Saturday, July 28, 2012

Little Free Library, Day 1

Sorry I've been gone.  Life got very busy after spring break -- end of the school year and now summer vacation -- and I just haven't figured out how to sneak blogging into my daily life recently.  But we've got something new I am very excited about, and I want to keep a record about it here, at least for a little while.

We just installed a Little Free Library!  My dad made it for us, and it's adorable.  When he was putting it in for us, some neighbors stopped by to admire his work.  Because it's so beautiful, they worried a bit about vandalism.  (It's a common concern; click on the Little Free Library link to read their wise words on this topic.)

"I bet some people will just take a book and never return it," another neighbor worried.  My dad stopped in the middle of his work, looked right at her, and said, "That's the point.  That would be great!  If they keep it, that means they have it in their home to read again and again."  Then he told a story of when he was an elementary school principal.  Everyone worried about books not being returned to the school library.  Money was a concern, of course, but he often chose to look at the silver lining:  "Those books are now out there in the world, in homes where they can be read and enjoyed."

Here's what I put out in our library today:

~ Some board books:  Ten (Keith Haring), *Lola at the Library (Anna McQuinn & Rosalind Beardshaw), and *Max's Bedtime (Rosemary Wells).
~ Some picture books and an early reader:  *Frederick (Leo Lionni), *Mrs. McNosh and the Great Big Squash (Sarah Weeks & Nadine Bernard Westcott), and Piglet Feels Small (Jennifer Liberts).
~ Lots of middle-grade chapter books:  The Sunday Horse (Marie Gibson), *Miss Child Has Gone Wild (Dan Gutman), Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle's Magic and Hello, Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle (Betty MacDonald), Runaway Ralph (Beverly Cleary), The Magic Thief (Sarah Prineas), If You're Reading This, It's Too Late, (Pseudonymous Bosch), The Battle of the Labyrinth (Rick Riordan), Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy (Gary D. Schmidt).
~ A young adult novel:  *Will Grayson, Will Grayson (John Green & David Levithan).
~ Several other books:  *50 Simple Things You Can Do to Save the Earth, *Gravity: Poems (John Minczeski), Frankenstein (Mary Shelley), The Good Earth (Pearl S. Buck), An Incomplete Revenge (Jacqueline Winspear).

My parents also left some inside:  Mysteries by Jonathan Kellerman, James Patterson, and John Grisham, Amy Tan's The Bonesetter's Daughter, and The Trellis and the Seed (Jan Karon).

Later in the day, I couldn't resist stopping at the used bookstore and picking up a supply of cheap but good books.  I picked out ones that we'd already read, or that I've heard good things about.  Now I've got a backup stash, to reload the library as people take books.  (The starred titles above are ones I bought there.)  I'd like to keep the selection broad, with books for readers young and old.

When do you think the library will start being used?  Which books do you think will be taken first?  Which one would you take, if any?  Do you think anyone will leave a book?

I will post a photo of our library tomorrow, and let you know it's gotten any attention yet.  I'll try to update daily for a couple of days, and then maybe weekly.  (By the way, this post was written about Friday's experience; I'll post about Saturday tomorrow.)

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