17 March 2022

Libraries are a place of adventure and wonder for kids and adults of all ages.

Michelle wearing glasses and sitting in front of a bookshelf holding two copies of her book 'Sass and Traz Save the Library'.

Long gone are the days of dusty bookshelves, ancient books and librarians who ‘shhhhh’ you for breathing too loudly. Libraries today are vibrant hubs of activity; places of community and belonging, filled with children’s giggles, songs and storytelling.   The Hook into Books initiative Members Only encourages all people, young and old, to seek out their local libraries and experience these amazing community resources. While you’re there - sign up and reap the wonderful benefits that library membership brings in the quest for literacy for life!  

Michelle Worthington, author of 'Sass and Traz Save the Library', and supporter of Hook into Books says:  

"I wrote Sass and Traz because I was a library monitor at school and one of my favourite things to do was put the books back on the shelves. I loved researching about the Dewey Decimal System, how and why it was invented and then sharing that with students at school visits.

When I think about choosing a library for the setting of the book, I think it was inevitable because I have always loved reading, and being read to, and the library was always a safe space for me to retreat to when I couldn’t find anyone to play with at lunch time. Some of my best friends were in books.

My characters are a combination of children I have met at school visits. Sass had Autism and Traz has mobility challenges. When I was younger, I loved reading about twins in books and I knew I wanted to have characters that could sense how each other were feeling and talk in ‘twin speak’ because that always fascinated me when I was a kid. It was also to highlight that children with alternate abilities need to be represented not only in picture books, but books for older readers as well.

Ms Burns was the name of my primary school librarian. She was one of the people who encouraged me to become an author. Libraries these days are about accessibility and choice, with children who should have time to wander the shelves, both fiction and non-fiction and choose something that appeals to them.

That’s why having dedicated library time that is longer than 5 minutes and a full time librarian is so important. It shouldn’t be a rushed or forced thing. And if they want to borrow their favourite book every week, that should be ok, too.

I hope readers and educators will read Sass and Traz Save the Library and be reminded that with a little bit of imagination, anything is possible!"

To learn more about Michelle Worthington visit:

Young blonde boy reading in a library. He is wearing a blue tshirt.

Why join a library?

Personal growth and development  

We know that exposure to a range of rich and developmentally appropriate literature supports literacy growth and brain development. We also know that there is no better place than a library to unlock the literacy potential of your child (or yourself) by the mere act of being surrounded by an abundance of books and other resources. Spending time in your local library may be enough to support your curiosity and learning potential.   

Free Stuff 

Who doesn’t love a freebie? The range of free resources available at most public libraries now may surprise you. Let’s begin with the obvious – books! Membership means that you can borrow all the books your heart desires. Beyond books though, think magazines and newspapers, audiobooks, CD’s and music downloads, DVD’s, and e-book downloads. There are free computers to use where you’ll use free Wi-Fi. There’s also free printing services and access to adult classes such a computer and internet navigation.  

Events and Programs 

This one will be dependent of your local library, however there are common themes that are widely shared. Early years baby storytelling, rhyme time and shared song groups are an example of a program gaining significant traction across the board. Libraries are taking proactive roles in supporting strong literacy foundations for babies and children and supporting parents and carers in their roles as being their child’s first teacher.  

Other events may include author visits, book clubs, reading programs, book week celebrations, poetry circles and media and arts classes. Did we mention that these are usually always FREE and open to children, young people and adults alike. 

So, what are you waiting for? Find your local library here and sign up today! 

Huge thank you to the Australian Children’s Laureate Foundation (ACLF) for their support of Hook into Books. The ACLF is a not-for-profit organisation with representation from across the field of children's and young adult literature.  The ACLF's vision is to enrich the lives of young Australians through the power of story. 

Image: Founded in 2008 as the Australian Children's Literature Alliance, the name was changed to Australian Children’s Laureate Foundation in 2018 to clarify the focus of the organisation's work.

Hook Into Books!

Supporting Children and Young People to build bright futures through education and learning “Everyday Everyway”.

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