A recent article in The Boston Globe describes a prep school library that has eliminated all of its books and gone completely virtual–well almost, they’ve saved a very tiny amount of their collection. Say it “ain’t” so! While I am a huge proponent of ebooks and electronic databases as authoritative sources of current information, nothing can replace the excitement of a “real” novel that you can hold in your hands and curl up with in front of a roaring fire or drag to the ocean’s edge at the beachwithout fear of sun, water, or sand. Yes, I have a Kindle, and I also love listening to books on my iPod as I drive in my car. But I know that not all of my students have access to these technologies, and libraries provide delightful, age-appropriate books that our students love to read for FREE. And even though I adore my Kindle and iPod, I frequently find myself thinking that I want to flip back to review a previously-read passage, which, while possible, is not as simple a task as it is with a “real” book. In this era of economic uncertainty, the free services provided by public and school libraries are now more important than ever.
Thanks to fabulous teen author Lisa Yee for giving the heads up on this article, and thanks to all those who support authors and libraries.