Monday, August 22, 2011

Summer Reading via Audioboo

If you haven't previously seen our annual summer reading list of 22 excellent books, here's a short audioboo introduction. Listen via the player below. Click here for the original list.
Our Summer Reading list 2011 (mp3)

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Leaving Certificate results, 2011

Congratulations to our candidates in this year's Leaving Certificate, who maintained the very high standards of their recent predecessors by achieving an average points total of 448 across all candidates and all subjects.

In English,
  • 91% of our candidates took the exam at Higher Level (nationally, 63%) :-
  • 3.6% of all our candidates achieved an A at Higher Level (nationally, 6.5% of all candidates achieve this).
  • 14.5% achieved a B (nationally, 17% of all candidates).
  • 49% achieved a C (nationally, 24% of all candidates).
Congratulations also to our Ordinary Level candidates (two As, three Bs).
See previous results by clicking on the years for 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2010.

Thursday, August 04, 2011

Summer Reading 2: Howards End is on the Landing

Susan Hill's Howards End is on the Landing is sub-titled 'A Year of Reading from Home'. Prompted by realising that she wanted to 'repossess' her books, both read and unread, she has written a memoir of a year's reading. With formidable discipline for a writer and reader she restrained herself from buying new books for twelve whole months, and concentrated on discovering or re-discovering the books in her rural English home. 

This book is the story of that year, but also the story of her house and indeed her past. It's a great summer read, and you're certain to find at least one or two books you will want to discover for yourself. The tone is personal, passionate, rather rambling, occasionally entertainingly cantakerous. Among her strongest enthusiasms are Frances Kilvert, W.G. Sebald and Penelope Fitzgerald. On the other hand, she's not exactly keen on Jane Austen.

Finally, for those of us anxious that we don't have enough time to read everything (especially new books), her thoughts on 'deeply satisfying' Slow Reading are consoling. Ironically, it's difficult to read her own book slowly...