I used to be a library fiend. At one point we belonged to about six different library systems thanks to our jobs at universities and our frequent back-and-forths to a couple of towns where we used to live. Back when reservations were still free through Reading Borough Libraries I would regularly have 20 or more new books on request at any one time, and every trip to the library required backpacks, tote bags and my husband’s help to get everything to the car.
Now that holds cost 50 pence each, however, I’ve cut back to basically zero. Most of what I used to read via libraries has now been replaced by e-books downloaded from NetGalley and Edelweiss. This is rather a shame, as I still love the feeling of stocking up with piles of physical books. I’ll still make an exception and pay 40 pence to reserve a book through our (more strictly local) Wokingham Borough Libraries when it’s something I’m hugely keen to read, like the new Jonathan Franzen novel or a book I need to review and can’t find online.
Nowadays I mostly peruse my local library for poetry collections and new nonfiction, though I can occasionally be tempted by recent fiction I haven’t gotten my hands on by other means.
(Thanks to Shannon at River City Reading for the great idea and the template! Check out her blog for other link-ups.)
LIBRARY BOOKS READ
- The Cartographer Tries to Map a Way to Zion, Kei Miller [I also saw the author speak at Reading Poetry Festival.]
- Purity, Jonathan Franzen
CHECKED OUT, TO BE READ
- DK Eyewitness Guides to Sweden, Austria, and Switzerland; Rough Guides to Scandinavia and the Czech Republic; Lonely Planet Guides to Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and “Europe on a Shoestring” [we’re contemplating a big trip around Europe by train next spring; the next few months will be for dreaming and planning]
- When I Die: Lessons from the Death Zone, Philip Gould
- Dept. of Speculation, Jenny Offill
- Weathering, Lucy Wood [for BookBrowse review]
- Meadowland: The Private Life of an English Field, John Lewis-Stempel
- As Far as I Know, Roger McGough
- Two Cures for Love: Selected Poems 1979–2006, Wendy Cope
- The Night Trotsky Came to Stay, Allison McVety
- 40 Sonnets, Don Patterson
- Fair’s Fair, Susan Utting
- Striptease, Susan Utting
- Loop of Jade, Sarah Howe
- Water Sessions, James Lasdun
- Standard Midland, Roy Fisher
Do you take advantage of your local libraries?
What were some of your best recent library reads?