My friend Ser informed me we were to meet at Edinburgh Central Library at noon on Saturday to read out our favourite passages from books we love. There was a lot going on to celebrate National Libraries Day, but this little unofficial meet-up struck me as a wonderful way to celebrate books and our local libraries. Clom L’Inane initiated and organised it, and it was lovely to be in a little group of book enthusiasts. Some of the highlights were a Seamus Heaney poem, a piece from Julian Barnes’ ‘A History of the World in 10 ½ chapters’, an Inuit story from Angela Carter’s Book of Fairy Tales, and the wonderful ‘Gobbleknoll‘ from Alan Garner’s book of British fairy tales. My own choice was the delicious opening paragraph from Angela Carter’s ‘The Erl King’ (a fairy tale theme emerged in our little group). Sharing the magic of books in this way filled me with warmth and excitement, and I’m looking forward to another event soon.
Libraries are an important part of the vibrant cultural delights in our city, and with the recent government attack on libraries it is particularly important to support your local library. I’ll leave you with this piece in the Guardian celebrating libraries and the people who use them: The Secret Life of Libraries.