A Frog he would a-wooing go

Capital Collections (www.capitalcollections.org) provides a window into Edinburgh Libraries’ Special Collections and gives the public opportunity to view photographs, illustrations and books in a manner that makes them much more accessible to a wider audience.  The latest Capital Collections exhibition displays a digitised view of one such special book, ‘A Frog he would a-wooing go’ brimming with gorgeous, colourful images by the acclaimed and widely celebrated artist Randolph Caldecott (1846-1886).

‘A Frog he would a-wooing go’, front cover

The book was first published in 1883 as part of a series of highly successful picture books illustrated by Caldecott for children. His success continued throughout the 19th century and by 1884, sales of Caldecott’s Nursery Rhymes, which by this point consisted of twelve books, reached 867,000 copies leading him to international acclaim. Despite his relatively short life time, Caldecott work is considered to have been transformative in the nature of children’s book in the Victorian era. Caldecott is considered a leading figure in children’s literature with his work considered part of the influential ‘nursery triumvirate’, along with Walter Crane and Kate Greenway. Following the popularity of these authors it became the norm for children’s books to consist of more images and less text.

‘”Pray, Mr. Frog, will you give us a song?”
Heigho, says Rowley!
“But let it be something that’s not very long.”
With a rowley-powley, gammon and spinach,
Heigho, says Anthony Rowley!’
from ‘A Frog he would a-wooing go’

This book tells the story of a Frog, with the help of his friend the Rat, as he attempts to gain the affection of a Mouse. His books such as the one presented in this exhibition, are praised for their sense of fluidity and repeated phrases, which creates a sense of movement from one page to the other, a style which appeals to children. Not only do Caldecott’s books have a bright, humorous and inviting nature, their brilliance lies in his ability to express subtle but profound meaning in stories dominated by image and only supplemented with text.

The Capital Collections exhibition attempts to highlight the brilliance and vibrancy of Caldecott’s work. Although originally marketed at children, the images in this book are full of life and can be enjoyed by young and old alike, those with an interest in the history of children’s illustration and those who simply appreciate Caldecott’s artistic style.

Browse all the pages from this delightful Victorian illustrated children’s book on Capital Collections.

Ashlea House in the Borders

We’d like to introduce you to a unique set of images we have in our collection, made available to view on Capital Collections.

The images are taken in the grounds of Ashlea House in Stow, in the Borders. Ashlea House was the summer home of the well-known Edinburgh bookseller, James Thin. Born in Edinburgh in 1824, he served as an apprentice to bookseller James McIntosh who had a shop at 5 North College Street. In 1848 he founded the book shop that bore his name. Situated on South Bridge, opposite the University’s Old College, Thin’s was the main academic bookshop in Edinburgh for 150 years, remaining in the same family until 2002 when it was taken over by Blackwells.

Ashlea House, Stow – c1910

In 1849 he married Catherine Traquair and they had seven sons. Catherine died in 1869 aged 47. In 1870, James Thin purchased a plot of land in Stow in the Scottish Borders, and had a house built, which was completed in 1873 and named Ashlea.
In 1885, at the age of 61 he married a farmer’s daughter Elizabeth Darling who died in 1905. James Thin died on 15th April 1915 at his Edinburgh home in Lauder Road aged 91.

James Thin in the garden of Ashlea House – c1910

The images gathered her are all autochromes, a type of early colour photography which gives the pictures a beautiful painterly quality. Autochrome was patented in 1903 by the Lumiere Brothers in France and first marketed in 1907. Before then colour photography remained in its infancy and the process was clumsy and complicated. Their new technology quickly took the world by storm to become the first viable method of creating images in colour.

Stow Parish Church and Ashlea House – c1910

Stereoscopic Autochromes were especially popular. Usually of a small size, they were most commonly viewed in a small hand-held box type stereoscope. Having made the Autochrome Lumiere technique portable the brothers’ invention meant photographers could travel all over the world capturing images of cultures never seen in colour before.

Garden of Ashlea House – c1910

We hope you enjoy the few images we have featured here, to see the complete set, visit the exhibition on Capital Collections.

Read together online

We are all finding innovative ways to communicate and keep in touch at the moment. Why not consider forming a virtual book group with your friends and family? Edinburgh Libraries provides a range of multi-access ebooks and audiobooks that you can all read or listen to together. Then you can use Facetime, What’s App, Skype or the phone etc to chat to each about the book!

OverDrive – Big Library Read
Running till the 13 April, OverDrive’s latest Big Library Read allows unlimited users to download the ebook or audiobook version of Funny, You Don’t Look Autistic by Michael McCreary. Like many others on the autism spectrum, stand-up comic Michael McCreary has been told by more than a few well-meaning folks that he doesn’t “look” autistic. But, as he’s quick to point out in this memoir, autism “looks” different for just about everyone.

OverDrive – always available ebook titles
A small, but perfectly formed collection of unlimited access ebooks from Canongate publishers is available on the homepage of OverDrive and Libby, Featuring fiction and non-fiction titles from authors such as Matt Haig, Caro Ramsay, Jess Kidd, Ambrose Parry, Scarlett Thomas and Patricia MacDonald theres something for everyone.

RBdigital – always available audiobook titles
Hundreds of the audiobooks available through our RBdigital service are multi-access – so no queues. Enjoy instant access to authors such as Val McDermid, Santa Montefiore, Tony Parsons, Jeffery Deaver, Marian Keyes, Ian Rankin and Jane Fallon. RBdigital can be played on your  phone, tablet or computer.

 

uLIBRARY – Talking Books Book Club
Listen to the fantastic Holding by Graham Norton on our uLIBRARY audiobook service from 1 April. Norton’s masterful debut is an intelligently crafted story of love, secrets and loss set in an idyllic Irish village, where a bumbling investigator has to sort through decades of gossip and secrets to solve a mysterious crime.

 

BorrowBox – Campaign titles
A new feature to BorrowBox audiobooks is the addition of campaign titles – so a cracking audiobook that everyone wants to read, available to everyone to download. We’ve got two brilliant campaign titles starting on the 1 April – The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying by Marie Kondo (the perfect book to listen to when we are stuck indoors – you will transform your house!) and from Alexander McCall Smith, The Quiet Side of Passion (one of the immensely popular Isabel Dalhousie series).

Information about using our fantastic suite of Library2go downloadable services can be found on our Your Library website.

Access library services from home

Many of us will be staying indoors over the coming months due to the current health crisis. Edinburgh Libraries provide a range of online services that you can access from home that can help keep you occupied and entertained during these difficult times.

Library2go provides a fantastic range of free ebooks, audiobooks, newspapers and magazines that you can use on your tablet, smart phone or computer. Sign in using your Edinburgh Libraries membership number and PIN. Forgotten your PIN? Use our PIN Reset service. Not a library member? Use our online Join the Library service.

Newspapers – get access to your daily newspaper without leaving the house. You can get 250 UK newspapers including the Edinburgh Evening news, The Scotsman, The Herald, Scottish Daily Mail, The Guardian and the Daily Record on our PressReader service.

eBooks – thousands of best-selling books for adults, teens and kids can be found on OverDrive. Read through the OverDrive website your computer or with their brilliant Libby app on a phone or tablet.

Audiobooks – listen to best-selling books with fantastic narrators on our OverDrive, RBdigital, BorrowBox and uLIBRARY sites.These four downloadable audiobook services give you a wide range of adult, teen and children’s titles to choose from.

Magazines –  hundreds of UK and worldwide magazines are available to read through RBdigital and PressReader. So whether you’re in to Hello!, Amateur Gardening, Good Housekeeping, Auto Express, TV Times, BBC Good Food or Amateur Photography we’ve got it covered.

Please pass on this information to anyone you think might benefit from these services who maybe aren’t already members of the library. Or consider helping a relative or friend get started.

There are clear instructions on how to use all these services available from https://yourlibrary.edinburgh.gov.uk. Any further questions please contact informationdigital@edinburgh.gov.uk or phone 0131 242 8047.

Baby STEM at Muirhouse Library

Once Upon a Time…
…as all great stories are supposed to start. Not too long before Christmas 2018, a BIG box of resources arrived at Muirhouse Library. At first, we were a bit confused, we stood and looked at the box, we scratched heads and we wondered what to do.

So we rummaged, looking at this and that, until we stumbled upon a box of Lego Duplo. It wasn’t the biggest box of Duplo we had seen – and it didn’t have lots of pieces – but it looked fun. It’s name was Animal Bingo and from this little box, Baby STEM* was born (* in case you don’t know STEM stands for science, technology, engineering and math!!).

Our journey begins with Bookbug…
…Bookbug sessions are popular at Muirhouse Library and we all know it has positive effects on early years child development. Parents often would stay after Bookbug for a chat and a cup tea. This gave us a bright idea!

As parents were already in the library, we could use this as a chance to try out our new activity. So when Bookbug finished, we asked the adults (after their cup of tea of course!) if they would like to stay and try out a this new activity called Baby STEM.

All the grownups thought ‘oh what a grand idea!’ In the first session we used the Animal Bingo. Out of the box there are eight animals to build with flash card instructions. Afterwards everyone asked if we could do it again next time and some even asked where they could get their own set of Animal Bingo. We were all so happy that everyone had a good time.

And finishes with a busy morning…
…since that first Baby STEM session, it has become a regular activity. The most popular activity with the babies is playing with the Lego Duplo. It has been fantastic and well received! Not only have we noticed that Baby STEM builds on the skills we encourage in Bookbug, but also it builds on some other skills too such as:

  • Hand eye coordination
  • Shape and Colour recognition
  • Matching and Counting
  • Taking Turns
  • Social development with other children
  • Adult-children interaction

From Baby STEM, we have seen children develop from struggling to find the right part when prompted and having difficulty with the fine motor control needed to put the blocks together. To being able to follow the flash cards and build everything themselves!

A Tuesday or a Friday morning at Muirhouse Library for our youngest customers starts with Bookbug at 10:30am, wrapped up with Goodbye babies and a sticker. Followed by short intermission for juice and a snack at 11:00am and then onto some Baby Stem around 20 to 30 minutes.

Then it is nap time for EVERYONE, and we all lived happily ever after.

Join in with our Digital Fun Day – Saturday 12th October

We are finishing off Libraries Week 2019 in style with a Digital Fun Day! On Saturday 12th October you can come along to Central Library’s mezzanine and get help setting up Library2go services on your device or your children can join in with a fantastic range of fun events –

Kids & Teen Events

  • Introduction to Micro:bits with CodeBase Stirling 10.30-11.30am
    Use pocket-sized computers to create simple games (ages 8-15 yrs)
  • Introduction to Coding with CodeBase Stirling 11.30-12.30pm
    Use codecombat to explore coding basics (ages 8-15 yrs)
  • Bee-Bot Robot Fun 1.30-3.30pm (drop-in, no need to book)*
    Program the bees to guide them along paths and mazes (ages 5-10 yrs)
  • Digital Bracelets Craft Event 2-3pm*
    Learn the basics of coding by making binary bead bracelets (ages 7-12 yrs)

* Children under 8 years old must be accompanied by an adult.

Adult Events

  • Library2go Drop-in 11am-1pm and 1.30-3.30pm (drop-in, no need to book)
    Bring your tablet, smart phone or laptop along for help getting set up with the library’s ebook, audiobook, magazine and newspaper services.

All events are free, book your place on Eventbrite –        http://www.edinburghreads.eventbrite.co.uk

Contact informationdigital@edinburgh.gov.uk or – 0131 242 8047 if you have any questions regarding these events.

Macmillan Cancer Information and Support Service

Libraries have always been a place where people could get the help and information that they needed. That is why we are so proud to be able to offer access to the  Macmillan@Edinburgh Library service which provides support for patients, their families and carers.

Finding out that you or someone close to you has cancer can be a difficult time and sometimes you just need someone to talk to. Macmillan@Edinburgh Libraries have highly trained volunteers who will listen to your concerns and offer free, confidential support and information. As well as being good listeners they will provide you with leaflets to take away on all aspects of cancer and can help you access services such as counselling, transport to hospital and other support services.

Six of our libraries have Information Point stands with helpful leaflets that you can take away at any time. Most of these branches also have manned service times where can drop in to talk to one of our volunteers (these new times start from the 1st October)

Portobello Library Mondays 10.30am-2.30pm
Drumbrae Library Tuesday 10.30am-2.30pm
Leith Library  Wednesdays 10.30am-2.30pm
Craigmillar Library Thursdays 10.30am-2.30pm
Morningside Library Fridays 10.30am-2.30pm
Central Library Information Point only

For more information visit www.edinburgh.gov.uk/macmillanlibraries or email macmillan.libraries@edinburgh.gov.uk or phone 0131 242 8125

Macmillan Coffee Mornings – Friday 27th September

Join in with the world’s biggest coffee morning! Tomorrow people across the UK will be hosting coffee mornings at home, work or in the community, collecting donations for drinks and edible treats which are all given to Macmillan Cancer Support. And Edinburgh Libraries is no exception!

Newington Library will be hosting a coffee morning tomorrow from 11am until 1.30pm. There will be lots of homebaking available as well as some savoury items such as pakora and courgette and cheese muffins. They’ll have items available for vegans, vegetarians and lacto-intolerante as well as those with nut allergies!

Leith Library is joining in the fun too from 11-1pm and will have lots of tasy treats available for you to buy. Please pop in to Newington or Leith tomorrow and help support a good cause.

These along with the four other coffee mornings we’ve held this week also help to highlight the Macmillan Cancer Support services that you can access from many of our libraries. Look out for our forthcoming blogpost about this valuable service!

Meet the author event: Ambrose Parry

On the 16th October we will be hosting a special author event in the historic Central Library. Come along to the Reference Library to hear Ambrose Parry (Chris Brookmyre and Marisa Haetzman), discussing their new novel The Art of Dying. This is the second collaboration from this husband and wife team, following the hugely successful The Way of All Flesh. Their collaboration has created truly addictive historical crime novels, filled with period detail recreating a real feel of Victorian Edinburgh.

Ambrose Parry (AKA Chris Brookmyre and Marisa Haetzman)

Chris Brookmyre is the international bestselling and multi-award-winning author of over twenty novels, including Black Widow, winner of both the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year and the McIlvanney Prize for Scottish Crime Novel of the Year. Dr Marisa Haetzman is a consultant anaesthetist of twenty years’ experience, whose research for her Master’s in the History of Medicine uncovered the material upon which this novel was based.

The Art of Dying is set in 1840’s Edinburgh, which was at the forefront of modern medicine, thanks in part to Dr James Simpson’s discovery of chloroform. However, when one of Simpson’s patients is found dead in mysterious circumstances, the medical elite, wary of his growing fame, point to Simpson’s reckless use of chloroform as the cause. With their friend’s reputation in peril, Simpson’s protégé Will Raven and former housemaid Sarah Fisher team up to discover the unthinkable truth behind the dead patient as they try to clear Simpson’s name.

Reference Library

This is a late addition to our Libraries Week programme, the theme of which is “Celebrating libraries in a digital world”. We wanted to feature an author who was hugely popular on our ebook and audiobook platforms and Ambrose Parry fitted the bill perfectly! Their first book The Way of All Flesh is available for unlimited downloads in ebook format through OverDrive and audiobook format on RBdigital and has been downloaded over 400 times by our readers. The Art of Dying is now also available as an ebook on OverDrive and in audio format on BorrowBox.

This free event will run from 7-8.20pm on Wednesday 16th October. Booking is essential. Tickets can be booked at EventBrite and the talk from will be followed by a book signing.

Green Pencil book list highlights

The Green Pencil Award is our annual environmentally-themed creative writing competition. It is open to all P4 to S3-aged children and young people in Edinburgh. The closing date is 11 October 2019 – full instructions for entering can be found on our information page.

Looking for some inspiration for our Green Pencil competition? Each of our libraries have a collection of books on environmental challenges facing Scotland and the world today, along with a range of fiction featuring a range of animals native to Scotland. Here are 6 of our favourites that you can order online or in your local library.

Let’s investigate plastic pollution by Ruth Owen
Stories about plastic pollution is everywhere just now, and nobody is more passionate about solving this than children. This title offers a whole range of facts, discussion topics, and information to help young enthusiasts start their own investigations.

 

The Baby Otter Rescue by Michelle Sloan
If there is an animal needing rescued, the Animal Adventure Club are here to help. Whilst helping out at the local nature reserve the club find a baby otter who has been flooded out of his home. The club work together to find his Mum, but there is a heart-warming surprise for them along the way.
Also available as an ebook on OverDrive.

 

The Sound of Whales by Kerr Thomson
Hayley, Fraser and Dunny are reluctantly spending their summer on a wild Scottish island, when the find two bodies on the beach, one of a man and one of a whale. Fraser and Hayley want to solve the mystery but Dunny is inconsolable.
Also available as an ebook on OverDrive.

 


The Bee Book by Charlotte Milner
Did you know that about a third of every mouthful you eat is thanks to our hardworking brilliant bees? This beautiful celebration of bees and their journey from flower to flower is illustrated and written by talented artist Charlotte Milner.
Also available as an ebook on OverDrive.

 

How to Help a Hedgehog and Protect a Polar Bear: 70 simple things you can do for our planet!
Animals and habitats all over the world need our help and this book has some brilliant tips for helping hedgehogs in your own back gardens or advice on how to spread the word to save the endangered animals from further away.

 

Tilly and the Badgers by Joan Lingard
Someone is making badgers fight dogs. Tilly and William are determined to find out if the new boy at school and his family are involved.

 

Friends Against Scams

Edinburgh Libraries are hosting a series of presentations over coming weeks promoting Friends Against Scams, a National Trading Standards initiative, which aims to protect and prevent people from becoming victims of scams and seeks to empower people to take a stand against fraud.

Scams come in many forms – by phone, emails and even text – and the cost to the UK economy is estimated to be between £5 and £10 billion a year!

Did you know?

  • 53% of people over the age of 65 have been targeted by a scam
  • 37% of people have been targeted by a scam five times or more
  • Only 5% of scam victims report the matter appropriately and 22% don’t tell anyone at all
  • 65% have taken no action to protect friends and family

Come along to one of the following sessions and find out about the types of increasingly sophisticated scams that are out there and get sound advice on making sure that you don’t fall for any of them and know how to go about reporting them too.

Community banker, Sam Mooney, will be offering these presentations and Q&A sessions at:

  • Fountainbridge Library – Thursday, June 13th, 3pm
  • Stockbridge Library – Friday, June 14th, 10.30am
  • Central Library – Monday, June 24th, 2.30pm
  • Morningside Library, June 27th, 10.30am

https://www.friendsagainstscams.org.uk/

https://takefive-stopfraud.org.uk/

https://www.actionfraud.police.uk/

 

Coworking business hub opens at Central Library

The Scottish Coworking Network is a new network of business hubs within Scotland’s public libraries, with Edinburgh Central Library being one of the first to join the network. The hubs offer dedicated, business-focused space for aspiring entrepreneurs, sole traders, start-ups and small businesses to work, meet, collaborate and grow.

The space in Central Library has 15 fixed desks and 15 hot desks to choose from. The space also offers a breakout area equipped with comfy sofas, coffee table so you can relax and unwind, or chat and collaborate with other hub members.

The hub offers free wifi and printing facilities and is equipped with basic catering facilities.

Exclusive business workshops, seminars and networking events will be held at Central Library throughout the year.

When you sign up for hot desk or fixed desk membership, you become a member of the Scottish Coworking Network, giving you free access to desk space at hub locations throughout Scotland’s public libraries.

Dedicated, unlimited access to the hub network is available for £35 (+VAT) per month for a hot desk and £50 (+VAT) per month for a fixed desk.

Opening Times:
Mon, Tues & Wed 10am – 8pm
Thu, Fri & Sat 10am – 5pm

For more information, to book your space or a tour of the hub running weekly at 2pm on Wednesday visit scottishcoworking.org.

 

 

Friday afternoon Digital drop-in is back!

 

The Friday afternoon digital drop-in at Central Library will resume from Friday, February 1st, 2 – 4pm.

This is a partnership between the Libraries and Edinburgh University who provide a small team of students to offer 1:1 assistance with any kind of digital issue on any kind of device. No need to book, just drop-in and get help with that headache you have had trying to do something on your laptop, tablet or even your phone.

Volunteers are available between 2 and 4 pm each Friday afternoon on the Mezzanine level of Central Library, George IV Bridge.

 

 

Digital drop-in

In addition to the regular Get Online groups run by the Libraries’, the Digital drop-in delivered in partnership with Edinburgh University has returned to the Central Library. It will run each week on Friday afternoons from 2 – 4pm with student volunteers on hand and offering you the chance to bring along your computing device (be that a laptop, tablet or smartphone) and get help to sort out any difficulties or issues you may be having. We will work with you 1:1 so it can be a very basic problem, like for example, how to send photos by email or text, or possibly something a bit more complicated like how you save and organise all those photos! If you do not have a computing device we can also offer general advice on what to look for or perhaps get you started on the library public access PCs. If you have attended a previous Get Online group or just have a digital issue you need help with, please just come along – you will find us on the Mezzanine level, Central Library.

Remember there are other digital ‘surgeries’ also offered at Central which are specifically about providing assistance with the Libraries’ e-book/audio and e-magazine/newspaper apps and services. These are again on the Mezzanine level, Central Library, every Tuesday 2 – 3.30pm and the first Thursday of the month 10.30am – 12.

Big Library Read – digital book club

The Girl with the Red Balloon by Katherine Locke is this autumn’s Big Library Read and unlimited people will be able to read it from our OverDrive site at the same time from 1st till 15th October. There’s nothing quite like a fantastic young adult novel so join in with the world’s largest digital reading club!

Sixteen year old Ellie Baum feels the weight of history on her when she arrives on a school trip to Berlin. After all, she’s the first member of her family to return since her grandfather’s miraculous escape from a death camp in 1942. One moment she’s contemplating the Berlin Wall Memorial, and the next, she’s yanked back through time to 1988 East Berlin when the Wall is still standing. Ellie becomes caught up in a conspiracy of history and magic when she meets members of an underground guild who use balloons and magic to help people escape over the Wall. When it becomes clear that someone is using dark magic to change history, Ellie must risk everything, including her only way home, to stop them.

Readers can join an online conversation about the book at BigLibraryRead.com. All you need is library membership so you can login with your library card and PIN. Full instructions for using OverDrive can be found on our Your Library website.

Digital drop-in back at Central Library

In addition to the regular Get Online groups run by the Libraries’, the Digital drop-in delivered in partnership with Edinburgh University returns to the Central Library from this Friday, September 28th. It will run each week from 2 – 4pm with student volunteers on hand and offering you the chance to bring along your computing device (be that a laptop, tablet or smartphone) and get help to sort out any difficulties or issues you may be having. We will work with you 1:1 so it can be a very basic problem, like for example, how to send photos by email or text, or possibly something a bit more complicated like how you save and organise all those photos! If you do not have a computing device we can also offer general advice on what to look for or perhaps get you started on the library public access PCs. If you have attended a previous Get Online group or just have a digital issue you need help with, please just come along – you will find us on the Mezzanine level, Central Library.

Remember there are other digital ‘surgeries’ also offered at Central which are specifically about providing assistance with the Libraries’ e-book/audio and e-magazine/newspaper apps and services. These are again on the Mezzanine level, Central Library, every Tuesday 2 – 3.30pm and the first Thursday of the month 10.30am – 12.

Zoe Ball Book Club

We are excited to hear that there’s to be a new TV book club hosted by Zoe Ball starting on ITV the 17th June – perfect if you’re not able to go along to one yourself!

And even better, you can borrow some of the featured titles from our downloadable library services! –

I Am, I Am, I Am by Maggie O’Farrell

Available to download as audiobook from RBdigital

 

 

 

A Necessary Evil by Abir Mukherjee

Available to download as ebook and audiobook from OverDrive

 

 

 

The Sealwoman’s Gift by Sally Magnusson

Available to download on audiobook from uLIBRARY

 

 

 

The Summer of Impossible Things by Rowan Coleman

Available to download as ebook from OverDrive and audiobook from RBdigital

 

 

The Silent Companions by Laura Purcell

Available to download as ebook  from OverDrive

 

 

 

Killer Intent by Tony Kent

Available to download as ebook from OverDrive

 

 

 

Dark Pines by Will Dean

Available to download as ebook from OverDrive

 

 

 

This is Going To Hurt by Adam Kay

Available to download as ebook from OverDrive

 

 

 

Fancy starting your own book group – did you know you can borrow sets of books from the library? Find out how by reading the Book Group Collections blog post.

A serial addiction

There’s only one thing better than a good book and that’s a series of good books!! Who can resist the addictive quality of finding out more about your favourite character and their further adventures. We have some truly fantastic series to follow from our downloadable Library2go services. Here’s just a few to whet your apetite!

The Chronicles of St.Mary’s by Jodi Taylor

A rip roaring ride through time – meet the disaster-magnets of St Mary’s Institute of Historical Research as they ricochet around History. Their aim is to observe and document – to try and find the answers to many of History’s unanswered questions…and not to die in the process. eBooks available on OverDrive.

 

Shetland Island Series by Ann Cleeves

Who would have thought Shetland was such a dangerous place to live! This bestselling series of crime novel features Detective Jimmy Perez  investigating a series of grisly murders. Audiobooks available on uLIBRARY and eBooks on OverDrive.

 

The Clifton Chronicles by Jeffrey Archer

Read Jeffrey Archer’s tales following the rising fortunes and crises of the Clifton family through the 20th Century.
Audiobooks available on uLIBRARY and eBooks on OverDrive.

 

 

Jack Reacher Series by Lee Child

This hugely popular series features Jack Reacher, a former major in the US Army Military Police, who roams the United States investigating suspicious and frequently dangerous situations.
Audiobooks available on BorrowBox and further audiobooks and eBooks on OverDrive.

 

Outlander Series by Diana Gabaldon

Claire Randall, is whisked through time from the 1940s to 18th century Scotland and finds adventure and romance.
Audiobooks available on RBdigital and eBooks on OverDrive.

 

 

Maisie Dobbs Mystery Series by Jacqueline Winspear

In 1929 London,  Maisie Dobbs starts her own business as a psychologist and investigator. Get hooked with this unique and gripping historical mystery series.
Audiobooks available on RBdigital and eBooks on OverDrive.

 

 

Seven Sisters by Lucinda Riley

The Seven Sisters is a saga of love and loss based on the legends of the Seven Sisters star constellation. After their adoptive father dies each sister is handed a clue to their true heritage, each book tells one of the sister’s stories.
Audiobooks available on RBdigital and  eBooks on OverDrive.

 

DI Helen Grace by MJ Arlidge

Read about Helen Grace, woman with a hefty caseload. A Detective Inspector, she runs the Major Incident Team and grapples with murders, rapes, trafficking and more besides.
Audiobooks available on uLIBRARY and  eBooks on OverDrive.

Libraries’ Get Online service: continuing our conversation with a learner and volunteer

We introduced you last week to two people who have been involved in the Libraries’ Get Online service. Joyce Young recently completed a series of sessions with volunteer Emily Johnson, learning how to use her iPad. We talked with them about how they had each found the experience.

Joyce, do you think being able to work with the same person 1:1 was important? What kind of things have you learned during the sessions?

It was great to be sitting and working just 1:1. I did try classes years ago when I first had my laptop but, honestly, there must have been fifteen people in the class and you had to make the best of it when the teacher could come to you; really, you were going but not learning an awful lot each time. The thing is too that family often just don’t have the time in their own busy lives to help or are living away so it makes it difficult. However, since I’ve come to the library, every week I came I learned a lot of new things – I can do so many things now I couldn’t before, it’s hard to think of them all –

I use apps like the bus tracker, I look up vouchers for restaurants on the internet and I’ve even recently made holiday arrangements and printed out my own boarding pass for a flight.

It really has been so worthwhile and having your own tutor for the sessions was a big part of it – I felt I got to know Emily over the weeks. I could get Emily to go over things again to make sure I had understood them and was doing things properly. I could make notes and check them with her and she’d give me ‘homework’ too! I know I’ve still got a lot I could learn about and use but I now have so much more confidence that I can do it”. To give you another example I had a plumbing problem in the house – I got onto my iPad and looked up a thing called Trusted Traders that a neighbour had told me about; I found a plumber through that and it’s been fixed. I was really happy with that

and that is all about using the internet and the benefits it can bring. . . .

Well, yes, definitely; I find now I will use the iPad every day. I would say it has made a big difference in so many ways. Now it’s great staying in touch with my son – he travels a lot and he’s sending me photos and updates from where he is, it’s marvellous! One thing leads to another . . . I then learnt how to save photos from an email into the photos app so it’s all organised and I can find them. I tell you I could make a list of so many things like that that I have learned so I’m so glad my son signed me up – best Christmas present ever!

Joyce: “I find now I will use the iPad every day. I would say it has made a big difference in so many ways”.

So you feel being able to use the iPad helps you feel more “in touch” with things around you?

Yes, I think it does. It makes me feel like I’ve caught up with things a wee bit – I’d recommend it especially for older people who are wary of trying the internet. What we need is the kind of help I’ve had at the library and it opens up a whole new world to you

“The thing is there are so many things you can’t do or are getting much more difficult to do without the internet”.

I’m now looking at shopping online for instance. I mean, as I get older, it would be a lot easier, I can’t carry heavy things or even getting them into the car is difficult, so, yes, ordering it through the internet and having it delivered makes sense. I’m sure I’m going to be doing that soon!

Emily: Yes, that’s right, Joyce now has the Amazon app on her iPad and we almost bought something!! We went right through the process so Joyce would be able to start using that or other shopping sites and apps. When we started, I remember Joyce saying to me she felt like she was so far behind with all the new technology that she’d never catch up and it was too big an obstacle to overcome – but she has done it!

The final part of our conversation about Get Online with Joyce and Emily will be here next week

If you are interested in finding out more about Get Online in the libraries or you would like to book a place click/tap here

Macmillan information and engagement event

We are delighted to invite you to Macmillan@Edinburgh Libraries first information and engagement event at Central Library.

Come along from 11am-2pm on Thursday 15th March to hear from Michaelagh Broadbent, author of My Daddy is a Superhero; and John Young, author of Farewell Tour of a Terminal Optimist;  talking about differing cancer perspectives.

A light lunch and refreshments are available throughout the day; along with information from a range of Macmillan programmes and cancer charities. Our programme team and some of our lovely volunteers will be on hand to answer any questions you may have about our programme, and copies of our annual report will be available on the day. We hope that you can find the time to drop in.

Please book your place on Eventbrite