Thursday, February 5, 2015

What's the last thing you borrowed from the library?

As we're celebrating National Libraries Day this week, I thought it would be fun to ask my Facebook friends and fellow authors: What was the last thing you borrowed from the library? It could be a book (of course), or a DVD or CD. It could be "internet time".

I think there's sometimes a perception that people don't use libraries any more, because of internet access and other resources. I don't agree with that; I blogged earlier today about the way that local libraries have helped me to integrate into the community in every new place I have called home. So I was delighted to hear from so many friends and colleagues that they are actively using libraries, and fascinated to hear what their most recent loans had been.

Here's what they said!

 Emma Pass, author (pictured left): Pea's Book of Best Friends by Susie Day, and the DVD of Schindler's List.

K.A. Laity, academic and author: Double Indemnity DVD to show my students next week. From local library, The Black Count by Tom Reiss about Dumas' father and a 2-in-1 pair of Margaret Millar novels. I'd actually started reading The Black Count from Dundee Central Library, but had to leave before I could finish.

Splendibird, blogger and reviewer for Mountains of InsteadInto Thin Air by Jon Krakauer. Not usually a non fiction reader but was up until the wee small hours reading this. Brilliantly compelling.

Savita Kalhan, author: The Sterkarm Handshake by Susan Price because I wanted to reread it.

Mary Mayfield, blogger: Mad About the Boy by Helen Fielding - I read it a few months ago so for my Teen this time. The new system at our library allows the librarian to say "You know you've already read this?", as if no one would ever read the same book twice!

 Sally Nicholls, author (pictured left): Um ... the last book I borrowed from the library is a bit more revealing than I think I want to be (nothing rude before you all get excited!).
Last books before that were the Complete Works of Saki and The Regeneration Trilogy by Pat Barker.

Kate Kelly, author: Not counting the books I borrow on behalf of my kids - the last thing I borrowed for me was a book all about the development of Radar during WW2, written by one of the Scientists. Echoes of War by Sir Bernard Lovell.  I had to get them to order it up from another library for me.

Dawn Kurtagich, author: My last one was Just Ask Alice I think!

Bryony Pearce, author: I'm always borrowing new YA from my library - they're really great at getting in anything I ask for, so my library has a well stocked YA section now!

 Roy Gill, author (pictured left): Four different books on the life and work of Alan Turing - research for something I was writing at the time.

Nikki Sheehan, author: Reality Boy. But I go in there to work as well, and Brighton Library does great coffee!

Alex Campbell, author: Just borrowed - Only Ever Yours by Louise O'Neill. And was also there researching yesterday for Bk3. Love my library.

Sarah Naughton, author: The Inbetweeners 2 and The End of Mr Y by Scarlett Thomas. Both excellent, but at somewhat differing ends of the intellectual spectrum.

Janet Edwards, author: My last thing at the library was the last readers' circle.

Helen Douglas, author: I've just taken out With Your Crooked Heart by Helen Dunmore and The London Eye Mystery by Siobhan Dowd.

 Luisa Plaja, author (pictured left): The last book I borrowed was the graphic memoir Fun Home by Alison Bechdel.

Zoe Marriott, author: The last thing I borrowed was The Pale Horse by Agatha Christie. Little though most people realise it, I am a huge whodunnit fiend, and have read (and re-read) everything Christie ever wrote, including all the short stories. But if I actually attempted to *own* AG's vast backlist I'd probably need to move myself of my house to make room for them all. So when I feel the need for Poirot or Marple (or any of her other, lesser known sleuths) I head to the library, because there's not a library in Britain that doesn't have a full shelf of her books.

As for me, my last trip to the library was to consult the huge collection of old copies of the Strathearn Herald for Crieff Remembers, a commemoration of the effects of World War One on the town, scheduled to take place in 1917. Because libraries aren't just about books; it's where our history is.

What's the last thing you borrowed from your local library? I'd love to know! 


  1. ...and now, as I do, I'll make a long list of everything everyone's mentioned above and go on a library raid - but not till next Wednesday as that's the only day they open all day.

  2. Love this post! I checked out a large stack of books for my boys and Code Name Verity and Rose Under Fire by Elizabeth Wein :)

  3. The fresh vegan kitchen. Not tried anything out yet, though!