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Musing Monday Jan 5: Library Books

January 5, 2009

Today’s Musing Monday is about library books.

Do you have a system for borrowing books from the library?  Do you know what you’re going to borrow beforehand?  How often do you borrow books?

I do a mix of reserving books and browsing.  I love that I can set up library reserves from my home computer, because that lets me make note of books while I’m reading book blogs and book blogger’s groups.  It’s also a form of financial discipline.  The bookstore I go to is near my library.  I have been trying to talk myself into borrowing more often than buying, to save money.  Not to mention bookshelf space.  So, a good amount of the time, I know what I’m after- I just have to be patient for interlibrary loan.

I browse and pick up books on a whim less often.  Mostly because the specific list of books I intend to read has gotten rather long of late.  (Isn’t that a nice problem to have?)   Most of what I’ll grab to read on a whim is quirky nonfiction, something with a spin of social history, like Pledged: The Secret Life of Sororities or Bobos In Paradise: The New Upper Class and How They Got There.

Much more rarely, I’ll pick up fiction on a whim, based on the title or the back of the book, or the fact that I’ve been meaning to read that author. I do a lot of picking up fiction slightly to the right or left of an author I already read, as something in that shelf-neighborhood catches my eye.

The one thing I absolutely don’t do is take more than one or two books out at a time. I can be bad at returning library books, so I keep myself on a short leash, so no books get lost in the shuffle.

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6 Comments leave one →
  1. January 5, 2009 10:04 am

    Good point about number of books. Me too! I take just one or two print books at a time. Otherwise I’d either not get to them or owe fines.

  2. January 5, 2009 2:27 pm

    When I was younger I used to check out over 30 at a time. Extraorinarily enough I never lost one.

  3. January 5, 2009 2:28 pm

    I never lost books which is amazing as I checked out over 30 at a time..

  4. fleurfisher permalink
    January 5, 2009 3:24 pm

    I wish I could be so strong minded about only taking a small number of books out. I always have a heap of library books on hand but luckily I get a printout every time I borrow a book so I just about keep on top of returns and renewals.

  5. January 5, 2009 3:25 pm

    I always take out more books than I’ll ever read. You sound much more disciplined than I am!

  6. January 5, 2009 10:02 pm

    Good idea to only take out a couple at a time. I don’t have that rule, and though I have never lost any myself, my kids have lost many.

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