Looking for a good book to take on holiday? Here are some ideas for books you’ll want to pack in your suitcase.

Locals invited to join Ben’s Book Club

Members of Fraser Coast Libraries can join a new, free, online book club and watch live video chats between authors every month following the launch of Ben’s Book Club.

Brisbane author Ben Hobson will chat with authors whose books will be available to library members to read as an eBook, or listen to as an eAudiobook, for free via the Libby app.

Cr David Lewis said the launch event would feature Queensland-born writer Maryrose Cuskelly and her novel The Cane, a story about the disappearance of a 16-year-old girl in a north Queensland sugar town.

Fraser Coast Libraries - Author Maryrose Cuskelly

Maryrose Cuskelly

He said the real-life disappearance of Mackay girl Marilyn Wallman in 1972, while riding her bike to school, made a lasting impression on the author.

“Maryrose has already written about Marilyn’s disappearance and the way it percolated through her childhood and now has created this fictional story dealing with some of the same themes,” Cr Lewis said.

“Unlimited numbers of Fraser Coast Libraries members can borrow The Cane as an eBook or eAudiobook simultaneously through our Libby app and then join the author talk online on March 22 – all for free.”

Cr Lewis said he was delighted that Libby had launched the online book club to give regional audiences access to successful authors.

“People will be able to type in questions during the online Zoom session and, perhaps, be inspired to write their own stories or pick up a few writing tips if they are already penning a book,” Cr Lewis said.

Borrow The Cane via Libby

The Cane is available for borrowing via Libby now and physical copies are also available to reserve.

Cr Lewis said people did not need to have read the book before the video chat between the authors, which was scheduled to begin at 6 pm on March 22.

The link to join the Zoom session can be found in the “What’s On” section of the Fraser Coast Libraries website (www.frasercoast.qld.gov.au/whats-on) as well as on the libraries Facebook page.

To get started enjoying eBooks, eAudiobooks and eMagazines, download Libby or, for more information about Libby, visit www.frasercoast.qld.gov.au/ebooks

For free membership of the library, and to gain access to the eLibrary within one-and-a-half hours, go to https://catalogue.frasercoast.qld.gov.au/Montage/Join.aspx

Fraser Coast Libraries receives financial assistance from the Queensland Government through the State Library of Queensland.

Who is the host of Ben’s Book Club?

Ben Hobson lives in Brisbane with his wife, son and two dogs and is an English teacher at a Queensland high school.

His childhood was spent surrounded by the country life of Victoria’s Gippsland region, which helped shape many aspects about him today, including how much he loves being close to nature whenever possible.

Ben’s novella If the Saddle Breaks My Spine was shortlisted for a Viva La Novella prize in 2014.

His debut novel To Become A Whale came out in 2017 and was longlisted at an Abia Debut Fiction Award as well as being chosen for The Courier Mail’s People’s Choice Award.

To find out more, click here.

Looking for more literary inspiration?

Is the daily rat race leaving you feeling exhausted?

My blog acts as a source of inspiration to help you indulge dreams and imaginations.

So if you are looking for your next literary adventure, check out some of my blogs on stories here.

 

 

 

Find your inner hero with inspirational books

If you are looking for inspirational books to read while on holiday, you might want to check out these 11 books that tell the stories of ordinary people who have succeeded in the face of adversity.

Books from Billy Connolly, Dick Smith, Sonny Bill Williams and more will help motivate you to overcome any challenge you face next year and keep working towards the life of your dreams.

Disclosure: As an Amazon Australia Associate I earn from qualifying purchases made through links in this post.

1. Can’t Hurt Me

Can’t Hurt Me shares the story of how David Goggins overcame poverty and prejudice in his childhood to become “The Fittest (Real) Man in America.” He is one of the country’s top icons within the U.S. Armed Forces and showcases how anyone can use self-discipline and hard work to change their life.

2. First They Killed My Father: A Daughter of Cambodia Remembers

Loung Ung grew up living a privileged life in Phnom Penh, but at five years of age, this all changed. First They Killed My Father shares the story of how she overcame adversity after being sent to a labour camp and continued to show courage and love throughout her childhood and into her adult life.

3. Windswept & Interesting: My Autobiography

While Billy Connolly is well known around the world today, you might not know he was orphaned at the tender age of four. Surviving abuse from his own family, Windswept & Interesting shares his story of success despite the odds which were stacked against him.

4. My Adventurous Life

If you aren’t familiar with Dick Smith, he’s a proud Australian who is known for his work within business and innovation. In My Adventurous Life, we learn how Dick was branded as useless at academics at school and grew up with a speech impediment and became one of the country’s most respected citizens.

5. You Can’t Stop the Sun from Shining

As the first Muslim to play for the All Blacks, Sonny Bill Williams shares his incredible story in You Can’t Stop the Sun from Shining. He has always been driven by his moral compass and uses his newly found platform to encourage change in the world around him.

6. Breathe – A Life in Flow

Rickson Gracie is a familiar name to anyone who is familiar with Jiu-Jitsu. In Breathe – A Life in Flow, we learn how Rickson was inspired to defend himself growing up in Rio and the tragedies that he overcame on his path to success.

7. In Order To Live: A North Korean’s Journey To Freedom

Yeonmi Park shares the harrowing story of growing up in North Korea. In Order to Live offers us an insight into her childhood, where she was sold into slavery at the tender age of 13. Her resilient spirit shines throughout the book.

8. The Sound of Gravel: A Memoir

Ruth Wariner grew up in a family of 42 children in Mexico, and as the 39th child, she faced extreme poverty and violence growing up. The Sound of Gravel shares the story of living in a polygamist family and how she strived to maintain loyalty to her family after leaving them behind.

9. The Nazis Knew My Name

For anyone who is inspired by the story of Auschwitz and those who survived, you’ll want to pick up The Nazis Knew My Name by Magda Hellinger. She is an Australian Slovakian Holocaust survivor who saved multiple lives in Auschwitz through her acts of kindness and courage.

10. Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness

Susannah Cahalan shares her story of a misdiagnosis that almost ended her life. In Brain on Fire, we learn how one intelligent doctor saved Cahalan’s life and discover some of the hard truths about the medical industry.

11. My Story

Elizabeth Smart shares her life in My Story, where we learn about her abduction at 14 years of age. She was held captive for almost a year by a religious fanatic, and we learn how she escaped from this terrible situation. People around the world now find inspiration from hearing her speak as an advocate for victims of similar crimes.

Inspirational books tell courageous tales

When you read any of these books, you’ll be inspired by the courageous tales which showcase how overcoming adversity in most situations is possible.

If you are struggling to find inspiration in your everyday life, learning about the struggles that others have faced is often what you need to hear.

The more you read about the world around you, the more you’ll be able to show compassion and mental toughness in any situation you face in the future.

Or, do you prefer crime and mystery novels?

If reading crime and mystery novels are more your style, check out these titles the list of Top 10 most borrowed adult fiction titles in 2020 from Fraser Coast Libraries.

Readers love crime and mystery

The top 10 most borrowed adult fiction books in 2020 from the Fraser Coast Libraries reveal users’ love of crime and mystery stories with Lee Child novels taking out three of the top five positions.

Councillor David Lewis said crime and mystery writers also featured strongly in the list of the top 10 most popular authors of 2020 with James Patterson in the number one position.

“Female writers hold an equal number of spots in the top 10 list of most borrowed authors,” Cr Lewis said.

“Romance and fantasy writer Nora Roberts appears in the number two ranking and again in the ninth slot under her crime-writing pseudonym of J.D. Robb.

“It’s also good to see a children’s book author in the top 10 with Daisy Meadows in eighth place.”

Disclosure: As an Amazon Australia Associate I earn from qualifying purchases made through links in this post.

Council’s five library branches were inundated during the first week of the New Year with borrowers returning more than 41,000 items.

During the opening week, borrowers also took home almost 17,000 items, Cr Lewis said.

The busy start to 2021 followed a major jump of 49 per cent in the use of the e-Library last year.

“Fraser Coast Libraries recorded more than 63,000 eBook loans and reserves in 2020, along with 48,000 eAudiobook loans and reserves, as the community felt the impact of COVID-19,” he said.

“The e-Library proved invaluable during the time when the physical library branches were closed during the early stages of the global pandemic.

“People were able to, and still can, join online and start borrowing ebooks and e-audiobooks for free within one-and-a-half hours.”

Top 10 most borrowed adult fiction titles in 2020

  1. Past Tense by Lee Child
  2. Blue Moon by Lee Child
  3. The Night Fire by Michael Connelly
  4. The Midnight Line by Lee Child
  5. Khaki Town by Judy Nunn
  6. Fifty Fifty by James Patterson and Candice Fox
  7. Camino Island by John Grisham
  8. Sanctuary by Judy Nunn
  9. End Game by David Baldacci
  10. The Fix by David Baldacci

Top 10 most popular authors in 2020

  1. James Patterson
  2. Nora Roberts
  3. Danielle Steel
  4. Clive Cussler
  5. David Baldacci
  6. Lee Child
  7. Michael Connelly
  8. Daisy Meadows
  9. J.D. Robb
  10. Anna Jacobs

If reading true stories of inspiration are more your style, check out the Top 11 Inspirational Books of 2021.

 

Early bush life fosters adventure novels

Writing about a gunfight between British and German soldiers didn’t impress Keith McArdle’s primary school teacher but his readers today are fascinated with his action-packed war novels.

“My father told me about world wars but my teacher wasn’t particularly enthralled with a seven-year-old boy writing about warfare. It’s not what kids of that age normally write about,” he said.

The former military man turned paramedic will be among the guest writers attending the launch of the USQ’s new Creative Writing on Country workshop in Maryborough during the Mary Poppins Festival on 6 July 2014.

USQ Fraser Coast Executive Manager Brett Langabeer said anyone interested in creative writing of any genre was invited to meet Mr McArdle and other local authors between 10 am and noon to hear about their writing journeys, win books and learn how to win a competition prize valued at $550.

Visitors can also learn about USQ’s new Creative Writing on Country workshop to be held on the Labour Day long weekend, October 4 to 6, 2014.

Mr McArdle said his writing journey began in early childhood on his family’s 55-acre farm near Mudgee in New South Wales where the lack of television and computer games meant he and his brother entertained themselves in the yard.

“Dad was a school teacher and when he and Mum moved out here from England they had very little money. The farm had no running water, electricity or telephone.

“Everything was done as it was in Australia’s early days – we had a bush shower and cooked on a cast-iron stove. I didn’t see television until I was seven years old.”

Military-based adventure novels

Adventure Novels

T

Mr McArdle’s keen interest in action and adventure has resulted in two military-based fiction novels – The Forgotten Land and The Reckoning: The Day Aus

adventure novels

tralia Fell. He is now writing the latter’s sequel titled Aftermath. A short story in eBook format is currently available for download from Amazon.

People attending the USQ Creative Writing on Country launch on July 6 will hear more about Mr McArdle’s fascinating past and how it led him to be the multi-talented author he is today. Autographed books will be available for purchase on the day. One lucky door winner will take home one of Mr McArdle’s books for free.

Other local authors at USQHub@Maryborough, 38 Sussex Street, on Sunday include Toni McRae, T.J Hamilton, Lincoln Bertoli, Linda Downing and USQ’s own international award-winning author and lecturer, Dr Nike Sulway, who will run the USQ workshop in October. The official launch starts at 11 am.

This exciting initiative is aimed at helping local writers build their literary skills and inspire them to have their stories published.