Ten Book Tuesday... Read Graphic (Novels)

Okay, first thing first. A graphic novel is not simply a longer version of a comic book, but a serialised comic can be published in a graphic novel format. Graphic novels are usually stand-alone stories, so they can be read in their entirety in a single book.

And if you think graphic novels are nothing but spandex and superheroes, think again. Here is a selection of ten classic and up-and-coming graphic novels for the seasoned fan to expand their horizons, or for newcomers keen to dip a toe into a diverse new medium of storytelling.

Considered by some to be the penultimate classic of graphic novels, in the multi-award winning Sandman Neil Gaiman weaves together ancient mythology, folklore and fairy tales. Volume one tells the story of an occultist who attempts to capture Death in order to bargain for eternal life, but who captures Death’s younger brother, Dream, instead.

Persepolis is the best-selling and internationally acclaimed visual memoir of Marjane Satrapi. The novel tells the story of Satrapi’s childhood in Tehran during the Islamic Revolution, exploring the contradictions between private life and public life in a country plagued by political upheaval. Edgy, candid, sad, and joyful; Persepolis is unforgettable.

This is where the acclaimed television series began. Kirkman’s Walking Dead has redefined the survival horror genre. Led by former police-officer Rick Grimes, a diverse band of survivors look for a future in a world that no longer has one. It is far more than an apocalyptic zombie tale; it is a story that questions what it means to live in a world populated by the dead.

From Hell is the New York Times bestselling graphic novel set in the mind of a madman whose savagery and violence gave birth to the 20th century: Jack the Ripper. Detailing the events leading up to the Whitechapel killings, and the infamous murders themselves, this dark masterpiece of historical fiction was adapted into a major motion picture starring Johnny Depp.

Acclaimed suspense novelist and New York Times best-selling author Joe Hill creates in Locke & Key a unique dark fantasy world set in a New England mansion, complete with doors that transform all who dare walk through them, and home to a hate-filled and relentless creature. It is a tragic but uplifting story of a family living in the aftermath of loss.

Pulitzer Prize-winning Maus is widely considered a classic and profound story of the Holocaust. Art Spiegelman anthropomorphises the characters (Nazis are cats, Jews become mice) in the tale-within-a-tale story of his father, Vladek Spiegelman, a Jewish survivor of Hitler’s Europe, and himself as he tries to come to terms with his tortured family history.

One of the most critically acclaimed series of the last decade, Y the Last Man is at once humorous and socially relevant. It is the story of the only human survivor of a plague targeting every mammal possessing a Y chromosome. In his travels Yorick, the last man, is accompanied by a mysterious government agent, a brilliant young geneticist and his pet monkey, Ampersand.

The sell-out hit Revival starts on a day in rural central Wisconsin when the dead come back to life. Officer Dana Cypress must deal with the aftermath: media scrutiny, religious zealots and government quarantine. While the living have to learn to deal with those who are supposed to be dead, Dana is also trying to investigate the murder of her recently-returned sister.

The adaption of this coming-of-age graphic novel won the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival in 2013. Blue is the Warmest Colour is about Clementine: a French high school student who finds love in an unexpected place. When she meets Emma, a blue-haired punkish girl, Clementine finds herself in a relationship that will test her friendships, her family, and her own ideas about herself and her identity.

Blankets is an autobiographic tale of sibling rivalry between brothers growing up in the isolated countryside, and the budding romance of two lovers in the face of falling from grace and faith. The novel garnered numerous accolades, including Eisner, Harvey, and Ignatz Awards for Best Graphic Novel and Best Cartoonist. 

Seven Deadly Sins Book discussion: Gluttony. So, what's on the menu?

Are you a literary glutton? This is defined as spending as much time reading as many books as you possibly can, indulging your insatiable appetite for reading. If so, come along to a Seven Deadly Sins Gluttony book discussion.
On the menu for the Seven Deadly Sins Gluttony Book Discussion are books with gluttony themes, door stoppers (a.k.a. big books, 500+ pages), and books you just have to keep reading because you can't put them down!
Gluttony, just like reading, is also often associated with food, so we will also discuss foodie fiction and novels with recipes. A literary feast!
Afternoon tea/ light supper is provided.

Seven Deadly Sins Gluttony Book Discussion

Miranda Library
Wednesday 16 July
Book online now or call Miranda Library 9524 8217

Sutherland Library
Wednesday 30 July
 9710 0351
Book online now or call Sutherland Library 9710 0351

The Great Aussie Book Prize, 2014.

Barnardos Australia believes that reading and literacy is vital for children to reach their full potential. But while we’re a nation of book readers, too often we just don’t realise that we have some of the best writers, and stories, in the world. So Barnados have teamed up with Australian Voices in Print, an organisation dedicated to promoting Australian books and writers, to launch The Great Aussie Book Prize to unearth even more fresh new home-grown talent.
They are looking for inspiring true-life stories from everyday Australians, and feature Aussie family life, in whatever form that takes.
The story judged the best and the most likely to succeed in the marketplace by our team of experienced judges will win the prize of having their manuscript published in print, ebook and audio form with a negotiated advance and royalties with a well-known Australian publisher. The winner will also be represented by one of the country’s best-known agents.
Everyone’s $50 entry fees go to Barnardos Australia, the Nation’s leading child protection charity, to help them continue to raise funds for Australian children in desperate need of safe and loving families and homes.
For more information or an entry form go to www.greataussiebookprize.com.au

Entries accepted from June1 to August 31, with the winner announced by November 30.

Expand your family tree with online databases

It's time to discover the most popular family history databases.  We will look at three databases on offer when you visit the Library.  You will probably have heard about with the first two, Ancestry.com and Findmypast.   The other to look at is Internet History Resources (IHR).

 If you have not used any of them before the databases offer enormous amounts of information for the family researcher!

Want to know more about your family connections?  Then Ancestry.com is a great place to start.  The Library can provide access to the Library edition  (distributed by Proquest) of this database for use in the Library.
Ancestry Library Edition logo

Make sure you have collected some information about your family to get started.  However if you are new to family history research take a look at the help and how to get started guides in the Learning Center.
If you go to the Card catalog and filter the collections by selecting Australia in the Location you will see a list of all the databases available to search.  By hovering your mouse over the title a pop up box will appear providing information about the database.

It is always best to start with yourself and work backwards. Ancestry.com allows you to enter details as basic as first and last names.  

It is always a good idea to have a year of birth for each person you are looking for.  If you don't know a guess is acceptable as there is a  search option to check  many years either side of the year you nominate.

Have a good look at the search screen to become familiar with the options available to you.  

Just remember there are many ways to get to the information you are looking for with Ancestry.com and because it is an American database first and foremost make sure if you only want to search in Australian databases to select Australia as the location.  Some databases can even be searched by state.

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Findyourpast also allows the new family history researcher to explore their past but the databases are much smaller in number.  It is good for military records as well as immigration from the UK as it links with its sister database there.

Find My Past Logo 
You will notice that the search strategy is the same as Ancestry.com

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Findyourpast is a database which can be used in conjunction with Ancestry.com to complement sources available.  Those who have done some research will know that it may be necessary  to use many sources when you are searching for your ancestors.

The final database to look at is different in many ways to the two already explored.  Internet History Resources(IHR) is a very old database and relates to a very small set of information sources.  

Internet History Resources          The datasets have been extracted from sources such as directories like Sands as well as  Police and Govenrment Gazettes.  

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If you are interested in the places and occupations of your ancestors this database will be useful to you.  It even has information on inquests which provide the date and cause of death for a person.
Enjoy you adventures with family history and if you have any questions please ask Library staff for help!