The State Library of Victoria was the first major cultural institution to be established in Melbourne. Since its founding in 1854, it has acquired a large collection of books, manuscripts and other literary and historical material, with a strong focus on items from Melbourne and Victoria. It is the city’s major literary repository and a highly active centre for participation by the public in reading, research and cultural engagement.

The Melbourne Athenaeum Library has been operating since 1839, making it Victoria's oldest subscription library. Open to library members and the general public, it has a reputation for being a charming sanctuary from the hubbub of busy Collins Street outside.

Melbourne has a thriving public library network. The three that service the inner suburbs of the city are the City of Melbourne (branches in Melbourne CBD, Carlton, Docklands, East Melbourne, North Melbourne and Southbank), the City of Port Phillip (branches in Albert Park, Emerald Hill, Middle Park, Port Melbourne and St Kilda) and the City of Yarra (branches in Carlton, Collingwood, Fitzroy, Fitzroy North and Richmond). Further out, Craigieburn library in Hume, Victoria was named public library of the year in 2014 following a cross-continent competition by the Danish Agency for Culture. At these, and others, you will find features such as free Wi-Fi, events, story times, talks, launches and other events.

Melbourne is also the centre of the Little Free Library movement in Australia. These tiny dollhouse-style libraries are popping up in front yards across the city as people build miniature libraries using recycled materials to offer books free to the public. A geocaching list has even been set up to help locate them. We can help too - there’s a Little Library in the CBD at Melbourne Central!

My Emma: A Jane Austen Experience

20 November 2017
Stonnington Libraries
Lise Rodgers

A not-to-be-missed fully costumed One Act Play that brings the world of Emma...

Preschool Storytime with Sue deGennaro

20 November 2017
Stonnington Libraries
Sue deGennaro

Audiences young and old will be charmed by the tale of Eddie Frogbert and...

Lia Hills on The Crying Place

20 November 2017
Stonnington Libraries
Lia Hills

During the writing of her latest novel The Crying Place, Lia Hills travelled...

Jelena Dokic: Unbreakable

21 November 2017
Hobsons Bay Libraries
Jelena Dokic in conversation with John Trickey

Jelena Dokic has not told a soul her incredible, explosive story in full –...

Pompey Elliott at war

22 November 2017
Hobsons Bay Libraries
Ross Mc Mullin

A charismatic, controversial and outstandingly successful commander, Pompey...

Author Talk with Mark Brandi

2 December 2017
Frankston City Libraries
Mark Brandi

Mark Brandi’s writing has featured widely in print and radio, and he has won...