It’s October (late October at that, how did this even happen?!) and I’ve managed to read 120 books. OK fine, 119. But I’m reading book 120 right now.
And lest you think this is just a chance for me to brag about that, there is actually a point.
Of the 120 books this year (yeah I’m rounding up – by the time this goes up, I will be finished with The Library at Mount Char), 26 have come from the library. Now, math has never been my strong suit but that’s 22% of the total. That’s a pretty big chunk.
Last year, when I was planning my wedding, the library became part of my regular routine because it was a free way to get fresh reading material. Once the dust had settled on that event, I went a little insane buying new material. I’ve always been someone who likes to buy books. I enjoy having them, I like lending them (to some people) and I love looking at them. Certain books hold really strong memories too – of when I read them, what was going on in my life at the time, how I reacted to a certain book.
But something shifted with me this year. I don’t know if it’s because books are quite literally taking over my home, if it’s that I’m getting older and am starting to shift away from having stuff or if maybe I’m starting to read faster and I can’t keep up with the need for new material (can you imagine finishing a book and having nothing on hand to start on?) but I’ve needed my library in a way that I didn’t before.
I LOVE my library.
I love that there’s one around the corner from my office. It has completely removed that old obstacle of returning books on time. When I finish a book, I bring it to work and it sits on my desk until a day when I have enough of them and I walk over to bring them back. And usually walk out with a new stack.
I love the selection at my library. I love that I can walk in and out with fresh new reads with very little effort. If I have more time, I can wander. I will probably never run out of great mysteries to read there. I love that they take their recommendations so seriously – those librarians know their stuff.
I love how quiet it is in the library. I find being around people exhausting. Partially, I mostly hate other people but I also tend to take on other people’s emotions so just being around people drains me. I’m physically exhausted from being social. The library lays no claims to me this way. It allows me to exist, quietly, whispering great titles at me, knowing just what I need.
I love that there’s no judgment. Taking a stack of 8-10 books? Good for you. Reading about the Nazis? It’s important not to forget! Is that a pile of Maeve Binchy/Jane Green/other author people roll their eyes at? We all have our favourites!
I love the idea that when I return a book I love, someone else has the opportunity to find it.
Makes you want to go to your library doesn’t it? Libraries are one of the best things in life – the chance to read widely and freely (literally) is completely underrated. I have two library due dates right now but once that first one passes, you better believe I will be in there looking for another stack.