One of the things I used to love as a child was when my Mum would take me to the library on the way home from school. I would come out each time clutching a handful of books, which I would start reading as soon as we got into the car, and I would have devoured within days. I did every single one of the summer reading challenges (and completed them all, obviously!) from being around four or five, all the way up to my early teens (and still have some of the medals to prove it!), and had probably read most of the kids and teen section by that point.
Then, for some reason I stopped going. I can never quite remember why – maybe I was just bored with the small selection in that little village library, or had a 50p fine I was trying to avoid, or just thought in all my emo glory that it wasn’t ‘cool’ – but during most of my late teens I steered clear of the library.
A few months ago however, I rediscovered the library (hallelujah!), and haven’t looked back since! So here are five things I love about the library:
- Free books!
The most obvious thing to love about the library is access to free books! The average book these days costs upwards of £6 if bought new, so with me reading several a week it would literally cost a fortune to buy every single one. On the other hand, I can just keep going to the library and taking and returning all the books I want at no cost! All you need is a card, and to make sure you bring them back or renew them on time, and they are yours to read.
Maybe I’m just sad, but as a bookworm simply being in the presence of lots of books is exciting enough, let alone when you’re allowed to take any of them home with you! Just walking round the library itself is part of the fun, and I like when I find a book that looks right up my street from an author I’ve never heard of, or spot a book I’ve been meaning to read for ages but have never been able to track down a copy.
- It’s a risk free way to try something new.
We all get into reading ruts sometime, and one way I’ve found to get out of it is to go for a walk round the library and pick something a little bit different than what I’d normally read. Seen as there’s no money commitment, it doesn’t matter if you don’t like it, so you may as well try it! Recently, for example, I decided to try reading some graphic novels and comic books after discovering a huge section full of them at my local library, and so far I’ve been really enjoying them! It just goes to show that trying something new every once in a while can be a great experience, and if you can do that for free at the library, then why wouldn’t you?
- When you finish a book, it isn’t cluttering up your home.
I don’t know about you, but even with my frequent trips to the library, I still seem to be collating one of my own at home! If I were to buy every book I read my already extensive collection would probably more than double, significantly cluttering up what is not a very large flat as it is! Therefore, yet another reason to love the library is that you get the fun part of reading the book, without the clutter afterwards.
One kind of book I don’t buy a lot of is non-fiction, yet recently I’ve found myself taking quite a few out of the library. Although I know that in this day and age all we have to do to find out information is use Google, it’s nice sometimes to do things the old fashioned way and learn through books, and I like that you can just go to the library, take out a book, and learn to do anything from cooking, to knitting to starting your own business.
So do you visit the library much? What do you love most about it?