The Library

I love the library.  I have always loved the library.  I will always love the library.  I have fond childhood memories of going downtown in Charlottesville with my family  and spending hours browsing books until we were all ready to go.  Even as a child (this has carried over into adulthood), I was obsessed with books about magic or witches.  I read all the books by Ruth Chew, Edward Eager, Edith Nesbit, Zilpha Keatley Snyder, Mail Order Wings, Fifth Grade Magic, and all of Tamora Pierce’s novels (at that time, she had only written the first few Alanna books, which I still love to this day and reread not too long ago).  I thought Encyclopedia Brown was great and read that entire series.  I loved those little “orange biographies” – I think I read almost all of them.  I remember being so excited when I was finally old enough to check out books from the grown-up section of the library.

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Cincinnati Public Library

In college, I had no car the first three years and was busying practicing 5+ hours a day, so my reading fell off a bit.  On Christmas and summer breaks, I would go to the library in Charlottesville and get stacks of books to devour.  Once I finally had a car in Cincinnati, I loved visiting the huge new downtown library.  They had thousands of wonderful CDs and VHS movies available for check-out.  I made my way through many, many movie classics – Fred & Ginger, Katharine Hepburn, Jimmy Stewart, Audrey Hepburn…  And of course, more books.  Always more books.  Once, one of the librarians at my branch library in Cincinnati asked me if I really read all the books I checked out!

Virginia Beach Great Neck Area Library

Whenever I move somewhere new, I usually find my nearest library within the first week.  By the time I’ve lived somewhere a month, the librarians know me by sight.  As a devoted library user for so many decades, I believe in giving back, and donate both materials and money to whichever library system I’m living in at the time.  I could never afford to feed my reading habit without the help of the library. I love the extras technology has brought to libraries: being able to put books on hold late at night, at home on my computer; checking out books to my Kindle and even being able to return them early; and checking out digital audiobooks and transferring them onto my iPhone. My current library system even has an option, when I’m browsing books online at home, to text myself the name of a book that’s available at my local branch.

I have a nice little stack of holds I picked up in this past week that I’m eager to read:

The Darkness of Night, by Deborah Harkness (reading now)
Team Human, by Justine Larbalestier
Little Night, by Luanne Rice
Insignia, by S. J. Kincaid
The Violinist’s Thumb: and Other Lost Tales of Love, War, and Genius, as Written By Our Genetic Code, by Sam Kean
Earth Unaware: The First Formic War, by Orson Scott Card
Thirteen, by Kelley Armstrong
I Couldn’t Love You More, by Jillian Medoff
When in Doubt, Add Butter, by Elizabeth Harbison

A great thing about the Virginia Beach library (and several others I’ve used in the last decade) is the ability to put books on hold as soon as they go in the system, even if the book won’t be published for many months.  For anyone who is interested (because I know some of you want to know what books I’m looking forward to!), here is my current hold list:

12.21, by Dustin Thomason
The Care and Handling of Roses with Thorns, by Margaret Dilloway
The Diviners, by Libba Bray
The Middlesteins, by Jami Attenberg
NW, by Zadie Smith
Something Like Normal, by Trish Doller
Sweet Talk, by Julie Garwood
The Sweetness of Forgetting, by Kristin Harmel
Ten Girls to Watch, by Charity Shumway
What’s Left of Me, by Kat Zhang
Shadow Woman, by Linda Howard
The Cutting Edge, by Linda Howard
Flight Behavior, by Barbara Kingsolver
Unwholly, by Neal Shusterman
When It Happens To You, by Molly Ringwald
Where’d You Go, Bernadette, by Maria Semple
Wife 22, by Melanie Gideon
Into the Darkest Corner, by Elizabeth Haynes
Enchanting Lily, by Anjali Banerjee
Foretold: 14 Stories of Prophecy and Prediction (collection)
Libriomancer, by Jim Hines
Seating Arrangements, by Maggie Shipstead
Goodbye for Now, by Laurie Frankel
The Orchardist, by Amanda Coplin
The Casual Vacancy, by J. K. Rowling
The Last Minute, by Jeff Abbott
The Secret Keeper, by Kate Morton
The Dog Stars, by Peter Heller
Girl of Nightmares, by Kendare Blake

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