Travelling books…

Reading time: Less than 1 minute

This is my weekly installment of “writing about writing,” in which I scan the world to find websites, books and articles to help other writers. Today I discuss a blog post and Youtube video about bookmobiles…

I grew up in a big family — I was the eldest of five kids — and we had very little money. My parents scrimped and saved to buy groceries so books weren’t ever in the budget. Nor did my neighbourhood even have a library. But when I was about 6 years old, a dusty pink bookmobile started arriving every Friday afternoon at 5 pm.

For me, it was as if a travelling toy store had pulled up. I even liked the small, cramped size of it and the powdery scent of the books. Once I’d advanced beyond picture books, I steered straight for the fairy tale section and each time would take out the maximum number of books allowed, 10. Friday nights and Saturday mornings, I lay in bed reading. I always took a bookmobile book to school with me so I could place it on the top right-hand corner of my desk, ready for reading when I finished my dreaded math worksheets.

My bookmobile memories returned when I read a recent Brain Pickings post, headlined, How Libraries Save Lives. It tells the story of Storm Reyes, a girl who had grown up in an impoverished Native American community, and then had her life changed by a bookmobile. I loved that she went on to become a librarian herself.

Her story is movingly told in a 3-minute video put together by StoryCorps. Watch it!

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