Millfield Library Tea Garden Opens

Students and Teachers took advantage of the wonderful Summer weather (at times), this is England after all…

The Library doors swung open once more for classes to enjoy the fresh air and their lessons in a deckchair, beanbag or on a picnic rug, ice cream in hand. After such an unusual and at times challenging year it has been fantastic to see so many staff and students enjoying the library from a different perspective.

All donations from the ice creams will be collected for the charity CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably).

The Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) is leading a movement against suicide. Every week 125 people in the UK take their own lives. And 75% of all UK suicides are male. CALM exists to change this. Join the campaign to take a stand against suicide.

With just over a week until the end of the academic year we are expecting a further 20 classes to drop into the Tea Garden for a lesson or just to put their feet up with a good book!

Summer BookFace Challenge Launched

This week, Millfield Library launched its first ever BookFace Challenge. To help promote reading for pleasure over the long Summer holidays the Library is running a competition for the best ‘Book Selfies’. Just take a photo of yourself that incorporates a book cover (fiction or non-fiction). There will be prizes for the best student, Staff and OM entries.

(check out some of these examples for inspiration).

Or this excellent YouTube clip produced for the German public library, Stadtbibliothek Erlangen.

Filmed, directed and edited by Jacco Kliesch. Music: Rolegur by Osker Wyld

We will let the comp run right over the Summer holidays with the judges awarding prizes in the first week back in September.

Please email your Bookface photos to us:  by the first week back at school in September. There is no limit on the number of entries per person.

Show us your best BookFace!

Website of the Week: Book Series in Order

This week’s  Website of the Week, is Book Series in Order.

This site is a very useful way of finding out exactly what books belong in a series and which order to read them. With over 10 000 authors listed (and counting) Book Series in Order is a truly comprehensive searchable database of authors, and book series. You can search by author, series or even by character. There are also handy book and series reviews, top lists as well as an excellent blog and email newsletter to subscribe to. 

BSIO snip

For loads more reading suggestions visit out own Reading page here.

Read what you like. Like what you read….




International Booker Prize Winner Announced

The 2021 International Booker Prize has been won by David Diop for his book At Night All Blood Is Black,

translated from the French by Anna Moschovakis and published by Pushkin Press.

David Diop

David Diop was born in Paris in 1966 and grew up in Senegal. He now lives in France, where he is a professor of eighteenth century literature at the University of Pau. At Night All Blood is Black is David’s second novel. It was shortlisted for ten major prizes in France and won the Prix Goncourt des Lycéens as well as the Swiss Prix Ahmadou Korouma. It is currently being translated into 13 languages and has already won the Strega European Prize in Italy.

The shortlisted novels for 2021 were

At Night All Blood Is Black by David Diop, translated by Anna Moschovakis, published by Pushkin Press;

The Dangers of Smoking in Bed by Mariana Enríquez, translated by Megan McDowell, published by Granta Books;

When We Cease to Understand the World by Benjamín Labatut, translated by Adrian Nathan West, published by Pushkin Press;

The Employees by Olga Ravn, translated by Martin Aitken, published by Lolli Editions;

In Memory of Memory by Maria Stepanova, translated by Sasha Dugdale, published by Fitzcarraldo Editions;

The War of the Poor by Éric Vuillard, translated by Mark Polizzotti, published by Pan Macmillan;

Website of the Week: Literary Hub

This week’s  Website of the Week, is Literary Hub. So, just what is Literary Hub? In their own words, the editors say:

Literary Hub is an organizing principle in the service of literary culture, a single, trusted, daily source for all the news, ideas and richness of contemporary literary life. There is more great literary content online than ever before, but it is scattered, easily lost—with the help of its editorial partners, Lit Hub is a site readers can rely on for smart, engaged, entertaining writing about all things books. Each day—alongside original content and exclusive excerpts—Literary Hub is proud to showcase an editorial feature from one of its many partners from across the literary spectrum: publishers big and small, journals, bookstores, and non-profits.

The LitHub site is a veritable treasure trove of all things literary. Featured sections include:

For loads more reading suggestions visit out own Reading page here.

Read what you like. Like what you read.




Website of the Week: The Book Smugglers

This week’s  Website of the Week, is The Book Smugglers.

This site is a fabulous, up-to-date book blog curated by two self-confessed bibliophiles and book geeks. 

Like many foolhardy ideas, The Book Smugglers was born of a time of great adversity. Faced with threats concerning the overwhelming volume of books purchased on a daily basis, Ana Grilo and Thea James resorted to “smuggling” books home in huge handbags to avoid scrutiny. In 2008, the devious duo founded The Book Smugglers, a blog dedicated to speculative and genre fiction for all ages. In addition to being an outlet for Ana and Thea’s bottomless obsession with books, reviews, and assorted popgeekery, it is also the home of original SFF short fiction and nonfiction.

The Book Smugglers won the Hugo Award for Best Fanzine in 2020.

For loads more reading suggestions visit out own Reading page here.

Read what you like. Like what you read.




World Book and Copyright Day Literary Quiz (and World Book Night too…)

“Books have the unique ability both to entertain and to teach. They are at once a means of exploring realms beyond our personal experience through exposure to different authors, universes and cultures, and a means of accessing the deepest recesses of our inner selves.”

— Audrey Azoulay, Director-General of UNESCO, on the occasion of World Book and Copyright Day

On March 4th World Book Day was celebrated in the UK. The official United Nations (UNESCO) World Book and Copyright Day is actually 23rd April each year. UK schools tend to celebrate WBD in early March in order to avoid a clash with the Easter Holidays. This year’s theme is ‘Read…so you never feel alone’.

So, due to the fact that we were in Lockdown once again on March 4 we decided to celebrate World Book Day this year only, on April 23rd instead. In the first two weeks of this term our Year 9 English classes have been participating in a World Book Day Literary Quiz leading up to the final held today.

I am pleased to be able to announce our worthy winners. In third place was Georgiana, followed closely by Louisa in second place with. Our overall champion however is Tansy by a substantial margin. Well done Tansy!

Georgiana, Tansy and Louisa. Our Year 9 World Book and Copyright Day Literary Quiz Winners.

Our winner and two runners-up will each receive a National Book Token which they can redeem in local bookshops or online for books of their choice.

Thank you to all the Year 9 students and their English teachers who made the quiz so much fun and to all those who found a new book to read or maybe a new favourite author over the last few weeks.

Happy World Book and Copyright Day!

World Book and Copyright Day is a celebration to promote the enjoyment of books and reading. Each year, on 23 April, celebrations take place all over the world to recognize the scope of books – a link between the past and the future, a bridge between generations and across cultures. On this occasion, UNESCO and the international organizations representing the three major sectors of the book industry – publishers, booksellers and libraries, select the World Book Capital for a year to maintain, through its own initiatives, the impetus of the Day’s celebrations. 

and just for good measure today 23rd April is also celebrated as World Book Night here in the UK!

Carnegie Award Shortlist Books Hit Millfield Library Shelves

We are excited to announce that several copies of each of the eight shortlisted books for this year’s Carnegie Book Award are now available to borrow in the Library. The CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals are the UK’s oldest and best-loved children’s book awards, recognising outstanding reading experiences created through writing and illustration in books for children and young people. If you’d like to borrow any of these and/or get involved in our ‘Shadowing’ project just let the Library staff know.

Click below for more information on the shortlisted titles and their authors.

Clap When You Land by Elizabeth Acevedo

The Girl Who Speaks Bear by Sophie Anderson

The Girl Who Became a Tree by Joseph Coelho

On Midnight Beach by Marie-Louise Fitzpatrick

Run, Rebel by Manjeet Mann

Look Both Ways by Jason Reynolds

The Fountains of Silence by Ruta Sepetys

Echo Mountain by Lauren Wolk

UK Children’s Laureate Leads Call for £100m School Library Fund

Cressida Cowell, the UK’s current Children’s Laureate is leading a call for the government to commit £100m per year in ring-fenced funding for Primary school libraries in England. Read her open letter to the Prime Minister here.

The letter has also been signed by former Children’s Laureates including Michael Rosen, Quentin Blake and Jacqueline Wilson.

Cowell noted how one in eight primary schools don’t have a library.

That statistic doubles in schools with a higher proportion of children on free school meals.

She also noted that in prisons, libraries are statutory – but not in schools.

Read the news coverage of her open letter and her ‘Life-Changing Libraries‘ project below:


BBC News

The Guardian

The Independent

New University of Bristol Library plans approved

The University of Bristol recently gained planning permission for their new £80m Library. Despite initial rejection of the proposal, the plan for a brand new Library and revamped surroundings has gotten the green light. Check out the video flythrough below to get a feel for the project and the design.

According to the University’s website the New University Library (NUL)

‘will be a stimulating and nurturing learning environment providing world-class academic facilities that foster innovation in teaching, student attainment and new research partnerships. The building will accommodate learning and research space and provide:

  • capacity for around 2,000 new study seats
  • approximately 420,000 books and 70,000 journals
  • a new space to showcase Bristol’s world-class cultural collections
  • a museum style café, exhibition gallery space and reading rooms, open to all

The NUL will be a new cultural destination for the city of Bristol. The ground floor of the library will be fully open to the public and is designed to be accessible to all. It will welcome students, staff and Bristol’s communities by opening up exhibition spaces and the University’s accredited museum and archive services, including the renowned Theatre Collection and world-class Special Collections.’

Artist’s impression of the NUL and surrounding gardens.

It is heartening to see a local learning institution investing so heavily in new library infrastructure and services at a time when many others are withdrawing funding or scaling back plans. The university’s new library project will incorporate ethically sourced materials and environmentally sustainable design including a green rooftop terrace. The project forms part of the University’s Campus Heart programme which aims to transform the centre of the campus into a vibrant hub for the University and city community.

Since the start of the programme in 2018, the University has already improved a number of its spaces and facilities for the benefit of our staff, students and members of the local community.

These changes include a larger and better equipped Indoor Sports Centre providing bigger class capacities, improved changing facilities and faster access; and a new environmentally friendly and fully wheelchair accessible café – Source Garden Café – offering sustainable, ethically sourced food and great coffee.

Find out more about Campus Heart by visiting