As part of #LoveAtTheLibrary, we’re asking our author to share why they love their libraries. Check back over the next few weeks to read their throughts and remember to follow Mills & Boon to see all the romantic displays!
I’m so pleased to get involved in library events – I’ve been a library girl all my life. We grew up not owning lots of books (that came later) but we always had plenty to read as we went to the local public library each week. One of my early memories is the thrill of moving from the selection of picture books low to the ground to the section for older children and choosing my first ever book without pictures. I felt so incredibly excited and grown up! I can’t recall the book’s title but the memory of the library and how I felt is indelible. I think of the other children I knew whose parents didn’t instil that love of books early and know I was incredibly lucky.
Growing up libraries provided a window into a wider world, whether I was browsing books borrowed by other family members or choosing my own. I dipped into fiction and non fiction that broadened my horizons well beyond suburban New South Wales. How could I not appreciate libraries when it was because of them I first read Georgette Heyer, Leo Tolstoy, Lindsay Davis and so many others? Did I mention I met my husband in the university library?
Even when I was old enough to have a disposable income libraries were a must. Living overseas for a year the English language section was a godsend. Back in Australia Saturday mornings meant grocery shopping and then a trip to the library to stock up on books.
With young children the library became a special treat. Story time and craft sessions at the library were stimulating for them and relaxing for me. I had time to snaffle my own hoard of books, help with the craft and meet other mums. As the children grew libraries became a special resource. Moving to a new area the library school holiday activities where fantastic for restless children who missed their friends. Librarians were valuable resources in suggesting titles suitable for very different children. I’m still grateful to the wonderful local librarians who, in addition to helping with research, seemed to specialise in deciphering the arcane language used by senior high school educators.
Libraries are still used by the whole family. They’re a source of community information, talking books for long road trips, magazines and as ever, books. Until recently my elderly parents had access a mobile library that serviced their non-suburban community every couple of weeks. It was a wonderful service for the not-quite house-bound.
And the other reason I love libraries? The thrill of seeing well-thumbed titles of my own on the shelves. More than that, there’s the joy of hearing from readers who discovered my stories via their local library at a time when losing themselves in a romance made a huge difference to them, particularly when life was tough.