Posts tagged ‘Library’

Reading, Reading, Reading

This year is off to an encouraging start! It’s only February, and already I’ve read 3 new books, am in the middle of one, and have 2 on the way! My goal is to read 30 books that I’ve never read before by the end of December, so it’s nice to have such a promising beginning.

So far, we have:

  • The 10th Kingdom
  • The Lovely Bones
  • Wildwood Dancing

And, right now, I’m reading The Mermaid by Carolyn Turgeon. I think I might have outgrown its genre though, because I’m having trouble getting into it.

In the case of re-reading old books, I’m 3/4 of the way through Tamora Pierce’s Protector of the Small quartet. I’m enjoying it quite a bit even as an older reader. Kel’s crushes on the boys around her aren’t nearly as grating this time around, so I guess I still must have been in the “Eeeeewwww! Kissing!” phase when I first read the series or something. 😉

My other new books should be coming into the library soon. I’ve requested Mercedes Lackey’s newest – Unnatural Issue, and then a craft book on how to bind your own books! I about squee’d when I saw it!

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My Dream Library (AKA A Bookworm’s Paradise)

As a young child, my favorite part of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast was the scene where Beast shows Belle the castle library. Oh, how I wanted it! For the longest time, that was my mental template for my dream library.

Then, as I grew older, I realized that I’m a decently picky reader, and therefore, I wouldn’t be able to fill a library that size with books that I’d actually want to read.

So I downsized.

Nowadays, my dream library is mostly based off of my grandpa’s old study at the house my grandparents lived in when I was very young.

It wouldn’t be a large room, but just big enough for a comfortable reading chair and a small, squishy couch, with one wall made entirely out of shelves and cabinets that I would fill with my books and knick-knacks. It would have one big bay window to let in morning sunshine and all of the walls and panelling would be made of rich, warm-toned wood. To finish it off, I’d have a nice thick carpet in there and possibly a decent sized desk and an easel to work on my paintings. The computer and TV would be relegated to a different room entirely.

So that’s my dream library. For now, I have my Book Nook, which suits me perfectly, but someday…

Edit: I’ve recently started a Pinterest Board dedicated to “building” my Dream Library. So feel free to click on the little Pinterest button in the sidebar and visit!

Books, Snow, and Kittens

I’ve fallen behind on actually doing the Booking Through Thursday prompts. 😳

So, here’s this week’s question: What’s your favorite book with weather events? Hurricanes? Tornadoes? Blizzards? Real? Fiction? Doesn’t matter … weather comes up a lot in books, so there’s got to be a favorite somewhere, huh?

The only book I can think of (in my library at least) that has any sort of important focus on the weather is Vicky Myron’s Dewey. It’s a biography of sorts as it tells the story of Dewey, an orange tabby who lived in the small Iowa town of Spencer’s local library.

His story begins when the head librarian, Myron, finds him freezing to death in the library drop-box early one morning. She talks about the cutting winds and the abnormally bitter cold that winter. Myron writes,

“Someone had jammed a book into the return slot, wedging it open. It was as cold in the box as it was outside; maybe colder, since the box was lined with metal… [The kitten] was huddled in the front left corner of the box, its head down, its legs tucked underneath it, trying to appear as small as possible.”

The kitten was promptly rescued, bathed, and after a little wrangling, adopted by the library staff as the town’s Library Cat. They named him Dewey Readmore Books. It took a little time, but eventually, the whole town adopted him as well and he earned world-wide fame.

This is an adorable story – and how can it not be? It follows Dewey through his kitten-hood to his eventual death. In between stories of his antics, we learn a little bit about Myron herself – her trials, tribulations, and successes. The book has a good mix of emotions – extremely funny moments that make any cat owner chuckle in sympathy, poignant moments as we learn about the people of the town, and moments that make the reader growl in indignation at the bureaucracy and politics surrounding the library.

The only thing that annoys me about this book is that Myron constantly ascribes human motives to Dewey’s actions. Now, most cat owners do this, but she goes a little overboard – giving Dewey credit for seeking out shy people specifically to draw them into conversation, or going over to a sad patron deliberately to comfort them. Normally, I wouldn’t even notice this, but the way Myron writes several moments made me roll my eyes and go “Yeah… right.” That’s just me though.

Anyways, good book! I quite liked it (except for that one little style issue) and will probably buy my own copy at some point.

How Do You Arrange Your Books?

An older Booking Through Thursday prompt that I found interesting – but then, I’m just OCD enough about my books that when I saw this one, I went, “Ooh! Ooh! I’ve got an answer!!” ‘Cause, you know, I’m a book nerd who actually takes the time to specifically plan out and arrange my bookshelves. I’ve been doing it since I was a small child – I’d sort my Dr. Seuss books by color and arrange all the others by height.

The current arrangement spans my entire house. The biggest bookshelf  is in the bedroom and is crammed full of books. It’s probably the most meticulously sorted.

  • Textbooks go on the bottom – they’re heaviest and help provide a sturdy anchor.
  • The next shelf up is devoted to that beloved series from my childhood – Redwall. Yes… it takes up a whole shelf.
  • The next four shelves are my favorite books arranged semi-alphabetically and grouped into clusters of vaguely related topics (i.e. all books based on classic faerie tales are placed together, all High Fantasy together, etc.).  On top of all this, my absolute favorites are on the shelf closest to my reading chair ( for ease of reach) and I work my way up from there.
  • The topmost shelf is filled with books that I want to keep, but don’t read often.

The other two bookshelves are in the living room. One is darker wood and sits by the door. It’s filled with my leather-bound books – because they look cool and stand out beautifully against the wood.

  • Faerie Tales go on the top shelf.
  • Classics that I’m bound to read again and again go on the next shelf down.
  • Classics that I want to read go on the second shelf from the bottom.
  • The bottom shelf is for “pretty books” that I have little to no interest in at the moment.

Last but not least is the tan bookshelf behind the couch. It’s for books that I don’t know what to do with. It’s only about half-way full and is home to knick-knacks and other decorative things as well.

  • Bottom shelf is for small boxes.
  • Next shelf up is for CDs.
  • Middle shelf is for my big art books (Brian Froud’s work – beautiful!) and my Encyclopedia of World Mythology.
  • Next shelf up is for paperbacks that I might read someday.
  • Top shelf is for books that don’t belong anywhere else.

That’s about it… though there are some rogue cookbooks hiding in my kitchen cupboards, and a few small books lurking in the bathroom.

So, yeah, I’m that nerdy a bookworm – I have a system that probably makes no sense to anyone else, but it makes me happy!

Dennis Langley's Blog

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