Golden Man Booker Prize Shortlist

This year marks the 50th (Golden) anniversary of the Man Booker Prize! The ‘Golden Five’ have been selected by the Prize’s judges showcasing the winning books from Man Booker history that have continued to stand the test of time.

In a free state, V.S. Naipaul

In a Free State tells first of an Indian servant in Washington, who becomes an American citizen but feels he has ceased to be a part of the flow. Then of a disturbed Asian West Indian in London who, in jail for murder, has never really known where he is. Then the central novel moves to Africa, to a fictional country something like Uganda or Rwanda. Its two main characters are English. They once found Africa liberating, but now it has gone sour on them. The land is no longer safe, and at a time of tribal conflict they have to make the long drive to the safety of their compound.

Moon Tiger, Penelope Lively

Moon Tiger is a haunting story of loss and desire, published here as a Penguin Essential for the first time. Claudia Hampton – beautiful, famous, independent, dying. But she remains defiant to the last, telling her nurses that she will write a ‘history of the world . . . and in the process, my own’. And it is her story from a childhood just after the First World War through the Second and beyond. But Claudia’s life is entwined with others and she must allow those who knew her, loved her, the chance to speak, to put across their point of view.

The English Patient, Michael Ondaatje

The final curtain is closing on the Second World War, and Hana, a nurse, stays behind in an abandoned Italian villa to tend to her only remaining patient. Rescued by Bedouins from a burning plane, he is English, anonymous, damaged beyond recognition and haunted by his memories of passion and betrayal. The only clue Hana has to his past is the one thing he clung on to through the fire – a copy of The Histories by Herodotus, covered with hand-written notes describing a painful and ultimately tragic love affair.

Wolf Hall, Hilary Mantel

‘England, the 1520s. Henry VIII is on the throne, but has no heir. Cardinal Wolsey is his chief advisor, charged with securing the divorce the pope refuses to grant. Into this atmosphere of distrust and need comes Thomas Cromwell, first as Wolsey’s clerk, and later his successor. Cromwell is a wholly original man: the son of a brutal blacksmith, a political genius, a briber, a charmer, a bully, a man with a delicate and deadly expertise in manipulating people and events. Ruthless in pursuit of his own interests, he is as ambitious in his wider politics as he is for himself. His reforming agenda is carried out in the grip of a self-interested parliament and a king who fluctuates between romantic passions and murderous rages.

Lincoln in the Bardo, George Saunders

The American Civil War rages while President Lincoln’s beloved eleven-year-old son lies gravely ill. In a matter of days, Willie dies and is laid to rest in a Georgetown cemetery. Newspapers report that a grief-stricken Lincoln returns to the crypt several times alone to hold his boy’s body. From this seed of historical truth, George Saunders spins an unforgettable story of familial love and loss that breaks free of realism, entering a thrilling, supernatural domain both hilarious and terrifying. Willie Lincoln finds himself trapped in a transitional realm – called, in Tibetan tradition, the bardo – and as ghosts mingle, squabble, gripe, and commiserate, and stony tendrils creep towards the boy, a monumental struggle erupts over young Willie’s soul.


Half Term fun at Hampshire Libraries

This half term we have lots of great events and activities taking place across Hampshire Libraries for all the family!

Saturday 26 May

Is Elmer Day! Check out all the Elmer activities going on across our Libraries here.

‘Read and Make’ Clay Workshop at Eastleigh Library

What better way than to allow children’s imaginations to run free than to create a character from a story from clay!  Be inspired by the famous story of ‘Room on a Broom’ and then create your favourite character or Mud Monster from the book out of clay! I will provide all the materials to get you started. To be enjoyed by children of all ages, let your creativity run wild and make the story come alive!

Time: 10.00am-11.00am

Cost: £5.00

Monday 28 May

The Bureau of Untold Stories at Winchester Discovery Centre

Mysterious storytellers bring to life your tales, featuring live sound effects. Unravel the hidden tales of the audience with our inspectors as they utilise live sound effects, improvisation and their unconventional storytelling skills to immerse you into the excitement of an old radio mystery.

Time: 11.30am-12.30pm

Cost: £4.50/ 4 for £15.00

Tuesday 29 May

Drawing your own comic book character at Tadley Library

children’s workshop with local artist and teacher, Russell Bignold From finding the shapes through to completed picture (including colouring in), Russell will guide you through the steps in this 90-minute drawing workshop for children aged 7+.


Cost: £5.00

Make your own bird feeders at Romsey Library

Gemma, from Natural Selection Learning, will explain how you can help birds in your garden and then show you how to create some simple bird feeders to take home with you and watch the birds enjoy their food. Please Note that this workshop uses nut-based products so is not suitable for those with allergies. Suitable for families with children aged 5 to 11.

Time: 10.30am

Cost: £4.00 per participating child

Half Term Fun! Special Storytime: Dog’s Trust Workshop at Winchester Discovery Centre

A Special Storytime at 11am is followed by this Workshop at 11.30am! Join Dogs Trust Education and Community Officer Vickie, to find out all about dogs: how to stay safe and what a dog needs to be happy and healthy. Vickie will be reading some stories and showing you how to make your own dog to take home! All primary school aged children are welcome and the workshop is free but booking essential.

Time: 11.30am-1.00pm

Cost: Free, booking is essential!

Wednesday 30 May

Otter day at Waterlooville Library

Join us  in celebrating International Otter Awareness Day for crafts, puzzles and a competition to win a ticket to the New Forest Wildlife Park, home to 4 of the species of 13 otter. We will also be joined by the Community Conservation Officer for The Billy’s Lake Project. Suitable for children 5 to 10 years.

Time: 10.00am-12.00pm

Cost: Free, ticketed event (Tickets available from the Library)

Doggy Tales at Chandler’s Ford Library

Join Dogs Trust Education and Community Officer Vickie, to find out all about dogs: how to stay safe and what a dog needs to be happy and healthy. Vickie will be reading some stories and showing you how to make your own dog to take home!

For bookings please contact Chandler’s Ford Library on 02380 276098 or drop in to branch.

Time: 10.30am -12.00pm

Cost: Free

Thursday 31 May

Join Illustrator and Author Mike Henson at Waterlooville Library

Join author and llustrator Mike Henson for an interactive storytime, book signing and sing along! Tickets available from the library. For more information please contact the library.


Cost: Free (ticketed event)

Viking craft activity at Leigh Park Library

Join us for fun Viking crafts! We will be making a Viking long boat, Viking shield and a Viking brooch. Suitable for ages 4 to 8.

Time: 10.00am

Cost: Free

Friday 1 June

Catkin and Pussywillow Children’s Workshop at Winchester Discovery Centre

Make your party magical by learning the art of flower garlands & jar arrangements for parties & celebrations to take home. Suitable for Children aged 6-11, children aged under the age of 8 must be accompanied by an adult.


Cost: £25.00 – To book tickets please email or ring 01962 860345

Don’t forget we still have lots of other great activities and events taking place across over half term!

ComicPlus – May 2018 Reads

This month kick back indulge in ComicPlus! With unlimited access for Hampshire Library customers to thousands of digital graphic novels and comics, find out more here.

Check out our 12 recommended reads for ComicPlus this month! Let us know what you’re favourite comic is at the moment by leaving a comment below.

  1. Fantasy

Award-winning writer Kurt Busiek and artists Cary Nord and Dave Stewart render the glorious suspense of Howard’s beloved “The God in the Bowl” in all its terrifying detail, as well as introducing not only Conan’s most famed adversary, Thoth-amon, but a new female foil to Conan’s exploits–Janissa the Widowmaker, bound by a pact to a witch who has sinister plans for Conan.

2. Star Trek

This all-new story set in the universe of the new STAR TREK films celebrates the life of the most iconic character of them all: Leonard Nimoy’s SPOCK. In Part 1 of this 4-part epic, the elder Spock joins the last survivors of Vulcan to search the galaxy for a new homeworld!.

3. Superheroes

The World’s Greatest Mystery. The World’s Greatest Detective. They can barely stand each other, so how will they possibly deal with the World’s Greatest Evil? What legacy can two of the world’s most enduring icons of justice leave once they discover an ancient evil has been living inside the world they protect for centuries. Can Batman and the Shadow save the world without destroying it in the process?

4. War

The heroine of The Night Witches and Motherland flies straight into trouble as her aircraft is shot down behind German lines. Anna faces her worst nightmare as a prisoner of the Nazis, and events are set in motion that will see her made an outcast amongst her own people. The third and last installment of the Night Witches’ story begins here.

5. Humour

The only big-business tycoon boasting his own private executive litter box and luxury mega cat condo, the dashing Business Cat misses meetings because he’s stuck in trees, sends emails while napping on keyboards, and demands to be let out, then in, then out again.

6. George R.R. Martin

George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire saga continues in the official comic book adaptation by Dynamite Entertainment! Following the events of A Game of Thrones, Westeros is embroiled in civil war, while Daenerys Targaryen — as heir to the Targaryen dynasty, seeks to reclaim the Iron Throne. Arya, with the help of Yoren, a brother of the Night’s Watch, has escaped from King’s Landing, but the road to the Wall brings its own dangers. Meanwhile, Sansa attends a tournament on the sadistic King Joffrey’s name-day, and Bran, in Winterfell, suffers from strange dreams of wolves…

7.Feisty ideas

Join Xena and her fan-favorite allies Gabrielle, Joxer, and Autolycus as they become embroiled in a feud reaching all the way up to the heavens, courtesy of the machinations of the ruthless Callisto!.

8. Peanuts

Snoopy is one small dog with one huge imagination! From day to day, he can be found stalking the other Peanuts characters as a fierce ready-to-prey vulture, leopard, mountain lion, piranha, or creature from the sea. But his grandest flights of fancy are when he’s airborne as the Flying Ace on his Sopwith Camel seeking out the evil Red Baron. His forays take him through the World War I French countryside in repeated attempts to achieve his quest.

9. Jurassic Park

The time has come… to return to Isla Nublar! The famed original Jurassic Park island has become overgrown and wild after years of being stuck in United Nations limbo. A major criminal overlord has moved in and started using the island as a base of operations. Undercover agent Espinoza tries to bring down the drug cartel- but when he’s found out, there’s only one place to run… the dino-infested island interior! It’s survival of the fittest at Jurassic Park!

10.For the very young (at heart)

When the TRANSFORMERS lose their powerful ALLSPARK, it ends up on Piggie Island! Prepare to meet… the AUTOBIRDS and DECEPTIHOGS!

11. Horror

Selena, Derrick and Clint have set their sights on London. Selena has survived one war with The Infected but can she make it through a second time? They’ve got a machete that’s hacked its share of infected and a gun with only nine bullets. Ammo, and time, is running out…

12. Modern life

Confined to their cubicles in a company run by idiot bosses, Dilbert and his white-collar colleagues make the dronelike world of Kafka seem congenial. Parasitic consultants, weaselly stockbrokers, masochistic coworkers and the ever-present, evil-plotting pointy-haired boss? Welcome to the seventh circle of hell.