For many, reality television is akin to devil worship. It is considered voyeuristic, cheap television, and a symbol of all that is wrong in the world. Admitting you watch this type of TV – and perhaps even like it – could, in some circles lead to instant social isolation! If you have been exposed to this type of exclusion then a way back into the social milieu could be to casually mention that the library embraces reality tv – warts and all!
Think of all the cookbooks from the likes of Jamie and his School dinners, Nigella and Masterchef have spawned? New Zealand’s Hottest Home baker now has its own Alice in Bakingland.
Project Runway has not only raised its host Tim Gunn to the giddy heights of bestsellerdom but contestants have also gone on to produce their own material. Remember Trinny and Suzannah in What not to wear, there was always a waiting list for these two, and who could forget Gok, now not only the savour of the fashionably inept he has now gone onto not only help us look good on the street but in the kitchen as well!
The diet industry has led to many a torrid reality TV watching experience, and The Biggest Loser host Bob Harper has gone onto become a bestseller and diet guru. Jo Frost – our favourite Supernanny – has just put out a new title and the TV programme One born every minute has its own spin-off.
Not even dogs are safe…Cesar Millan aka The dog whisperer has his own books and DVDs.
Not only has reality TV created its own publishing bonanza it has supported a plethora of books on interior design and craft and design (thanks to My House Rules, Mitre 10 dream home, and Kevin McCloud).
Our CD collections now feature the likes of Stan Walker winner of Australian Idol, and who could possibly forget Britain’s Got Talent Susan Boyle?
So the next time someone scoffs as you chat about last night’s elimination in ‘My Kitchen Rules’, just remind them that the library has plenty of books, DVD’s and CD’s that could help them keep more up with the play.
I spied a poster in the library that has put a real spring in my step: Community Read 2014. The reason for this spring is a visit to Christchurch City Libraries by Kate De Goldi. She is coming to talk about her novel The 10PM Question and I can’t wait.
I read this book a number of years ago and at the time it struck a real chord. Frankie Parsons, a twelve year old boy, is on the verge of change. He has a head full of worries and Frankie’s Ma listens patiently to his 10pm questions. I had a son who also had a head full of worries and at the time I found The 10PM Question a reassuring read. Kate De Goldi deals sensitively and perceptively with the issue of anxiety and the challenges faced by Frankie and his family.
Kate is an award winning writer who cannot be missed.
Lover of Literature
I had the pleasure of listening to Kate a number of years ago and I promise you will not be disappointed. Come along to this free event on Friday 22nd August, 11-12pm, at the South Library Colombo Street, Christchurch. In the evening (7.30pm to 9pm), join the Court Jesters for some 10pm questions. Share your 10PM question and be in to win an iPod touch. The Court Jesters at South Library will improvise your 10pm questions!
Kate de Goldi – and many more authors – will also be appearing in a variety of sessions at the WORD Christchurch Writers and Readers Festival.
I don’t have a 10pm question but I do have plenty of 2.30am questions! What is your 10pm question?
The For Later list gets longer and longer. Surely there must be some way of making it more worthwhile and less of an impossible dream.
Sharing the titles added every week and some of the reasons why? Worth a try.
This week they were:
- The age of innocence by Edith Wharton, because Katie Roiphe, in In praise of messy lives, deals with hard times by reading books she has read “a million times before”. After separating from her husband, Roiphe read the story of Countess Olenska, who, after her own divorce, was victim of “the same stigma mingled with fascination”.
- Some hope by Edward St Aubyn, because he sounds fascinating.
- The book of you by Claire Kendal because it’s based on Samuel Richardson’s Clarissa, only shorter and easier. I hope.
- Red light properties by Dan Goldman because it’s a graphic novel and therefore a quick read, and because it’s an interesting premise – a real estate agency in Miami that specialises in exorcising haunted houses.
- Glitter and glue by Kelly Corrigan because it’s about mothers and daughters.
- It by Alexa Chung because fashion books are lovely to look at.
Go on – put a hold on one (or more) of these and make me feel better.