So what do library staff read?….

Surrounded every day by lots of fantastic books, Swindon’s library staff really are spoiled for choice! Here are some of our favourites: those books that we would recommend and those which, well, just make us feel good!

one dayneverwhereretro girl

princess bride“Best books ever are:The Princess Bride by William Goldman : This is a book for everyone. Who wouldn’t love something that has fencing, fighting, torture, poison, true love, hate, revenge, giants, hunters, bad men, good men, beautifulest ladies, snakes, spiders, beasts, chases, escapes, lies, truths, passion and miracles. If you were a kid in the 80’s you’ll remember the movie. The book is even better.
Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman: Have you ever looked at a tube map and wondered about the place names. There really is an Angel Islington and an Earl of Earls Court. There are Black Friars and a Knights Bridge. Do they sound like happy places?. They’re not. Richard Mayhew is about to discover this. The book is incredible. You’ll never look at a tube map the same way again, and you will always remember to mind the gap.” (Nicholas Johnson, Manager Park and Wroughton Libraries)

game of thrones“We recently got the first two volumes of the Game of Thrones graphic novel in the library and I think they are great adaptation of the book with amazing artwork. I would definitely recommend this for anybody who is a fan of the books/TV series!” (Joe McCance, Library Assistant at Central Library)

“On the graphic novel front, I am enjoying the Powers series by Brian Michael Bendis that we’ve got in. Who Killed Retro Girl? is the first one. It’s set in a world where superheroes exist but the story is told through the eyes of the police investigating a murder and the media reporting on it. So it’s sort of crime-noir-y superhero-y and that’s what I like about it, it’s sort of an antidote to all the regular good-guy superhero stuff. It won the Eisner for best new series when it was launched.” (Heather Carolan, Library Assistant at Central Library)

labyrinth“My favourite summer reads are Labyrinth, Sepulchre and Citadel by Kate Mosse. They are fantastic history, mystery and adventure stories in their own right, but transport me back to the Languedoc in southern France in an instant. You can feel and smell the atmosphere vividly and her details are so authentic you can walk the streets and country side with her characters.”                                      (Gilli Brookes-Palmer, Manager, North Swindon Library)

“I’d recommend Stephen King’s Dark Tower Series.  I found the stories completely absorbing and was distraught when I got to the end of the series.  Be warned, once you’ve started, you’ll cancel all social engagements so that you can stay at home and read!”

gunslingerThe Dark Tower
1. The Gunslinger
2. The Drawing of the Three
3. The Waste Lands
4. Wizard and Glass
5. Wolves of the Calla
6. Song of Susannah
7. The Dark Tower
8. The Wind Through the Keyhole
(Emma McElwee, Stock Librarian)

“I have just read a new book that I couldn’t put down  – The Shadow Year by Hannah Richell.  It’s the kind of book I love because it interweaves two time periods – alternating chapters between 1980-1 and the present day.  Lila has just lost her baby and is mysteriously gifted the key to a cottage in the Peak District, which she disappears to and shadow yeargrieves.  30 years earlier a group of five friends graduate from uni and decide to drop out and live the good life in the cottage.  Over the course of the year though events conspire to make the cottage life far less idyllic than it first seemed. It’s a good summer read because it’s not too difficult to keep track of the events and characters despite the alternating chapters and there’s a couple of red herrings that keep you guessing to the end; but at the same time there’s a certain familiarity to the storyline which means you can make some speculations along the way as the where the story is going.  It’s a story with some heart, but it’s certainly not a classic piece of literature, making it absolutely perfect for a summer read.  The only drawback is that it’s not yet out in paperback, so it’s heavier to be travelling with!” (Kelly Saunders, Library Assistant at Central Library)

jane eyre“My all-time feel good book is Jane Eyre. I always go back to it whenever I can’t find anything else to read. Also I really like apocalypse fiction and enjoy having a read of those when I want something easy to read. My book for any Island is still Lord of the Rings – read it for the first time when I was 14 and still find bits that I missed or skipped over. I must get it out at least one a year – usually a winter sitting by the fire book.” (Wendy Levick, Library Assistant at Upper Stratton and Highworth Libraries)

silent land“Books I really love and want to get away from the bad news all the time, are the Miss Read books. I know they are corny but they take you into an innocent and ideal world and very descriptive writings of the countryside. You can really smell the roses!!! Another good book I read was the Sookie Stackhouse fantasy series by Charlaine Harris. Good romance running through them. Another excellent book with such a twist at the end is The Silent Land by Graham Joyce. I recommended it to our reading group and they all loved it! Mo Hayder another good writer for crime, written around Wilts/ Glos/ Bristol area. Very good suspense stories.”  (Di Jenks, Library Assistant at Upper Stratton Library)

love from both sides“My favourite “feel good book” is Love from Both Sides by Nick Spalding, it’s not the sort of book I would usually read but it did make me laugh.
I love One Day by David Nicholls and would recommend it not only as a summertime read but all year round. It has everything: it made me laugh and cry,  me my son and dad  read it all at the same time and we all loved it!!!”  (Sharron Ashman, Library Assistant at Pinehurst and North Swindon  Library)

If you would like to find out more about any of these books/ reserve your copy, check on our online catalogue.