Listen: Librarian Nicole Yule shares four September holiday reading recommendations with Sam Robinson on Hope Breakfast
With Sydney facing another school holidays in lockdown, librarian Nicole Yule has a number of reading recommendations.
Looking for a new read for the September school holidays? Hope Breakfast’s literary expert Nicole Yule has shared the best reads for the fortnight ahead, with something that will suit everyone.
Fiction for adults
The Thursday Murder Club by Richard Osman
This murder mystery was one of the biggest selling fiction books of 2020. Set in a peaceful retirement village, four unlikely friends meet up weekly to investigate unsolved murders. But when a killing takes place on their very doorstep, the Thursday Murder Club find themselves in the middle of their first live case.
Nicole said she loved this book because it’s simply a lot of fun.
Written by British comedian Richard Osman, it’s a realistic portrayal of a high-end retirement village, and Nicole found herself laughing numerous times while reading it. As one would expect from a murder mystery, there are lots of twists and turns, and there ends up being multiple murders by the end of the book. And the bonus is, that the book’s sequel The Man Who Died Twice, has just been released.
Non-fiction for adults
Phosphorescence: On Awe, Wonder And Things That Sustain You When The World Goes Dark by Julia Baird
Nicole read this book during the first lockdown in 2020, and found it to be a huge help when a family member fell seriously ill.
Journalist Julia Baird looks at the importance of finding awe, wonder, and light during times of darkness in our lives. The book also looks at the importance of nature, and how it can help us during times of difficulty. Other ideas explored include the importance of silence, of accepting who we truly are, and the importance of friendship and those we do life with. Phosphorescence also won the Australian Book Industry “Book of the Year” award earlier in 2021.
Robin Hood series by Robert Muchamore
While Robert Muchamore is best known for writing for an older teenage audience, Nicole said that this series will please younger teens (Year 7 and above).
This puts a modern spin on the classic tale of Robin Hood, and is set in current-day Loxley – a town that has been hit hard with lots of people losing their jobs and finding themselves broke. There’s the requisite baddies: Sheriff of Nottingham and Guy Gisborne who are running illegal schemes to build up their own fortunes. They used to be friends with Robin’s dad but when he tries to stand up to them he’s framed for robbery and arrested. Robin and his brother Little John then go on the run, and Robin ends up in Sherwood Forest.
Nicole said that the the characters are familiar but the storyline is different, with a female Sherriff of Nottingham, and Robin quite versed with computer hacking.
Cat Wants… series by P.Crumble and Lucinda Gifford
Nicole – a cat lover herself – said that anyone who has ever owned a cat will identify with these picture books focused on a cat named Kevin who doesn’t really know what he wants.
In each book (The Cat Wants Cuddles, The Cat Wants Custard, The Cat Wants a Castle), he starts out either wanting or not wanting something and generally changes his mind halfway through the book. And, in typical cat fashion, no one can force him to do what he doesn’t want to do or convince him to change his mind.
Nicole said she found these books to be similar in style to the Diary of a Wombat series where you have a very determined wombat who manages to get the humans to do whatever she wants them to do. These books could promote some good conversations with children about how sometimes the things we don’t want to do, or are worried about, end up being what we really like to do.
Hear more about these books from Nicole Yule in the player above.