Category Archives: Features

Post about a specific topic or to highlight a book or catagory.

How well do you know these fictional families?

How well do you know these fictional families?

At the end of last half term we ran a famiy-based quiz for the Junior girls’ of Hesquith House and Girls’ Division senior school.

They were set the following challenge (downloadable version: FAMILIES QUIZ):


























Test your knowledge before downloading the answers (Answers to the Family Quiz). No cheating now!

There are lots of family-based stories across all the libraries to read as we come to the end of the school year and the summer holidays.

Hogwarts, mysterious turret rooms and creepy dolls

Hogwarts, mysterious turret rooms and creepy dolls


On 7th May we were delighted to welcome Frances Hardinge to come and talk to some Year 8 and 9 classes in the Girls’ Division. She told us about her Carnegie nominated book Cuckoo Song and newly published book (on the day of the event) The Lie Tree.  We were also joined by students from Turton School, Smithills School and Bolton Muslim Girls School.

The event was kindly organised by Ebb & Flo books in Chorley and Macmillan Publishers. Unfortunately we weren’t able to offer the event to all students due to exam timetabling. We’re sorry if you missed out but it is still possible to borrow the books, please ask in the Library for more information. A full write up of the event can be found here.

Whilst she was here I showed Frances around the School, she later tweeted that it was ‘Hogwarts.’ I told her about the Turret Library and the mysterious unknown room with a window above the Library. Since Frances gets her ideas from ‘everywhere’ I suggest we watch this space to see if the School appears in a parallel universe next time!

If you haven’t yet read the books I’d like to encourage you to do so. The Lie Tree is a creepy murder mystery set in 19th Century England where the main character, Faith, is a feisty girl challenges the constraints of Victorian femininity. The idea of the Lie Tree is particularly interesting as unlike in other stories, lies are not ‘punished’ or seen as necessarily ‘wrong’ and instead are used to unmask the killer.

I’m part-way through Cuckoo Song and have already decided it’s not a good book to read just as I go to sleep. If you’re a fan of Dr Who, you’ll enjoy Frances Hardinge- she uses the same malevolent twisting of reality, with porcelain, speaking dolls and doppelgangers. Earlier books feature glass-like faces where characters can only speak the truth and vindictive fairies that demand that children who use the coins from a magic well grant everyone’s wishes…

Voyage to the solar system of the 18th Century

Voyage to the solar system of the 18th Century

The recent eclipse was spectacular to watch. Explorations of our Special Collections have revealed astronomical works from the eighteenth century. It is space almost as we know it…

Explanation of eclipses

The Description and use of the Globes and the Orrery by Joseph Harris

We possess a seventh edition of this work which was published in 1751.

Exploring the Protestant Martyrs

Exploring the Protestant Martyrs

21st March 1556: Thomas Cranmer burns at the stake

BBC History magazine March 2015


The March edition of BBC History magazine includes an article about the burning of Henry VIII’s Archbishop, Thomas Cranmer, with an illustration taken from the 1563 editon of John Foxe’s Acts and Monuments, known as ‘The Book of Martyrs’.



Among our Chained Library and Special Collections, which have been donated to the school, can be found three volumes of the 1684 edition of this work, including the volume that lists Cranmer and the other protestant martyrs who were burnt at the stake during the reign of Mary Tudor.

Come and decorate our tree

Come and decorate our tree

What book would make the perfect Christmas present?

Christmas present booksWould it be the latest bestseller from a favourite author or a well-loved classic? Do you have a favourite seasonal tale, or perhaps a much-loved book from your childhood which would be ideal for a younger member of the family?

Or maybe you would like to suggest one for a teacher or celebrity?