Ada Wells : Picturing Canterbury

Ada Wells was a school teacher, notably at St. Albans. She was the right-hand woman of Kate Sheppard in the Women’s Christian Temperance Union struggle for women to get the vote in parliamentary elections and, later, was the first woman on the Christchurch City Council, 1917-1919.


RIP P.D. James

Cover of Time to be in EarnestP.D. James,  Baroness James of Holland Park, (OBE, FRSA, FRSL) has died aged 94.

Phyllis Dorothy James was the author of over 20 crime novels, most of them featuring Detective Adam Dalgliesh. She published her (Fragment of an) autobiography Time to be in Earnest in 1999 and many of her works were adapted for television.

Her most recent book was Death Comes to Pemberley (2011) a continuation of the events in Pride and Prejudice framed as a murder-mystery. It was one of those ideas that intrigued almost everyone and was made into a successful mini-series in 2013.

My favourite PD James title is The Maul and the Pear Tree (1971). Co-written with T.A. Critchley, it is a non-fiction examination of The Ratcliffe Highway Murders of 1811.

Cover of The Maul and the Pear Tree Cover of An Adam Dalgliesh Omnibus Cover of Original Sin Book cover of Death comes to Pemberley Cover of Talking about detective fiction Cover of The skull beneath the skin

Freegal Friday: One R2-D2 To Rule Them All

Normally on Freegal Friday we highlight a selection of goodies that can be downloaded by Library members for free from Freegal. This week however there was room for only one title. A song that crosses the streams of Christmas, Star Wars and Jon Bon Jovi. Our early Christmas gift for you is R2-D2 We Wish You A Merry Christmas.

Cover of Rare and Unusual Christmas Songs

The Star Wars Holiday Special is infamous in Star Wars lore for its cheesy tone and general shunning by the franchise, even though it is mostly classified as canon. Its lesser-known cousin is Christmas in the Stars, a LP and cassette focusing on the story of a Christmas droid toy-making factory. Songs include The Odds Against Christmas, The Meaning of Christmas and that holiday favourite What Can You Get A Wookie for Christmas (When He Already Owns a Comb?). But among this galaxy of Christmas tunes, why pick out R2-D2 We Wish You A Merry Christmas? Three words Jon Bon Jovi.

In his first professional recording, 17-year-old Jon Bon Jovi provides the vocals for this piece of Star Wars kitsch. Check it out, along with other Rare and Unusual Christmas Songs and download it with your library card and PIN.