Library borrowers back books

PAPERBACKS are not dead — at least according to figures from south-west libraries. 

More people are borrowing novels out of Warrnambool’s library and it’s local titles that are the big winners. 

Drama at an Irish mansion, a true story of murder in Portland and a complicated friendship between three women were the most popular books to get the loan stamp in 2013. 

As solid proof that smartphones are yet to conquer the world, Corangamite Regional Library has released a list of most hired books for the year. 

Most in demand was A Week in Winter by the late Irish author Maeve Binchy — a tale about a woman taking over a mansion in a small town. 

The Longing, by Candice Bruce about three women living on a Western District farming property, was second. 

Library chief executive Roslyn Cousins said there was a surprising rise in interest in books.

“We’ve had a 5 per cent increase with our borrowing in the last financial year,” Ms Cousins said. 

“We’ve got about 2000 ebooks since May but it hasn’t put a big dent in our core business.” 

Ms Cousins said extra stock and using the libraries as a meeting place for pre-school reading lessons kept reading rooms busy. 

The unresolved murders of two people at a Portland hairdresser in 1991 also spiked interest with Horrible Man by Leonie Wallace the most popular non-fiction book. 

Meanwhile, the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series dominated the kids’ section with copies flying off the shelves. 

s.mccomish@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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