics and other disasters are just some of the many themes covered in this comprehensive, vibrantly illustrated account.” (Catalogue)

North and south / Morris, Sandra
“A beautiful non-fiction picture book about animals around the world. This non-fiction picture book takes readers around the world through the months of the year, looking at seasons in both the northern and southern hemisphere. It focuses on a species in each hemisphere for that month, e.g. March in the northern hemisphere is polar bear cubs in the Canadian Arctic and also saltwater crocodiles in Australia. There are a range of countries, habitats, species and animal activities included.” (Catalogue)

You’re joking : become an expert joke-teller / Moffatt, Tom E
“Tired of no one laughing at your jokes? You don’t have to be. Joke-telling is a skill, like playing the piano or juggling live hedgehogs. This book teaches you that skill with easy-to-follow instructions and simple exercises. With 101 hilarious jokes (and lots of practice), you’ll soon get the laughter and applause you deserve. Without ever needing to juggle hedgehogs.” (Publisher summary courtesy of Wright Laugh Books)

Russell Clark Award for Illustration

Judges’ comments: “The judges faced an outstandingly strong and large pool of entries for the Russell Clark Award for Illustration. The finalists are characterised by a diversity of styles and media, but the books all have in common an expert use of colour and line to communicate emotion and pace and skilfully add texture to the narrative.”

Hare & Ruru : a quiet moment / Shallcrass, Laura
“This is the story of Hare, who struggles with an un-named mental malady self-described as ‘noise’. Noise could be runaway thoughts, voices in Hare’s head, or loud feelings and general anxiety. Hare goes on a journey to try and find a solution and finally gives up. Just when Hare thinks there’s no hope a friend, Ruru, flies calmly down and gives a suggestion. Hare ultimately feels better after doing three things: * Talking to someone; * Focusing on breathing; * Connecting to nature.” (Catalogue)

Read this book in te reo Māori!

I am the universe / Unka, Vasanti
“I am the Universe, an infinite space of glittering galaxies. It’s a starlit journey through space that will lead you to a wonderful planet brimming with all kinds of life – including yours. This stunning story demonstrating the scale of the Universe and our place in it was created specially for children aged three years and up by the award-winning author-illustrator Vasanti Unka, who lives in Auckland, New Zealand, the Earth, the Solar System, the Galaxy, the Milky Way, the Universe.” (Catalogue)

Kōwhai and the giants / Parker, Kate
“Kōwhai first appeared from the golden glow of a beautiful flower … and the voice was the rain and the sea and the cry of a bird. Follow Kōwhai as she discovers a tiny seed of hope and rebuilds a great forest.” (Catalogue)

Moon & Sun / Szymanik, Melinda
“Moon is sad. She feels dull next to her bright happy sister, Sun. She hides away at night until Sun tells Moon how special she is and how she would love to share the sky with her. This beautifully illustrated children’s book explains how our diffrerences are our strengths, and how together we can make the world a better place!” (Catalogue)

Te Uruuru Whenua o Ngātoroirangi / Winitana, Chris.
“This is the story, told in te reo Māori, of the arrival of Ngātoroirangi in Aotearoa and his exploration of the landscape and subduing of kaitiaki, such as the guardian of Tarawera, Tamaohoi; the guardian of water on Kaingaroa, Torepatutai; and the King of the Patupaiarehe, fairy folk, Ririō. This adventure story traces the places Ngātoroirangi travelled through, such as Waimahunga, the large spring where he conducted his cleansing ceremonies, and Te Whārua o Ngātoroirangi, where his footprints are still visible in the land today.”

(Publisher summary courtesy of Huia Publishers)

Wright Family Foundation Te Kura Pounamu Award

Judges’ comments: “The finalists in the Wright Family Foundation Te Kura Pounamu Award for books written entirely in te reo Māori will appeal to a broad range of abilities. Te reo in its simplest form will lift the language for beginners, while there are also titles with a depth of language to send the imaginations of confident speakers soaring. The judges were pleased to see a marked increase in the number of books written in te reo Māori, rather than translated from English.”

Aroha te whai ora : he mahere piropiro mā te tamariki / Phillips, Craig
“Nau mai, hoake tātou ko Aroha, i a ia e kaupare ana i te taiatea, i te mataku, i te māharahara, me te anipā, ki ana tukanga māmā ka taea e te katoa. Come along on a journey with Aroha as she wards off nervousness, fear, worrying thoughts and apprehension, with simple, yet effect tools that everyone can use.” (Catalogue)

Also read this book in te reo Pākehā!

Mihi / Bishop, Gavin
“This beautiful baby book introduces ideas of me and my place in the world in the shape of a simple mihi or pepeha… Repeating colours and shapes show the connections between waka, mountain, and iwi through to mama, papa, and the baby reader.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Pīpī kiwi / Taylor, Helen J.
“Young Kiwi Iti waits impatiently for his baby sister, Pīpī Kiwi, to hatch. Will she ever arrive? When will she be ready to play with him? His father Kiwi Nui explains to him that love takes time. Ahea RAWA pao ai te hua? This Māori-language story is for all children eagerly awaiting a new sibling.” (Catalogue)

Also read this book in te reo Pākehā!

Ngake me Whātaitai / Ngaia, Ben
“A traditional story told in te reo Māori from the perspective of the Kāhui Maunga people about Ngake and Whātaitai. These two taniwha inhabited Te Whanganui-a-Tara, Wellington Harbour, long before the ancestral migrations. The story tells how the shape and landscape of Wellington, its harbour and the Lower Hutt area came about because of the actions of Ngake and Whātaitai.” (Catalogue)

Te Uruuru Whenua o Ngātoroirangi / Winitana, Chris.
“This is the story, told in te reo Māori, of the arrival of Ngātoroirangi in Aotearoa and his exploration of the landscape and subduing of kaitiaki, such as the guardian of Tarawera, Tamaohoi; the guardian of water on Kaingaroa, Torepatutai; and the King of the Patupaiarehe, fairy folk, Ririō. This adventure story traces the places Ngātoroirangi travelled through, such as Waimahunga, the large spring where he conducted his cleansing ceremonies, and Te Whārua o Ngātoroirangi, where his footprints are still visible in the land today.” (Publisher summary courtesy of Huia Publishers)

Best First Book Award

Judges’ comments: “The finalists for the Best First Book Award left the judges reassured that the future of children’s literature in New Zealand is in good hands. In fact, the standard is so high, that four of the books are also finalists in one or more of the main categories.”

Hare & Ruru : a quiet moment / Shallcrass, Laura
“This is the story of Hare, who struggles with an un-named mental malady self-described as ‘noise’. Noise could be runaway thoughts, voices in Hare’s head, or loud feelings and general anxiety. Hare goes on a journey to try and find a solution and finally gives up. Just when Hare thinks there’s no hope a friend, Ruru, flies calmly down and gives a suggestion. Hare ultimately feels better after doing three things: * Talking to someone; * Focusing on breathing; * Connecting to nature.” (Catalogue).

Read this book in te reo Māori!

Kōwhai and the giants / Parker, Kate
“Kōwhai first appeared from the golden glow of a beautiful flower … and the voice was the rain and the sea and the cry of a bird. Follow Kōwhai as she discovers a tiny seed of hope and rebuilds a great forest.” (Catalogue)

The Inkberg Enigma / King, Jonathan
“Miro and Zia live in Aurora, a fishing town nestled in the shadow of a mysterious castle. Miro lives in the world of books ; Zia is never without her camera. The they meet, they stumble upon a secret. With Zia determined to discover more, a reluctant Miro is pulled into a real-life adventure” (Catalogue)

Also available as an eBook!

The midnight adventures of Ruru and Kiwi / Scott, Clare
“Ruru and Kiwi invite you to their midnight forest feast, in this delightful twist on the tale of the Owl and the Pussycat. Drawing on a cast of nocturnal New Zealand creatures, with award-winning illustrations by Amy Haarhoff, Clare Scott’s story imagines Edward Lear’s famous nonsense poem taking place in a moonlit forest in Aotearoa.” (Catalogue)

The pōrangi boy / Kino, Shilo
“Twelve-year-old Niko lives in Pohe Bay, a small, rural town with a sacred hot spring and a taniwha named Taukere. The government plan to build a prison here and destroy the home of the taniwha has divided the community. Some are against it, but others see it as an opportunity. Niko is worried about the land and Taukere, but who will listen to him? He’s an ordinary boy who’s laughed at, bullied, and called pōrangi, crazy, for believing in the taniwha. But it’s Niko who has to convince the community that Taukere is real, unite whānau in protest against the prison and stand up to the bullies.” (Catalogue)

Pixar films to watch in 2021 and… a special bonus (tasty) Pixar surprise!

The Pixar movie revolution has arrived at Wellington City Libraries in 2021 and just in time for the wintery-est of time of year. It is an exciting time with the release of a tasty Italian surprise produced by Pixar Animation Studios and released by Walt Disney Pictures. 

image courtesy of amazon.comToy Story2, 3 and 4.

Toy Story was the first Pixar film ever released and changed the world of animation films forever.

These films are timeless classics that takes you on a journey into the world of the secret life of toys. Join Buzz, Woody, Jessie and lots of amazing toys that unexpectedly embark on adventures that challenge and change them. These films are full of excitement, adventure and will change the way you think of toys!


image courtesy of amazon.comMonsters Inc.

“In the world behind our closet doors, monsters like Mike and Sulley work hard for their income. To be exact, the monster world depends on our children’s screams: It is their energy that makes lightbulbs glow and cars drive. Sulley, the number one frightener, one day accidentally lets a human child into the monster world. Since kids are supposed to be poisonous and carry loads of diseases, pandemonium ensues. After Mike and Sulley discover that the girl they named Boo actually seems quite harmless, they decide to bring her back through her door into her room. But Boo’s presence is more than just a mere accident. Now, Mike and Sulley have to face an enemy within their own ranks.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of amazon.comMonsters University.

“Mike Wazowski and James P. Sullivan are an inseparable pair, but that wasn’t always the case. From the moment these two mismatched monsters met they couldn’t stand each other. Monsters University unlocks the door to how Mike and Sulley overcame their differences and became the best of friends.” (Catalogue).

image courtesy of amazon.comBrave.

Be brave and grab life by the kilt with Merida, the feisty, Scottish  princess and skilled archer who dreams of following her own path living her own life, even if it mean defying the traditions and expectations of her family and people. However when her pride gets in the way and a spell is cast upon her mother, Merida must use her wits and skills to “mend the bond caused by pride” and save the day “highlander” style. If you’re not convinced that this DVD is worth watching, have a read of my review here.

image courtesy of amazon.comCars Trilogy.

Take a ride on the wild side with Lightening McQueen and the gang in Cars 1, 2 and 3, that chronicles the secret life of race car driving, from the race car’s point of view. This is a movies that boys will enjoy, especially boys into cars and formula one racing.

Finding Nemo.image courtesy of amazon.com

Go back to where it all began where Marlin goes on an epic quest from the great barrier reef to Sydney in order to find and save his son, Nemo, while meeting and encountering new friends on the way such as surfer turtles that live to 150 years old, vegetarian sharks who have regular meetings and of course, Dory herself, a good-hearted and optimistic regal blue tang with short-term memory loss. (Adapted from Catalogue)

image courtesy of amazon.comFinding Dory reunites the friendly but forgetful blue tang fish, Dory, along with her friends, Marlin and Nemo on an epic quest to find Dory’s family. The questions that hangs on everyone’s lips are what does she remember? Who are her parents? And where did she learn to speak whale? Favourite moments in the film include Dory as a baby – Boy, she’s adorable!, Marlin and Nemo’s encounter with the seals, Still can’t get the ‘OFFOFFOFFOFF’ aka the seal talk out of my head, Dory making new friends with Hank, an octopus with seven tentacles and who, for a guy with three hearts is very bad tempered, Dory reuniting with her childhood friend, Destiny and the odd cameo of previous characters from Finding Nemo. It is truly unforgettable.


Also check out footage of Baby Dory and the Pixar short film, Piper that was released alongside Finding Dory.



image courtesy of amazon.comThe Incredibles 1 and 2.

The secret life of superheroes comes to life with the Parrs, aka The Incredibles, where you watch them balance secret identities, families and saving the day. Overall, both films are funny, action packed and will keep you entertained for hours on end.

Also check out footage of  the Pixar short film, Bao that was released alongside The Incredibles 2. The film won the Oscar for the Best Animated Short Film in 2019.



image courtesy of amazon.comInside Out.

What happens when your emotions go into overdrive? They manifest in the form of Joy, Sadness, Fear, Anger and Disgust. This film is set in the mind of a young girl, Riley Andersen, where the five personified emotions try to lead her through life as her parents  move the family to a new city. Some very funny moments in the film, especially when Anger loses his temper, Disgust’s sarcastic and cynical behaviour and finding what role Sadness plays in our lives (Spoiler: Very important role).

image courtesy of amazon.comSoul.

“Joe Gardner is a middle-school band teacher who gets the chance of a lifetime to play at the best jazz club in town. A misstep takes him from New York City to The Great Before, a fantastical place where new souls get their personalities before going to Earth. Determined to return to his life, Joe teams up with a precocious soul, 22, who has never understood the appeal of the human life. As Joe tries to show 22 what’s great about life, he may discover the answers to the most important questions.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of amazon.comCoco.

“Despite his family’s generations-old ban on music, Miguel dreams of becoming an accomplished musician like his idol, Ernesto de la Cruz. Desperate to prove his talent, Miguel finds himself in the stunning and colorful Land of the Dead following a mysterious chain of events. Along the way, he meets charming trickster Hector, and together, they set off on an extraordinary journey to unlock the real story behind Miguel’s family history.” (Catalogue)


Brace yourself for a tasty release of Disney’s and Pixar’s animated film, Luca!

Set in a beautiful seaside town on the Italian Riviera, Disney and Pixar’s original feature film “Luca” is a coming-of-age story about one young boy experiencing an unforgettable summer filled with gelato (YUM!), pasta (DOUBLE YUM!) and endless scooter rides. Luca shares these adventures with his newfound best friend, but all the fun is threatened by a deeply-held secret: they are sea monsters from another world just below the water’s surface. Check out the trailer below!

Stay tuned for information for when this film will be released. In the meantime, head on down to your local library and borrow some Pixar movies for a quiet wintery night in with some popcorn and a cup of hot chocolate. Enjoy and stay warm this winter!

Lōemis Winter Solstice Festival 2021

Winter has arrived in Wellington, and the Lōemis Winter Solstice Festival is back again, in it’s fourth year,  during the week of the 14th to the 22nd of June, and there’s heaps of exciting events happening in the capital!
Link to loemis.nz website

What is the Lōemis Winter Solstice Festival?

Lōemis (pron. lew-mis) festival began in 2016 and is held annually in Wellington in the lead up to the winter solstice.

For seven days, the Lōemis Winter Solstice Festival  observes the longest nights of the year with a hearty mix of feasting, theatre, music, monstrous creatures and a fiery waterfront procession, based around the winter solstice, which falls on 22 June.

For more information on what events are on, check out the Lōemis website and Facebook page.


In the meantime, why not get into the “festival” season with:

image courtesy of syndeticsFestival folk : an atlas of carnival customs and costumes.

“A beautifully illustrated compendium of weird and wonderful festival costumes around the world. All around the world there are festivals that reach back through the sands of time to the very roots of civilisation; to agrarian rites and pagan traditions. The festivals in this book are often little known outside their locale and they are all characterised by the most radical and bizarre costumes imaginable. The Kukeri in Bulgaria wear enormous headpieces made of goatskin. Burryman festival in Edinburgh features a man covered from head to toe with burrs and thorns. Paraders in Switzerland’s Silvesterklausen wear vast wooden doll-masks and hats carved with peasant scenes. Each costume is brought to life in Rob Flower’s joyous, surrealist, urban illustrations. Brief, engaging texts describe the festival, its history and the traditions that surround it.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of syndeticsFestivals and celebrations.

“Take a trip around the world, looking at the many different ways that people celebrate special days, holidays, religious festivals and traditional celebrations. Comparing Countries is a ground breaking non-fiction dual-language series which compares and contrasts ways of life in different countries around the world. Presented in two different languages, each title explores a topic common to all children, from homes to festivals, highlighting what makes us different and what we all have in common. This series provides great support to geography learning, as well as helping young language learners improve their reading skills.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of syndeticsFestivals around the world.

“Learn about the diverse and vibrant festivals that are celebrated around the world.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of syndeticsA year full of celebrations and festivals.

“Countless different festivals are celebrated all over the world throughout the year. Some are national holidays, celebrated for religious and cultural reasons, or to mark an important date in history, while others are just for fun. Give thanks and tuck into a delicious meal with friends and family at Thanksgiving, get caught up in a messy tomato fight in Spain at La Tomatina, add a splash of colour to your day at the Holi festival of colours and celebrate the life and achievements of Martin Luther King Jr. on Martin Luther King Jr. Day. With fact-filled text accompanied by beautifully bright illustrations from the wonderfully talented Chris Corr, prepare yourself for a journey as we travel around the world celebrating and uncovering a visual feast of culture.” (Catalogue)


Learn more about what happens in winter, as well the other seasons, why not head on down to your local library and grab some books about seasons, such as:

image courtesy of syndeticsSeasons.

“Finding out about the four seasons has never been so engaging. This book is full of exciting experiments, fun puzzles, quirky humour and science facts to make you say WOW … it’s science with a BOOM!” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of syndeticsA stroll through the seasons.

“Follow the wonderful changes that each season brings! From bright spring blossoms to dazzling summer sunshine, vibrant autumn leaves, and sparkling winter snow. Look and Wonder is a fresh, bold, and bright narrative nonfiction series introducing children to the natural world” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of syndeticsWeather in 30 seconds.

“This book takes readers on a whirlwind tour of our planet’s weather and climate. 30 key topics explore and explain the how and why of our global weather and its effects, from atmospheric influences, the seasons, and climate zones to extreme events, forecasting, and global warming. Each topic is presented in a neat 30-second sound bite, supported by a 3-second flash summary and a full-page colourful artwork. Fun active “missions” support the topics and encourage kids to find out more. With stunning artwork, the attention-grabbing format is engaging and immediate, introducing readers aged from 8 up to this fascinating subject that affects all our lives.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of syndeticsWeather.

“See the biggest hailstone, inside the eye of a hurricane, a warm front in 3-D, the beauty of a snow crystal, a moon dog, and a dust devil. Learn the difference between a stratus and cumulonimbus cloud, how our weather may change in the future, and why tornadoes are so ferocious. Discover why deserts are dry, how clouds are born, what makes raindrops grow, why the sky is blue, and much, much more.” (Catalogue)

Check out the catalogue for more books about seasons and the weather.


Also, why not join in on “the Lōemis workshop fun”,  in the comfort of your own home… or library by creating your masterpieces, (Mask making, Mexican style treats, culinary goodness, puppetry and house building), with some help from the following books:

image courtesy of syndeticsAmazing masks to make yourself : 25 projects for funny and frightening faces to wear!

“Make masks from balloons, kitchen sponges, funnels, strainers, paper plates and other household items! The inventive projects include a tiger mask made from a basket, crazy card glasses, a wicked witch, a teapot and a glow-in-the-dark skeleton. 250 fantastic photographs show you what to do every step of the way.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of syndeticsCool world cooking : fun and tasty recipes for kids!

“Give up-and-coming chefs a chance to explore the foods of the world! This international cookbook has over 50 recipes from six different cultures and introduces readers to world geography, math, science, and authentic, easy-to-make recipes that taste great. Learn about African, French, Italian, Mexican, Middle Eastern, and Japanese and Chinese cooking. So grab an apron and prepare for a tasty adventure!” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of syndeticsOn stage : theater games and activities for kids.

“Covers basic theatre vocabulary, puppetry and pantomime, sound effects, costumes, props, and makeup; includes several play scripts.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of syndeticsLet’s build a house.

“Let’s Build a House! But what sort of a house should it be? And what do we need to build it? It could be a shack on a beach, or it could be a skyscraper. Try building a bungalow or even a castle! Join in the imaginative play as a group of children plan their houses and discover the materials and techniques needed to build them. The Wonderwise series presents facts in a way that will inspire young children’s imaginations about the world around them.” (Catalogue)


Winter movies to watch on a cold night in…

image courtesy of amazon.comFrozen.

“The cold may bother us, but it never bothers Elsa, Queen of Arendelle. You can never go wrong with Frozen. Relive the magic and musical renditions of “Let it go” in this amazing classic about family, friendship and diversity.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of amazon.comFrozen II.

“Anna, Elsa, Kristoff, Olaf, and Sven leave Arendelle to travel to an ancient, autumn-bound forest of an enchanted land. They set out to find the origin of Elsa’s powers in order to save their kingdom.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of amazon.comRise of the Guardians.

“When an evil spirit known as Pitch lays down the gauntlet to take over the world, the immortal Guardians must join forces for the first time to protect the hopes, beliefs, and imagination of children all over the world.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of amazon.comIce Age.

“Twenty thousand years ago, at the dawn of the Ice Age, three completely mismatched creatures have been brought together by a twist of fate. Sid, a fast-talking and comical sloth, Manfred, a moody woolly mammoth, and Diego, a sinister saber-toothed tiger reluctantly team up to help return a human baby to his father. Before their incredible journey ends, this unlikely trio will confront boiling lava pits, escape treacherous ice tunnels and meet a prehistoric squirrel-rat named Scrat who is frantically trying to bury his beloved acorn. Join the weirdest herd in history for the coolest adventure of all time!” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of amazon.comIce Age. 2, The meltdown.

“The Ice Age is coming to an end, and the animals are delighting in their new world: a melting paradise of water parks, geysers and tar pits. But when Manny, Sid and Diego discover that the miles of melted ice will flood their valley, they must warn everyone and somehow figure out a way to escape the coming deluge. … With their one chance of survival being a boat at the other end of the valley, the trio make a desperate exodus there. Along the way, they meet Ellie, a female mammoth who is convinced that she is an opossum like her brothers. While the strange group continues their trek across the valley, they must learn to get along. Manny struggles to find some connection to Ellie, who may be the only other one of his kind.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

image courtesy of amazon.comIce age. 3, Dawn of the dinosaurs.

“Scrat is still trying to nab the ever-elusive nut and in the process may find his true love; Manny and Ellie await the birth of their mini-mammoth; Diego, the saber-toothed tiger, wonders if he’s growing too ‘soft’ hanging with his pals; and Sid the sloth gets into trouble when he creates his own makeshift family by hijacking some dinosaur eggs. On a mission to rescue the hapless Sid, the gang ventures into a mysterious underground world where they have some very close encounters with dinosaurs, battle flora and fauna, and where they meet a relentless, one-eyed, dino-hunting weasel named Buck.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of amazon.comIce age. 4, Continental drift.

“Scrat’s constant quest for an acorn causes a shift in the ice. Manny, Sid, and Diego end up stranded on an iceberg in the middle of the sea. A group of misfit pirates are determined to stop the trio from ever returning home.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of amazon.comIce age. 5. Collision course.

“Your favourite ICE AGE heroes are back and cooler than ever in this all-new animated adventure that’s mammoth-sized fun for the whole family! Scrat’s epic pursuit of the elusive acorn catapults him into the universe, where he accidentally triggers a series of cosmic events that threaten the Ice Age world. Now the entire herd – including Buck, Manny, Ellie, Sid and Diego – must work together on a hilarious journey, filled with nonstop action and colourful new characters, in order to survive the global Scrat-tastrophe!” (Catalogue)

Keep warm and stay safe this winter.

Tālofa Lava! Celebrate Samoa Language Week 2021!

Tālofa Lava! Samoa Language Week will be celebrated this year from Sunday, 30 May 2021 until Saturday, 5th June 2021. The event aims to raise awareness of the Samoan language, celebrate Samoan culture in New Zealand and around the world, and promote the use of Samoan language in schools, at work and at home. 



This year’s theme is “Poupou le lotoifale. Ola manuia le anofale” which means “Strengthen the posts of your house, for all to thrive”.

For more information on events and ideas on how to celebrate, visit the following websites:

Also you can visit your local library and borrow some amazing books on ways to:

Learn Samoan!

image courtesy of syndeticsLittle kiddy Sāmoan.

“This book packs in a lot of common words and phrases. It is a great resource for anybody wanting to learn Samoan.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of syndeticsThe Samoan picture dictionary.

“Contains over 1000 commonly used words, and words needing further explanation are given in English and Samoan sentences to aid comprehension. Word lists include parts of the body, telling the time, colours, numbers, days of the week and months of the year” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of syndeticsThe Samoan Picture Dictionary.

“The Samoan Picture Dictionary is an excellent resource for people beginning to speak or write Samoan. It contains over 1000 commonly used words, and words needing further explanation are given in English and Samoan sentences to aid comprehension. Wordlists include parts of the body, telling the time, colours, numbers, days of the week and months of the year.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of syndeticsFirst readers in Samoan.

“These bilingual books are ideal for beginning learners of Samoan, with simple language and stories, and illustrations that support the text. Each book has a glossary that gives a clear English translation of the Samoan text. All of the books have been translated into Samoan by Ainslie Chu Ling So’o who is a language consultant specialist at the Ministry of Education, Sport and Culture in Samoa.” (Catalogue)

Search the catalogue here for other books to brush up your Samoan language skills.

You also read about Samoan heroes such as…

image courtesy of syndeticsSamoan heroes.

“A collection of inspirational stories of achievers who have Samoan ancestry. It includes: contemporary heroes like Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson, Troy Polamalu, Judge Ida Mālosi, Savage and Associate Professor Donna Adis; historical figures like Emma Coe, Tamasese, Salamāsina and Lauaki; legends like Sina, Tiʻitiʻi and Tigilau.” (Catalogue) Also available as an eBook. 

image courtesy of syndeticsFanene Peter Maivia : son of Samoa.
“Fanene Peter Maivia – Son of Samoa is the remarkable story of the first Polynesian to become a star of professional wrestling. Fanene’s life began in Samoa and he took Samoa to the world. He was a pioneer who inspired some of the greatest wrestlers the world has known, including his own grandson, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.” (Catalogue) Also available as an eBook.

Brush up on your geography and history with…


image courtesy of syndeticsSamoa.

“Did you know that the English word ‘tattoo’ is supposedly derived from the Samoan word ‘tatau’? Find out about the traditional methods still used by Samoans to apply the amazing tattoos worn by many of the islands’ people today. In this book you will discover that an ‘ie toga is a beautiful and intricate fine mat, woven by Samoan women and used as highly prized gifts, which are made and given to celebrate important occasions. You can also study the climate, population, social structure and political history of the thirteen islands that make up the beautiful countries of American Samoa and independent Samoa (formerly Western Samoa).” (Catalogue).

image courtesy of syndeticsSamoa & Tuvalu.

This book contains information about the history, culture and people of Samoa and nearby Tuvalu. A great book to have just in time for Samoan Language week.

A Polynesian movie night at home with…

image courtesy of amazon.comMoana.

“Celebrate Samoan language week and get into the Polynesian spirit by watching Disney’s Moana! The film follows the journey of a spirited teenager named Moana as she meets the once-mighty demi-god Maui, and together they traverse the open ocean, encountering enormous fiery creatures and impossible odds.” (Catalogue)


image courtesy of syndeticsMoana : original motion picture soundtrack.

“Moana is the 56th animated feature from Disney, an ocean adventure about a teenaged girl from a tribal community on a mystical island in the South Pacific. Its soundtrack offers both 45 minutes of score and a set of original songs co-written by a trio of musicians with impressive pedigrees. Highlights include “We Know the Way,” sung by Miranda and Foa’i, and the soaring “How Far I’ll Go,” delivered by Auli’i Carvalho in the title role, with a second version by Canadian pop singer Alessia Cara. Among other names appearing on the soundtrack are Dwayne Johnson, who sings “You’re Welcome” as Maui, and Jermaine Clement of Flight of the Conchords, who sings “Shiny” as the menacing crab Tamatoa. Closing out the song portion of the album and bringing listeners back to contemporary reality are Jordan Fisher and a rapping Miranda in a reprise of “You’re Welcome.” ~ Marcy Donelson.” (Catalogue).

Also check out these YouTube clips from the movie soundtrack: “How far I’ll go” and “You’re Welcome!”


Thank you and Happy Samoa Language week!

Fa’afetai ma fiafia Vaiaso o le Gagana Samoa!

Read Books, Earn Pizza!

Love pizza? Love reading? Then boy, do we have the deal for you!

The famous Hell Pizza Reading Challenge has returned for another year, and from now until the end of January 2022, Hell Pizza will give you one free kids’ pizza from their 333 menu for every seven books you borrow and read from the library.

Does it sound too good to be true? We thought you might think that, but trust us: we’d never lie to you. Especially when it comes to books and pizza.

So here’s the deal:

The next time you go to your local library, ask the friendly librarian for a pizza wheel. They look a bit like this:

A circular card divided into seven segments, each of which has a space to be stamped by a librarian. once seven segments are stamped, the card can be redeemed for one free 333 kids' pizza at any Hell Pizza store.

All those books just waiting to be read; all those pizzas just waiting to be eaten!

Whenever you issue a book from the library, ask the librarian to stamp and sign one segment of your pizza wheel. You can have one segment of your wheel signed for each book you read from the library! Our librarians love to talk to you about the books you’re reading, so come to the desk prepared to talk about bookish things!

Once you have all seven segments of your pizza wheel stamped and signed, the librarian will finish it off with The Master Stamp, and you can take the completed wheel to any Hell Pizza store and exchange it for one free 333 kids’ pizza. It really is as simple as that!

Rules:

  • You must be in Years 1-8 in order to participate in the Challenge.
  • Pizza wheels can be redeemed at any Hell Pizza store until 31 January 2022.
  • There’s no limit to how many pizza wheels you can earn across the year, but remember that Hell Pizza will only redeem one pizza wheel per visit per child! So you can’t stockpile 10 pizza wheels and get 10 free pizzas all at once.

We know lots of you have already started your 2021 Hell Pizza Reading Challenge journey already — but for those of you that haven’t, it’s never too late to start! You can pick up and sign off pizza wheels at any of our 14 libraries across the city! Last year Wellington City Libraries kids racked up nearly 15,000 free pizzas as part of the Hell Pizza Reading Challenge — that’s over 100,000 books read! Let’s see if we can beat that number this year!

Happy reading, everyone! 🙂

Olympians vs. Marvel/DC Heroes: Welcome to the Arena!

The world of the Greek gods and goddesses (The Olympians series) collides with the extended comic universe in an epic battle with the heroes from Marvel and DC. According to Olympians author George O’Connor, a Greek mythology buff and a classic superhero comics fan, our pantheon of Marvel and DC superheroes (Superman, Batman, the X-Men, etc.) owes much in terms of inspiration to the pantheon of Greek gods, like Zeus, Athena, and Poseidon. Over the coming weeks, we’ll be pitting each superhero against their Greek deity counterpart right here on the Kids’ Blog: who do you think will win?

Check out the following non fiction and fiction about Greek deities and their Marvel and DC nemeses to prepare yourself for their upcoming literary battles:


image courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndetics  image courtesy from syndeticsimage courtesy of syndetics

image courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndetics
image courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndetics
 
Also search our catalogue for more books about the
Marvel Universe and the DC Universe. You might also be interested in the DC and Marvel websites, where you can learn more about your favourite heroes.

About The Olympians:

The Olympians, by George O’Connor is a series of graphic novels about Greek mythology.

Each volume of The Olympians tells the story of one of the gods, (Zeus, Athena, Hera, Hades, Poseidon, Aphrodite, Ares, Apollo, Artemis, Hermes and Hesphaistos) in the Olympic pantheon. Also included in each book is extensive back matter that tells the history behind each myth and resources for further study and critical analysis of the Greek gods, history, culture, religion… Hmm, who would have thought homework would involve reading comics! You can find them all on the shelf at Wellington City Libraries and online at Overdrive Kids.

image courtesy of syndetics

image courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndetics
To find out more about The Olympians, check out the official website. You can also have fun with the activities and learn more about Greek mythology by visiting some of these sites.

Don’t forget to tune back in soon for the first round of Superheroes vs. Greek Gods on the Kids’ Blog, where we’ll have Thor, Wonder Woman and Captain Marvel facing off in a team battle against Zeus, Athena and Hera!

New Zealand Music Month 2021

New Zealand Music Month is back again and is in its 20th year marks 20 years of celebrating and supporting the New Zealand Music industry. The theme for 2021’s NZ Music Month is: Support local. Stream local. Follow local. Buy local.image courtesy of nz music month facebook page

image courtesy of nzmusicmonth.co.nz

What is New Zealand Music Month?

May is New Zealand Music Month, which celebrates music from New Zealand, and the people who make it.

How can I celebrate? 

The NZ Music Month schedule is packed with events, awards, radio specials, online seminars and promotions. Check out the events page for more information.

You can also support your librarians, many of whom also moonlight as musicians and performers. You can also to your local library for events such as preschool storytime, Baby Rock and Rhyme and so much more! Check out what’s on for kids at your local library.

May Music Mini-fest ‘21.

At Waitohi and Tawa Libraries, It’s a musical takeover from musical LEGO and crafterschool to upbeat storytimes and pop-up performances! Check the Waitohi and Tawa Libraries calendars for more information!

Check out our books on music and musicians!

image courtesy of syndeticsThe school of music.

“Here you will go an a unique and melodious journey, which introduces aspiring musicians to all kinds of music, from classical, to country, to contemporary… and many more! Meet six musicians and learn about different instruments and genres of music, as well as basic theory for beginners, from melodies and harmonies to pitch and rhythm.” (Catalogue).

image courtesy of syndeticsMusic trivia : what you never knew about rock stars, recording studios and smash-hit songs.

“Do you think you know everything there is to know about music? Think again Get the inside scoop on some surprising music industry trivia.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of syndetics50 things you should know about music.

“An all-encompassing introduction to the genres, musicians, instruments and musical events that have shaped the world of music. From the rock and pop of Western youth culture to the haunting sounds of traditional Mongolian throat singers, all humans in all parts of the world make music. Its harmonies affect us in a deep way and its beauty is universal. We have developed hundreds of styles of music played with all kinds of instruments, large and small. The very first instruments were simple flutes made from animal bones, but we soon developed a vast array, making all kinds of sounds. Today we can use the latest computer technology to create any sound imaginable, and musicians continue to explore the endless possibilities of music.”  (Catalogue).

image courtesy of syndeticsLegends, icons & rebels : music that changed the world.

“A tribute to more than two dozen legendary music artists who significantly influenced the landscape of music for generations to come, from Ray Charles and Bob Dylan to Chuck Berry and Johnny Cash.” (Catalogue)


Also search our catalogue for more about music.

Watch music themed DVDs!

image courtesy of amazon.comSoul.

“Joe Gardner is a middle-school band teacher who gets the chance of a lifetime to play at the best jazz club in town. A misstep takes him from New York City to The Great Before, a fantastical place where new souls get their personalities before going to Earth. Determined to return to his life, Joe teams up with a precocious soul, 22, who has never understood the appeal of the human life. As Joe tries to show 22 what’s great about life, he may discover the answers to the most important questions.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of amazon.comCoco.

“Despite his family’s generations-old ban on music, Miguel dreams of becoming an accomplished musician like his idol, Ernesto de la Cruz. Desperate to prove his talent, Miguel finds himself in the stunning and colorful Land of the Dead following a mysterious chain of events. Along the way, he meets charming trickster Hector, and together, they set off on an extraordinary journey to unlock the real story behind Miguel’s family history.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of amazon.comimage courtesy of amazon.comTrolls and Trolls World Tour.

“When their village is invaded by the grumpy Bergens, two mismatched friends must work together in perfect harmony to save the day. Featuring hit songs performed by Justin Timberlake, Anna Kendrick, and more. (Catalogue). In Trolls World Tour, Poppy and Branch discover that they are but one of six different Trolls tribes scattered over six different lands and devoted to six different kinds of music: Funk, Country, Techno, Classical, Pop and Rock. A member of hard-rock royalty, Queen Barb, aided by her father King Thrash, wants to destroy all other kinds of music to let rock reign supreme. With the fate of the world at stake, Poppy and Branch set out to visit all the other lands to unify the Trolls in harmony against Queen Barb.” (Catalogue).

image courtesy of syndeticsTrolls Soundtrack.

“A computer-animated film starring the shock-headed dolls that won’t stay out of style, Trolls featured the voice talents of such double threats as Anna Kendrick, Justin Timberlake, Zooey Deschanel, and Gwen Stefani. Its soundtrack was executive produced by Timberlake, who also provided the original song “Can’t Stop the Feeling.” The dance-pop tune, penned by Timberlake, Max Martin, and Shellback, topped the charts in over a dozen countries in the spring of 2016 before the movie’s release that fall. ” (Catalogue)

Check out the music video, Can’t Stop the Feeling, by Justin Timberlake, from the movie soundtrack!


image courtesy of syndeticsTrolls World Tour : original motion picture soundtrack.
“Expanding the Trolls universe with the addition of new genre “lands” — encompassing pop, funk, classical, reggaeton, hip-hop, techno/electronic, country, and rock — the album follows suit, building upon the first soundtrack’s pop/dance base with fun surprises from an all-star roster.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Where can I find information about New Zealand Music, artists and bands?

ManyAnswers has a page dedicated to websites, resources and ways to search for information about New Zealand musicians and bands. The National Library also has a page dedicated to New Zealand Music, where you can explore the culture, history and uses of music in New Zealand along with famous singers (traditional and contemporary), music awards, bands and the styles of music unique to New Zealand. Wellington City Libraries also runs the Wellington Music Blog — the most comprehensive source of information about local Wellington musicians and bands you can find. Check it out!

For more information, on events and ideas on how to celebrate, visit the following websites:

NZ Music Month official website.

New Zealand Curriculum Online – New Zealand Music Month.

NZ History – New Zealand Music Month.

NZ Music Month Facebook, Instagram and Twitter page.


Enjoy!… and Happy New Zealand Music Month 2021!

May the Fourth Be With You!

Attention all Jedi, Bounty Hunters and Rebels! Star Wars Day is happening again on May the Fourth, which is observed and celebrated by fans of the Star Wars franchise.
image courtesy of starwarsnewsnet

This year, you can celebrate by visiting your local library, relive and check out non fiction, (as well as fiction, and movies) all related to anything and everything from the Star Wars universe!

Also search our catalogue for more about  Star Wars.
image courtesy about syndeticsimage courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndetics
image courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndetics

While you’re at it, check out all the amazing activities on the Star Wars website dedicated to information, activities and events about Star Wars Day.

Why not dress up as your favourite Star Wars character, cook and craft up a storm all in the comfort of your own home? The Ewok Sushi and milk mando macarons look like a hit!
image courtesy of starwars.com

image courtesy of starwars.com


For more ideas on how to celebrate at home, have a look at 5 ways to celebrate Star Wars Day at home.

You can listen to your favorite Star Wars stories read by your favourite actors. Watch Rey (Daisy Ridley)  read “Star Wars: BB-8 On The Run,” and “Star Wars: Chewie & The Porgs,” read by Joonas Suotamo:



image courtesy of syndeticsBB-8 on the run.

When BB-8 is separated from his master, Poe Dameron, on the lonely planet of Jakku, he has no choice but to keep rolling. It’s all up to him to get a top-secret map to the Resistance so they can find Luke Skywalker and save the galaxy from the evil First Order. Ti’s scary to have a big job when you’re just a little droid on your own. But BB-8 isn’t alone for long. As he speeds across the sand, BB-8 meets all kinds of strangers who need his help. Should he do good things, as Poe always told him, or will that get in the way of his mission? (Catalogue).

 


 

Check out the official trailer for Star Wars: The Bad Batch, which arrives on the Disney channel on May 4th. Also check out the trailer for popular Star Wars series, The Mandalorian, which  follows the travails of a lone gunfighter in the outer reaches of the galaxy far from the authority of the New Republic.


 

Enjoy!… and may the forth be with you!

Upcoming changes to our children’s programme schedule

If you live in Karori, Ngaio, or Khandallah, you might notice that there are a few changes coming to our schedule of events for children and families, starting in the first week of May!

Our extra-special monthly storytimes at Khandallah Library will feature a special theme and fun activity for tamariki and whānau to get stuck into as well — contact the library (or chat to a friendly librarian!) to find out about what’s happening each month.


What’s changing?

Here is the new schedule of events for Karori, Cummings Park, and Khandallah Libraries — programmes that have changed days or times are marked with a star. Don’t forget to check in on the library event calendar from time to time to keep up to date with new programmes and special events happening in our libraries!

Karori Library | Te Māhanga

  • *Preschool Storytime: Every Tuesday and Wednesday, 10.30am*
  • *Kōhunga Kōrero: 2nd Tuesday of every month, 10.30am*
  • Baby Rock and Rhyme: Every Thursday and Friday, 10.30am
  • Let’s Go LEGO®: 3rd Saturday of every month, 2.00pm
  • Code Club: Every Tuesday during the school term, 3.30pm
  • *Free Family Movies: During school holidays and to mark special events*

Cummings Park (Ngaio) Library | Korimako

  • Preschool Storytime: Every Wednesday, 10.30am
  • Kōhunga Kōrero: 3rd Wednesday of every month, 10.30am
  • Baby Rock and Rhyme: Every Tuesday, 10.30am
  • Let’s Go LEGO®: 2nd Thursday of every month, 3.30pm

Khandallah Library | Tari-kākā

  • *Preschool Storytime: Last Friday of every month, 10.30am*
  • Let’s Go LEGO®: First Friday of every month, 3.30pm

Why are the changes happening?

We’re changing the days and times on which some of our programmes are happening so that we can make some more space in our calendar to bring some new and different experiences to tamariki and whānau who use these libraries. We also hope that the new schedule will make it easier for more families to join us for our sessions, by making sure that our events aren’t on at the same time as other, similar groups in the community!

To our wonderful families in Karori, Ngaio, and Khandallah — we look forward to seeing you soon.

Happy Birthday, William Shakespeare!

All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players. Well, that was certainly the case during William Shakespeare’s life. This year marks Shakespeare’s, or the Bard of Avon, (assumed) 457th birthday on the 26th of April and 405th death anniversary on the 23rd April.
Image courtesy of Wikipedia

And pray tell, who was William Shakespeare?

Well, he was an English poet, playwright and actor who is widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language and the world’s pre-eminent dramatist. People all over the world have come to recognise the image of William Shakespeare and would heard of his plays, but what do we know about the man himself, or even what went on behind the scenes during the performance of his plays, or even who his plays were being performed for?

How dost thou celebrate?image courtesy of gifer

In addition to the traditional birthday party, cake and presents, why not read all about his life, from his early and humble beginnings in Stratford upon Avon, England to conquering the stage in Queen Elizabeth’s court and the Globe Theatre.

image courtesy of syndeticsWilliam Shakespeare : a man for all times.

Who was William Shakespeare? How much do we really know about him, and why is he so famous? This book takes the reader step-by-step through Shakespeare’s life, looking at the evidence.
image courtesy of syndeticsShakespeare.

A spectacular and engaging non-fiction Eyewitness guide to one of history’s most iconic writers, William Shakespeare. Did you know special effects were used in Shakespeare’s plays? That devils and ghosts came up through trapdoors in the stage? Find out how in Eyewitness Shakespeare and discover the fascinating life and times of one of the world’s greatest playwrights. Travel back in time and follow Shakespeare from his birth in the small town of Stratford-upon-Avon to theatre life in 16th century London. Eyewitness reference books are now more interactive and colourful, with new infographics, statistics, facts and timelines, plus a giant pull-out wall chart, you’ll be an expert on Shakespeare in no time. Great for projects or just for fun, learn everything you need to know about Shakespeare.

image courtesy of syndeticsMuch ado about Shakespeare : the life and times of William Shakespeare : a literary picture book.

Take a peek behind the curtain to discover the boy, the youth, the man behind some of the greatest works of literature. The life and times of William Shakespeare are richly imagined in this unique biography told using quotes from the Bard himself.


Also search our catalogue for more biographies about Shakespeare and his remarkable life.


Read Shakespeare’s plays!

Read and relive your favourite Shakespeare plays. Wellington City Libraries holds a huge array of plays which is part of the Orchard book of Shakespeare Stories series written by Andrew Matthews. Plays include A Midsummer Night’s DreamRomeo and Juliet, Much Ado About Nothing and King Lear.
image courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndetics
Also search our catalogue for more plays from the Orchard book of Shakespeare Stories series. Also, check out:

image courtesy of syndeticsShakespeare retold.

A beautifully illustrated collection of prose retellings of seven Shakespeare plays will bring the Bard to life for young readers. Not only is this a beautiful keepsake edition, full of gorgeous illustrations by Antonio Javier Caparo, but the prose retellings by beloved classic children’s book author E. Nesbit are an excellent tool to introduce children to the complex language of Shakespeare.

A foreword by John Lithgow touches on his own childhood as a Shakespearean actor and the importance of Shakespeare. The book contains extensive support materials, including a biography, a timeline of Shakespeare’s life, and further recommended readings.

image courtesy of syndeticsMr William Shakespeare’s plays.

Seven classic Shakespeare plays presented in an accessible comic strip format. Take your place in the Globe Theatre of Shakespeare’s day to see seven of his best-loved plays in performance. Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Macbeth, Julius Caesar, The Winter’s Tale and The Tempest are all brought vividly to life in Marcia Williams’ gloriously accessible comic-strip versions, which include the bard’s own dialogue and the rowdy remarks of the audience.

image courtesy of syndeticsShakespeare stories II.

By skillfully weaving his own prose with Shakespeare’s language, Leon Garfield has refashioned nine of the Elizabethan playwright’s dramas into stories, capturing all the richness of the characters, plot, mood, and setting. This format will delight both those who know the great dramatist’s works and those who are new to them. Plays included are: Much Ado About Nothing, Julius Caesar, Antony and Cleopatra, Measure for Measure, As You Like It, Cymbeline, King Richard the Third, The Comedy of Errors, and The Winter’s Tale.

image courtesy of syndeticsA stage full of Shakespeare stories.

Step on to a stage full of stories with this beautiful anthology of 12 stories from Shakespeare, rewritten to be accessible to children ages 7+. A section at the back gives details about Shakespeare’s life and further information about the plays. Each story is rewritten in a comprehensive way that is accessible for children and stunningly illustrated by collage artist Alice Lindstrom.

Recite some poetry!

image courtesy of syndeticsShakespeare edited by Marguerite Tassi.

A collection of thirty-one of playwright and poet William Shakespeare’s most famous verses, sonnets and speeches.

He was the world’s greatest playwright, and the English language’s finest writer, Shakespeare is the man the Oxford English dictionary credits as having invented over 1700 common words, and to whom we owe expressions such as ‘fair play’, ‘break the ice’, and ‘laughing stock’. The continued timelessness and genius of his work will be celebrated the world over on his special day.

Have some fun with William Shakespeare!

image courtesy of syndeticsPop-up Shakespeare.

“Discover beloved playwright William Shakespeare’s plays and poetry in this spectacular novelty book from the Reduced Shakespeare Company comedy troupe. Featuring dramatic pop-ups and foldouts and loaded with jokes and fascinating facts, this hilariously informative and fully immersive look into the Bard’s world invites you to experience Shakespeare’s works as you’ve never seen them before!” — Back cover.

image courtesy of syndeticsWhere’s Will? : find Shakespeare hidden in his plays.

Each play in this book begins with a summary of the plot and descriptions of the characters. On the following page is a detailed picture showing the setting of the play and within it you can find the characters, William Shakespeare , and a spotted pig.

Watch movies inspired by Shakespeare’s plays:

image courtesy of amazon.co.ukThe Lion King… and The Lion King inspired by Hamlet.

You can never go wrong with an oldie but a goodie.

Tricked into thinking he caused his father’s death, Simba, a guilt ridden lion cub flees into exile and abandons his identity as the future King. However when the fate of his kingdom is threatened, he is forced to return and take his place as King.

image courtesy of sydneticsGnomeo & Juliet… inspired by Romeo and Juliet.

Caught up in a feud between neighbors, Gnomeo and Juliet must overcome as many obstacles as their namesakes. But with flamboyant pink flamingoes and epic lawnmower races, can this young couple find lasting happiness?

Also check out the sequel, Sherlock Gnomes.image courtesy of syndetics

Garden gnomes, Gnomeo and Juliet, recruit renowned detective Sherlock Gnomes to investigate the mysterious disappearance of other garden ornaments.

Where to find more information?