Six Word Books

 

Last term, our second years were set the challenge of describing a favourite book in exactly six words – no more, no less. This is harder than you think! They met the task with enthusiasm and whimsy. The entries above are the ones which were selected as the ‘top six’ by a team of staff members. Ms Dickson, the librarian, will be announcing two winners in assembly next week. Each will win a €10 book token. All of the top six will receive a small prize. Well done, Aaliyah, Persis, Dunah, Missy, Isabelle and Tori!

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The ‘Six Word Books’ display during the event

If any librarians or other educators would like to use the files and images from this contest, feel free to get in touch with me: library@stdominics.ie

 

Black History Month – Famous Black Authors

Maya Angelou

  • Writer, poet, screenwriter, actor, dancer
  • 1928-2014
  • Missouri, USA
  • Famous book: I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (1969) – Autobiography
  • Famous poem: Still I Rise
  • Maya Angelou made literary history with I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings which was the first non-fiction best-seller by an African-American woman.

Chinua Achebe

  • Author, Educator, Publisher
  • 1930–2013
  • Nigeria
  • Famous book: Things Fall Apart (1958) – Fiction
  • Things Fall Apart has sold more than 20 million copies and has been translated into more than 50 languages.

Ben Okri

  • Author
  • 1959-
  • Nigeria & England
  • Famous book: The Famished Road (1991) – Fiction
  • Okri won the Booker Prize in 1991 for The Famished Road.

Mildred D. Taylor

  • Author
  • 1943-
  • Mississippi, USA
  • Famous book: Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry (1976) – Children’s Fiction
  • All of Mildred D. Taylor’s novels are based on personal stories based on her own family and tales she heard at gatherings throughout her life.

Andrea Levy

  • Author
  • 1956-
  • England (& Jamaica)
  • Famous Book: Small Island (2004) – Fiction
  • Andrea Levy’s father was one of the generation to sail from Jamaica to England on the Empire Windrush Ship in 1948.

Toni Morrison

  • Author
  • 1931-
  • Ohio, USA
  • Famous book: Beloved (1987) – Fiction
  • Toni Morrison was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1993.

Malorie Blackman

  • Author, Teacher
  • 1962-
  • London, England
  • Famous book: Noughts & Crosses (2001) – Fiction (series)

This is what Malorie Blackman had to say about writing about racism in children’s literature:

 I think a lot of racism comes out of ignorance and fear, and we can start to combat it by showing different cultures, races, religions in story contexts. Stories promote empathy, a sense of being able to see through the eyes of others and being able to walk in another person’s shoes. That said, we also need more books which feature children of colour, children with disabilities, working class children, LGBT teens, etc which are just about children and teens having adventures and not necessarily about their disability, colour, culture, religion. Books should be mirrors as well as windows.

I generally make my major characters black because that’s who and what I am and I’m started writing in part to redress the imbalance regarding ethnic diversity in children’s literature that I felt acutely as a child, but the ethnic identity of my characters is never the whole story. I try to make my characters real people who are trying to live their lives and deal with their problems. For example, a black boy who needs a heart transplant is pretty much the same as a white boy who needs a heart transplant (Pig Heart Boy).

Nicola Yoon

  • Author, Programmer
  • New York, USA & Jamaica
  • Famous book: Everything, Everything (2015) – Fiction
  • Nicola Yoon had a full-time job while writing Everything, Everything. It took her three years of writing from 4am-6am before work.

 

All the above-mentioned books – and more! – are available in the school library.

 

More authors to follow…

It’s Black History Month!

February is Black History Month! While Black History Month originated as an African American celebration, we recognise it here in the St Dominic’s library. We have a great selection of books by Writers of Colour in the library.

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We’ll be having events later in the month, including a discussion on African Irish identity, some readings from Michelle Obama’s Becoming and a special one-off African-themed audiobook/colouring club after half term.

Goodnight Stories for Rebel Girls – Elena Favilli & Francesco Cavallo

From the back cover:

“Goodnight stories for rebel girls cover reinvents fairy tales, inspiring girls with the stories of 100 heroic women from Elizabeth I to Serena Williams. Illustrated by 60 female artists from every corner of the world, this is the most-funded original book in the history of crowdfunding.”

Review by Ally C.:

The book I read is called Goodnight Stories for Rebel Girls. It is about 100 women from Elizabeth I to Serena Williams. It is illustratedby 60 female artists from all over the world. It is non-fiction.

I love this book because it is very inspiring and tells you the story behind your favourite artist, explorer, ballerina, politician, scientist, queen, princess… you name it.

I would definitely give this book a 10/10 and it is a must-read. The reason why is because it is very inspiring and interesting and you find out the history of the women’s rights we have today, like voting in elections, cycling in competitions, equal rights, being in the army, having our own businesses or being able to have a proper job.

Frida Kahlo, by Guillermo Kahlo

My favourite story was Frida Kahlo’s because she is an inspiration to us all and what you can achieve through all the odds.

Ally is a first year student in St Dominic’s College. Her review was awarded joint second place in the school’s 2018 ‘Book in the Bag’ Book Review Contest.