The Journey to an Online Database of Australian Books
I don’t recall ever a time I couldn’t read, a love of words led me to a love of books. Growing up in a home full of books, as a pre-teen it seemed only natural to set up a library. I loved pasting envelopes and borrowing cards on family books and handing out library cards to the neighbourhood children. They were eager to join my lending library, at least that was my perception. This was laying the groundwork for my later dream of having an Online Database of Australian Books.
That childhood library fortunately gifted to me and I have added onto it extensively since. Many of our books are Australian books, a passion of mine since childhood that has only grown with time. As a child I would devour the ‘School Magazines’ which contained excerpts of books written by Australian authors. I would then source the book to read in its entirety and to own. The last decade has seen a surge of Australian publications so my library and passion for Australian books has only grown.
Feeling enormously blessed by our large family library I often lend to local friends and talk extensively about books. Recommending which ones would suit their needs, their course of study etc. Friends locally and online often ask for book recommendations and I love organising books into categories and sub categories. A desire grew for a way to streamline answering friends’ needs so they weren’t left waiting but could be answered immediately. Initially I began writing book reviews but they are time consuming posts to write. Being a home education mum of ten means that reviews doesn’t happen as often as I’d like. I wanted a way in which my friends could click a button and have their information immediately, organised in an intuitive manner. There were so many great treasures I wanted to share and not enough time to do so.
Dream Come True – Online Database of Australian Books!
Thus finally my long held dream has come to fruition, I have an online database of Australian Books! A database entirely devoted to Australian Books. These are predominately living books; engaging picture and chapter books with little non-fiction. I’ve included both in-print, out of print and re-printed titles. There has been an explosion of excellent new Australian authors and books over the last decade. And with many childhood favourites and long term favourites of home educators there are so many books to share! Thus far I’ve entered 800 books!! But there are many more to come, it’s become a little bit of an obsession. If you are a family interested in books or passionate about books we are sure to have something for you.
I’ve organised the database into three main categories: Cultures, Literature and History. Under each category is over a dozen sub-categories.
- Cultures includes our First Nations Peoples (some excellent books there!) and reflect the multicultural identity of Australia.
- Literature includes those childhood favourites of mine, modern titles, graphic novels (an area I know little about) and picture books. Plus various Flora and Fauna of Australia, such as birds and the Outback.
- Australian history is my passion and I’m thrilled to report there are wonderful Australian history publications of recent years. From the arrival of our First Nation Peoples, to the European discovery of Australia, to the First Fleet and settlement. Continuing on to the Gold Rush, the War Years through to Modern History. We have these organised in the menu in chronological order. It just makes it so easy to research titles for your period of study.
The information is laid out in a grid table with columns for: authors, illustrators, series, tags, target age and print status. All of these are clickable, with more information about each author, tag etc. To view all works by the authors, illustrators etc directions are on the landing page. The grid layout also contains a column with a wishlist button to save books into a list. A suggestion is to have your local library catalogue open and cross save, working your way through areas of interest/study.
Keep checking back as new books will be continually added. Also we have further plans in developing this resource to assist you in your Home Education endeavours. I’m kenn to share my passion and knowledge of Australian books with the Home Education community and all book lovers. Pop on over and have a look. If you have a request or an area of interest not yet represented, drop me a line. I always love to find a new area of research. Trouble navigating the site? Needing tips on how to search your local library database? I’m happy to help.