Staff Picks - what we are reading

Staff and volunteers share some of their favourite reads from the scheme.

Staff Picks

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Ginny - historical fiction
Ginny is a volunteer who helps cover new books and is part of the Review Network. She is a voracious reader and so finds it difficult to recall titles of books she read a while ago. She likes fiction and non-fiction, and finds historical novels to be an enjoyable and "painless" way to learn history. Her absolute favourite books are Jewels and Colour, by Victoria Finlay. Historical and other novels she has recently enjoyed are: 1. LaRose "[The title is] the unlikely name for a young native American Indian" 2. Room 3. Raised from the Ground "It's set in Portugal. The review copy had the best first line I've ever read, but the translator modified it in the next edition". 4. The Inconvenient Indian 5. Cold Mountain / Thirteen Moons (by the same author) Read More

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Phyll - eclectic taste
Phyll volunteers weekly, covering books for our collection. She has an eclectic taste in books, which is evident in her pick of favourite reads. Her first love is murder mysteries but admits that books she may not be drawn to at first glance can be "a real surprise sometimes" and most enjoyable.  1. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society 2. The Poisonwood Bible "When I finally got into it, I found it really enjoyable" 3. The Kite Runner 4. A Fine Balance "Not a happy story, but I couldn't put it down" 5. The Shadow of the Wind  "I want to go to Barcelona" Read More

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Lesley - journeying to different places
Lesley is one of our distribution staff and has been with BDS for 5 years. She reads a wide variety of fiction and non-fiction but particularly enjoys books with interesting people or characters. "I do like journeying, as an armchair traveller, to different places and learning about them. My favourite books are set in different countries: from Iceland to Hawaii to Rwanda. I enjoy the different settings," she says. Lesley's top reads are: 1. Requiem 2. Three Souls  3. Life in a Jar Read More

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Barbara - likes to learn
Barbara, our manager, enjoys character-driven books and the opportunity to learn something - about cultures, countries or history. Here is her current list of favourites from the scheme: 1. News of the World     "Loved it" . 2.  Gentleman in Moscow      "And it's going to be a TV series!" 3. The Radium Girls      "Tissues are required but it was a real eye-opener" 4. Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine  Read More

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Annie - broaden my world view
Annie is one of our dispatch team, writes the book blurbs for BDS and convenes two book groups. She says her favourite book is usually the one she is reading at the time, but (more helpfully) adds: "My reading choices are 'ideas-driven'. I read a wide range of fiction and non-fiction but really enjoy stories that make me think and so challenge and broaden my view of the world." Annie's current best reads are: 1. The Big Thirst 2. Where the Rekohu Bone Sings 3. We Are Called To Rise 4. The Good Doctor "...Read this book and ponder"   5. The Care and Handling of Roses With Thorns Read More

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Shelagh - convincing characters
Shelagh manages the production of our booknotes. She enjoys novels that are credible and authentic - not necessarily "a happy read" but those with convincing characters "that leave you thinking about them long after the book is finished". Recent non-fiction reading tends to be biography with a literary or historical focus. Shelagh's all-time top-ranking picks from the scheme include: 1. The Luminaries "It's a stand-out book for me in the way it's constructed and with the cast of characters." 2. Coming Rain 3. Summer Lies Read More
More Staff Picks
Your Favourites (as voted by BDS groups)
Challenging But Rewarding (as voted by BDS groups)
The Book Discussion 
Scheme is a member of the Federation of Workers Educational Associations in Aotearoa New Zealand
BDS is a member of the Federation of Workers Educational Associations