The Sword and Laser discussion

Misty, water-colored memories

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message 1: by Joseph (new)

Joseph | 1842 comments Was visiting my hometown this weekend and popped into the public library. (n.b. This isn't the building I used to go to when I was growing up -- they tore that down and built a new (very nice) library maybe 15 years ago.) Went poking through the shelves, and was pleasantly surprised to discover at least two books (the actual same physical copies) that I was checking out back in the 1970s & 1980s.

I still miss that old library building, though. Anybody else have childhood library nostalgia?

Library visit

Library visit

message 2: by Trike (new)

Trike | 4603 comments Oh, yeah. The oversized guacamole green vinyl chairs of the Trotwood library where I would ensconce myself with a copy of the Burne Hogarth collection of Tarzan and happily read away. My first library.

message 3: by Dara (new)

Dara (cmdrdara) | 2108 comments When I was a kid, I used to go to the library with my mom all the time. She was a voracious reader (not as much now that she's older) so I easily picked it up from her. I used to read this book called Where's Chimpy? all the time. It was about this girl with Down's Syndrome who lost her beloved stuffed monkey. I don't know why I loved that book so much but I did.

message 4: by Joseph (new)

Joseph | 1842 comments I also learned that it was not a good idea to try to balance a book on the handlebars of your green Schwinn Sting-Ray and read it on the way home. Fortunately, it wasn't a catastrophic lesson.

The old library was a fascinating place -- I didn't realize it until much later, but the core of it was a Carnegie library from the 1920s, and then sometime in the 1960s they wrapped a kind of Brady Bunch house-feeling shell around it (complete with open staircases, etc.). At the time, I just knew that it had lots of interesting nooks and crannies and weird half-levels.

message 5: by Phil (new)

Phil | 969 comments My elementary school library and the book bus (mobile library) are what got me started on SF&F with several Heinlein juveniles and books on mythology and magic and science experiments.

message 6: by John (Taloni) (new)

John (Taloni) Taloni (JohnTaloni) | 2489 comments ...of the way, we weren't.....

My house was an "SF" house and we got books mainly by waiting for an adult to be finished with them. Later on we discovered a used SF bookstore, the Science Fantasy bookstore in Cambridge MA.

I got a few books from libraries, so few I remember which ones: A Wrinkle in Time plus the two followups then available (elementary school) and The Adolescence of P1 from the high school library.

message 7: by Silvana (new)

Silvana (silvaubrey) | 874 comments I only had one public library where I borrowed my first comics (Smurfs! Tin Tin! Police Agent 212!), Enid Blyton, adventure stories and so on.

It was not for free, had to pay Rp 100-200 per book (one cent?) yet I remember always going home with no less than ten books. I read alot when I was little, I guess.

Now, I have my own public library at my hometown. For free. I hope it can create great memories for the kids there too.

message 8: by Bill (new)

Bill | 70 comments My library has been expanded and completely renovated since I was a kid but I meet my nieces(3 and 5) there sometimes when my mom brings them. We go to the book sale room and we all get books. The only section they kept from the old library was the reference section so not a spot I spent any time in.

message 9: by David (new)

David H. (farrakut) | 709 comments I remember when I got my first library card and got my first books. It was a really fun routine for my father and me to go to the library every weekend and get a bunch of books.

I remember hanging out for a long time in the "kids' section," which had colored stickers on the books for the age groups. I felt really proud of myself for reading the Grades 7-8 books while younger than that, haha. That's where I discovered Jane Yolen's Pit Dragon Chronicles--a series that Yolen finally wrote a 4th book for just a few years ago after a 22-year break. That was a fun nostalgia trip to read through.

I was scared of the "adult fiction" section for a while--at least until I found that they had a separate section just for sci-fi & fantasy (I get annoyed at libraries that don't--I hate having to try to pick out the sword-and-laser-y books from between the romances, the historical romances, & the Christian romances.

And all the Star Trek books in the book-spinners! <3 <3 <3

I have no idea if that particular branch is still standing, my family moved away from that city about 20 years ago, so they will likely remain just fond memories for me.

My current city has a nice lil library--in walking distance!--so I'm looking forward to taking Future Kid there when they're old enough to enjoy it (right now, they're... negative 4 months old). Can't wait. :-)

message 10: by Mark (new)

Mark (mmtz) | 905 comments My earliest childhood public library memory is binging on the Dr. Doolittle series starting with The Story of Doctor Doolittle. As an adult, I gradually stopped visiting the library and started spending more time in second-hand bookstores. As an oldster, I hang out here and buy too many Kindle books on sale.

message 11: by Serendi (new)

Serendi | 755 comments David wrote: "so I'm looking forward to taking Future Kid there when they're old enough to enjoy it (right now, they're... negative 4 months old)."


message 12: by Nils (new)

Nils Krebber | 99 comments I got my first Lone Wolf Choose your own adventure Flight from the Dark from my library and was instantly hooked. I was deathly afraid of writing in it (there was a character sheet in there) and was somehow too dumb to realize I could just copy it.
Unfortunately, that library doesn't exist anymore, but the ones in my new chosen hometown are awesome. Both the physical spaces and their foray into electronic media with audiobooks and ebooks are excellent.

message 13: by Todd (last edited Aug 18, 2017 12:09AM) (new)

Todd | 28 comments I used to read the Danny Dunn books by Jay Willliams. Danny Dunn and the Homework Machine etc.
My school library had several books but the local Library had many more. This and the Tom Swift books by Victor Appleton are the seeds of my life long love of Science Fiction and Fantasy. I just tried looking them up but apparently Victor Appleton was a pseudonym. The ones that the library had were a new series where Tom has a robot named Aristotle. Anyone else seen this series?

message 14: by Joseph (new)

Joseph | 1842 comments I remember Danny Dunn! (Although I hadn't until I just now saw your comment ...)

I also read Tom Swift books, but they weren't from the library -- I think I was getting them from the Scholastic Book Club or some such. I don't remember exactly which ones I had, but I'm pretty sure that Tom Swift in the Caves of Nuclear Fire was one of them; at least, the ones I had were from that sequence.

message 15: by Iain (new)

Iain Bertram (Iain_Bertram) | 498 comments I remember the library I went to in Cheltenham, Vic, Oz.

I worked my way through every Asterix and Tintin book. Then tried to read every SF book they had in stock. A habit that has stayed with me over the years. Good days.

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