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 Senior School Library Updates

Top 5 Reasons to use Overdrive on your Holiday

The Senior Resource Centre will always love the feel of a print book in our hands, and we know that many in our community feel the same way. We see Overdrive, our growing collection of audio and eBooks, as an alternative to our print collection rather than a replacement.  We gathered the top five reasons why we think our users would enjoy using Overdrive on holidays:


1.       Lighten your suitcase. Why try to pack your bags with heavy books when you can load multiple titles on to your e-reader or download on the spot from your tablet or Smart Phone

2.       24/7 access. Borrow from our digital collection anytime, anywhere. All you need is an internet connection. No Wi-Fi? No problem! Simply download audio and eBooks to your devices for offline use

3.       Harry Potter for the road. Audio books make excellent travel companions for long car rides.  Audio checkouts have been gaining popularity thanks to fantastic audio retellings  such as Ken Follett’s Century Trilogy and the Harry Potter series read by English actor and voice artist Jim Dale

4.       There’s an app for that. The Overdrive app is available for iPhone®, iPad®, Android, Chromebook, Windows Phone, Windows 8, and NOOK® HD/HD+. Recent improvements have made it even easier to access our collection

5.       Finish your book already? Simply return the title early and choose another. Need more time? You now have the option to renew your title as long as there are no holds 


This unique Reading List​ started as a goal for the Senior Resource Centre staff, but it has slowly been making its way around Branksome Hall, inspiring our community to challenge their reading this year. We have created a display of suggestions and have been circulating the list amongst students and employees. We are very excited to hear about everyone’s reading this year and hope to make this a yearly tradition!​


The Senior Resource Centre has recently updated its Graphic Novel collection with help from the experts at Beguiling   - Toronto’s well reputed graphic and comic retail store.

We are encouraging students to explore the various genres that graphic novels have to offer.

Currently we have a wide variety of graphic novels that will challenge our students to think of graphic novels as more than just comic books.  Everything from memoirs, manga, historical events, superheroes and classic adaptations are available in graphic format, each illustrated and expressed in their own unique way.

The graphic novels have certainly peeked interest in the library and we are looking forward to expanding our collection!






- All Descriptions from Novelist

 eBook checkouts are at an all-time high at Branksome Hall! Since its inception in 2012, the Resource Centre has seen a steady increase in use with the 2014/2015 school year being the most significant so far.



As you can see above, December and March have been our highest months for checkouts.
 The goal of having our own Overdrive platform is to make reading our collection accessible even when the school is closed for the holidays. We see Overdrive as another option rather than a replacement for our print collection and we encourage our community of readers to explore the benefits of reading eBooks. For example, we suggest downloading eBooks to a device rather than packing print books in your suitcase for a vacation.  Students are able to use their tablets, laptops or mobile devices to read and the Resource Centre also loans kobo eReaders to students. We also provide instruction on their use.  This year, we have finally seen the successful result of investing in such a diverse collection and expect even better results next year.

Take a look at our growing collection at





The Senior Resource Centre is excited to announce The MYP Book Club’s First selection is Little Women by Louisa May Alcott.  First published in 1868, this beloved classic follows the laughter and tears of the four March sisters – Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy. 


The MYP Book Club consists of students in Grade 7-10 who meet every other Wednesday in the Senior Resource Centre to discuss all things books! The club has exciting plans for the school year which include:


  • Reading books voted by its members and celebrating by watching the film version
  • Making holiday ornaments for our book tree
  • Selecting books for our annual ‘Blind Date with a book’ on Valentine’s Day
  • Recommending books for the Branksome Community to enjoy


Exciting News from Overdrive​!

Just in time for your summer holidays, John Green, Sarah Dessen, Meg Cabot, Kerstin Gier and many of your favourite authors are now available in ebook format on Overdrive! Questions? Never used Overdrive before? Come see us in the Resource Centre before school ends to get started.

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Code Name Verity  by Elizabeth Wein

 Historical fiction is one of my favorite genres and I am particularly drawn to books about the war years.  However, I have never read anything like Code Name Verity before. The first part of the story is narrated by Julia, code name Verity, Queenie or Eva depending on which double agent mission she is involved in, who has been captured by the Nazi gestapo. She is being tortured and forced to write her confession detailing British codes she had memorized before crash landing in France. She also describes her friendship with Maddie, the pilot who had flown her into France, who takes over the story in the second half and reveals more about what transpired after the plane crashed.  The final third of this book is moving and devastating as it reveals just how courageous Julia was.

This book has been carefully researched and details the role of women as pilots and spies during World War 11. It was one of 28 titles in the running for the YALSA Teens Top Ten list for 2013 and has just been voted as the top teen book of 2013.  It is not an easy story to read but one that should not be missed.

Mrs. Reid

 We are both avid readers of Young Adult novels but with very different tastes, so it is truly special when a book captures both of our hearts the way Eleanor and Park has. This book left such an impression that we decided to make the first official monthly book review a joint project. 

Eleanor & Park is, at first glance, a typical teenage love story about a girl branded as an outcast and a boy who feels different than his friends despite being popular.  The deeper you get into the story, you begin to connect with the protagonists through Rowell’s stunning writing that often causes you to pause to appreciate the power of the written word. Some passages that stayed with us are:

You’re the kind of person that I want to be with when I want to be alone.

She never looked nice. She looked like art, and art wasn’t supposed to look nice; it was supposed to make you feel something.

Ever since the day they’d met, Eleanor was always seeing him in unexpected places. It was like their lives were overlapping lines, like they had their own gravity.

The story reveals its complexity with the turn of every page, making it impossible to put down; this makes the characters easy to visualize and know in the most intimate and sometimes, uncomfortable way. Both funny and heart-breaking, hopeful yet grim, Eleanor and Park is DEFINITELY in the running to be the best book of the year.

Available in print and as an audio book on Overdrive​

 Ms. Julie Cristinzo and Ms. Deann Rousseau  ​


10 Elm Avenue, Toronto, ON M4W 1N4, Canada

Tel: 416-920-9741 |