The Detective’s Daughter – For the Love of Libraries

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Kim in Baltimore enjoying some quiet time.

I love my local library. We even have a cafe in the back. What’s not to love when you can read books and drink coffee surrounded by people who all enjoy the same things you do? There is not a time in my life that I can recall not being infatuated with the hushed cool rooms and the enormous shelves filled with books.

0916191032a_HDRWhen I was a small girl, I spent some of the best moments of my childhood with my mom in the tiny library a few blocks from my house. I would sit at a table engrossed in the picture books Mom had helped me choose while she wandered the aisles selecting mystery novels to take home. My sister was not as interested in books, but did enjoy climbing and ended up with her head busted open on the library’s radiator. I have to admit it was more exciting than the book I was reading at the time. A real-life adventure.

By the time I was turning eleven, the Enoch Pratt had abandoned the old building for a brand-new modern branch a half block away. It was next to the High’s. Now library time always concluded with a scoop of ice-cream in a sugar cone for the walk home. 0916191029_HDR

When my children were younger we spent hours in the library for story time, special events, and sometimes just to take a break in the air conditioning on a sweltering afternoon. Even now that they are grown they still want to accompany me when I take a trip to the library.

Over the past few years a great number of little library boxes have popped up in my neighborhood. My friend Kathleen, who is a librarian, built one in front of her house. The little libraries are such a wonderful gift to bring the community together. Seeing the 0831190855_HDRcolorful boxes has inspired me to build one of my own.

Libraries are filled with limitless possibilities, dreams and wonder. Support your local branch often.

Dear Reader, Do you make regular visits to the library? In what section of the library are you most likely to be found? Was going to the library a part of your childhood?

 

31 Thoughts

  1. I’ve always wanted to put up one of these little libraries. Goodness knows, I could stock it quite well to get it started. I just don’t know where to put it. At the end of my road? I can just see the snow plows taking it out or at least burying it this winter. Must give it some serious thought though.

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  2. I remember those lovely quiet hours in the library with Mom when I was just a kid. It was as if we had escaped to a different world, a better place. Thanks for the memory! 🙂

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  3. I have loved reading since I was little. I loved going to the library in town and couldn’t wait for library day at school. As an adult I ended up on my town library’s Board of Trustees, until I ended up working there – the best job I ever had. Unfortunately, we closed due to mold 2 years ago and are frantically fundraising in order to re-open our Little Library That Could. Hopefully it will happen! Libraries are so much more than books – they are the hub of the community!

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  4. I went to the library all the time as a child. Of course, as I grew I gravitated to the mystery section.

    I took my kids when they were young. I wound up with one reader, so I guess a 50% success rate isn’t bad.

    Sadly, I just haven’t been to the library much recently. Too much to do. I didn’t even replace my library card when it expired. But our local library is a Carnegie library and it is wonderful.

    Someone put up one of those little libraries at our dog park. Next time I have a couple extra books I should put them in.

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  5. Thank you for this great blog!
    I’m a librarian and I want to remind people of all the wonderful services we offer. Of course you can always check out a book, but most libraries offer DVDs, audio books, comic books, games, crafting items, baking items and so much more! September is Library Card sign up month. If you haven’t been to your local library in awhile, I’ll bet you’ll be surprised at all they have to offer! Plus, it’s a great way to support your favorite authors!

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    1. Andrea, you are so lucky to be a librarian. I’ve wished many times I had pursued that career. The closest I came was when I took on a long term sub job as the librarian at my children’s school. I loved it.

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  6. We lived one block from the library when I was a kid, and I was always there. I think I read everything in the kid’s section (it was small) before I moved on to the adult section. Now I live where there is a great library, especially for a relatively small town, and I am there all the time. I would go broke if I tried to buy all the books I read, and our library is very good about getting books that they don’t have. My younger son is a reader, though mostly uses an e-reader these days as he reads while he commutes. I have told my husband I will live anywhere as long as there is a good library nearby!

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  7. I worked as a children’s librarian for a while, and that hushed atmosphere and those fun events took effort! There are no better folks than librarians. I smile when I see a little library on the roadside. Such a neat idea!

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  8. I love libraries thanks to my parents. The library system in the town I grew up in was amazing and we had a bookmobile that came to a park near our home once a week. In high school we went to the library downtown to “study” aka meet boys. And I still love libraries to this day. There’s one about a half mile from my house that is lovely.

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    1. I forgot about the book mobile!! We had one that came to us when I was in middle school. Occasionally I see the Enoch Pratt Library bus on the beltway. Now I have the urge to buy a van and sell books.

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  9. I’ve always lived libraries.. I’ve lived near them at times and spent a lot of time there. I love using libraries for research – the not on-line type. Unfortunately, I don’t live near one now that is even minimally convenient. I don’t even have a library card. Horrors!

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  10. I went to the library all the time as a kid. It was how my parents kept me in books.

    These days, I don’t go to the library quite as much. When I am there, I am most likely picking up an audiobook.

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  11. I was blessed to be born into a book loving family. My mother read me books from her childhood
    every night before bed. We lived in Kensington, Maryland. There are two libraries there. At the beginning it was Noyes library, which is now a children’s library. Then Kensington Park library was built. We went every week to get books. I was one of the lucky kids because my mother never restricted what I chose to read or how many books I could take home. When I was 10 she let me ride my bicycle to Kensington Park library and I went at least twice a week to get new books.

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  12. We went to the library all the time when I was a kid. It was a big deal for us. It also led the mom’s rule “You can’t get more books than you can carry.” We got around it pretty easily- my sister made me carry some of hers. I don’t get there as often as I would like now, but I love the mysteries. I just wish there were more, as I live in a very small town, with a small library.

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  13. I have always loved libraries. My grandmother was a public librarian and I spent many years with her “behind the desk”. Not sure that would be allowed now. I was a library work study student in college, and one of my first jobs was at the science and engineering library at UCLA. About a decade later, I went back for my masters in library science, and spent eight years as a hospital librarian. I have spent the past twelve years happily rooted as a elementary school librarian. I just love libraries. No matter what library you enter, the same books and how they are organized make you instantly feel at home.

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