Why libraries rock

There are few places that can open up a world of knowledge and imagination like a library.

So last night I got lost in the library, wandered down the passages and found a treasure trove of books.

Now, one would think, that for someone who buys so many books and receive quite a number of them for review, that I wouldn't have time for the library.

This is where you'd be wrong.

You see, for me, the library is not just a gateway to a world of shelves upon shelves of books, but it's my second home and sanctuary.

My love affair with this magical place started when I was a young child, but it was only during my primary school years that I'd really come to appreciate what the library would mean to me.
 
As a young girl, I was severely bullied, and as a result, I'd spend most of my lunch breaks hiding out in the library to get away from the viciousness of the girls in the playground.
 
The library, at the time, became a place where I could hide; and at first, that was as far as it went. The more time I began spending there though, the more I realised that something had changed.

 Once I got beyond the point where the awful feelings living inside me subsided just a little bit, I finally began to comprehend what kind of impact just being in the library had on me.

It dawned on me that I had unlimited access to a world beyond worlds.

I could walk into a forest filled with fairies at any time I wanted and I could go on adventures the various little critters, creatures and all sorts of wondrous beings. And oh, not even to talk about the soothing atmosphere, the classical music and the knowledge that time suspended itself every time I took a step into the library.

This was the moment when both the written word and the library became my best friends.

By that time, I had pretty much loved reading, but it was those trips to what I thought of as my book palace (I still think that by the way), that made me realise just how important having access to books was and still is, to me.

 If I think about it now, I'm thankful for the girls who picked on me back then because they are the ones that only served cement my love of reading. They hurt me, but I don't think they realise what they gave me in the process.

Because it's Library week in South Africa this week, I'm dedicating this column to all the wonderful librarians who keep our libraries up and running.

Because, without you, libraries wouldn't exist and I'm fortunate enough to be able to say that not only did I have (and still have) a fantastic bookish place to run to, but I also had kind librarians who always kept an eye out for me and kept new books aside for me.

Thank you for loving books and for always sharing your knowledge.  Trite as it sounds, you truly make this world a better place.

Now that I'm done sharing my story, I'd love to hear your stories.

Tell me about your favourite library. What do you love most about it and which library do you think needs more support from communities out there?

Oh, and if you happen to be a librarian? I'd love to hear from you too.

P.S. The Books I took out at Bellville Library last night?

The  Complete Collection of Hans Christian Andersen's Fairytales
(because you can never be old enough to read and reread fairytales), Blood Red, Snow White by Marcus Sedgwick (a young adult, part historical fantasy, part fairytale-inspired novel - why yes, I am fairytale obsessed) and Angels' Blood by Nalini Singh (An indulgent paranormal romance - yes, yes... I do like to read those on the odd occasion too.).

And at Cape Town Library?

I finally got a hold of Flowers in the Attic (believe it or not, I haven't read this until now) and managed to grab a copy of Fire and Hemlock by Diana Wynne Jones, which is a retelling of Tam Lin.

P.S.S. What books have you picked up? I do love swapping book recs.

Follow Tammy on Twitter.

You can also Follow Women24 on Twitter.



Read more on: books  |  reading

NEXT ON WOMEN24X
Share this page (What are these?):

Read Women24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
12 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
We reserve the right to maintain the quality of the discourse on the comments board as much as we can.
By posting comments you agree to our Terms & Conditions.
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.