Thursday, March 26, 2009

Libraries Rock

When I was young and car-less, I knew the greatness of the public library. I methodically worked through the entire Nancy Drew series, and many other books by making my way down the library shelf. I looked forward to my weekly-ish trips to the library, and I always left with a new stack of books to devour. Somewhere along the way, I forgot how awesome libraries are. So sad.

I instead became sucked in to Barnes and Noble culture, buying books I thought I might someday want to read because they had cool covers or were on sale. And they languished on my bookshelf. I also bought a ton of books that I did actually read, and ended up selling these on or I read too much to keep all the books lying around. And I'm not really a re-reader. There are so many great things to read; I feel like I must move onward instead of rehashing books I've already covered. After moving to Lex (where there is no large bookstore), I switched my addiction to online book ordering. As soon as I saw a review for a book I wanted, I'd order it (and probably several other amazon suggestions), and then I'd get a happy surprise about a week later in the mail!

And then, it hit me. I work in the courthouse, and there is a public law library downstairs. I finally got around to asking if they did inter-library loans... and they do! All I have to do is go online and search the card catalogue and press a little button, and they deliver the book to the library in my building as soon as it's available. It's like amazon, but FREEEEEE!

So, thank you Roanoke Valley Libraries. Thank you very much.


Tracey said...

I couldn't agree more! I've saved so much money borrowing cookbooks from the library instead of buying them on Amazon. I end up buying some of some of the great ones eventually though :)

Tami said...

We love the library in our house, too!!

Dottie said...

That's a sweet story :) I have fond memories of trips to the local library as a kid. It was always nice and cool from air conditioning in the summer. But my fondest memories are of meticulously looking through shelves at the used book stores. The books were so cheap, there was really no limit on what my mom let me buy each trip, as long as I read them all. I actually started my own library, where I would lend books to friends after they filled out the card in the back.

This instilled in me the need to own every novel that I read. I read almost exclusively "classics," rarely anything modern and am a big re-reader, so there's not much filler on my shelves. I'm planning a trip to the library soon, though, for cookbooks and magazines.