Booking Through Thursday 8/21: Libraries
Whether you usually read off of your own book pile or from the library shelves NOW, chances are you started off with trips to the library. (There’s no way my parents could otherwise have kept up with my book habit when I was 10.) So … What is your earliest memory of a library? Who took you? Do you have any funny/odd memories of the library?
The first thing that comes to mind is the Mattituck Free Library, in the town on Long Island where my grandparents live. When I was a little kid, a skunk got trapped in the vestibule somehow. For a few summers, the smell was almost overwhelming. Then it faded to a vaguely evergreen funk, a faint whiff. To this day, the vestiges of skunk smell make me feel a little bookish.
During the school year, there was the Epiphany Branch library, affiliated with the scary, dark, ultra-modern Catholic Church my mom and I attended on Sundays. (I’m convinced that the Church architecture is what made me be a lapsed Catholic.) The only way to get up to the second floor for the children’s books was a scary, slow elevator that never felt like it was moving at all, just like it was trapping you and holding you captive. Yikes! Given that elevator, I’m surprised I didn’t start reading YA books (on the first floor) sooner.
But I was a young-for-my-age, innocent kid, didn’t really have much to do with “teen” lit until I was 14 or so. Now, of course, there’s so much more good, fantastic YA out there- wonderful magical themes and imagination, and not just kissing boys.