View Finders Photo Competition Results

Over the school holidays, we asked young people to tell us a story by taking a photo!

We took submissions in three categories: Nature, Whānau, and Objects/Books, and in two age groups, 5-12 and 13-18.

Thanks to all our competition entrants who wowed us with your creativity, eye for detail, and wonderful visual storytelling.

We are grateful for the insightful judging provided by the team at Splendid Photo. Thanks Splendid for helping us pick these winners!

Check the winners out here! Underneath each photograph is the story behind them.

5-12 – Nature: Mala

Mala - Nature Winner

“I wanted to take a photo of a natural beauty. I want people to feel like they are in the photo, surrounded by towering blades of grass.”


5-12 – Objects/Books: Lucas

Lucas - Objects-Books Winner

“This cat was at the playground. I really wanted a photo of the cats paw because it looked interesting . I spent a long time getting the paw in the photo.”


5-12 – Whānau: Mia

Mia Whānau Winner

“It was sooooo cool! I didn’t know that sunrises in New Zealand could look like this. We were lucky to go to an old fashioned Bach. It was old and had holes in the floor. But the front bedroom had glass for one wall. So me, mum and my sister all slept in there, so that we could see the sunrise from our beds. I got up so early, so that I could go down and take photos. It was so beautiful I couldn’t believe it. Like art in the sky. Only us there on the beach together.”


13-18 – Nature: Brunella 

Brunella image

“For me, beauty is also in nature, and it’s not always exposed on the outside; easy to see, touch, feel, and smell… but it also is sometimes in unexpected places where if you look carefully, you can find light and beauty somewhere dark, small and
mysterious.”


13-18 – Objects/Books: Kaitlyn

Kaitlyn - Objects

“This is my netball hoop. Dad bought a new one because the other was tipping over. I have spent a lot of time this holiday practicing shooting for the netball season ahead.”


13-18 – Whānau: Tilly

Tilly Whānau Category Winner

“The whānau photo took place when my family and I were flying a kite on the beach. People stopped to watch as my family and I laughed willing it to fly higher and higher. The moment captured the familiar essence of whānau.”


Each of our winners won their own reusable film camera, a roll of film, and a voucher to get it developed! We hope they will all enjoy exploring a classic photography medium, that might be what their parents (or grandparents!) grew up with.

Thanks to Ben & Jerry’s Wellington and Light House Cinema who kindly provided some bonus spot prizes for a few other entrants!

Keep an eye-out for the travelling View Finders photography exhibition, including all our young people’s work. Coming soon to a library near you!

View Finders Beanstack Challenge!

This April School Holidays, take part in our View Finders Photography Challenge! 

We have a holiday challenge for you on our Beanstack platform!

This Beanstack challenge will guide you down the path of learning about photography so that you can get your submissions in before the deadline of the 1st of May — and there are some cool spot prizes for people who complete book reviews and take part in activities. We’re choosing a random book reviewer or challenge completer EVERY DAY to win a spot prize, so don’t miss out!

To jump right into Beanstack, click here! 🎞

Our Beanstack challenge is full of tips and activities to help you take great portraits of people, find flora and fauna in our wonderful city, and get inspired by excellent object photography!

Beanstack challenges

Some of the digital badges you can earn on our Beanstack!


For our photo competition, we’re taking submissions in three categories: Nature, Whānau, and Objects/Books, and in two age groups, 5-12 and 13-18.

The first prize for each category is a reusable Kodak film camera, some black-and-white film roll, and free development with Splendid Photo!

The Beanstack activities lead to a link to enter your own photos.

We look forward to seeing your photos and hearing the story behind them! You may want to display your photo at your local branch library at the end of the competition.

View Finders 1st Place Category Prizes

Our 1st place category prizes! You could win your very own film camera!


Special thanks to our friends at Splendid Photo, who are helping us to judge the competition, and Ben & Jerry’s Wellington, Light House Cinema, and Unity Books, who are kindly providing us with spot prizes to give away. Ka rawe!

Arabic Language Day and New Books in Arabic!

ٱلسَّلَامُ عَلَيْكُمْ!

The 18th of December marks the United Nations Arabic Language Day. Did you know that there are over 300 million native Arabic speakers worldwide?

This makes the Arabic language one of the most widely spoken languages in the word.

It is spoken by a diverse range of people across the African continent and the Middle East, including Sudan, Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Lebanon, Jordan, Libya, Morocco, Palestine, and many more. At Wellington City Libraries we’re lucky enough to offer our community a wide selection of books in Arabic for everyone to enjoy!

Here is our librarian, Khadro, showing us two more brand new Arabic books in the Newtown Library collection:

A smiling librarian, wearing a colourful facemask and hijab, is holding two beautiful picture books in Arabic. Behind her, you can see the children's world languages collection at Newtown Library, with lots of books in colourful shelving and comfortable seats nearby.

Our friendly librarians love helping you find good books to read!

Here are some of our favourite books for children in Arabic. Click on the title to find out more. If the book you want is in a library that is too far away, you can click ‘Place Reserve‘ to have it sent to a library which is closer, where you can pick it up.

Mā arwaʻ al-ṭaʻām = Food, food, fabulous food / Clynes, Kate
A fun story about the diversity of food and all the ways it enriches our lives. Food brings people together from all walks of life and is a great way to connect with each other.

Ikhtalafat fa-tamayyazatu / Nājim, Alāʼ Saʻd

Our Differences are Distinguished: This story is a dive into everything that makes us different and unique. Through music the characters of this book learn that there are different ways to express themselves.

Time to pray = Awqāt al-ṣalāh / Addasi, Maha

This story follows young Yasmin as she learns about one of the core tenants of her religion: prayer. It also teaches Yasmin the importance of family and community.

Samakat qaws qazah = The rainbow fish. / Pfister, Marcus

Leaning to share your beauty with others makes everyone shine. This classic tale is now available in English and Arabic for new and native Arabic speakers to enjoy.

Ayyuhā al-dub al-asmar, ayyuhā al-dub al-asmar mādhā tará? / Martin, Bill

I see a bear, what about you? A fun rhyming book that covers all the bases, from magical blue horses to cute purple cats. This book has it all.

Click here to see more Arabic children’s books at Wellington City Libraries

Joining the Library is free! You can take these books home for three weeks and then get some new ones! If you would like to learn more, here is some information about how to join the library, written in Arabic.

“Sugar, Spice, Everything Nice”: New Children’s Fiction

“Sugar, spice, everything nice, that’s what little girls are made of.” This new collection of children’s fiction, consisting of female characters are filled with magic, unicorns and all things nice which will be enjoyed by young readers of all stripes. Why not spring on down to your local library and borrow the following books:

image courtesy of syndeticsThe amazing Edie Eckhart / Jones, Rosie

“Hello! My name is Edie Eckhart and I’m eleven years old. I’m a little bit different. I have a disability called cerebral palsy, so I talk slowly and fall over a lot. It’s never really bothered me because I’ve never known anything else. Edie Eckhart is Excited with a capital E to start secondary school with her best friend Oscar – the fish to her chips, the bananas to her custard. But when she and Oscar are put into different tutor groups on their first day, Edie is devastated. Who will play secret hangman with her in class? Who will she eat sausage rolls with? But while she’s plotting her reunion with Oscar, she accidentally gets cast as the lead in the school play. As Edie discovers a passion for performance, she also finds new friendships, talents, and dreams. After all, it’s easy to shine on and off the stage when you’re Amazing with a capital A.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of syndeticsPizazz vs Perfecto / Henn, Sophie

“HELLO! My name is PIZAZZ and I’m a superhero… You probably think that’s really AWESOME, and while it can be, it’s also REEEEEEEAAALLLLY annoying. Even though I’m saving the world ALL THE TIME, there are still LOADS of bad guys about. Like super baddie PERFECTO! She’s younger than me, and just… well, PERFECT! But I have a plan. Maybe I just need to be perfect too – even more perfect than Perfecto. Easy-peasy, right?!” (Catalogue) Also available as an eBook.

The forest of stars / Kassner, Heather

“Left all alone after her mother passes away, twelve-year-old Louisa watches the sky for her father. Long ago, a powerful gust of wind stole him away on the wings of his untamed magic – the same magic that stirs within Louisa. As if she is made of hollow bones and too much air, her feet never quite touch the ground. But for all her sky gazing, Louisa finds her fortune on the ground when she spots a ticket to the Carnival Beneath the Stars…” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Maddy Yip’s guide to life / Cheung, Sue

“Maddy Yip is perfectly happy in life, until she realises that everyone she knows has a talent – except for her! Maddy is determined to change that, with the help of her brothers, bewildered grandad and her best friend Dev. There are disastrous attempts at breakdancing and playing the recorder, revolting cakes, and a magic disappearing trick that ends up with a hunt for the school guinea pig. Will Maddy ever find her true calling? A madcap new series filled with belly-laughs and packed with drawings, perfect for fans of Tom Gates and Sam Wu.” (Catalogue).

iage courtesy of syndeticsFirebright and the magic medicine / Meadows, Daisy

“In the mountains of Enchanted Valley, a family of guinea hoglets collects the magical crystals that keep all the creatures healthy. But there’s a problem – Firebright’s magical medicine crystal has been stolen! Can Emily, Aisha and the guinea hoglets find the crystal and cure an outbreak of the sneezles?” (Catalogue).

image courtesy of syndeticsDaisy and the trouble with unicorns / Gray, Kes

“Here comes trouble! It’s Gabby’s birthday and Daisy is the GUEST OF HONOUR at her party!!! What’s even more exciting is that Gabby has been given TWO TOY UNICORNS for her birthday. They’re so sparkly and soft and fluffy and cuddly!!! Trouble is, these unicorns are also MAGIC – and very chatty. And they’re giving Daisy all sorts of troublesome ideas…” (Catalogue).

Become a RAKtivist: Random Acts of Kindness Day

happy birthday greeting card on green and red textile

Image: Unsplash free images

September 1st is New Zealand’s Random Acts of Kindness Day and we’ve never needed it more than in these Covid times!

Started in New Zealand in 2005, we are the only country in the world that celebrate a National Random Acts of Kindness Day. There is also a World Kindness Day on Saturday 13 November 2021… but let’s make every day a kindness day!

Random Acts of Kindness have probably never been more important, yet have never been harder to do, than when the city is in a lockdown.

Whether you’re in the full Level 4 and can’t even get takeaways delivered to someone, or in a variation of lockdowns which maybe means no school or no shops are open, there are still little random acts of kindness that are doable. Here are just a few ideas:

  •  Chalk positive, happy messages around your neighbourhood
  • Organise FaceTime or Zoom with friends to check in on each other
  • Play online Scrabble or other board games with friends also stuck at home
  • Play a game with your younger brothers and sisters… even if you think it’s a bit boring!
  • Help your caregivers to order some groceries online and have them delivered to a friend or neighbour
  • Offer to make lunch or dinner – maybe even make one night a week your cooking night
  • Pick up rubbish on your neighbourhood walks
  • Make a video of yourself reading a story and send it to your grandparents
  • Offer to do some housework or gardening
  • Tidy your room without being asked
  • Ring a neighbour that you know is isolating on their own, to check that they’re OK
  • Be kind and loving to your pets. Show them you love them with extra pats, a kind voice, small edible treats
  • Give your bubble buddies a compliment and a hug just for being your bubble buddies
  • Bring you parents breakfast in bed one morning for no reason (other than you love them)!
  • Stop for a moment of quiet and appreciate what a great person you are too!

Being kind is good for you!

There are scientifically proven benefits to being kind! It is contagious, teachable, and raises the levels of serotonin – our body’s “feel good” hormone – in your brain. Being kind can also help people to sleep better and feel more healthy.

Websites that might help you with kindness action ideas:

Random Acts of Kindness NZ

Random Acts of Kindness Foundation

Life Education Trust

Neighbourhood Support

RAK ideas when you can go back to school

Student Volunteer Army for kids

Youth volunteering at City Mission


Wellington City Libraries have a huge collection of books (both physical and digital) that can help with your kindness quest:

Kind / Green, Alison
“Illustrations by prominent illustrators accompany this story on how to make the world a better place through kindness, with an emphasis on welcoming refugees.” (Catalogue)

Do something for someone else / Kirby, Loll
“Meet 12 real-life children spreading kindness with simple acts of everyday activism.” (Catalogue)
All kinds of kindness / Carey Nevin, Judy
“Plant a seed, push a swing. Kindness makes your heart sing. There is so much kindness in the world and this sweet board book celebrates those special differences that make kind acts both individual and similar. Judy Carey Nevin’s bouncing text paired with Susie Hammer’s bright, brilliant art showcases a creative look at how important kindness can be. From optimistic ideas of hope to small acts of goodwill, each scene shares the heart of the story: kindness makes our world a better place.” (Catalogue)


Pete the cat’s groovy guide to kindness : tips from a cool cat on how to be kind / Dean, Kim
“A collection of quotes by famous notables, including Henry James, Booker T. Washington, and Judy Blume, echoes Pete the Cat’s thoughts on kindness.” (Catalogue)
A small kindness / McAnulty, Stacy
“It was like a game of tag, with one small act of kindness spreading throughout a small community of kids and teachers alike. Award-winning children’s book author Stacy McAnulty packs a powerful punch with minimal text, providing a sweet message about all the small ways one can be kind. Illustrator Wendy Leach creates a diverse cast of characters while using colour as a visual cue to how kindness is able to spread, even in a small community like a school” (Catalogue)
The good guys : 50 heroes who changed the world with kindness / Kemp, Rob
“A life-changing book that shows kids it’s cool to be kind. A gloriously illustrated celebration of heroes who have changed the world with kindness and compassion, from David Attenborough to Nelson Mandela, Oskar Schindler to Usain Bolt. What if we celebrated boys for their kindness as well their strength? For their generosity as well as their success? For their loyal friendship as well as their charm? […] The Good Guys celebrates the feats of heroes and everyday men, and will show kids that it really is cool to be kind.” (Adapted from Catalogue)
I like being me : poems about kindness, friendship, and making good choices / Lalli, Judy
“Twenty-five rhyming poems invite children to believe in themselves, learn from mistakes, cooperate, share, help others, solve problems, be kind, tell the truth, make positive choices, and more. The short poems are quick to read, easy to learn, and fun to recite — making them perfect for teaching social skills to young children. Children can memorise their favorite poems, talk about them, act them out, and get ideas for creating their own. Accompanying photographs show children from diverse backgrounds in realistic settings, and back matter provides adults with ideas for thought-provoking discussion, activities, and learning.” (Catalogue)

Kindness grows / Teckentrup, Britta
“It all starts with a crack that we can hardly see, It happens when we shout or if we disagree. But with every kindness that we care to show, something good and magical then begins to grow… Angry words and thoughtlessness cause a crack to open up, but find out what happens when kindness begins to blossom, in this thought-provoking book by award-winning illustrator Britta Teckentrup.” (Catalogue) 

“Everywhere you go, leave a glitter trail of kindness behind you.” (unknown)

 

 

When the Ground Shook – 1931 Hawke’s Bay Earthquake

Image result for 1931 hawke's bay earthquake

Almost all of Napier’s roads, houses and buildings were damaged or destroyed in the quake. Image: Hawke’s Bay NZ / Archive

2021 (3 February 2021, to be exact) marks 90 years since the Hawke’s Bay Earthquake, which occurred on the 3rd of February 1931. This earthquake devastated the cities of Napier and Hastings and goes down in Aotearoa’s history as our worst natural disaster to-date. The quake was measured at 7.8 on the Richter Scale with 256 deaths – 161 in Napier, 93 in Hastings, and 2 in Wairoa. Many thousands more required medical treatment.

Lascelles kids (1929). Annie is wearing the bow in her hair. Image: Courtesy Sue Jane

The following is an account of that terrifying day written by Annie Lascelles who was 8 years old at the time. Annie went on to have a long and interesting life, playing the piano until her death in 2019, aged 96… but I think you’ll agree that she had a lucky escape! Annie never lost her fear of earthquakes and would refer to Aotearoa as “The Shaky Isles”:

On the 3rd Feb. 1931 I set off for school, it being the first day of the 1st term at St. Joseph’s School (now Reigner School),
Greenmeadows (just 4 miles from Napier).  It was my first day in Standard 2 (year 4) – I remember it was a mild, slightly cloudy morning.  We had a new teacher, also as being a Tuesday I had taken my music.  The previous year it had always been my piano lesson at play time (10.40am).  With this in mind I was about to go over to the nun’s convent adjacent to the school.  This was a new two-storied brick building, erected about 12 months before.  

The new Convent collapses in the quake. Sadly, Annie’s music teacher was killed. Image: Courtesy Doreen Keogh

However, my friend Molly asked me to go over to the shop as she had to get some slate pencils (we used slates in those days, sort of like mini-chalkboards) so  I went, thinking I would go over and see my music teacher when I returned. Mr Russell’s shop was through the horse-paddock at the back (a few of the children used to ride horses to school).  Molly  spent half her money on the slate pencils, but the other half on an ice cream each!  We were heading back across the shingle road to school when the earthquake struck (10.47am).  We were both thrown to the road.  I remember looking along the road.  It reminded me of a rough sea with breakers coming in but instead of spray on the ridge of each wave it was dust and shingle.  Of course my ice cream was squashed into my new uniform, about which I was more concerned (what would Mum say!).  Mr Russell rescued us and we spent the next half hour clutching onto him, each had a leg I think – every time the quakes jerked and shook we pulled at his trousers!  After some time my Mum appeared.  Dad had rushed home from his work, hopped in the car and drove Mum down to see we were OK.  They found my four brothers but not me. Mum gave one look at the Sisters’ Convent which had collapsed like a pack of cards, and thought the worst (I can remember watching the convent crumble and the roof just sliding down over the top of the bricks, looking for all the world like a big tent top).  Also, there was so much noise from the quake, which seemed to be a continuous shake after the first 2 big shocks.  Fortunately, someone remembered seeing Molly and I going through the horse-paddock to the shop so no doubt Mum was pretty relieved to see me clutching Mr Russell’s trousers…but I was still concerned about the mess I had made of my uniform!

Image result for 1931 hawke's bay earthquake fire

Napier burns post earthquake. It was thought that the fires started in two chemist shops in central Napier. Image: Stuff.co.nz

We were all  put in the dodge (a big black car, with side curtains) and drove into Napier to get my older sister who was having her first day at Sacred Heart College on Bluff Hill. I can remember Dad being concerned as the road kept opening up with cracks and closing again, he was afraid a wheel could become entrapped.

Only for the fact that trucks, Army I think, were transporting patients from the Napier Hospital out to the Greenmeadows Racecourse (now Anderson Park) we were able to follow the trucks on return, as the two bridges over a couple of river outlets had risen by quite a few feet and the soldiers were stacking timber up to fill the gaps to allow the trucks through and they beckoned us on.  We parked to the south of Clive Square as it was impossible to go further.  The town was ablaze and razed practically to the ground with firemen and hoses and rescuers doing what they could.  Mum and another brother had to follow the path up the side of the hill to approach the Convent that way.  They eventually came back with my sister and another girl who lived out our way (a sister of Molly, by the way).

At home the exterior looked OK but the chimney had moved about a lot.  Inside was chaos, cupboards emptied on the floor, jams, pickles etc. Just a mess; furniture pitched here and there, pictures fallen and smashed. It was impossible to use the coal range in the house for cooking, as with the chimney so damaged, it would be dangerous.  Dad made a temporary stove out in one of the out-buildings, erecting a pipe chimney through the corrugated iron roof, enabling Mum to cook food and boil the kettle.  No mean task I imagine, as there were six of us in the family.  Dad and the boys brought out mattresses and we slept in the garage for nearly six weeks while the house was made safe to live in again. We also brought our grandparents from Taradale out to live with us too.  They slept in a tent on the back lawn for a few weeks.  Their chimney had collapsed and went through the dining room table, which grandfather was following around the dining room during the worst of the initial shocks – he was underneath, but escaped injury.  Nana was confined to bed at the time.

We had an artesian well, fortunately, which never ceased running, so water was not a problem.


Want to know more?

Many Answers – Hawke’s Bay Earthquake 1931

Te Ara Dictionary of New Zealand – Historic Earthquakes

Napier City Council – The 1931 Earthquake

Christchurch City Libraries – Hawke’s Bay Earthquake


Want something to read?

Earthquake! : the diary of Katie Bourke, Napier, 1930-31 / McVeagh, Janine
On the day of her father’s funeral, 11 year-old Katie Bourke begins a diary. It is 1930 and New Zealand is in the grip of the Great Depression. Money is scarce and even basic necessities are hard to find. Katie describes how she longs to escape the boredom of school and do something to help her struggling family. Then a disaster happens which turns every body’s world upside down. (Catalogue)  Continue reading

8 New Junior Comics to Read Just in Time for Winter!

Kia ora kids!

Here are some new junior comics that have just arrived at Wellington City Libraries! Head on down to your local library and grab these awesome reads just in time for winter!

Enjoy!


image courtesy of syndeticsInvestiGators.

Time to get your super sleuth on with the InvestiGators, Mango and Brash, sewer-loving agents on their first mission together, who have not one but two mysteries to solve! Can Mango and Brash uncover the clues, crack their cases, and corral the crooks–or will the criminals wriggle out of their grasp? Overall a very humorous read!

image courtesy of syndeticsSnoopy: First Beagle in Space.

“Join Snoopy and the rest of the Peanuts gang as he seeks new milestones in the space race! Even though the first moon landing was 50 years ago, Snoopy has a bold new mission: to be the first beagle in space! Join Snoopy as he sets out on his ambitious quest, while also leading Woodstock and friends as a Beagle Scout and keeping the company of his owner, the round-headed kid Charlie Brown.”–Publisher’s website.

image courtesy of syndeticsCaptain Underpants: George and Harold’s Epic Comix Collection Vol. 2.

Lovable series, Captain Underpants returns with another comic to entertain fans far and wide. “This second collection features even more of George and Harold’s hilarious comix from the first three seasons of the TV show — nearly 200 pages of comics total! Each epic adventure features a brand-new villain from the hit Netflix TV series.”–Provided by publisher.

image courtesy of syndeticsRocket Raccoon and Groot : tall tails.

If you love adventure, animals, outer space and just about anything in between, this is the book for you! Join Rocket Racoon and Groot in weird and wacky adaptation of Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy as you have never seen it before!


image courtesy of syndeticsIllegal.

“Ebo is alone. His brother, Kwame, has disappeared, and Ebo knows it can only be to attempt the hazardous journey to Europe, and a better life, the same journey their sister set out on months ago. But Ebo refuses to be left behind in Ghana. He sets out after Kwame and joins him on the quest to reach Europe. Ebo’s epic journey takes him across the Sahara Desert to the dangerous streets of Tripoli, and finally out to the merciless sea. But with every step he holds on to his hope for a new life, and a reunion with his family”–Provided by publisher.

image courtesy of syndeticsThe Sisters. 1: Just Like Family.

“Meet two wonderful young girls who happen to be sisters-Maureen, and her older sister Wendy. Both are full of personality and a strong sense of independence. So while they may love each other with all their hearts, it’s not always easy for the two of them to be together. After all, when we’re still very young, age differences are much more meaningful. While Maureen may want to hang out with her older sister, nothing could be more embarrassing for Wendy. See how despite all odds, they still manage to get through each day without killing each other… well, at least so far!” — publisher’s web site.

image courtesy of syndeticsThe sisters. 4, Selfie awareness.

Beach vacation with the Sisters! But can their parents stop Wendy from burying Maureen in the sand… permanently?!


image courtesy of syndeticsStig & Tilde. 2, Leader of the pack.

“In their second adventure, Stig and Tilde once again find themselves shipwrecked on a mysterious island. This time, after their shipwreck, Stig & Tilde are welcomed by a pack of feral wolves! With only each other as backup, will they make it out unscathed? Find out in the next exciting adventure!”–Provided by publisher.

6 New Comics to Read During Winter

Hey Kids!

Wellington City Libraries has a new shipment of junior comics and graphic novels! Get your hands on them just in time for winter!

Enjoy!

image courtesy of syndeticsMaker Comics: Grow a Garden!

You can grow a garden — and it’s easier than you think! With the easy instructions inside this book, you can grow lettuce, carrots, tomatoes, peppers, and more. And you don’t need a backyard to be a great gardener — just a little bit of space and a lot of sunlight. Maker Comics: Grow a Garden! will walk you through each step, from seed to harvest.

image courtesy of syndeticsMarvel action : Spider-Man : bad luck. Book 3.

“Peter, Gwen, and Miles have learned to work together, but a sinister new enemy is about to tear them apart in this middle-grade-friendly graphic novel! After a devastating encounter with the Black Cat and her bad luck powers, the Spidey team is down on their luck and at each other’s throats. Will Peter, Miles, and Gwen learn to overcome their bad luck and work together again, or is this the end of the line for the Marvelous Spider-Trio?”–Provided by publisher.

image courtesy of syndeticsPoems to see by : a comic artist interprets great poetry.

This stunning anthology of favorite poems visually interpreted by comic artist Julian Peters breathes new life into some of the greatest English-language poets of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

image courtesy of syndeticsAstronauts : women on the final frontier.

“The U.S. may have put the first man on the moon, but it was the Soviet space program that made Valentina Tereshkova the first woman in space. It took years to catch up, but soon NASA’s first female astronauts were racing past milestones of their own. The trail-blazing women of Group 9, NASA’s first mixed gender class, had the challenging task of convincing the powers that be that a woman’s place is in space, but they discovered that NASA had plenty to learn about how to make space travel possible for everyone.”–Front flap.

image courtesy of syndeticsSnapdragon.

“Snap’s town had a witch. At least, that’s how the rumor goes. But in reality, Jacks is just a crocks-wearing, internet-savvy old lady who sells roadkill skeletons online–after doing a little ritual to put their spirits to rest. It’s creepy, sure, but Snap thinks it’s kind of cool, too. They make a deal: Jacks will teach Snap how to take care of the baby opossums that Snap rescued, and Snap will help Jacks with her work. But as Snap starts to get to know Jacks, she realizes that Jacks may in fact have real magic–and a connection with Snap’s family’s past.”–Provided by publisher.

image courtesy of syndeticsKaren’s witch : a graphic novel.

Karen Brewer’s imagination gets the best of her when she decides that her neighbour, Mrs. Porter – who has wild gray hair, wears black robes, and has a garden full of mysterious herbs – must be a witch.

Virtual Storytime: Straight from the Librarian’s Living Room

With our libraries currently closed, are you missing your regular storytime fix? Don’t worry, we have you covered in more ways than one: check the options below!

Virtual Storytimes
During the lockdown, your favourite librarians will be bringing you livestreamed storytimes directly from their living rooms on the Wellington City Libraries Facebook page. Storytime will be streamed live Monday-Friday at 10:30am, and on Saturdays at 2:00pm, to match the times when Preschool Storytime would normally be happening at your local library. You can join us live as we stream, or watch the video afterwards.

Story Box Library
Tired of waiting for your next storytime livestream? Did you know that you can enjoy a read-aloud storytime ANYtime?! All you need is your Wellington City Libraries card and a device to watch on — PC, laptop, tablet or smartphone. Log in with your library card number and PIN, and enjoy stories being read aloud by fantastic, predominantly Australian and New Zealand, storytellers.

Stories Online
If those options aren’t enough, over on the Kids’ Downloads page we have a whole raft of digital storytime content that we have been curating over the years. This page is stuffed full of videos of New Zealand books being read by their authors at the library, links to awesome resources such as TumbleBooks and Kanopy Kids, and plenty of other bits and pieces to keep your mind busy!

While you check out all these awesome resources, why not watch our first livestreamed Virtual Storytime below? Straight from my living room (with Velvet Elvis looking down from above!) I bring you I Want My Hat Back by Jon Klassen, published by Walker Books.

Here’s 7 great new kids fiction books from your library to start your New Year off perfectly!

 

It’s the end of the school holidays! You might be excited to go back to school …or you might not be. Either way, you can ease yourself back into routine with these simply awesome super cool new books. They will make you forget all about going back to school, guaranteed!! **

** Not guaranteed, sorry. 

 

Image courtesy of SyndeticsKlawde: Evil Alien Warlord Cat by Johnny Marciano

Klawde is not your average cat. He’s an emperor from another planet, exiled to Earth. He’s cruel. He’s cunning. He’s brilliant… and he’s about to become Raj Banerjee’s best friend. Whether he likes it or not. Klawde had everything. Sharp claws. Fine fur. And, being the High Commander of the planet Lyttyrboks, an entire world of warlike cats at his command. But when he is stripped of his feline throne, he is sentenced to the worst possible punishment: exile to a small planet in a quiet corner of the universe… named Earth. Raj had everything. A cool apartment in Brooklyn. Three friends who lived in his building. And pizza and comics within walking distance. But when his mom gets a job in Elba, Oregon, and he is forced to move, all of that changes. It’s now the beginning of summer, he has no friends, and because of his mother’s urgings, he has joined a nature camp. It’s only when his doorbell rings and he meets a furball of a cat that Raj begins to think maybe his luck is turning around…


Image courtesy of SyndeticsZac’s Biggest Ever Hits; Volume 3 (4 missions in 1!!!) by H.I Larry

Zac Power is a boy spy who has twenty-four hours to save the world and do his homework. A haunted house, sabotage in space, vanishing tombs and undead dinosaurs – Zac’s biggest ever adventures are action-packed. But can he outsmart an evil genius and save the world, yet again?

Image courtesy of SyndeticsMika & Max by Laura Bloom

A story about a girl who meets a boy who changes everything. When 13-year-old Mika is forced to attend a music festival with her family, she resigns herself to hippies, heat, and embarrassment. But nothing could prepare her for Max, who’s almost 10 and has autism. When the two of them join forces, a series of unexpected and life-changing events unfold.

Image courtesy of SyndeticsMy Parents Cancelled my Birthday by Jo Simmons

Tom can’t wait for his LUCKY BIRTHDAY. It’s an EPIC family tradition and he’s dreamed up an UNFORGETTABLE party! Only, after several disasters involving a flattened Chihuahua and a curse from the tooth fairy, it’s been CANCELLED. But Tom won’t give up. With the help of his friends (and a pig painted like a zebra), Tom decides to throw himself the party he deserves. What could possibly go wrong?

Image courtesy of SyneticsNatboff! One Million Years of Stupidity by Andy Stanton

Time travel through the funniest and most mad moments in history, from the stone age to a million years in the future, all set in the town of Lamonic Bibber (home of Mr Gum). Meet the town’s most famous residents such as Natboff the caveman, Terry Shakespeare, a squirrel, Edith the witch, some grapes and mysterious Victorian inventor, Cribbins, who invented mysterious Victorian things. Learn LOADS of stuff about history along the way*.

*You won’t learn anything about history.


Image courtesy of SyndeticsTrouble in New York (the Travels of Ermine (who is very determined)) by Jennifer Gray

Ermine the Determined is off to explore NEW YORK. She can’t wait to visit Central Park Zoo, ride in a yellow taxi, and zoooom to the top of the Rockefeller building! But when her suitcase is switched, Ermine finds some robbers are hot on her tail.

Image courtesy of SyndeticsThe Leap of Death by Andrew Clover and Ralph Lazar

Meet RORY BRANAGAN – he eats bad guys for breakfast. Well, not ACTUALLY. But he IS the best detective in town. Fifth in a hilarious comedy-crime series for readers of 8+. Hello. I am Rory Branagan. I am actually a detective. And I am about to face more DEADLY DANGER than ever …