May is the month we rediscovered the library. I went a few times when Theo was very little, to check out a few board books and to try out a few new cookbooks as well. I hadn’t been back as, to be honest, the board books had mixed success. Theo mostly just wanted to eat them at that stage, and I wasn’t too keen on that.
But we went back at the beginning of the month and it was a completely different experience. He loved walking around the children’s area and was very interested in some of the books. We read some there and then, which he seemed to enjoy, and then a class of children came in and he could not have been more fascinated by them. All in all, a pretty good time. We also took this book out, which he is actually obsessed with.
I may or may not have written about this before, but Theo’s only word (pretty much) right now is Duck. He loves ducks. He loves looking at them in the park, he loves his rubber ducks in his bath, and whenever there is a duck (or, to be frank, any kind of bird) in a book, he points at it and says ‘Duck!’. If it actually IS a duck, then I say ‘Yes! It’s a duck!’ and he gives himself a little round of applause. It’s pretty cute.
Anyway. The point of this rambling aside is that we were able to find a couple of books that featured ducks as their central characters, and he absolutely loves them. Quacky Quack Quack, which sadly I did not take a photo of before returning (but which we’ll definitely be taking out again), was his absolute favourite, and I think I’ve now read it to him approximately one thousand times since we took it out. I actually don’t even think that’s an exaggeration. It has a nice rhyme to it, with fun illustrations, so even though he always asks me to read it again immediately after we’ve reached the end, I’m generally quite happy to do so (to a point – I draw the line at three reads in a row).
Over the bank holiday, the children’s library had a makeover, and I’m so excited to spend time there with Theo over the summer – particularly if we get as many rainy days as we’ve had recently!
While we were there, I also took a book out for myself. I read Curtis Sittenfeld’s take on Pride & Prejudice (Eligible) for work, and absolutely loved it. I’d never read anything of hers before, despite having American Wife on my bookshelf for YEARS before I finally decided I was never going to read it, and giving it away. Since then, I’ve had endless recommendations for her, so that, combined with the fact that I loved Eligible, made me decide to read more books by her.
So it was a nice coincidence that as I was walking through the library, I saw Sisterland face-out on the shelf. I picked it up and put it to the top of my reading pile (because the thing about library books is: you have a due date!). It was not at all what I expected (about a pair of psychic twins in Middle America – one of whom has made a living out of her ‘senses’ and one who has tried with everything she has to suppress them), but perhaps unsurprisingly, I really loved it.
Have you read any of her books? I’m not sure if they have any more, but if they do I’ll be getting another out from the library on our next visit. I know that this is so obvious, I used to use them all the time when I was a kind and I work in publishing, for God’s sake, I know about libraries, but it’s really great to be a member of one again. I like just going in and seeing what they’ve got in, and it’s also nice to know that I’m not buying more books (my plan is to only buy books for my shelf if I really, really love them or if they are particularly beautiful to look at and keep – otherwise I’ll be overrun again. I know that I can’t walk into a Waterstones without coming out with a book, so this plan is doomed to failure, but I’m okay with that).