Skip to content

Fancy a spin?

spinning%20wheelDannevirke Spinning Club are demonstrating the skill of spinning, at Dannevirke Library on Thursday 9 July 2015 between 10am and 2pm. All welcome, children or adults, free.

Learn how natural wool, straight off the sheep, is transformed into spun wool.  Have a go on a spinning wheel.  See what beautiful products can be created! Chat about spinning, weaving, knitting, dyeing, felting and crochet with people who enjoy these crafts.

“The group communicates, educates, promotes and preserves the cultural activities of spinning and weaving and all crafts pertaining to the use of wool and other fibres and encourage the pursuit of excellence” – Dannevirke Spinning & Weaving Club



NZ Children’s Book Awards – 6th Annual Quiz 2015

NZCYA_logo_jpg_largeTararua District Library is once again celebrating the best of New Zealand’s books for young people with our sixth Annual Children’s Book Awards Quiz.  Primary schools from Tararua District are invited to submit team(s) of up to four Year 7 / Year 8 children, who will answer questions based on the finalist books listed below.

A CHANGE to previous years is that for non-fiction books, the questions will be based on the first ten physical pages of the book only (e.g. title page onward).

The quiz is held simultaneously in each town.  South School of Dannevirke are the current District Champions. Can any other Tararua school knock them off their coveted perch?  The Champion Team get possession of a trophy for a year, plus a prize.  The highest scoring team in each town also get a small prize.     Time to get reading – only 5 weeks to go!


Registration:     Entries close Friday 24 July 5pm (entry forms available at library or download Quiz Entry Form Tararua District Library New Zealand Children s Book Awards 2015 )

Location:            Your local library (any change of venue will be advised)

When:                  Thursday 6 August 2015

Time:                   6.30 pm sharp, estimated end time 8.30pm



Each of our libraries have one copy of the finalist books.   They may be available on the shelves, but most likely you will have to reserve them.  Reserves for these items are free, if on a child’s library card.  Each child may only issue the book one time, for a two week period with no renewals. To reserve, you can contact the library, or easily log into the online catalogue and do it yourself. Use this link  We have created a Reading List especially to make them easy to find.

Notes:  Parents, caregivers and teachers may attend the quiz to observe only. Smartphones or tablets are not allowed. Children may bring their own water bottle to the event.  Photographs of the winning team will appear on our Facebook page (not tagged), this blog and possibly the Bush Telegraph newspaper.


NZ Children’s Book Awards FINALISTS – Each book will have one round of questions based on it:


Picture Books

by Sally Sutton and Brian Lovelock
Walker Books Australia
I Am Not a Worm
by Scott Tulloch
Scholastic New Zealand
Jim’s Letters
by Glyn Harper and Jenny Cooper
Penguin Random House
by Sacha Cotter and Joshua Morgan
Huia Publishers
Little Red Riding Hood . . . Not Quite
by Yvonne Morrison and Donovan Bixley
Scholastic New Zealand
Ghoulish Get-Ups: How to Create Your Own Freaky Costumes
by Fifi Colston
Scholastic New Zealand
Māori Art for Kids
by Julie Noanoa and Norm Heke
Craig Potton Publishing
Mōtītī Blue and the Oil Spill
by Debbie McCauley
Mauao Publishing
The Book of Hat
by Harriet Rowland
Makaro Press/Submarine
Under the Ocean: explore & discover New Zealand’s sea life
by Gillian Candler and Ned Barraud
Craig Potton Publishing
Junior Fiction
Conrad Cooper’s Last Stand
by Leonie Agnew
Penguin Random House/Puffin
Dragon Knight: Fire!
by Kyle Mewburn and Donovan Bixley
Scholastic New Zealand
Monkey Boy
by Donovan Bixley
Scholastic New Zealand
The Island of Lost Horses
by Stacy Gregg
The Pirates and the Nightmaker
by James Norcliffe
Penguin Random House/Longacre Child


The girl with a clock for a heart…

clock heartThe main job of the writer of a thriller is to hook the reader and draw one tautly through the pages until one is caught because one’s life depends on knowing the outcome. Therefore author Peter Swanson is a success. Other reviews have called him formulaic, but I disagree: the hero is the anti- kind and the protagonist is also unusual, which saves the story from the usual dreck some other writers churn out.

George fell in love with a girl, Audrey, in college. Absolute textbook romance – but wait, it’s still not formulaic, I promise. Over the Christmas break, she commits suicide. Bereft, George goes to grieve with her parents…but the photo on their mantelpiece is not Audrey. What?! Is there a chance she’s still alive? George hopes and waits and hopes, never really committing to another woman. After 20 years of thinking he’s glimpsed his lost love, studying elements of strange women’s faces and gait, Liana is lying in wait for him at his favourite bar. She’s in deep doodee and George is the only one who can help her. Will he? Read it and find out!

4/5 stars.

– Tamara


Cheaper DVDs!

dvd movieMost of our DVD collection has now reduced to $2.00/week from today, 1 July 2015, the beginning of our financial year. Yay!  The newer releases are still $3.50.

We hope you enjoy the cheaper DVDs and can afford to enjoy more movies now.

Interloans have increased very slightly from $4.10 to $4.50,  and printing from our free public computers is now 20 cents per side (double sided = 40c) to help cover the costs there.

No other changes – new release books and magazines are still free, and of course, library membership is free.

Local schoolgirl heading for stardom?

Congratulations to Dannevirke High School student, fifteen-year-old Lauren Carr who has won the 2015 Smokefree Rockquest Wairarapa Regional Title in the Solo Section, and the APRA Lyric Award.  Well done Lauren!  She features in an article in the Manawatu Standard 23 June 2015, where she states that Adele is a big influence on her and she “wants to light a fire and let it happen!” Lauren is now preparing for the Smokefree Rockquest National Finals.


Ryan Lock – my new hero!

I’ve found a new author! Ever vigilant to a new read, I’ve started following author Sean Black and his hero Ryan Lock.  I have managed to read all  four of his books in just sean blackover a week, so let’s hope Mr Black is a prolific writer!

Ryan Lock is an  ex-military personal protection officer who, with his co-worker Ty, find themselves in various tricky situations. The writing I have to say isn’t always slick although you can see an improvement through the series even though the third book feels like it was written first, due to the fact that it’s a bit rough, but the storylines are original and the characters likeable. There is also a touch of humour and a great back story with several plot twists even I didn’t see coming!

Mr Black isn’t Lee Child or Robert Crais but in all honesty some of their early work doesn’t hold up too close to inspection either. As with all writers, I think, time improves their art and with judicious editing and a good team behind them any author will improve as Mr Black seems to have done.  If you want an action thriller with good plots, a lead character who isn’t perfect and support cast who are interesting and likeable then have a look. If nothing else it will tide you over until the new Lee Child and Robert Crais books come out towards the end of 2015.

Until next time



Happy Matariki

Pleiades1aA happy Matariki to you!  Sure, the weather might be dreadful, but under all that rain cloud, the Pleiades (Matariki) star cluster became visible on 18 June, and festivities continue for a while.

If you’d like to know more about the Maori New Year celebration, have a look on the NZ Ministry for Culture & Heritage site here

And if you would like some ideas of how to celebrate, KiwiFamilies has some good ideas too, such as:

  • Make Matariki a time when the whole family gets together to feast and give thanks. It may be a nice opportunity to explore traditional Maori food like hangi and rewena (Maori bread).
  • Spend a night sleeping under the stars (or under a tent!), and tell your own family stories. You may want to talk about family memories, or create goals for the coming lunar year.
  • Contact your local Department of Conservation to find out if there are any regeneration projects happening in your area. Organise to plant a tree on Matariki, or better still, get together with a group of friends and plant several.

And for rainy day weather, there are some craft ideas here.





Did the inventor of computing save millions of lives?

The Imitation Game film stars Benedict Cumberbatch and Kiera Knightly, and is based on the book “Alan Turing: the Enigma” by Andrew Hodges.

I’ve never reviewed a DVD before but I watched the library’s copy of the Imitation Game recently and it is brilliant. Others agree as it won the 2015 Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay.

Even if you’re not a Benedict Cumberbatch fan, this film is worth seeing. Set in England during the Second Wimageorld War, it tells how Alan Turing and his team cracked the Nazi Enigma code.

Alan Turing, due in no small part to his homosexuality, is not a household name in England. His work and the work of his team is only coming to light now, more than 60 years after his death. Ridiculed and bullied from an early age, this awkward man potentially saved millions of lives, but his work was clouded in mystery and secrecy, and his arrest after the War for gross indecency removed his name from the annals of recent history to all intents and purposes. Benedict Cumberbatch who played him so well is amongst the loudest protesters asking for more recognition for Alan and I can see why. He worked tirelessly on cracking the impossible code, came up with the concept of computers and built one of the first computers and saving, through a complicated web of misinformation and leaked lies, millions of lives and possibly shortening the war by more than two years. Breaking the Enigma code was one of the most closely guarded secrets of not only the war but the next 50 years.

There have been many books written about this amazing accomplishment but this film shows the heartache and commitment that Alan and his team faced. Unlike other films that glorify and exaggerate,  this film simply shows that British ingenuity and determination under intense pressure to achieve, finally got the results that no one expected, except possibly Alan. That his life ended so sadly is perhaps one of the most shameful parts of recent British history.

I am not a war film fan, there is no burning love story here and it does not glorify or sugar coat someone who was essentially a highly unlikeable individual. But what it does is tell honestly (well as honestly as any film can while still being entertainment) a story that we should all know. Thank goodness today, we as a nation, do not view homosexuality as a crime, in light of the ground breaking vote in Ireland recently, this film is doubly timely and well worth watching.

And if, like me, you are a Benedict Cumberbatch fan, all the better.


SALE books, come and get ’em!

Book saleGuess what!  What?  It’s sale time again!  That’s right – our shelves were jammed tight, so time to let some books go to new homes.

All items 50 cents each (or less) which is an amazing bargain.  Lots of non-fiction books this time, and as space allows, more second hand stock will be added, so keep looking.


Where:  Dannevirke Library foyer, 1 Station St, Dannevirke (adjacent to KFC)

Begins: Monday 8 June 2015, 9am

Ends: Tuesday 30 June 2015, 5.30pm

Eftpos available (no credit)





Puppet shows during July 2015 school holidays

Anna and Bill the puppetThanks to EC Read’n (Winter Warmers) Anna Bailey from String Bean Puppets will be visiting Tararua libraries to perform her hour-long show free for children.  Anna is a Wellington puppeteer dedicated to sharing the wonder and magic of puppetry.

When and where?


Eketahuna Library – Wednesday 8 July at 10am

Pahiatua Library – Wednesday 8 July at 1pm

Woodville Library – Monday 13 July at 1pm

Dannevirke Library – Monday 13 July at 3pm

We want you!

do surveyIf you live in the Tararua District, we want to know what you think of your library service.  The good, the bad or the ugly, we want to know!  So now is your chance. Please complete our survey.

All responses will be assessed by the District Librarian to see if there is anything we can do better.  If you choose to provide personal details (to go in the draw to win prizes), that will be kept completely confidential – so, feel free to share your opinion.

The survey starts today and ends 27 June 2015.

Case files of injustice

West Memphis 3

Law and Disorder by John Douglas is a must read for those who enjoy real crime rather than (or as well as) the fictional variety. Written by a top ranking FBI ‘profiler’, this book covers several cases of injustice and the work of John Douglas and others to right those injustices.

One of the worst cases is that of the West Memphis 3 who were found guilty of the murders of three eight-year-olds and spent over 10 years in prison before eventually being proven not guilty. In this instance, the interest and active support of Sir Peter Jackson and Fran Welsh played a significant part in getting the three young men off death row. The book deals with several such trials right up to the recent case of Amanda Knox who was imprisoned along with her Italian boyfriend for a murder they did not commit.

Douglas shows how he went about his work, case by case, and reveals the way in which pre-conceived theories, sloppy investigation and mistaken testimony, often by so-called experts, lead to bad verdicts. A fascinating account of some notorious cases. – Larry

Hint:  If you find true crime cases fascinating, visit the non-fiction area of your library, Dewey 364. Some authors who have written books investigating New Zealand cases are Bryan Bruce, Ian Wishart, David White, Mike White, and Mark Price.


Get in quick, we’re closing early!

Closing early 5 June

Kids, want a free pizza?

pizza sliceHey kids!  Do you like pizza?  Tararua District Library is running a really cool reading challenge from now until the end of November 2015.  Just by reading a few books, you can earn a free pizza!

How does it work? There are 3 age groups:  age 5 – 7 years ; age 8 – 12 years ; age 13 – 18 years. Depending on your age group, you get a booklet (there are three booklets, each designed for a different age group). Inside the booklet are seven challenges.  To do some of the challenges, you’ll need to look at the LIANZA 2015 Children & Young Adult Book Awards finalist books.  Other challenges can be done using any Tararua District Lbrary book.  All the instructions are in the booklets.

When you have completed the whole booklet, hand it in to your local library in exchange for a specially clipped and stamped Pizza Wheel Voucher. Take the voucher to your nearest Hell’s Pizza shop, and you can get a free healthy 333 kids pizza!    The Hell’s Pizza Caravan will be in Tararua sometime during the Term 3 school holidays, and the vouchers can also be redeemed there.

After you’ve completed one booklet, you can begin another if you like.  Think how many free pizza’s you could earn by December!

Booklets are available at Dannevirke Library, Woodville Library & Service Centre, Pahiatua Library, and Eketahuna Library & Service Centre.  Or if you can’t get into a library, email us at and we can send you a pdf booklet to print out  (tell us your name and age please).

If you aren’t a member of the library yet, you’ll need to get a library card to be able to finish your booklet.  It’s really easy – just bring your Mum or Dad or other adult over 18 years old along with you,library card to fill out a form.  The adult will show us their ID (like a driving license) and also some mail to prove they live in the Tararua (like a phone bill), and then your card will be ready to use.  It only takes about 10 minutes!   If you don’t have an adult to help you get a card, come and see us anyway, let us know that and we’ll see what we can do to help.


Want to be scared?

Nick Cutter’s previous book ‘The Troop’ “scared the hell” out of author Stephen King. And his second novel, ‘The Deep’ is also not for the faint-hearted.  It reminded me very much of King’s earlier work actually.

A plague has struck humankind. Known as “The ‘Gets”, it causes humans to forget things, usually over several years … beginning with small things like where you left your keys, and ending with forgetting how to eat and breathe.

challenger-deep-smallBut then a fishing trawler accidentally hauled up a lantern fish in the Mariana Trench.  Normally only capable of surviving at extreme depths, a marine biologist on board recognized the inconceivability of it being found, and was astonished to discover the reason was that a substance now named ambrosia had inhabited the fish.  Other scientists thought that ambrosia may be the cure to The ‘Gets, and an international project was instigated to develop an underwater station that could function at the bottom of Challenger Deep, the deepest part of the Mariana Trench, where the ambrosia was likely to be found.

Three scientists were selected to take up residence in that station, the Trieste, to experiment on the ambrosia. Some time later, communication with the station is lost and then the escape submarine surfaces, containing the badly scarred corpse of one of the scientists.    Unable to contact the other two, an emergency trip down is planned, with Dr Luke Nelson, the brother of one of the scientists. The authorities hope that he will be able to convince his brother to let them in, and find out what is going on.

When Luke, and sub pilot Alice arrive, they are alarmed to find both scientists acting very strangely.  One has locked himself in his lab, convinced everyone else has been infected by ambrosia, and the other (Luke’s brother) is intent on his experiments to the exclusion even of finding a cure.

It seems that this ambrosia is actually sentient, and possibly not of this world.  It has lain dormant 8 miles beneath the sea for a very long time, and there is an insinuation that the plague has been engineered to cause these events to unfold, allowing the substance to escape into the wider world.

As the story unfolds, the chills increase.  Much is left to your imagination, but the author does a very fine job of exacerbating childhood fears and building tension. There are a few gory sequences, but worse is the idea of what causes these events.  To me, it was reminiscent of Stephen King’s “It” although the ending was more satisfying.

If you like horrors, you’ll like this.

– Natalie


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 492 other followers