I almost grew up in the public library. It was a short walk from home from the time I was eleven. It was glorious not to depend on someone to drive me. I visited every day and checked out the maximum number of books I was allowed. The librarian turned a blind eye if I went over the limit by checking out more than I’d returned the next day.
The day after I graduated from high school I walked into the library and casually asked if there were any job openings. The librarian hired me on the spot as a clerk. She had watched me grow up. She had seen me help people find books while I was in high school. She understood I knew the library like the palm of my hand.
I loved working there. I had always wanted to be a librarian, but it didn’t turn out that way. I got married after I got my B.A. and my husband chose a graduate school that had no library school. So I got a teaching credential.
Later I became a bookseller catering to homeschoolers. That gave me access to all the offerings publishers had for children and I got to attend Book Expo. I loved discovering new children’s books and telling people about them. I loved reading to children. I still do when I have the chance. I donate books to my local library, and I make regular visits.
As to ebooks, they are convenient when one is on the move or in bed, but they are horrible when one is trying to review them. And paper books are permanent unless something destroys them like water or fire. What is written is written. Not so with ebooks. They can be updated and revised and the reader might not even realize it. That’s good if an author spots and wants to correct a typo that slipped through. It’s also a great way for a rogue government to revise written history for all who don’t have access to the original hard copy.
I don’t suppose I’ll ever outgrow my desire to help match up people with the right books to meet their reading needs.