Nenagh library kicked off their annual Children’s Book Festival in style with the hilarious (and very talented) Philip Sherman of the Booster Cushion Theatre company on the 4th of October. A master storyteller he entertained over 100 children from St. Mary’s junior boys school, St. Mary’s Church of Ireland and an Naíonra, all from Nenagh, as well as children from Aglish, Youghalarra and Cloughjordan No. 1 national schools, with a re-telling of the fairy tale classic, Little Red Riding Hood. Being familiar with the story and the main characters in this tale, the children readily responded to Philip’s enthusiasm and sense of fun. This was an interactive show and he made sure to get as many children involved in the story as possible, to the delight of both children and their teachers.
This was followed on Friday 11th October by a visit from well known author, Áine Ní Ghlinn, who explained the process of writing and getting her books published to over 60 pupils from Gaelscoil an tAonaigh. A fluent Irish speaker, her talk was well pitched to the kids so they could interact with her as she explained how covers are chosen for her books, often based on test readers feedback, and got everyone involved in the creative process, bringing up different members of the audience and having each of them play a part eg agent, editors, proofreaders and publishers.
Our final event was another author visit, this time by Brian Gallagher, writer of young adult novels such as Across the Divide, Taking Sides, Secrets and Shadows, Friend or Foe and Pawns and Spies
Three schools came to hear Brian speak and read from his novels, Terryglass N.S., St Mary’s No. 2, Nenagh and Aglish N.S. Brian is a well known and popular author of both adult and young adult fiction and the children were familiar with his books which greatly added to his talk.
Supported by organisations like Creative Ireland and Foras na Gaeilge, Tipperary county council library service has been organising Children’s Book Festival events for many years in libraries across the county throughout the month of October, with events scheduled for readers of all ages and interests. CBF gives children the opportunity to meet some of their favourite authors and take part in fun events but at heart it is about encouraging children to enjoy the experience of reading and supporting their reading development as part of the national Right to Read initiative.