Say it with words: Adopt a book this Valentine’s Day!

I love this idea. The British Library are offering this unique opportunity to adopt a rare edition book.  What a special and unique gift that would make.  The money goes towards conservation so you will be helping to preserve our valuable literary heritage.

Here is a little snippet from the website:

Adopt a Book for Valentine’s Day and choose from our specially selected titles, and we will post you an exclusive limited edition certificate to give to your loved one. Alternatively, choose from one of our classic titles which comes with a book-jacket gift card.

– See more at The British Library


Libraries and Librarians in Horror Movies

 Who would have thought that libraries and librarians would make such good subjects for horror films?!  How many of these have you seen?

The Horror of Dracula (1958)

Jonathan Harker, the Count’s new librarian makes it his missions to rid the world of Dracula’s evil…

Ghostbusters (1984)

The ghost of Eleanor Twitty is not a librarian to be meddled with!Library-Ghost-1

The Church (1989)

Instead of organising the book collection in a gothic cathedral, Ethan unleashes an ancient evil which possesses the librarian…

It (1990)

The town librarian is terrorized by a murderous, terrifying clown…

necronomiconNecronomicon (1993)

While researching in a monastery library, H. P. Lovecraft finds a  rare copy of The Necronomicon which can unleash a monster…

The Ninth Gate (1999)

A rare book dealer is on the hunt for a demon text which has the power to raise the devil…

The Mummy (1999)Evelyn-The-Mummy-rachel-weisz-24075005-1280-925

Evy Carnahan the adventureous librarian joins an expedition to find the ancient city of Hamunaptra where they inadvertantly awaken a Mummy…

TheOff-Season (2004)

A library assistant checks into a haunted hotel room and is plagued by ghosts of previously murdered guests…

Chainsaw Sally (2004)

Sally Diamon is an unassuming librarian by day, and a vengeful serial killer by night…

All About Evil (2010)

Another unassuming librarian with a murderous alter-ego… all about evil

Bad Kids Go to Hell (2012)

Six prep school kids from serve an all-day detention in the school’s haunted library….

The World’s Strongest Librarian

Josh Hanagarne is a strong, courageous and inspirational character. He is a proud dad, a public speaker, a Mormon, a librarian, a weightlifter and a published writer. He does all that whilst battling with an extreme case of Tourette’s Syndrome.  His memoir; The World’s Strongest Librarian was published by Gotham Books on May 2, 2013.

The book takes a look at some of the challenges he has had to deal with facing Tourette’s syndrome, and how he has coped.  More than that; he tries to encourage, inspire and support others.  He is heavily involved in helping people with special needs and regularly speaks publicly to groups of people with disabilities.  He is dedicated to helping other people like him to discover their full potential.   In his book, Josh talks openly about his own neurological disorder and how writing and weight training have aided him.  Before undertaking these two very different activities, his ticks and uncontrollable movements caused him physical damage such as broken teeth, a dislocated thumb, and even caused a hernia.

As a librarian, Josh admits that literature is an obsession with him.  He did not start writing his own books until his Tourette’s hurt him so much that he couldn’t leave the house.  His screaming became irrepressible.  He needed botox injections to paralyze his vocal chords leaving him unable to talk.  As a social person, Josh turned instead to writing to continue communicating with people in the absence of voice.  Writing became a way to keep up with social discussions.  He wrote his first novel The Knot during this time.

For Josh, literature and writing is not only something he enjoys, but something he needs.  Writing is a way for him to have control.  Tourette’s often takes control of his body.  Writing and literature allows him to be in control of his mind, to see progress that he can measure and demonstrate.    It is in literature where he finds some stability.  And as an author, a creative person, he finds a larger purpose.  As with writing, weightlifting gives Josh a sense of accomplishment and control.  Extreme physical exertion began as a way to suppress the pain often caused by Tourette’s, but he continued to lift to be strong, to be healthy, and to take control of his body.

Josh also discusses his religion in his book.  He is satisfyingly neither fervent nor reproving.  His church is simply part of his heritage.  What he takes from the Mormon church is a way of life which he learned from his father; that is, the Mormon Church is the church of “don’t be a dick”.



Measuring time by library loan due dates

In academic libraries there are numerous loan categories ranging from overnight loans (or even shorter – I studied at a university which issued hourly loans with hefty fines for being minutes overdue) to six week loans.  The six week loan category is a rare one for the school resources used by our trainee teachers.

I am often reminded of important upcoming dates by the due dates of the books I issue.  For instance if I stamp teaching practice books for Mother’s Day I know it’s time to start planning on buying a gift.  If that date appears a few weeks later, on the weekly loans, I know I’m cutting it a bit fine.  If I stamp an overnight loan book with that date and I still haven’t posted the card, I know I’m in big trouble.

Sorry mum 😦

You don't have to be in primary school to make your own Mother's Day card!  I made this for my mum last Mother's day.
You don’t have to be in primary school to make your own Mother’s Day card! I made this for my mum last Mother’s day.

Do you have any books in this library?

Working in a library sometimes has its advantages.

For instance, yesterday I spotted an interesting looking book on the shelves.  It wasn’t the type of book I would think to look for.  Nor was it the type of book I would stumble upon accidentally if I was browsing the shelves for something to read – after all  what would I be doing in the comparative psychology section? (not being a student or graduate of psychology, I mean).  Working in the library means that I do have to go to the comparative psychology section from time to time (Dewey Decimal number 156 if you were wondering!) and also the public administration section (351.1), the Celtic languages section (491.6), the geology of Great Britain section (554.1) and the history of Belarus section (947.8).  What this means is that I continuously stumble upon fascinating books I would not otherwise be anywhere near.

Going back to the book I found yesterday – I flicked through the pages, became intrigued so I issued it out to myself.  I took it home and began to read.

Today I rushed out of the house for work forgetting to take this book with me (I usually read a book during my breaks).   Here is the second reason working in the library is great: WE HAVE MORE COPIES!  Being an academic library for a university, we have multiple copies of any title on reading lists, or titles that are recommended for students in general (such as Writing your Dissertation: How to Plan, Prepare and Present Successful Work – 808.066).  So come break time I simply wandered up to the comparative psychology section and continued to read. Marvelous!

(We couldn’t have done it without the use of mechanical reproduction  – so thank you modernity!)

Not the actual book title!! No, this is not part of the library stock 😉