Cork’s libraries take part in Ireland Reads

There’s lots planned at Cork city and county libraries throughout February
Cork’s libraries take part in Ireland Reads

Author Elizabeth Murray will visit Schull Library on February 22.

THE library services in Cork City and Cork County have a host of events including readings and book launches taking place later this month as part of the Ireland Reads campaign.

The nationwide campaign, which culminates in a national day of reading on Saturday, February 25, is asking everyone to ‘squeeze in a read’ and Cork’s libraries are on hand to help.

“There are so many ways to avail of Cork County Council’s Library Service, be it online or in person at one of our 25 branches and four mobile libraries operating throughout the county,” Mayor of the County of Cork, Cllr. Danny Collins said.

“Our libraries have lots planned for all ages throughout the month of February and for Ireland Reads Day on February 25.”

Author Elizabeth Murray will visit Schull Library on February 22, authors Catherine Kirwan and David King will visit Youghal Library on February 25, and there are further events to be announced.

“Visit Cork County Council Library and Arts Service on social media for details of what’s happening near you,” Mr Collins added.

“It’s never too late to take up reading, rediscover your favourite book or share a story with family.”

Cork City Library also has numerous events taking place on February 25, with the launch of the latest Cork Words a particular highlight.

“Why not pop into the City Library to attend the Launch of Cork Words 3 at 2pm,” a spokesperson suggested.

This is the third and final book of the anthology which has been supported by Creative Ireland since 2020.

“The Launch will celebrate Ireland Reads with selected poets and writers, both award winning and emerging, reading from Cork Words 3.”

Readers can also visit Blackpool Library to take part in the re-launch of the local Blackpool Book club at 2pm.

“Pop in for tea, biscuits, and an informal chat while we decide on a book to read,” the spokesperson said, before highlighting another event on the day.

“Join us on our dais in the Frank O’Connor Library, Mayfield where your local librarians will read from their favourite written works in celebrations of Ireland Reads.

“Your local librarian is always happy to make a recommendation for you!”

Find a full list of events planned at

Ireland Reads is part of the government’s Healthy Ireland programme and aims to celebrate reading and all the benefits it can have for wellbeing and enjoyment.

The pledge to read can be made at, where you can also see how much time has been pledged by the Irish public so far and sign up for reading reminders.

The website also offers book recommendations suited to a person’s interests and the time they have available. There are more than 1,500 recommendations from librarians all around the country for all interests and reading levels.

A website user can simply enter their favourite type of book and how long they would like to read each day and the website will offer the perfect book suggestion and work out how long it will take to complete – so you can set yourself a challenge if you’re finding it hard to get back to reading.

Event for budding writers

Another major books event taking in place in the city soon is the Cork World Book Fest 2023, which is now accepting submissions for the very popular First Page Pitch event.

The festival, which welcomes Irish and international writers to Cork for an extravaganza of books and writing in April, has run the successful First Page Pitch event for a number of years and is asking writers to submit their work for consideration.

“It is incredibly useful to hear pitches and the openings of books and what the agents think of them,” Patricia Looney, Senior Executive Librarian at Cork City Libraries, said. “Even if your work isn’t selected to be read, it’s also a great opportunity to tune in to perfect your own approach, find out what works and what doesn’t!

“You also never know what will happen as a result – Olivia Hope pitched at our festival a few years ago and she’s now a published author.”

Writers interested in taking part need to submit a two line/50 word pitch describing your book, along with the first 500 words of their book, to

A panel of expert booklovers will choose 10 for the authors to read out loud for feedback from agents - or if the author is shy, Sam Blake will read them.

The readings and feedback will take place on Saturday April 22 at Cork City Library, Grand Parade, as part of the annual festival.

The closing date for submissions is 5pm on Friday March 31.

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