Libraries often emphasize the myriad resources available to patrons, proving the notion of a library as just a bunch of books and a shusshy librarian to be wildly inaccurate. We have a lot of ground to stand on there, with e-books, video and music streaming, extensive databases, and downloadable comic books, for goodness sakes; as well as diverse programs, public computers that come with helpful assistance, meeting rooms for all manner of community use, and the irreplaceability of the positive, kind human beings that librarians tend to be.
But, the beating heart of the library still truly is books. Books hold tremendous value in people’s lives, because they so beautifully contain and present the power of words. A book can unexpectedly change your entire frame of reference or concept of reality. This just happened to me, not even from reading a book, but from having passages of it read to me by my spouse. The book is called The Order of Time by Italian physicist Carlo Rovelli, and what has altered my perception profoundly is the premise that time passes more slowly at sea level than it does in the mountains—this has made me think about what time is, how it works, and what it means in ways I never had before. While it is a book on physics, it is most certainly a work of philosophy as well.
Many books have shifted the lives of the staff here at Elsie Quirk, and we invite you to check them out! Night by Eli and Marion Wiesel opened up empathy in a new way and ignited curiosity for one of our librarians, and When Rabbit Howls by Truddi Chase did the same for another. A passage in The Book Thief by Markus Zusak gave a reflective member of our staff a more urgent and appreciative perspective on life, while Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer inspired a new understanding of reciprocity in another. Our librarians found very practical life change in the books The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey and No Need for Speed by John Bingham. A member of our team found a transformation of her inclination to blame or judge through reading Return to Love by Marianne Williamson, while her coworker accidentally, almost unwillingly, became a forgiving person by reading The Book of Joy by the Dalai Lama, Desmond Tutu, and Douglas Abrams.
The children’s section has also been a meaningful source of life-altering books for some of us at Elsie Quirk, including The Thing About Jelly Fish, which gently suggests that we’re not as limited as our minds convince us; The Last of the Really Great Whangdoodles by Julie Andrews Edwards, which convinces us of the power of imagination and faith; and The Country Bunny and the Little Gold Shoes by DuBose Hayward, which affirms the value of hard work and a loving heart over arrogance and entitlement.
We are here to help you navigate all of the digital resources and amazing opportunities the Sarasota County Library System offers; but we will always also be here to share in the revelation and delight of books.
This week’s events:
- Spanish Study Group 10:15 a.m.
- Monday Night Movies 5 p.m. Our movie this week features Tom Hanks forlorn but resourceful, alone and shipwrecked.
- Master Gardener Plant Clinic 10 a.m. – Noon. Get free answers to your Florida gardening and landscaping questions. This is made possible through a partnership with UF/IFAS Extension Sarasota County.
- Teen DIY 5:30 – 6:30 p.m. For ages 11-18.
Thursday – Closed for Thanksgiving