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Make you look?  Don’t worry, we’re not closing down for good, but we do have some unusual temporary closures coming up.  closed sign


Thursday 23 April 2015 : All Tararua District Libraries (Dannevirke, Woodville, Pahiatua & Eketahuna) will be closed until 12pm (noon)

Thursday 23 April and Friday 24 April 2015: Eketahuna Library & Service Centre will be closed, re-opening on Tuesday 28 April.

Saturday 25 April 2015: Dannevirke & Pahiatua Libraries will be closed in recognition of the 100th anniversary of ANZAC Day*

Monday 27 April 2015: All Tararua District Libraries will be closed, as this is a public holiday.


*In future, our libraries will only be closed on the designated public holiday for ANZAC Day


A man you can bank on!

hansenAuthor Derek Hansen was born in England, spent his youth in New Zealand, went back to London (where he became a very successful writer in the advertising world) and finally settled in Australia where he began writing fiction.

Best known for his novels ‘Lunch with the generals’ and ‘Lunch with Mussolini’, he has also written several others plus three collections of short stories, Derek Hansen has now come up with something in a slightly different style. There are thousands of thrillers out there but cleverly comic thrillers – I mean comic in the sense of funny, not graphic- are few and far between.

A man you can bank on’ is both a fast paced crime story and a funny take on modern outback Australia. On the cover it says “the cops want to arrest him, the crims want to kill him and the town wants to name a dog after him”. The story is set in the very small town of Munni-Munni where a retired bank manager uses a large stash of stolen money to keep his town alive during a time of recession and drought. The trouble is, the gang that stole the money have been released from jail and want it back. The only policeman in town is an honest cop and he has to cope with the mob plus an insurance investigator and two truly frightful hit men.

This is a delightful read, unexpected from a writer whose previous novels were neither off centre nor funny. It would make a great movie. If you haven’t come across the author before, may I suggest you check him out.

– Larry Gordon

Author website

ANZAC girls

anzac girls“The Other Anzacs” by Peter Rees (also published as Anzac Girls) is a phenomenal read.  And that’s coming from someone who is not a fan of non-fiction.  The only reason I read this 2008 book is because I watched the mini-series Anzac Girls, based on it, and was inspired to find out more about the nurses.

The Other Anzacs is mainly about the first Australian and New Zealand nurses who nursed during World War I.  Whether it was via the Australia Army Nursing Service, the New Zealand Army Nursing Service, the Imperial Military Nursing Service or the Australian Red Cross ‘Bluebirds’.

Not only is it well written and easy to follow, it is impeccably researched, and includes additional information beyond the mini-series such as what happened to the nurses after the war, and quite a lot of information about the battles waged other anzacsand military politics of the day.  There was also a riveting chapter on the sinking of the Marquette transport ship in 1915, in which 10 New Zealand nurses died, with first-hand accounts of this tragic event.

This book does not shrink from criticising some of what went on during World War I, in particular detailing what some of the nurses went through, both professionally and personally, which almost beggars belief.  So if you enjoyed the mini-series (which we also have available on DVD), you will probably find this title as fascinating as I did.

– Natalie

Book Sale!

During April 2015, Dannevirke Library foyer will be filled with lots of lovely second-hand books for sale.  Nothing over 50c.  What a bargain! A mix of all kinds of books, from all genres and for all levels.

First in, first served, however, we do replenish the sale with more stock as space allows, so keep looking all month long!

Book sale


Finalists: 2015 LIANZA Children’s Book Awards

LIANZA logo best

The Library & Information Association of Aotearoa New Zealand is delighted to announce these incredible finalists for our LIANZA Children’s Book Awards:

These are books that have been voted on by librarians throughout New Zealand, and the winners will be announced 15 June 2015.  If you would like to know more about the Awards, such as past winners, please see here.

Most are available for loan from our libraries.


Russell Clark Illustration Award Finalists

Marmaduke Duck on the wide blue seas / Sarah Davis  see more

Jim’s letters / Jenny Cooper  see more

Have you seen a monster? / Raymond McGrath  see more

So many wonderfuls / Tina Matthews  see more

Mrs Mo’s monster / Paul Beavis see more


LIANZA Young Adult (Novel) Finalists

I am Rebecca / Fleur Beale   see more

The red suitcase / Jill Harris  see more

Singing home the whale / Mandy Hager  see more

Recon Team Angel: Vengeance / Brian Falkner  see more

Night vision / Ella West  see more


Elsie Locke Nonfiction Finalists

The book of hat / Harriet Rowland  see more

A New Zealand nature journal / Sandra Morris  see more

Maori art for kids / Julie Noanoa and Norm Heke  see more

Motiti Blue and the oil spill: a story from the Rena disaster / Debbie McCauley  see more

New Zealand sports hall of fame: 25 Kiwi champions / Maria Gill and Marco Ivancic  see more


Esther Glen Junior Fiction Finalists

Monkey boy / Donovan Bixley  see more

The volume of possible endings (a tale of Fontania) / Barbara Else  see more

Conrad Cooper’s last stand / Leonie Agnew  see more

Trouble in time / Adele Broadbent  see more

Letterbox cat / Paula Green  see more


Te Kura Pounamu (Te Reo Maori) finalists

Nga Ki / Sacha Cotter, Josh Morgan and Kawata Teepa   see more

Hui E! / various authors

Tutewehi / Fred Te Maro

Kimihia / Te Mihinga Komene and Scott Pearson

An early Te Reo reading book series / Carolyn Collis  see more

Could you get away with murder?

I’ve always found that every so-called “scary” novel can be topped by a way better non-fiction book and that is the case here.  “Body in question: exploring the cutting edge in forensic science” by Brian Innes is a book for those of us who enjoy learning about forensic science (and there are lots of us out there) but it has more value than just information on dead people.
body in question

This book gives a brilliant feel to the history on this subject.  All sciences have a start somewhere and this book shows us where all that fun stuff came from, that we learn about on those really cool but not so accurate forensic television programmes. Yet don’t worry people, this is not a “how-to-murder” book but a “you will always can be caught” book, so forget all those ‘accidents’ involving people with wills, it is not worth it!

Now, not everything is perfect, and this book does have a quirk that does it let it down a little. The print layout can be distracting as you try to find out where the last sentence ends and the next starts (kind of like this review), but in saying that, if you take your time then it starts to make sense.  I enjoyed it and hope you do too.

– Darren

See catalogue for forensic science books



What’s on in the April 2015 school holidays?


Bring your kids along to Tararua District Library for free & fun papercraft sessions (designed for primary aged children).

All we ask is that you supervise younger children, and unless you’re attending Dannevirke, please contact your local library (or email to to let them know you might come – just so we can be sure to have enough supplies available.

Woodville Library : Ph 06 376 0218

Pahiatua Library : Ph 06 376 0121

Eketahuna Library : Ph 06 376 0219

holiday events

Tararua District Library
April School Holiday Craft Sessions
Theme “Make toys & games”
Dannevirke Woodville
Wed 8 April 10 – 11 am Tue 7 April 2 – 3 pm
Tue 14 April 10 – 11 am Thur 16 April 2 – 3 pm
Thur 16 April 10 – 11 am
Pahiatua Eketahuna
Tue 14 April 2 – 3 pm Fri 10 April 11am-12 noon
Thur 16 April 2 – 3 pm Thur 16 April 2 – 3 pm

A little Frozen with your Cinderella?

If you have a little one who is mad about the animated film “Frozen“, you’ll be pleased to know that a new short-film  “Frozen Fever” is about to be released.  The catch is that it is only showing in theatres, before the film “Cinderella” showing from 13 March 2015.

But hey, who doesn’t love Cinderella anyway (well, maybe boys).  It was my favourite fairy tale when I was little, and I am quite excited that a film has been made using real live actors rather than animation.  Just in case you’re not familiar with the tale:

The story of “Cinderella” follows the fortunes of young Ella whose merchant father remarries following the death of her mother. Eager to support her loving father, Ella welcomes her new stepmother and her daughters Anastasia and Drisella into the family home. But, when Ella’s father unexpectedly passes away, she finds herself at the mercy of a jealous and cruel new family. Relegated to nothing more than a servant girl covered in ashes and spitefully renamed Cinderella, Ella could easily begin to lose hope. Yet, despite the cruelty inflicted upon her, Ella is determined to honor her mother’s dying words and to “have courage and be kind.” She will not give in to despair nor despise those who mistreat her.

Ella meets a dashing stranger she meets in the woods. Unaware that he is really a prince, Ella finally feels she has met a kindred soul. When the Palace sends out an open invitation for all maidens to attend a ball, Ella hopes to encounter the charming Kit again, believing he works there. Alas, her stepmother forbids her to attend and locks her away. Fortunately, her fairy godmother comes to the rescue, ensuring Ella attends the ball on the condition she must leave by midnight.  The prince is smitten by her, but when she flees at midnight, all she leaves behind is her magical crystal shoe.  Determined to find her, the prince insists that all maidens in the kingdom must try on the shoe to see if it fits.  When Ella is found, she has the opportunity to exact revenge on her horrible step-family. But will she?

Now, who wouldn’t enjoy a story like that?  The original Disney animated version of ‘Cinderella’  is also available in our DVD collection.

A delicate truth

John Le Carre

John Le Carre

John Le Carre’s “ A delicate Truth” is a return to the world of the foreign office, civil servants cum spies, dubious operations that go fatally wrong and a few lone men of conscience who try to disclose the truth. This is the kind of story Le Carre is master of and made his reputation with. It is gripping, up-to-the-minute and unlikely to disappoint his many fans. I could have wished for a less uncertain ending but others may feel differently.

The author once worked for MI5 and MI6, and first achieved fame with his book ‘The spy who came in from the cold’.

– Larry

Read more


Too busy for ‘Buddhism for busy people’…

buddhismUnfortunately I was too busy to read “Buddhism for busy people” by David Michie in full, but the tips I skim-read seemed valuable! Meditation, although reportedly very beneficial, is a hard task to master. Yet the advice seemed like it would work – breathing in and out through one’s nose, focusing only on the feeling of each breath on the tip of one’s nostril as it entered and exited – not that I had time to try it. Maybe later.

Sorry haven’t got time to finish it, and skimming through the book has made me want to take it home again!

– Tamara

See catalogue for books on Buddhism

Learn more about Buddhism

The Sherlockian

‘The Sherlockian’ by Graham Moore is a clever crime story interweaving a murder mystery in 2010 with one featuring Sir Arthur Conan Doyle in 1900.  The author knows his subjects: Sherlock Holmes and Doyle. This novel reads like a Holmes story as the proponents of each era follow clues and make Sherlockian deductions. For a first novel from a 28 year old American with a degree in religious history this is an astonishing achievement in the ever- expanding world of ‘Holmsiana”.

– Larry

Sir Terry Pratchett, Discworld creator, taken by Death

The wonderful Sir Terry Pratchett has died aged 66, after battling with posterior cortical atrophy, a variation of Alzheimer’s (which he called “the embuggerance”), for the last 7 years.  The famous author wrote more than 70 books for all ages, including 40 as part of the fantastical and satirical Discworld series, of which he completed his last book in 2014. He collaborated with several authors, including Stephen Baxter who wrote “The Long Earth” series with him. He is survived by his wife Lyn and their daughter Rhianna.  Read full article

It is with great sadness that I write this, as Discworld novels have delighted me for many years. This imaginary world is a flat disc-shaped planet that is carried through space on the back of four elephants, in turn standing upon a giant turtle. It is a world peopled by humans, incompetent wizards, upside-down mountains, slow-witted barbarians, trolls, vampires, and a wry incarnation of Death.

I have very carefully rationed myself about two Discworld books a year, to make the series last as long as possible (at that rate, 20 years, so maybe I should speed up?) because I knew the end was looming.  But if you’re not the kind of person who likes to read series in absolute order, then dip your toe in wherever you like – that said, I would probably recommend reading “The colour of magic” first, as that is a good introduction to Discworld (also available on film).

So, as a long-time fan, I salute you Sir Terry and I’m very glad you blazed through this world and shared your magic with us. I hope wherever you are now is as amazing as your imagination… “I ate’nt dead”

– Natalie

Is young adult fiction being forgotten?

young adults yaOn a recent Saturday, myself and the rugrats took advantage of a sunny day and headed out of Eketahuna to the beach at Herbertville. Stopping along the way at Dannevirke Library for reading material, we stocked up from the young adult section and hit the sand. Number one son seriously underestimated the distance and had finished his two books before we arrived but number one daughter and myself were more organised!

I read a couple of great books by author Megan McCafferty. “Bumped” and “Thumped” are futuristic stories where a mysterious virus has rendered everyone over 18 years old sterile. This means that teenagers are the new commodity, fulfilling the worlds need for babies. But they don’t get to keep them, they act as surrogate bodies for older couples. These books are well written from the point of view of twins, separated at birth and bought up in very different circumstances. I found the story quick paced and well thought out. They got read in a couple of days but the story and idea have lingered and they are a great talking point on the theme of teenage pregnancies. I liked all the characters, including the 17 year old stud and the ending was well written with enough of a hang so you feel the need to fill in the future for them. I wanted a much happier ending than I got but I also felt that this wasn’t the end. Whether Ms McCafferty writes more on this idea or I just fill in the blanks myself, these are a great couple of books.

I sometimes worry that our young adult collections are seriously forgotten. There is a lot of fantastic well written material there.  I mean, just look at ‘The Hunger Games’, ‘The Fault in Our Stars’, ‘The Maze’, ‘Divergent’, ‘The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants’, ‘The Giver’, ‘The Book Thief’, ‘Delirium’, ‘Ender’s Game’ and the later Harry Potter books for a start – all young adult fiction. That’s just the tip of the iceberg people!

Until next time.

– Corinna

The girl who saved the King of Sweden

saved king swedenAn intriguing title by Jonas Jonasson, who wrote the “The hundred year old man who climbed out of the window and disappeared” (it’s probably shorter in his native Swedish), which was made into a film of course.

Unless you’re up on Swedish history, you will be as uncertain as I was as to how much is fact and how much fiction in this funny, quirky, what the heck’s going to happen next? novel. Let’s just say it’s about a young African girl, Nombeko Mayeki, who manages to export a nuclear bomb to Sweden and ends up becoming the Swedish Ambassador to South Africa. But just about anything and everything happens on the way.  Very entertaining.

– Larry

See catalogue

Inaugural Wood Fest!

Come and visit Wood Fest, celebrating Woodville’s history, culture and society.

In Maori history, the local iwi of Rangitane used the Woodville area as a traveller and hunter’s rest place. The name appears to be a corruption of the original name Wharetiti (Whare – house, titi – muttonbird) although it was originally to be the third of the Scandinavian Road Labourers Villages, referred to as the “village in the woods” and colloquially known as “The Junction” as well.

Woodville town lots were officially offered for sale from 1874. The first sections were mostly sold to railway or farm workers. The town also fell within the “Seventy Mile Bush” area.  By vogel-street-lrg1880, there were eleven houses in the town, a hotel and stables, clothing store, butchery, bakery and boarding house and a boot-maker. A school building had been erected and served for many community group meetings. In 1885 the Town Board under the chairmanship of Joseph Sowry was formed and in 1887 Woodville was constituted as a Borough with Joseph Sowry elected as the first mayor.  (source: ThisisWoodville website)

Tararua District Library has a few digital historical images on the Tararua Kete.  Our collection also has plenty of interesting Woodville history, including the fascinating “This is Woodville : a chronicle of 81 town sections auctioned at Napier 16 January 1875, a business history” (2013) by Joan McIntyre.

Wood Fest is community family day, with free entertainment:

  • Luscious Lunch (tickets on sale see
  • Local bands
  • Market Fair
  • Competition grade axe menchainsaw sculpture
  • Chainsaw and crosscut saw demo
  • Chainsaw sculptors
  • Watch a mural being painted
  • Line and Circle dancing
  • Free kids bouncy castle and obstacle course
  • Hot rod rides, pony rides, milk train rides

Woodville video



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