CHECK THIS OUT: Love and e-Readers

Anne DeGrace on downloading new literary relationships

By Anne DeGrace

When we loaded e-Readers with popular titles — so folks could check out a mittful of great books, no downloading required — we had a great time choosing great eBooks for our Sony and Kobo collection. Nobody was more heartbroken than we were when our Romance eReader eloped with a jealous individual who clearly wanted this new flame all to themselves.

We lured a new eReader into our collection with promises and roses, and now you can check out We’ll Always Have Paris along with five other novels set to make you swoon. This eReader now nestles behind the circ desk with the other eReaders when it’s not checked out, shacking up as it were with Fantasy, Science Fiction, Nonfiction, Canadian Fiction, and Mystery eReaders. If the library suddenly begins offering cross-genre lendables, you’ll know why.

Librarians enjoy a daily love affair with books, and the same could be said for many of our members. Bibliophiles get bubbly when faced with so much choice: it’s a little like the dating website Plenty of Fish, except that it’s way easier to break up if the plot drags after chapter four, plus you can have affairs with several books at the same time and nobody minds.

Serious booklovers might be meeting up with their next great read online: downloading a new literary relationship through Overdrive — an eBook for the quiet types, or an eAudiobook when it’s nice to have someone around who can really hold up their end of the conversation.

At the same time there could be three or four physical copies — perhaps a biography, a whodunit, and a Large Print for the wee hours, when eyes are getting tired — piled up on the bedside table just waiting to be invited in, while in the living room a movie or two waits for that champagne pop so you can snuggle up together on the couch. Nobody gets jealous, because everyone knows there is nothing more polyamorous than a bibliophile.

We want folks to have a love affair with their library, whether that means strumming a Who Do You Love on a red ukulele (or any of our other nine colours you can borrow) or dining out with a bunch of potential friends at our New To Nelson Potluck on Friday, Feb. 22 (the last Friday of each month).

People love book clubs, and so we have the Family Book Club for kids 9 to 13 (and their grown-ups) on Saturday, Feb. 23, the Mother-Daughter Book Club for Teens on Tuesday Feb. 26, and we host the Kootenay Co-op Book Club on Thursday, Feb. 21. Call the library or check our website to find out more.

There’s a lot to love online, too: Gale Course offers free courses on many topics — including Marriage and Relationships: Keys to Success, or Romance Writing (because that way, you’ll always get the ending you want).

IndieFlix offers free streaming independent movies from all over the world, so you can be wooed in Spanish (with subtitles, if necessary).

And Pronunciator can help you say “I love you” in 80 different languages. Jeg elsker dig! Saya cinta kamu! Seni seviyorum! Pronunciator also offers live instructors for select languages for that slightly more intimate experience.

It’s easy to see Valentine’s Day as another Hallmark Holiday, and all those sappy hearts can be an irritant to some of us — and we get it. That’s why, at the library, the love affair goes on all year. You don’t need to whisper sweet nothings into the ear of your next great biblioRomance: you just need to open the first page and let enchantment take hold.

Anne DeGrace is the adult services coordinator at the Nelson Public Library. Check This Out runs every other week. For more info on library programs go to nelsonlibrary.ca.

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