August 9 is National Book Lovers Day! It’s an unofficial holiday recognized on a global scale. Its origins and creator remain unknown, but it’s a nice idea to put away our smart phones for a day and pick up a book. No matter what genre you prefer – romance, historical fiction, horror, fantasy, memoir or others – there are plenty of choices.
Whether you like to search antiquarian book shops to discover first editions or want a new copy of the current bestseller, both contain stories that may take you to other countries where you learn about the culture, geography, customs and politics, or you learn more about what makes people tick in the USA.
We can revisit favorites of our youth like The Secret Garden, Heidi, Black Beauty or Little Women while reading to our grandchildren, or re-visit other worlds while sharing The Brothers Grimm Fairy Tales.
Books were originally chiseled on stone tablets. Once the first paper was developed books were written on papyrus or vellum sheets and hand stitched together. Hand written books were very valuable because of the time involved and scarcity. Libraries have existed since the Middle Ages, but due to their value, books were protected in these buildings, chained to shelves to prevent theft of the huge, hand-written tomes. Librarians alone had the authority to unchain the desired book and laid it on a nearby table while a patron perused it.
Modern day librarians or media specialists are just as helpful. They will assist in finding books on the topic of your choice, suggest titles in particular genres, and guide patrons to a variety of resources.
Many libraries are now re-opening with new guidelines so that visitors remain safe. Check with your local public library for days and hours of operation and safety directives. Whether you visit your library or bookstore or order a new title online, enjoy a new story this August 9—a whole new world awaits within its cover!