Christmas recommendations: Best from 2011


You can borrow books from the MRC to read over the Christmas Holidays, especially uesful during the days before the man in the red suit pops down you chimney!


Here are some of the best titles from 2011 that you might have missed!


A Monster Calls

A Monster Calls by Siobhan Dowd, Patrick Ness

Winner of the Galaxy Children’s Book of the Year Award 2011 Prize-winning Patrick Ness displays brilliant new skills of sensitivity in this hauntingly touching story of how a boy deals with the…

There is No Dog

There is No Dog by Meg Rosoff

Carnegie Medal winner Meg Rosoff gives a whole new look to life in this brilliantly entertaining novel about what if the job of being god was in the hands of a…

Withering Tights

Withering Tights by Louise Rennison

Laugh out loud at this launch title of a brilliant new series by Queen of Teen author Louise Rennison. Tallulah Casey, cousin of the irrepressible Georgia Nicholson, signs up for an…

The Sky is Everywhere

The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson

This is a debut novel that once read will never be forgotten.  It’s a vibrant, deeply romantic novel that will bring tears to your eyes but it will also bring laughter through…

The Radleys


The Radleys by Matt Haig

Dripping in blood, this is a story of family secrets so terrible that they shouldn’t be uncovered…Rowan and Clara think they are ordinary teenagers. They live quietly with their ordinary Mum…

Out of Shadows

Out of Shadows by Jason Wallace

A memorable, moving and disturbing coming-of-age story about how different individuals react to the political changes around them and, especially, to the changing power structure between blacks and whites under the…


Carnegie Long List continued

I’m setting myself the challenge to read all of the books on the long list before the winner is announced. 52 titles in 6 months. That’s 2 a week….. I’d better get reading!

Since my last post I have read….

The Emerald Atlas by John Stephens

As I suspected in the previous Carnegie Blog spot this turned out to be book one in a trilogy. Which fits in with the three siblings and the three missing books. Sigh. It is a bit of a mixture of Harry Potter and Artemis Fowl, but is a poor relation to both of these. I did like the time-travel explanation, and those in KS3 who love fantasy may enjoy this too.

Lia’s Guide to Winning the Lottery by Keren David

If you’ve ever wanted to get inside the head of a teenage spoilt brat then this book is for you! It has all the usual teenage coming of age angst:-parents, school work, friendships, siblings, love and sex. All magnified by Lia’s lottery win and the responsibilties that come with it.

My Sister Lives on the Mantlepiece by Annabel Pitcher

I really enjoyed this book, and the issue with lack of speech marks was avoided by having all talking in italics, so whilst not normal I was able to read without it being too distracting. The story covers the neglect of the surviving children many years after the death of Rosie, the subsequent breakdown of their parents marriage, alcoholism and the resulting bigotry. A uplifting story of survival, and a satisfying read.


I’m currently reading “The Emerald Atlas” by John Stephens and I have a nasty suspicion that this to will turn out to be “Book one” of a series too!

Books I’ve read so far….


Guide to Renewing Your Overdue Books Online

If you have recently received one of the new Overdue email reminders you might have noticed the weblink which takes you to your own account where you can renew your overdues yourself.

You can do this just once and then if you need the book longer you will need to visit the MRC to arrange this.

Watch this video to see what happens when you click on the weblink, and how to renew your books.

Drop in on DEAR 2.4

The current focus of the Authors Page on the DEAR Homepage are…


all the authors whose books are included in this years Booked Up!




The Booked Up titles are available  to borrow from the MRC


Book of the Week




 Click HERE to find out if this book is still available from the MRC.


Year 7 Information Literacy Programme: Subject Index

Continuing from the last IL session, which introduced all 12 classes of Year 7 students to Dewey Decimal Classification, I showed them the Subject Index.


I started with a brief recap by making use of the podcast I had previously created about the 10 main classes in the MRC.





 I then gave them a story which had some missing words (those naughty book worms again!). I demonstrated how I could look up the missing word in the Subject Index to find the “magic” or Dewey Shelf number. They then had to fill all the gaps using the Subject Index, learning their way around it as they did the activity.


The Subject Index is available in an editable format from Carel Press it is called the “Find it Index”


A-Z of Internet Tools and Techniques: Letter J

So here we are with Letter J of the tools and techniques which you can use to get the most out of the Internet.

J stands for….


Jing is a screen capture tool that allows you to make a narrated video showing how to do something on a computer. It records your mouse, and everything you click on and show on your screen.
Ever had a  conversation over the phone with your parents, trying to explain to them how to open the attachment you sent in your last email? (“Double-click on the attachment icon!” – “There isn’t one!”…): this trick could help you solve this kind of situation and, more importantly, some work-related issues like having to explain over and over again to your students or friends how to do something on the computer.
Alternatives are Cam Studio,  Screencast-o-matic,  Camtasia and Lightshot.

Bibliography Scott, Elspeth. (2009). All kinds of e-verything. School Librarian. 57