Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Top 5 display books I stole from Manukau Library's shelves

List by Tosca

"A book must be an ice-axe to break the seas frozen inside our soul."
- Franz Kafka

One of the best things about working upstairs from a library is that I can pop down and randomly grab books left, right and centre. One of the worst things about working upstairs from a library is that I can pop down and randomly grab books left, right and centre. Many years ago I discovered that I am forever fatally attracted to books: titles, covers, writers, smell of new pages, smell of old pages...if it's a part of a book (the spine, the blurb, the font...) I will love it to death. And then some. I think that Manukau Library (the branch downstairs from me) does a fantastic job of keeping their display shelves topped up. They must do, because I am forever risking their ire to raid them and leave them empty. Today's selection is little more than the top 5 of their display books that I felt just begged to be read!

Taschen's 100 all-time favorite movies. [Volume 1] : 1915-1959 / edited by Jürgen Mülle
From horror to romance, noir to slapstick, adventure to tragedy, epic to musical, western to new wave, all genres are represented in this compendium. Chronological entries each include a synopsis, cast/crew listings, technical information, actor/director bios, trivia, and lists of awards, as well as film stills, production photos, and the original poster for each film. The chapter for each decade begins with an introduction exploring the historical and social context of films made in that era. -- From publisher description.

Tosca's comment: I'm a sucker for old films. Plain and simple. And I plan to make time to hunt up a lot of the titles in this I haven't seen and watch them. Total feelgood factor.

Bryn's kitchen : 5 brilliant ways to cook 20 great ingredients / Bryn Williams ; with Kay Plunkett-Hogge ; photographs by Jonathan Gregson

"I'm a great believer, too, in cooking from the heart and soul. If there's a missing ingredient in a dish, it could be love! I really do believe that. And in the sharing of food. What's the point of choosing ingredients, creating a dish and laying a beautiful table if you have no one to share your food with?"

Hailing from Denbigh in North Wales, Bryn learnt to appreciate food and its origins from an early age, shooting and fishing with his father and uncle, and digging for potatoes for dinner. In Bryn's World, the ingredient is the star - the book breaks down into 20 chapters, each featuring a favourite ingredient, which is cooked five different ways and graded from simple to challenging.

Tosca's comment: Totally shallow choice! I like Bryn Williams and I enjoy watching/reading what he can do with food. I don't have a hope in Hades of reproducing it but I love to imagine I could.

Cloudy with a chance of marriage / Kieran Kramer

"You're more luscious than any tropical fruit," he whispered.
"I am?"
"Oh, yes."

After a disastrous marriage, Jilly Jones, now living in London and working in a charming bookshop, is perfectly content with her newfound independence until she meets Captain Stephen Arrow, a dashing naval officer. Book 3 in Kramer's 'Impossible bachelors' series.

Tosca's comment: Here purely for the giggle factor! How can I resist a title like that? Although *doubtful look* I'm not sure I'd appreciate being likened to fruit. I'm hoping he didn't mean she resembled an Amazon Tree Grape or a Horned Melon *disgruntled look*

Poems and songs / Leonard Cohen ; edited by Robert Faggen

Love is a fire
It burns everyone
It disfigures everyone
It is the world's excuse
for being ugly

Leonard Cohen has evolved into an international cult figure who transcends genres and generations. This is a selection of his poetry and songs.

Tosca's comment: I am not a fan, nor a non-fan, of Cohen's music. It has just never appealed to me. I have always considered him a poet, much like I do Bob Dylan, which always drives some people nuts when I say that because they passionately tell me he is a genius. And I believe he is, but I prefer to read his lyrics/poems rather than hear them put to music. That, to me, is his true magical ability - his writing.

Playing the shape game / Anthony Browne with Joe Browne

Dear Anthony Browne,
Is Willy a real person, or did you make him up?

A fascinating insight into the life and work of Anthony Browne, the current Children's Laureate. Anthony Browne is one of the world's most celebrated creators of picture books, with classics such as Voices in the Park, Willy and Hugh and Gorilla to his name. He has won the Kate Greenaway Medal twice, the Kurt Maschler "Emil" Award three times and in 2000 became the first British illustrator to win the Hans Christian Andersen Award. In recognition of his outstanding contribution to children's literature, he was appointed the UK Children's Laureate for 2009 to 2011 and to celebrate both this honour and his glorious career, is presented a major retrospective of his life and work. Anthony shares insights into his childhood, his training, and his career as an artist, in this captivating memoir featuring over 200 illustrations.

Tosca's comment: Students at the former Auckland College of Education (I worked in the library there) introduced me to Browne's work and I have enjoyed his books ever since. There is always a picture within a picture within a picture, and the detail is incredible. I believe that there is something so terribly poignant about his artwork. It always makes me feel quite teary and reflective. I'm pretty sure it's not just hormones, being a girl and all. I enjoyed flipping through this book and reading, in his own words, where the ideas for stories and images come from.


Kelly M said...

I am loving this list because one of the authors shares a first name with my future son - and it's the first time I've seen it outside of a name book, yay!

catatonia said...

Bryn! Welsh, yes?

Kelly M said...

Good guess (although I guess it was the more uncommon name there) :) We are still undecided between Bryn and Brynn, and still trying to come up with a middle name to go with. We have some welsh in there somewhere in my family tree :)

catatonia said...

I heart Welsh names. They're so lyrical sounding. I am a Torchwood fan, though, and highly biased as a result :) Oh no you have to have Ianto as a name! You just *have* to!