Israel Armstrongthe hapless duffle coat wearing, navel-gazing librarian who solves crimes and domestic problems whilst driving a mobile library around the north coast of Irelandfinds himself on the brink of thirty. But any celebration, planned or otherwise, must be put on hold when a troubled teenagerthe daughter of a local politicianmysteriously vanishes. Israel suspects the girl's disappearance has something to do with his lending her American Pastoral from the library's special "Unshelved" category. Now he has to find the lost teen before he's run out of townwhile he attempts to recover from his recent breakup with his girlfriend, Gloria, and tries to figure out where in Tumdrum a Jewish vegetarian might celebrate his thirtieth birthday.
Mr. Sansom's fourth in the Mobile Library Series is a 3-D book. No, it is not a pop-up book. Nor is it so described because the characters and their small town in Northern Ireland come forward fully formed like Venus from the sea, although that is certainly part of it. It's because in addition to depth and definitude, Sansom adds a third dimension: daftness. Daftness is such a rarified dimension, a stratum where only the immensely gifted can survive. Here is where Sansom thrives. The characters, the plot, the town of Tumdrum are daft indeed. But it's a smart, snappy, literate daftness that reveals insights into the scope of life... I laughed longer and harder at Sansom's incisive and intelligent wit than I have since, perhaps, reading Catch 22. I enjoyed it so much that upon completion of this book I immediately read its three pre-quels. (Reviewed by Donna Chavez).
Ian Sansom on Libraries, Writing, and Flapjacks On his website Ian Sansom speaks about the role libraries have played in his life:
"Libraries are places where you go to invent and reinvent yourself, or maybe just to use the toilet, if they have toilet facilities, and to find out how other people have reinvented themselves, and what they've written on the walls, and the desks, and in the books; they're a wonderful hiding place, but also a way back out into the world. The whole point of a library is that you don't have to buy the books you read. You don't have to undergo the agony of going into bookshops, those brightly-lit half-houses of the soul, and shelling out your hard-earned cash for something that in all likelihood is only going to be fit for the fire, and which you're never going to read much past the first couple of chapters. The great truth and beauty of a public library is that you don't own the books: they, briefly, own you. There's probably a moral...
Set in Pratchett's wonderfully crazed city of Ankh-Morpork, Going Postal hilariously reflects the plight of post offices the world over as they struggle to compete in an era when e-mail has stolen much of the glamour from the postal trade.
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Kenn Nesbitt is new Children's Poet Laureate(Jun 12 2013) Kenn Nesbitt has been named the new Children's Poet Laureate: Consultant in Children's Poetry to the Poetry Foundation, which noted that the two-year position...