Review of small press and independent books.
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If you are one of those strange, old fashioned people who can remember what libraries are for, please have a look at Alan Gibbons' article (which I've just posted on my blog, here Kay Green) and start writing letters/shouting!
My local library is brilliant. True, it owns fewer books than I do, but both the librarians know Blossomkin Boo, and I can put her down in the children's section and leave her happily crawling between the big floor-standing boxes and pulling the books out of them - and occasionally even settling down for a read - while I go and find some books for myself. Aunty Gill the chief librarian was just as thrilled as I was when Blossomkin Boo picked up a book about teddy bears, pointed at the cover and said "Teddy, teddy!" This is what local libraries are for!
Sigh... what local libraries are NOT for is hosting the Health Visitor's baby clinic. I had to take Little Troubleblossom for her eighteen-month checkup a couple of weeks ago, and she was most perturbed that I brought her into the library, wouldn't let her touch any of the books and then took all her clothes off! After some disagreeable scenes with the big weighing scales, and the floor-lying height chart on which she expressed her displeasure rather more physically, all the time I was trying to talk to the Health Visitor Little Troubleblossom was running back and forth bringing us books and trying to tell us what the pictures were, and then I made her put them all back and go home! It's not right!
Not right for Little Troubleblossom, true, but maybe not such a bad idea for some of the other little people who might be looking around in wonder at this intriguing place and wondering what Little Troubleblossom was finding so exciting. Something might stick. You never know.
She knows where the library is now, bless her: we went to take her books back on Friday, and as soon as we turned into the road where the library is - she's in a baby-seat in the back of the car, so her vision's fairly restricted at this point - she started saying "Books, books!"
Aww... sweet! I used to love my weekly trips up to the library when I was a small child. Can't remember a time when I didn't go, so I must have started pretty young. Essential nourishment for the developing imagination.