Posts tagged Zac

Get ready – KidsFest is coming!

The school holidays are only a week and a half away and I’m sure you’re all looking forward to having some time to relax and have some fun.  One of the best things about the Winter school holidays is KidsFest because there’s so much going on and so many cool things you can do, from playing different sports and experimenting with science to watching a play or learning how to cook.

This year’s theme is Community, so get out and have fun in your community at some of the cool events that are planned.  Here are just a few of the highlights:

  • The Breeze Light and Flight Lantern Parade – Make your own lantern, bring a torch or something that lights up and come along to join the parade with the Kids Samba Band, Coolstuff, the KidsFest car and much more.
  • The Press Dogs Day Out – Bring along your pet pooch or pedigree and join in the fun with competitions, pimp my pooch, demonstrations, doggy stalls, food, rides, live music and a grand canine parade!
  • Dust off your singing voice, fine tune your fancy footwork or show us your special talent in the Singapore Airline’s StarFest, a talent quest with three heats and a grand final.

KidsFest is on in Christchurch from 16-30 July.  Have a look at the KidsFest website to find out what’s on our pick up a brochure from your library.

Are you going to any KidsFest events?  We’d like to know what you’re looking forward to.

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Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori — Māori Language Week

Tēnā koutou tamariki ma.  This week we are celebrating Maori Language Week with te mahi kai (the language of food).  Each day we’ll post the names of 5 different foods in te reo Maori, from chocolate to kiwifruit and spaghetti to ice cream.  If you know any other kai (food) related words feel free to add them to our posts.

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Books that I can’t wait for!

Cover imageThere are two books coming out in September that I can’t wait to read: the latest Skulduggery Pleasant book, Mortal Coil, and Cornelia Funke’s new book, Reckless.

The Skulduggery Pleasant series by Derek Landy is my favourite series.  The books are scary, gripping and hilarious.   Skulduggery Pleasant is one of the coolest characters around and his sidekick, Valkyrie is a girl you don’t want to mess with.  Mortal Coil is the fifth book in the series and here’s what we can expect:

“Skulduggery Pleasant is back, and reunited with his original head. But all is not well in the magical world — for one thing, foreign powers are conspiring to take over the Irish Sanctuary, and for another thing, Valkyrie has discovered she might be the sorceress set to destroy the world. The problem is, she doesn’t feel she can tell Skulduggery what she’s learned! and that’s how all the trouble starts.”

Cornelia Funke is the author of my favourite children’s book, Inkheart, so I can’t wait to see what magical world she will unleash in her new book, Reckless.

“For the first time in his life, Jacob Reckless is afraid. For years he’s stolen across to another world. A dark enchanted place he’s loved for its treasure, secrets and dangers. Until now. Will, his younger brother, has followed him with terrible consequences: the boy will turn to beast; the girl he loves will break her heart and chaos will rule forever, unless Jacob can spin a fairytale to save them.”

You can reserve both of these books at the library now.  What books are you looking forward to reading?

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The fabulous FaBo story

“Nine mad writers; one crazy story; no idea what happens next; hold onto your mouse… it’s going to be a wild ride!”

The FaBo (short for Face Book) story is an online interactive novel that’s added to each week by some great New Zealand authors and illustrators, including Kyle Mewburn, Fifi Colston and Brian Falkner.  The story is called The Visitors and so far the first 5 chapters have been written.  Each Monday an exciting new chapter is added by a mystery author and if you think you can guess which author wrote it, you can enter the ‘Mystery Author’ competition and win a mystery prize.  The best part is that you can have a go and write your own chapter to follow on from the previous one.  The FaBo team chooses a winning chapter and posts it the following week along with the next chapter written by the mystery author.

If you want to read the story so far and maybe even enter your own chapter, go to the FaBo Story blog.

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Leonie Thorpe’s visit to Central Library

Leonie Thorpe at Central Library

Leonie Thorpe talking about her books

Ever wanted to know how much an author gets paid for each book they sell?  Well Christchurch author Leonie Thorpe can tell you, and I’m sure you’ll be very disappointed.  However, as Leonie explained, being a writer is not all about the money, it’s about getting your book published and seeing it on the shelf.

Before becoming an author, Leonie worked in a hospital testing all sorts of things, including your number ones and number twos (YUCK!).  She explained that there are lots of different ways that you could get your writing published, such as entering it into writing competitions and getting it in the School Journal.

Leonie Thorpe has had three books published, called Archie’s Adventures, Archie Saves the Day, and The Sheep on the Fourth Floor, which we have in the library for you to borrow.  Look out for our interview with Leonie on the blog soon.

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Funky Word Friday – smother

smother (verb)

Pronunciation: smuth-er

What does it mean?:

  1. to be overcome through lack of air
  2. to overcome by depriving of air or exposing to smoke or fumes
  3. to prevent the development or actions of; to cover up; to cover thickly

How do you use it?:  I got myself a huge bowl of ice cream and smothered it with chocolate sauce and sprinkles.

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Writing Tip of the Week – Eoin Colfer

This week’s writing tip comes from Eoin Colfer, the creator of Artemis Fowl, Holly Short, Foaly and LEPrecon.

“Practise – write every day even if it’s only for ten minutes. Remember, nothing is wasted. Eventually your style will emerge. Persevere!”

Check out Eoin Colfer’s cool website where you can find out more about the characters, watch videos and play games.  Get your hands on a copy of Eoin Colfer’s latest book, Artemis Fowl and the Atlantis Complex, from your library now.

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Winners of the 2010 LIANZA Book Awards

Cover imageThe LIANZA Book Awards are a chance for librarians across New Zealand to pick their favourite New Zealand books of the year.  The winners are:

Congratulations to all the winners!  We are lucky enough to be having the winner of the Esther Glenn Award, Richard Newsome, coming to the launch of the Christchurch Kids Blog on Wednesday 8 September, from 7-8pm.  We will also have an interview with Richard on the blog after the launch.  You can read my review of The Billionaire’s Curse here on the blog.

Have you read any of the winning books?

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Eoin Colfer talks about Atlantis Complex

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Artemis Fowl is back

Cover imageArtemis Fowl, the world’s youngest criminal genius, is losing his mind.  His years of dabbling in fairy magic have finally taken their toll, and the boy with the once dastardly plans is now scared of the number 4.  Artemis summons the fairies to Iceland to present his scheme to save the world from global warming, but when a space probe crashes out of the sky, wiping out the group, it’s clear that someone is out to get them.  If things weren’t bad enough already, the fairies discover that Artemis has Atlantis Complex (or multiple personality disorder to you and me), and just when they need him the most, he disappears, only to be replaced by his soppy, romantic alter-ego, Orion.   Will Artemis come up with some brilliant scheme to save the day or will he be too busy telling Holly how much he loves her?

Artemis Fowl and the Atlantis Complex by Eoin Colfer is packed with all your favourite characters, including Captain Holly Short, Butler, Foaly, and Mulch Diggums, as well as lots of laughs, fairy magic, cool inventions, and a prison break.  If you’re an Artemis fan, you’ll love this latest book, and if you haven’t read about Artemis Fowl already, what are you waiting for?

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Happy Library Week!

This week is Library Week across the country and it’s a great excuse to visit your local library.  Sure, libraries have lots of books that you can borrow, but you can do lots of other things like:

  • Surf the net – all of our libraries have FREE internet so you could come to the library to do your homework, play online games, or look up useless information.
  • Play games – some of our libraries have Playstations and computers with games on them that you can use or you could bring your own card games to play with your friends or family.
  • Sit and chat with your friends.
  • Find a quiet space and do your homework, write a story or just chill out and listen to some music.

There are some exciting competitions running for kids during Library Week.  Check out Brindi’s Competitions and Prizes! post to find out more about these competitions.

Why do you love your library? What is your favourite thing to do at the library?

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Check out who was at the Storylines Family Day

Margaret Mahy at Christchurch Storylines Family Day

Margaret Mahy

Joy Cowley at Christchurch Storylines Family Day

Joy Cowley

Gavin Bishop at Christchurch Storylines Family Day

Gavin Bishop

Ross Kinnaird at Christchurch Storylines Family Day

Ross Kinnaird

Sandy McKay at Christchurch Storylines Family Day

Sandy McKay

I had lots of fun walking around and talking to the all the authors and illustrators.  There were lots of kids who were dressed up in costumes.  My favourite costume that I saw was a girl who was Pippi Longstocking.  There were also a few Harry Potters and a Willy Wonka.  I like getting my books signed because I think it’s really special, especially when an author or illustrating writes something nice.

Did you go to the Storylines Family Day?  If you did, what was your favourite part of the day?

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Funky Word Friday – shimmer

shimmer (verb)

Pronunciation: shim-ar

What does it mean?: to shine with a wavering light.

How do you use it?: The water shimmered as the sun’s rays bounced off the lake.

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Writing Tip of the Week – Joy Cowley

This week’s writing tip comes from one of New Zealand’s best-loved authors, Joy Cowley.  Joy has written some fantastic books over the years, including Bow Down Shadrach, Hunter, Greedy Cat, and Snake and Lizard.  In this writing tip, Joy talks about writing the end of a story.

“A story is a bit like a running race. It takes us a while to warm up but once we get going, we don’t always stop at the finishing tape, but run on. The right ending for any story is usually soon after the problem gets solved. If you don’t know where or how to end your story, stop and look back a few sentences. Chances are you’ll find the correct ending already written.”

Come and meet Joy Cowley at the Christchurch Town Hall this Sunday at the Storylines Free Family Day.  You could hear her read some of her books, talk about writing, and even get one of her books signed.

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OMG! It’s the Queen of Teen Awards!

Cover imageAre your favourite authors Jacqueline Wilson, Cathy Cassidy and Louise Rennison?  You should vote in this year’s Queen of Teen Awards.  The Queen of Teen award was founded in 2008 to celebrate the fantastic teen and tween authors who bring so much enjoyment to their readers, dealing with real-life issues in a way that is honest, entertaining and fun.  This year the shortlisted authors are:

The reigning Queen of Teen is Louise Rennison but who will win this year? Check out the Queen of Teen website now and vote for your favourite author.

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Meet great NZ authors at the Storylines Free Family Day

StorylinesIf you’re looking for something to do this weekend, why don’t you come along to the Storylines Free Family Day at the Christchurch Town Hall from 10am-3pm.  It’s a chance for you to meet some fantastic New Zealand authors and illustrators, including:

You could get your favourite author’s autograph, listen to them talk about their books and read some of them, make a cool mask or bookmark, or learn about the world around you in the Factopia Zone.

Who’s your favourite New Zealand author?  What question would you ask them if you got the chance to meet them?

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The Ghosts of Iron Bottom Sound by Sandy Nelson

Cover imageWhat would you do if the ghosts of World War Two were stuck inside your head and wouldn’t leave you alone?  Paddy is an ordinary New Zealand kid who becomes obsessed with a book that he gets from the library about the wrecks of warships sunk in World War Two at Guadalcanal.  This book is special – the ghosts of men who were killed in these battles are trapped inside and they want everyone to remember why they died.  The ghosts call out to Paddy but only he can hear their voices.  Whose voices are they and why are they reaching out to him?  The ghosts tell him he has to ask his grandfather about the battle at Guadalcanal, but his grandfather has never talked about the war so how will Paddy get him to tell him his story?

The Ghosts of Iron Bottom Sound is a fantastic and unique book about the horrors of war and how it affects people.  The ghosts of the war talking to Paddy is a really interesting way to tell the story and Sandy Nelson makes you really care about what happens to the characters.  This is now one of my favourite war stories.    10 out of 10

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Chronicles of Avantia by Adam Blade

Cover imageHave you read all the Beast Quest books but want to read something similar or maybe more of a challenge?  You should try the new series by Adam Blade, called The Chronicles of Avantia. In First Hero, an evil warlord is threatening to take over the kingdom of Avantia and it’s up to an ordinary boy called Tanner to stop the war from happening, with the help of a ferocious young flame bird called Firepos.  The stories are set in the fantasy world of Avantia with the same sorts of monsters and creatures that are in the Beast Quest books.  Check out this cool book trailer for the series:

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Interview with Raymond Huber

PhotoOur interview with New Zealand author, Raymond Huber, has just been added to the Interviews with NZ Children’s Authors pages on the library website.  Raymond’s book, a cool story about bees called Sting, was a finalist in the NZ Post Children’s Book Awards this year.  Check out Raymond Huber’s answers to these questions and more:

  • What was your most embarrassing moment?
  • Which person from the past would you most like to meet?
  • Why did you want to be a writer?
  • What’s the best thing and worst thing about being a writer?

Have a look at the Interviews with NZ Children’s Authors pages on the library website to find out more about your favourite New Zealand authors.  You’ll find interviews with Margaret Mahy, Joy Cowley, Lynley Dodd, Jack Lasenby and Gavin Bishop, plus lots more.

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Writing Tip of the Week – Margaret Mahy

Our writing tip this week is once again from Margaret Mahy, who will be at the Storylines Free Family Day next Sunday, 15 August at the Christchurch Town Hall.   Come along and listen to Margaret talk about her writing and read some of her books.

“I think writers ought to read a lot, and it is often good to be working on more one story. If your first story does not work out it is comforting to have another story to fall back on. Most writers have to work hard – to write and re-write their stories.”

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