My New Library Still Rubber Stamps the Due Dates On All of the Books

I think the thing that surprised me most about my local library was how many people were there. Then again, in a village of about 3,000 people, what else is there to do on a Saturday morning in the middle of January? This particular Saturday was “balmy”– overcast and nearly 50 degrees. I would have pried open windows, as Michiganders are wont to do during brief spells of unseasonably warm weather, but all of my windows are missing screens. So…I decided to walk to the library instead, which happens to be a short zig-zag away from my house. I mean, it probably took me a whole minute to walk there.

Now, the library I used to visit in the capital city was a big, brand new building with high ceilings, couches, and a fireplace, and you could easily maneuver the stacks without bumping into anyone. My new library is a small brick building tucked beside the fire department. The front lawn is decorated with some awkward scarecrow made out of white fence pieces and a blow-up snowman that looks tacky now that Christmas is a month behind us. Inside is cozy though, perhaps a little dark in some corners, and almost over-stuffed with books, if such a thing were possible. Patrons included a man with a scraggly beard playing on the computers, an elderly woman, who has traced her ancestry back to the 1400s so far, and a middle-aged woman, who had just won $40 on a scratch-off lottery ticket, and the first thing she thought to do with the money was pay her library fine so she could borrow books again.

Even though the selection of books isn’t nearly as vast as my old library, I still managed to spend an hour perusing the stacks. This weekend’s library loot includes:

  • Angus, Thongs, and Full-Frontal Snogging by Louise Rennison — I read this over ten years ago when I was still in high school; I wonder if it’s still as funny as I remember.
  • Sleeping Giants by Sylvain Neuvel — a sci-fi novel told in interviews, journal entries, transcripts, and news articles. I’ve not had any luck with epistolary novels lately, but we’ll see if this one is different.
  • Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz — because it’s about time I catch up with the rest of the book blogosphere!
  • Dead Until Dark: Sookie Stackhouse #1 by Charlain Harris — because it’s about time I catch up with the rest of the world!
  • the Mental Floss History of the World by Erik Sass and Steve Wiegand — because I’m a nerd.

If you’re a library-goer, what are some of your favorite things about your library?