I’m a big supporter of public libraries. They fill a critical role in the community, and open up the world to every comer without discrimination. But when I recently heard reports about live bedbugs found crawling out of library books, I reflected on the informal – and completely bug-free – book-lending system that goes on in my social circle. (Actually, first I retched, then I reflected.)
See, I have four or five friends whose literary tastes and mine happen to be listed on the same menu. We have made a habit of circulating our own books to each other over the years: “You will love this story.” “Here’s a must-read.” “Let me know what you think of this one.”
You can probably relate to this. I know you enjoy reading, or you wouldn’t be here. So maybe you agree that lending a book is a pretty great deed. Think about it: Just by handing over a slim packet of leaves to another person, you’re passing on hours of entertainment, mystery, education, laughter. Yummy! In fact, the book I’m reading right now (The Shadow of the Wind by Spanish writer Carlos Ruiz Zafón, in case you’re curious) is in my hands only because a pal thought I would probably enjoy it. I am.
Here’s another way good deeds and literature intersect: My friend Dwayne, a man of many talents – raising toddler twins isn’t the least of them – is giving away a book he wrote, absolutely free. It’s a fairy tale for adults. Intrigued? I was, especially when Dwayne told me this blog was part of the reason he decided to share his story without cost (he was also inspired by the selflessness theme in his philosophical book). You can download it here – and check out his beautiful paintings while you’re wandering around his websites.