Julie is the author of a number of guidebooks, including 'Melbourne's Best Bush Bay and City Walks' & 'Melbourne for Dogs' (with RSPCA). Read more of her adventures at her walks blog: walksmelbourne.com
Kick back on the grass with a beanbag and a book
If you're ever in the city during the lunch hour on a sunny day, you'll know the hottest spot to hang out is on the grass in front of the State Library on Swanston Street. In our green-space-deprived city centre, it's an oasis of respite.
Our ever-happening State Library is right on the pulse with its outdoor 'Summer Read' offering - plush red bean bags spread across the grass in the sunshine and rustic wooden crates full of copies of 10 popular books by Victorian writers which you can 'borrow' for a brief lunchtime read over your lunch break. If you really get into your book of choice, but have to race back to work before finishing it, you can borrow it (for real!) from your local library or buy one at the Readings bookshop in the foyer. Some of the books on offer include: Father Bob, the Larrikin Priest (by Sue Williams), The Swan Book (by Alexis Wright) and Love with a Chance of Drowning (by Torrie deRoche).
As a bonus offering, on Wednesday lunchtimes in February, the Summer Read will host book readings by authors.There is also an online competition where you can win an absolute stack of these books and many more.
The Summer Read runs throughout February, and most Victorian libraries, who are hosting all sorts of events in celebration of Victorian writers and reading in general. Enjoy!