Wednesday, 7 February 2018

Books Unlocked February 2018 - Graphic Novels

 Every Picture Tells the Story

Is it a bird? Is it a plane?
Well, no, but it is ‘Every Picture tells the Story’: a taster of comics and graphic novels, in
UOB Libraries this month.

There is a long history to be discovered; a look at using the medium in non-fiction and academia; new approaches to classic texts – oh, and some Superheroes too.

Whether taking a break or looking for inspiration do seek out the displays in your campus and see what comics and graphic novels may have for you. 




Bedford Library

1st floor Bedford Library

Bedford Library

Bedford Library
Aylesbury LRC



Luton Library

Tuesday, 9 January 2018

Mood Boosting for January


We know that University life can sometimes be challenging. That is why we have put together a collection of books on a wide range of topics around personal health and well-being.

Whether you’re interested in managing stress and learning some new relaxation techniques, or having more difficult mental health issues, there are books here that can help.  Why not look at our books on cookery, nutrition and exercise.

There is useful material available on Health and Well-being from Student Support, visit:



Health & Wellbeing 
Campus Centre, Luton campus  Tuesday 23 January, 10am-3pm.

Luton Library

Luton Library

Luton Library


 What can I do if I don’t have a lot of time?​

University can be a busy time, which can make it harder for you to take the time to look after your mental wellbeing. When you’re busy, stresses can mount up and really take their toll - so it’s important to take the time to prioritise your own mental wellbeing. ​If you have:

5 minutes

Make a cup of tea and enjoy it undistracted
Cuddle a pet or soft toy
Write a to-do list
Text a friend

10 minutes

Do a guided meditation
Take a walk
Do a quick tidy and clean of your room/workspace
Listen to your favourite songs

30 minutes

Take exercise - yoga, a run, a brisk walk
Call a friend or family member for a catch-up
Have a nap

1 hour

Watch an episode of your favourite TV show
Go for coffee with a friend
Cook or bake something tasty

Bedford Library


Bedford Library


Bedford Library
Aylesbury LRC


Aylesbury LRC

Thursday, 7 December 2017

Books Unlocked Christmas 2017



CHRISTMAS AROUND THE WORLD



"This year we wanted to focus on how people celebrate Christmas in other countries and get some interesting insights about Christmas traditions and celebrations. More than two billion people celebrate Christmas every year with traditions going further than decorating a Christmas tree or leaving treats out for Santa.

In many European places the festivities begin on the 6th of December with St Nicholas day. In Italy, they exchange presents  on January 6th which is the day of Epiphany. For Christians who live in India, fir trees are not common, they decorate mango trees instead. In Australia due to the weather, Father Christmas swaps his reindeer for ‘six white boomers’ or kangaroos. 


A Christmas tree has been made up on the 1st floor of Bedford Campus Library where you are encouraged to come along and share with us on a note, your own traditions." 




Christmas Tree to add your own tradition
Bedford Library

Teaching Practice Items for Christmas

Luton Library


Aylesbury LRC

Aylesbury Christmas Tree



Friday, 1 December 2017

2017: Waterstones Books of the Year

The full Waterstones Book of the Year shortlist:

  • Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls by Elena Favilli & Francesca Cavallo
  • A Skinful of Shadows by Frances Hardinge
  • The Lost Words by Robert Macfarlane and Jackie Morris
  • La Belle Sauvage: The Book of Dust Volume One by Philip Pullman
  • Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders
  • Mr Lear: A Life of Art and Nonsense by Jenny Uglow
  • Talking to My Daughter About the Economy: A Brief History of Capitalismby Yanis Varoufakis

How many have you read?

Thursday, 2 November 2017

Books Unlocked November 2017 - Gothic Novels






Gothic Fiction
The Gothic genre has been around since the 18th Century although it has been resurrected in the 21st Century with books such as Twilight.  Gothic Fiction delves into the depths of humanity, where the presence of the horrible and the macabre represent ‘the dark side’ of human nature which is portrayed with novels such as Frankenstein and Dracula.  The supernatural monsters are often what people think of when they consider gothic texts.

Please enjoy our Gothic displays in the Libraries this month and feel free to take out anything that interests you.

Bedford Library
Bedford Library

Bedford Library


Bedford Library - Not quite Gothic!
Aylesbury Library

Aylesbury Library

Aylesbury Library
Luton Library


Luton Library


Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Books Unlocked October 2017 - Black History Month

Who is Zadie Smith?

Novelist Zadie Smith was born in North London in 1975 to an English father and a Jamaican mother.  She studied English at Cambridge, graduating in 1997.  Her celebrated first novel, White Teeth (2000), published when Smith was only 24, examines amongst many other topics, cultural identity, history, faith, and future.  Her novel won several awards and prizes, has been translated into over twenty languages and adapted for television broadcast.  The same for my personal favourite, Smith’s novel NW (2012) which was also adapted for broadcast in 2016. The setting for Smith’s novels are the suburbs of North-West London: Harlesden, Neasden, Kilburn, Wembley and in particular, Willesden.  Her books resonate with me not only because this is where I grew up, but because she reflects both sides of “my” London in her literature. A pulsing, effervescent city, full of life and opportunity against the tension between the have and have nots.
Among a plethora of accolades, Smith was elected a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 2002 and was listed as one of Granta's 20 Best Young British Novelists in 2003 and again in 2013.
An essayist, and short story writer, Zadie Smith’s novels are definitely worth reading! A sample of her work include White Teeth (2000), The Autograph Man (2002), On Beauty (2005), NW (2012) and Swing Time (2016).  We eagerly await The Fraud set to be published in 2019!