Book Beat: Library Stories

Submitted by J. Alder on

September is Library Card Sign-Up Month. It’s my favorite month to be a library marketer. I love to take this time to point out how much money a library card can save a household. If you borrow 10 books from the library, you’ve saved at least $170 versus buying them. Using our Experience Pass program to get four free museum passes will save you about $80. Streaming movies and TV shows through the library will save a minimum of $120 per year on subscription services. There are many more ways to save if you use audiobooks, genealogy services, music downloads, and more. Get a library card at your local library, or sign up for an account online.

These books offer some fiction and nonfiction history and tales about libraries and librarians. You’ll find most in eBook format in addition to print.

  • The Library Book by Susan Orlean. While researching the unsolved mystery of the most catastrophic library fire in American history, Orlean comes to understand the larger, crucial role libraries play in our lives, and reveals how they provide much more than just books and are needed now more than ever.
  • The Library: A Fragile History by Andrew Pettegree. Perfect for book lovers, this is a fascinating exploration of the history of libraries and the people who built them, from the ancient world to the digital age.
  • The Midnight Library by Matt Haig. Nora Seed finds herself faced with the possibility of changing her life for a new one, following a different career, undoing old breakups, realizing her dreams of becoming a glaciologist; she must search within herself as she travels through the Midnight Library to decide what is truly fulfilling in life, and what makes it worth living in the first place.
  • The Paris Library by Janet Skeslien Charles. Based on the true story of the heroic librarians at the American Library in Paris during World War II, The Paris Library is a moving and unforgettable tribute to the importance of libraries, books, and the human connections we find within both.
  • The Library of Lost and Found by Phaedra Patrick. Librarian Martha Storm finds a book of fairytales on her doorstep. Inside, Martha finds a clue within the book that her beloved grandmother may still be alive, and she becomes determined to discover the truth. As she delves deeper into her grandmother’s past, she discovers a family secret that will change her life forever.

Library tip of the month: Would you like to try eBooks or eAudiobooks, but aren’t sure how to get started? We can help! Request a meeting with a staff member to help you get the app, download books, or whatever you need. To schedule a visit, fill out the online form or call 360-906-5000.

Janet Alder is Marketing and Communications Coordinator with Fort Vancouver Regional Libraries, which has 15 locations in Clark, Skamania, Klickitat, and Cowlitz Counties. Call 360-906-5000 or visit the library district website for more information.

A version of this column first appeared in The Messenger, September 2023.

Find more book columns in our Off the Shelf blog.