What Libraries Mean to Me by Sabrina A. Fish

Jul 12, 2016 by

In this blog post, author Sabrina A. Fish gives us a very personal and poignant tale of the importance of the library in her early life.

Don’t forget, the Friends of the Library Book Store Sale is going on now until July 16th, so don’t miss out! Everything in the store is half price!

 

What Libraries Mean to Me

By Sabrina A. Fish

The little girl clutched her mother’s hand, her wide eyes scanning the shelves of books that towered around her.  She wanted to open every one and see what kind of adventure it held. Surely this giant building must hold all the books in the whole world. She tugged on her mother’s hand.

Her mother glanced down with a tired smile. “What do you think, sweetie?”

“Are we allowed to touch them?” she whispered.

Her mother got that sparkle in her eye the little girl didn’t see so often since her dad had packed all of his stuff in boxes and stopped coming home. “Not only can we touch them,” her mother said, bending close to the little girl’s ear. “But we can also take them home for a few days.”

The little girl studied her mother’s face, checking for any tightness around her eyes or mouth. Sometimes her mom loved her too much. Last night, she’d overheard her mother telling her Aunt Sara that giving up dinner was a small price to pay so the little girl could have new shoes. Her mom’s face had been tight when she’d encouraged the little girl to pick out the pair of new shoes she needed for school. Her face was always tight when things cost money. The little girl loved books more than anything in the world, but she didn’t want them if it meant her mother had to spend more money.

“I don’t mind re-reading my old books at home, momma.”

The sparkle dimmed as her mother’s eyes grew sad. She got to her knees and pulled a small plastic card from her purse. “This building full of books is called a library. In here, all the books are free for you to borrow as long as you have one of these.”

The little girl took the card and turned it over in her hand. Then she looked around at the shelves of books. So many adventures. She couldn’t wait to read every one of them.

A smile stretched across her face. “How many can I borrow at a time?”

***

So many children in this world live in a family with a parent (or parents) who can’t afford books. I was one of those children. If it hadn’t been for my small town library, that I was sure must hold all the books in the world, I wouldn’t have the appreciation for reading that I do. I wouldn’t have discovered authors like C.S. Lewis, Lewis Carroll, E.B. White, Francis Hodgson Burnett, and Mark Twain. I wouldn’t have dared to imagine a world outside of my small town. I might not have had the capacity to dream for a better life.

This is why libraries are so important, even in today’s digital age. They give underprivileged children access to worlds beyond their imagination. Thanks to books from my small town public library, I learned about taking chances, perseverance, and having courage. These lessons pushed me to take a chance on my dream to be a published author, persevere while writing my own books, and gain the courage to show them to the world.

This is why libraries are so important to me.

 

Sabrina A. Fish is the author of three Shine novellas, Lost Haven, Road to Nowhere and The Gilded Cage. She lives in Oklahoma with her husband and son. She is the owner of a thriving trophy company with her husband where she collects interesting names to use in her writing from lists of award recipients. When she isn’t making trophies or writing, she is mommy to a beautiful little boy. You can learn more about Sabrina at www.SabrinaAFish.com or find her on Twitter and Instagram @SabrinaAFish, on Goodreads, and Facebook  www.Facebook.com/AuthorSabrinaAFish

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