Friday, July 10, 2020

Spotlight 32: By the Sea

In today's Library Spotlight we're looking along the shoreline and out to sea. Read on for bucketloads of beach reads, children's activities, and news of some great upcoming events. 

Lockdown LitFest

Lockdown LitFest is an ongoing series of online author events, featuring interviews with big-name novelists and non-fiction writers.

Today at 3pm (Friday 10 July), endurance swimmer Lewis Pugh will be talking about protecting the oceans, his extraordinary experiences of swimming in extreme conditions, and how we can all "achieve our impossible" - even if swimming the English Channel isn't on our bucket list!

The talk will be available to watch on Lockdown LitFest's YouTube channel afterwards, along with all their previous streams. All are free to watch. Previous speakers include Prue Leith, Anthony Horowitz, and (linking back to a coastal theme) The House on the Edge of the Cliff author Carol Drinkwater.

Creativity During Corona
Fish and chips, vinegar burning nostrils, candy floss, rides, bingo, crop tops and dubious sandals. So much to observe and get creative with at the seaside.
In the last of this week's Creativity During Corona posts, Claire from Central Library has some coastal poems and writing prompts to transport you to the seaside and spark your creativity.

Check out the latest activities and share your creations with us on our Facebook page.

The land artist

Throughout this week we've been focusing on the theme of art on our blog and social media. We love this short film about the incredible creations of Pembrokeshire "land artist" Jon Foreman, who uses the beach as his canvas.

Deco and deckchairs

Take a look inside the "Art Deco by the Sea" exhibition at Norwich's Sainsbury Centre with this BBC Culture in Quarantine special - available to watch on iPlayer.

Explorin the changing look of the British seaside holiday in the 1920s and 30s, this online tour showcases the beautiful items featured in the exhibition, including gorgeous railway posters and post-war changes to beach fashion.

There's lots of retro charm to enjoy here - and not a saucy seaside postcard in sight!

Adventure Book Festival

Sheffield Libraries' Adventure Book Festival starts next week on Monday 13 July - so if you haven't checked out the programme and booked your tickets, now's the time!

From 13-23 July, we're hosting a series of online events, with author talks on wild swimming, climbing, walking and more.

All events are free, but spaces are limited - book now on our Eventbrite page.

Writing the waves

In this episode of BBC Radio 4's Open Book, Mariella Frostrup explores how the coast and the sea's unpredictability and recuperative and destructive power have captured the imagination of so many authors and poets.

Now in the eLibrary

Speaking of the beach as both a sunny paradise and a place of danger, here's a selection of chilled-out beach reads, award-winning non-fiction and seafront thrillers, all available to borrow for free from our eLibrary.

Click the titles to go straight to the page for each eBook.

An Almost
Perfect Holiday

The House on the
Edge of the Cliff
The Shipping News
The Seabird's Cry
The Path to the Sea
The Wall
(also on audio)

The Sing of the Shore


In this week's book quiz, we're mixing things up a bit. The latest quiz features questions on both of our Library Spotlight themes this week: seas and beaches, and art and illustration.
Who is the captain of the Nautilus submarine in Jules Verne’s Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea (it may help to think of a famous clownfish…)? 
Tracy Chevalier’s Girl with A Pearl Earring was inspired by a painting by which Dutch artist?
Check out the full quiz on our Twitter page.

A mermaid in peril and a shark in the park!

Obviously we don't really have any beaches or seaside views in Sheffield - but as one of our story-time favourites, A Shark in the Park, proves, a little imagination goes a long way!

You can hear author and illustrator Nick Sharratt read his much-loved picture book in this video.

Then, learn how to create a shoal of sea creatures with a Shark in the Park-themed draw-a-long!

For another seaside story, here's Julia Donaldson's new picture book What the Ladybird Heard at the Seaside, read by the book's illustrator (and Sheffield local) Lydia Monks.

For even more family fun, check out today's library Rhyme Time, where Laura's got a beachbag-ful of seaside rhymes and songs to sing and dance along with. Watch on our Facebook page now!

Seaside adventures on the sofa with Usborne's Stay Home Summer

To keep children entertained over the summer, Usborne is launching a free weekly newsletter full of ideas for fun holiday activities to try out at home or on a walk.

Beginning this Sunday (12 July) and running for six weeks, each Stay Home Summer newsletter will have a new theme - including a week on Seaside Adventures. Usborne has created some fabulous activity books over the years, so this is sure to be worth checking out!

Learn more and sign up for the newsletter hereYou can also find lots of activities for all ages on Usborne's Play & Learn website.

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