books + reading

#books #libraries #mind #soul

I love libraries.

I mean, anyone who loves to read probably has some fondness for libraries.  But I love libraries.  I visit my local library – the Hereford Branch of the Baltimore County Public Library – just about every day of my life.0516c2a38e09bc14588db331e13981779caa2-wm

The library is my safest avenue for binge shopping.  It’s free – I can walk into a library, pick out a dozen books, and walk out with them, in a pile tucked under my chin, without paying a cent.  (Except for the inevitable late fees I pay, which I consider a charitable donation to a worthy community service.)

Thanks to technology, my relationship with my local library is also digital.  BCPL has an app!  From my phone, I can search their catalog, and (best of all) I can request specific titles.  I click “Place Request,” and then a copy of my book is shipped to my local branch and placed on a shelf for me to come pick up.  Sometimes I take the book home and read it cover to cover.  Sometimes I skim the book, decide it’s not for me, and return it the next day.  I can do that; the library allows me to explore titles I’m not quite sure about, which sometimes leads to interesting surprises.

(Sidebar: I sometimes feel guilty when I bring the book back the next day without having read it.  But recently, I came back to the library with Go Set A Watchman by Harper Lee, and when the librarian asked me how it was, I confessed to her, somewhat apologetically, that I’d read the first chapter and decided that it wasn’t for me.  She totally understood.  Librarians are the BEST.)10914111_1525774177695305_2058346235_n

Tee and I both love to read, and we love having our house filled with books.  I can’t imagine living in a house without books.  When I first visit the home of a friend, the first thing I do, always, is check out their bookshelves.  I feel oddly unnerved when I don’t find any bookshelves to peruse.  (There’s a John Waters quote I’m dying to use here, but I need to paraphrase if I want to keep this a family-friendly blog: “If you go home with someone and they don’t have books, don’t [spend the night] with them.”  Please feel free to google the actual quote; it has a much sharper landing.)04728adb5529e16e991f0e137d7462cd

I’m currently in the middle of a major reading kick – the kind when I read while waiting in line, while walking, or while at red lights.  (I mean, I don’t do that.)  It started with Tee recommending the amazingly beautiful book My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante; I’m now on Book Three of Ferrante’s Neapolitan Novels series, which is good timing, because Book Four comes out on September 1!  (Don’t worry – Tee and I already have copies reserved at the library.  Like you do.)

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