Assistant at the Richmond Upper Clarence Regional Library Richmond Branch, Kate Warner, with a selection of her favourite books.
Assistant at the Richmond Upper Clarence Regional Library Richmond Branch, Kate Warner, with a selection of her favourite books. Jay Cronan

Library grants benefit readers

IT’S A close call between adolescent vampires and a girl with a dragon tattoo, with an ex-convict turned Indian soul searcher following close behind.

But there’s some Tuscan romance, time travel and Nazi history in the running too.

These are just a few books in high demand at local libraries that come with a long wait on the reserve list.

The wait might be a bit shorter after over $400,000 in government grants was awarded to three local libraries this week

One recipient, Richmond Upper Clarence Valley Library which, includes Kyogle who received $36,115 and Casino who received $200,000, has noticed one constantly sought -after book and hopes to use the grant to expand services at the libraries.

“The Twilight series is still in high demand and anything that has been made into a film is always popular,” deputy regional manager Sylvia Cooling said.

“The library is the only free service people can go to and we get newborn babies to people 90 years old and over coming in.

“For a lot of people it is a social occasion and the conversation they have with our staff may be the only one they have all day.

“These regular customers become a part of our family.

“We hope to use the funds to have a better layout of facilities and different programs,” she said.

The funds, awarded by Minister for Arts Virginia Judge are part of a State-wide $3.3 million Library Development Grant scheme.

Byron Bay library’s long awaited new library plan has also been given a big $200,000 boost.

However, the popular Twilight series is absent from the Byron library’s number one spot, being superseded by Shantaram and Stieg Larsson’s Millennium Trilogy.

The internet, e-books, online news and other cyberspace literature might have once posed a threat to the popularity of library books but Ballina library assistant Ian Knight remains confident the value of book borrowing still reigns.

“I have worked here 17 years and the biggest change I have seen has been the internet,” said Mr Knight.

However, he said, despite a slew of new technologies, people still want to hold a book.

“Fifty per cent of Ballina residents are library members,” he said.

 

TOP 5 MOST BORROWED BOOKS

Lismore

1: Millennium Trilogy – Stieg Larsson 2: True Blood – Charlaine Harris 3: Dreams Can Come True – Susan Boyle 4: The Catcher in the Rye – J D Salinger 5: Stephanie Plum – Janet Evanovich

Casino

1: Twilight Series – Stephenie Meyer 2: Outlander – Diana Gabaldon 3: James Patterson – Assorted books 4: Handle With Care – Jodi Picoult 5: Tuscan Rose – Belinda Alexandra

Ballina

1: Millennium Trilogy – Stieg Larsson 2: Shantaram – Gregory David Roberts 3: Eat Pray Love – Elizabeth Gilbert 4: The Time Traveller’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger 5: Twilight Series – Stephenie Meyer



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