Library Haul


Thanks to my good friend Jill (and her oh-so-great list of Something Good that she publishes every Monday, that has so much good overflowing I can never read all of it), I discovered Justine’s blog Allowing Myself and a recurring feature called Library Haul. You know how wonderful it feels when you discover someone else who does something you love that you thought maybe only you do? That’s how I felt when I read this:

“I know, it’s a large haul this time (don’t judge). I bet I won’t even read 3 of these before they’re due back, but it’s such a comfort to pile books into my bag a drag them home to leaf through when I’m feeling untethered.”

Last Saturday some things weren’t going well, but it was a sunny afternoon and I got Cane to go to the library with me, where he sat and Facebookered while I just wandered though the stacks, one of my happiest places to be.

As you can probably guess, I was focusing on work more than my own pleasure, but honestly, it’s all pleasure. How cool is it that I have a job that requires me to read kid lit? (Really dang cool, that’s how cool.) Like Justine, I know when I’m checking the books out that I likely won’t read half of them. It’s the journey, not the destination. And the joy of the hunt.


This is one I am reading. It is so, so good. A graphic novel great for any tween girl who’s got a dream–and it’s set in Portland. And I saw the Rose City Rollers just last spring! Highly recommend.

So, are Justine and I the only ones? Any of you library haulers? Why? And what kinds of books do you get? And please let me know what you’re reading…I’d love some new suggestions. Haven’t been able to hook into anything since I finished All the Light We Cannot See. Such a great book…

12 thoughts on “Library Haul

  1. Marian says:

    I am a just a “bit” of a library hauler, and it seems to go with my mood: if I’m feeling overwhelmed (at home/with life) I manage to stop myself from bringing books home, because bringing big hauls home often makes me more jittery (“so much good stuff to read/do and so little time…!”).

    I tend to go to the library with my 10 year-old, so it seems I’m always on the look-out for books for him, rather than for me (although I do sometimes find stuff for me in the children’s section too: I selected Neil Gaiman’s The Graveyard Book this summer, not because I had any hope he would want to read it, but because I wanted to read it; similarly, The Giver is now sitting here beside me, an impulse selection I made the other day because I want to “finally” read it, even though I have another book on the go right now, and a list a mile long). I did, just the other day, pop in to the library on my own (we have a small branch library just beside the elementary school and I wandered there when there weren’t very many books to shelve in my voluntary job at the school library) and I picked up two knitting books: 50 Knitted Gifts for Year-Round Giving, and Charmed Knits (the Harry Potter knitting book). Now that I really stop to consider it, crafty or gardening books tend to be my major “impulse” library selections; books I know I wouldn’t ever buy, I suppose, but ones I think might have value for quick hits of inspiration or know-how.

    I read The Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert last year, and I love love loved it…the writing, the epic story, the characters… If I had to have a list of five favourite books, it would be one of them. I’m guessing you couldn’t get into Life After Life?
    Marian recently posted…A Heart of Eggs, Food Waste, and “Mom, My Friends Think It’s Funny…”My Profile

    • Rita says:

      Oh, the crafty books are my favorite kinds of library hauls. You’re right: They are books I’d never buy. And maybe my library hauls are my way of getting a shot of shopping endorphins, without having the depleted bank account hangover. If so, I’m OK with that!

      I love getting a pile of crafting/home books just to look at all the photos. I rarely do a project from them (although every once in a while I do), but they do get me inspired. You can see there are several sewing books in my haul. I paged through one yesterday afternoon before drifting off into a nap. There isn’t much I enjoy more than that. 🙂

      I forgot about Life After Life–thanks for the reminder! I did try The Signature of All Things. I thought I’d love it. I liked it, but for some reason I didn’t get into it enough…

    • Rita says:

      It’s making me happy, too. This afternoon I read the books by Lagercrantz. I think your younger daughter might really love these–even though I don’t know her. The main character is a sweet girl struggling with some hard things, but finding the happy that’s still all around her. I’m not going to capture them here, but they are just so quietly good. I would have loved them when I was in first grade or so.

  2. Jill Salahub says:

    Yay! I love that you found Justine’s site. I have two kinds of churches: trails and libraries. When I go to the library, which isn’t as often anymore, I bring home WAY more than I could possibly read, and usually return it late. xo
    Jill Salahub recently posted…Something GoodMy Profile

    • Rita says:

      Ditto on the trails and libraries. Schools sometimes are for me, too. And I always return late. Me the librarian. I tell myself the cost is nothing compared to how much I would spend to own all those books. Though my mother did joke that she spent so much on my library fines in college that they should build a new wing and name it after me. 🙂

  3. Kate says:

    I am NOT a library haul person when it comes to fiction -because once I have them checked out I just need to READ them. Since reading 4-7 books in two weeks while managing a household gets hard (and watching all that TV/knitting) I tend to try and limit myself to 1-2 fiction books a trip. But like Marian and you were talking about above, I LOVE to haul crafting (knitting, sewing) or home (organizing, gardening, decorating, DIY) books because I don’t ever READ those – I just flip. I have been known to actually purchase books in that category after borrowing them from the library because I find a pattern/project I just NEED to do someday but don’t have time to do NOW.
    Kate recently posted…things i’m watchingMy Profile

    • Rita says:

      I love that they have those books in the library, because I usually wouldn’t want to purchase them. I was at the fabric store on Monday, and there were several beautiful sewing books I wanted to buy, but I took photos with my phone so I could see if they are at the library instead. One I might have to go back for, though. Because it did have projects I want to do. And might. Trying to do more projects and buy less stuff to do projects. As my daughter would say, “The struggle is real.”

  4. Sarah says:

    “I was focusing on work more than my own pleasure, but honestly, it’s all pleasure. How cool is it that I have a job that requires me to read kid lit? (Really dang cool, that’s how cool.)” — This all sounds SO different from the stuff about writing, careers, and callings that you were struggling with a few months ago, and it’s really great to hear you talk this way.

    Most of my library hauls are cookbook related. And then I proceed to read them pretty much cover to cover, like fiction. But I don’t seem to be much good at reading actual fiction lately! I keep getting halfway through novels that I’m genuinely enjoying, and then putting them down and not finishing them, for reasons I don’t understand. Hm.
    Sarah recently posted…My wardrobe this season: Fall 2015My Profile

    • Rita says:

      I do the same thing with fiction. When I was younger, it was so easy for me to get pulled into a fictional world. I love it when that happens again, but it doesn’t happen like it used to. Like you, I can’t really figure out why. Pleasant enough doesn’t enthrall me, and I think because I’m so busy, if I’m not enthralled it doesn’t get finished.

      Cookbooks are one genre I really don’t read. I’m not much of a cook, or eater for that matter. When one of my kids asked me what superpower I would have if I could have any, I might have said it would be to never need to eat. Or sleep. One of those–which is horrible because both sleeping and eating can be so pleasurable!

      I’m still dealing with career challenges, but that Cal Newport book gave me a breakthrough. It provided a different lens through which to view past experience and find a way forward that makes sense. But in spite of angst and struggle, I have always loved the part of my job that involves reading kid lit. I’ve always made that part of my job, even when I was teaching.

  5. May says:

    Went to our Friends of the Library sale about a month ago and am working my way through the grocery sack of books I picked up for $5. Finished a novel last night that was so so so good….Midwives by Chris Bohhalian. Smart and engaging.
    May recently posted…Mèredays: Autumn GlowMy Profile

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