Sunday, April 13, 2008

National Library Week

It's National Library Week. I'm pretty sure that the week is intended to celebrate public libraries and all the services they provide to the community; Bozeman has a great public library with lots of programs and a spacious, separated children's section, well worth celebrating. But I think I will let this week be an excuse to celebrate my own (much smaller) library.

My library is filled with books that reflect my idiosyncratic reading; looking at the shelves, I can trace the evolution of my interests and the quirky by-ways I have taken over the years. It is as accurate a reflection of me as my scrapbook - and better kept up, because organizing my books is play and gluing photos in scrapbooks is a chore. My library includes:
  • A shelf of math books left over from college.
  • Physics books from when I was intrigued by cosmology, and more reflecting my kids' interest in astronomy.
  • Boxes of books on the Middle Ages, from the time when I was studying it seriously; this section has been thinned down over the years and most of the monographs are gone now.
  • A neat pile of books on American and Canadian history, collected when we studied that in school recently.
  • Books on water law and western water issues.
  • Several shelves of books on Montana - history, biography, guidebooks, picture books.
  • Random history and biography books that I have picked up because they look interesting; my favorites trace the history of one item, such as forests or potatoes or tea.
  • Travel books and books about countries I have been to and ones I haven't.
  • Lots of natural history books, identification books, and books on plants and animals; some I use with the kids, but most of them are just for me. This section includes books on winter, snow, and forest fires.
  • My favorite homeschooling books.
  • My collection of fairy tales and folk tales, some traditional and some modern rewrites.
  • Reference books of all sorts, including many for school.
  • Too many shelves of books I'm going to read "next".
  • Shakespeare's plays and an equal volume of books about him.
  • The remnants of older collections on architecture, the English language, and horses.
  • Smaller sections of new interests that haven't accumulated much yet: economics (as it applies to society), parenting, schools, simplifying my life (good luck!), modern culture, and religions.
  • Lots of fiction, everything from Homer to Wodehouse, Patrick O'Brien to Samurai Penguin, books on tape to Cliff Notes.
  • Kid's books, which I thin at least once a year; I am looking forward to incorporating the remainders into the rest of the library someday.
  • Books on food, cooking, food history, and food in culture.

No comments: