When I was a lot younger,
gosh 30 really feels old now, I would visit the library with my mom at least every two to three weeks. My mom was a big reader at the time and would take huge stacks of library books back with her. I was the same. And over time I had read everything that caught my interest in the children’s section (this included the 12+ section which would now be the young adult section) at least a few times. Living in a small town had its downsides. There just wasn’t that much available.
Fast forward to a few years ago where I had just moved here and where I decided not to take a library card again (the library is not free in the Netherlands). My expectations of the library here was that they did not have that much to offer me as I read mostly English and fantasy. I ended up buying mostly books and we all know how that ended up. A huge stack of unread books…
Last November I decided to take on a library card again though.
Merijn Loves the Library
One of the reasons for that was of course Merijn. I have shared before how through book start he got a library card. Up to the age of 18 he can use the library for free. Initially I did not go with him as I had a big stack of books from gifts at his birth. But as time passed on and his interest in books started growing, I decided to take him to the library and take out a few books every few weeks.
Merijn is very excited when we go to the library. When I take him out of the baby carriage he runs to all the picture books and doesn’t know which ones to pull from the shelves first in his excitement. It is endearing and exhausting at the same time. But this did trigger in me the want to share that with him. To make it an experience where the the both of us go to the library and take books with us. Like the memories I have of going to the library with my mom.
More Dutch and Less Book Buying
Another reason as to why I decided to get another library card is that I have been reading more in Dutch. Dutch authors and translated books. Unfortunately Dutch books do tend to be a bit more pricey than an English paperback.
Through the library I can still read these books in Dutch without having to pay the maximum price for them. It is a great way to also see what I like from Dutch authors or even those translated books where I am not sure if I will like them or not. If I buy them I have to rehome them if I don’t like them, but with the library I can just return them and be done with it.
And lastly I do really want to work on buying less books. I am really hoping that the library will help me with this itch that I sometimes have where I feel the need to buy a book. Maybe now I can go to the library instead. I already did this on January the second where I just wanted to sniff books and pick up a new book not already on my own shelves.
I’ve been using the library for a good 3 months now and it certainly has rekindled my love. One of the things I love is how I can just search the catalogue of my own library and see what books they have. I can reserve a book or even request it from another nearby library. I can lengthen my borrow time online as well.
I have yet to return a book unread. The reason for that is that I do not take books out I don’t expect I’ll be able to read almost right away. And I made the pact with myself to never take out more than 3 books at a time. Because you know what, they are still going to be there the next time. And otherwise I can reserve the book.
The fantasy section isn’t huge but does house some backlist books I’ve been meaning to get to, like the Tad Williams books. There is a decent Young Adult section and a very tiny English section.
Books I’ve Borrowed So Far
Goth Girl and the Ghost of a Mouse // The Copper Promise // The Iron Ghost // The Casual Vacancy // The Dragonbone Chair // 1984 // The Cuckoo’s Calling // Animal Farm // The Silkworm
Library Love Challenge
And now onto the reason why I even started writing this post to begin with. As I was reading other people’s goals I came across the Library Love Challenge, hosted by Angela from Angel’s Guilty Pleasaure and Brooke from Brooke Blogs . This challenge is there to promote the love of the library by reading books from it.
The main goal is to read a minimum of 12 books from the library. But there are other levels for those that can and want to read more from the library. Personally I am going for Dewey Decimal which is a minimum of 12 books, the lowest level. I thought of going for the next level, minimum of 24 books but I don’t want to pressure myself too much. And I also need to read a lot of my own books.