Bookstr Team Reminisces: Nostalgic Experiences with the Library

What memories at the library do you hold sacred? The Bookstr Team discusses our most cherished memories of our times spent at the library.

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An open book with flashes and sparks of light emitting from it. The book is sitting on a wooden desk with a candle in a candleholder sitting beside it. The scene has a magical, fantastical feel to it.

The library is a sacred place that many of us hold dear. Some of our fondest memories were of spending time there with our parents and grandparents, friends, and siblings. We found our first movie love and helped shape the minds and imaginations of younger people. We spent hours after school reading, chatting, and diving into the manga section for new and classic reads. To many of us book lovers, the library was, and still is, our home away from home as well as our world of discovery. And these discoveries have now become our dearest recollections wrapped in nostalgia.

Read below to peek inside our memory vaults, as the Bookstr team shares their most treasured experiences with the library.

Core Memories with Papa

An open book sits on a table with light and purple and gold mist emitting from it.

Our local library was near the opening of the village park. My papa was a reader, and he and I would go up to the library every few weeks. Once we browsed and got our hauls to the car, we would walk behind the building to the pond that always had ducks and geese swimming and feed them bread and lettuce. We would sit there talking about what we picked up, and he would always have some historical fiction or nonfiction — it’s where I get my love of history and constant need to learn — and I would have fantasy and horror books. He passed away when I was 10, but I’ll always cherish those memories and think fondly of the library.

Kristi Eskew, Editorial

Coraline Private Movie Theater Experience

An open book surrounded by papers and books stacked neatly on either side of the book. Sparkly mist emits from the open book. A blur of books on shelves sit in the background.

(This is still one of my favorite childhood memories to this day) My local library puts on a lot of events for kids in town, and I loved going to them when I was younger. One day, my dad told me the library was showing a kid’s horror movie called Coraline that had recently come out at the time. I was not too pushed on going, but dad encouraged me and said there might be other kids my age to play with.

When I got there, I was the only kid. After waiting a while, nobody else showed, so the librarians put on the movie just for me. They gave me candy, popcorn, and fluffy blankets, and they let me build a huge fort before the movie started. The movie was a life-changing experience; it is still one of my favorite movies of all time. Overall, this was the best trip I have ever had to the library. I got a private viewing of one of my favorite movies with free sweets, all while watching in a pillow/blanket fort. When I type it out, it sounds lame. But trust me, nine-year-old Erin was having the time of her life.

Erin Ewald, Editorial

Bonding and Making Friends

An open book surrounded by blurs of colorful sparkles. One of the pages of the book is lifted up. A white runner sits in front of the book.

I was definitely the only bookworm in my group of friends, and we would hang out at the school library every morning before class. They were only there because I was there, but I would be walking up and down the aisles instead of sitting at the table that they were at. I was always on the hunt for books that I searched in the catalog during class, but from time to time, a friend or two would come to seek me out. You would think that it would be bothersome, but it truly wasn’t.

Between the shelves of books, it was like our own bubble to talk about anything on their minds, whether it was serious or not. It got to the point that friends outside of my main friend group would randomly make a stop at those book aisles to say hi and talk. It was pretty similar to a therapy session for them, which I cherished because it was the time to be vulnerable and open. I even ended up making a best friend from that little haven, and to this day, we still update each other on life and books nine years later.

Jaiden Cruz, Graphics

Library Day with my Aunt and Grandpa

An open book with yellow light and sparkles emitting from sits on a wooden table. A green cup of cocoa sits beside the book. Hands of a young girl holds the book at the edges. A blur of her hair and white sweater serves as the background.

I just remember being a kid and every few weeks or so, my Grandpa would drive me, my aunt, and my brother to the library. I can’t quite remember what she would get, probably James Patterson or books like his, and then she’d set me and my brother loose. I think we would usually make a beeline towards the science books; he’d get books about space, while I got books about tornadoes and other natural disasters. But I’d also scour the shelves for any Rainbow Magic books (by Daisy Meadows) so I could continue my quest to find all the hidden letters, unscramble them, and make a word. Even though I can’t say I read a whole lot then, that memory is so precious to me since it both got me excited to go to the library also because that aunt passed away years ago, and it just serves as a nice reminder of her and one of her favorite hobbies.

Ashley Lewis, Editorial

Sunday Mornings at the Library

An open book with a golden flame dancing up from the book's pages. Golden strings swirl around the flame and open book. Gold sparkles twinkle around the book. Gold light emits from the book in a number of rays. The background is dark against the light, sparkles, and flame. Pages lift up from the book on the left and right side.

As kids, my sister and I were voracious readers, so my mom would take us to our local library every Sunday morning as a treat. We could spend hours at a time perusing the shelves and choosing the perfect book. Sometimes, we would also pick out a VHS tape or DVD, but the books were always most alluring to us. Afterward, we would go home and spend the rest of the day cuddled up with our books. When we were finished, we would trade, and then we’d eagerly await our next library trip!

Lauren Nee, Editorial

Class Trips to the Library

An open book with a white ball of light shimmers from the middle of the pages. Gold-orange bubble shapes float up from the book. Gold sparkles surround the book. The background is a cluster of black and grey plumes.

In first grade and second grade, my school would occasionally take trips to the local library. The library was next to a beautiful garden, and sometimes, we would stop and take time to look at all of the flowers. When we got to the library, we would go straight to the children’s section and marvel at all of the toys and games around. There was one big bean bag giraffe chair that we would take turns sitting in.

After looking through the kids section, we would separate into groups and browse the rest of the library. I remember always being drawn to the fantasy books section, and I would spend hours reading the backs of books and admiring all of the intricate cover designs. From a young age, I found the library a comforting space, and taking class trips to it became the highlight of my day.

Pluma Haarstad, Editorial

Summers at the Library

An open book with white smoke emitting from the pages. Written characters surround the book. Mists of gold-white spray from the book. The background is dark and mystical.

I would always look forward to summers at the library when I was young because my local library had a summer reading program for kids. At the beginning of June, I would head to the library to pick up my reading log. The reading log was a sheet of paper with a string of shapes snaking down it. When one completed a book or read for a certain amount of time, they would be able to fill in a shape with whatever color they desired. What I remember most is the joy of myself and the other children around me when we gathered at the library to pick up our reading logs, as well as the colorful reading logs at the end of the challenge. The action of gathering at the library as a community and coming together to celebrate books really exemplifies the joy of reading for me.

Julia Lie, Graphics

After School Days — Drinking Coffee and Reading Manga

An open book with colorful butterflies, green leaves, and white and purple flowers emitting from the pages. Pages flipping. The book sits on a wooden table. Rays of light and small white sparkles emit from the pages. The fantastical scene of the book is set against a green background.

Me and my friends were huge manga nerds, so almost every day we would ride the public bus to the downtown library that was next to the bus station. We’d stop at an Asian convenience store and get warm steamed meat buns, then walk to get coffee at the library cafe, sit in the library and read manga, and just hang out in the library for several hours. I checked out a lot of manga and art how-to books since I’m an artist who loves to draw, and I love learning new skills and tricks. Sometimes, we’d even rent out movies. It was just a good time to look back on. It’s one small nostalgic moment in my life for me when life was simple. :)

Talya Golian, Graphics

My Family at the Library

An open book sits on top of other books that are closed. The books sit on a grassy surface. Blurs of light swirl around the books. Blurs of indescribable red shapes make up the background.

When I was little, I had a hard time with social interactions. But my mom would always take me to the library whenever we had time. We would spend time picking out books, and she would always give me the space to read. My sibling also loved to read the manga in the library, so we would spend hours reading and talking about our favorite comics or manga from the library. Looking back, those moments at the library were precious and now, going to the library means I get to spend time with family.

Alison Mah, Video Editor

Library Days with My Oldest Nephew When He was a Child

An open book with a whimsical scene of trees, a red roofed house, and a grassy yard making up the pages of the book. The book sits on a tree stump. Yellow light shines down on the right side where the house sits.

One of my warmest memories was taking my oldest nephew to the library when he was a child. I used to care for him while my sister worked, and it was always fun taking him. He was so inquisitive and loved to read and pick out his own books for me to read to him. We would take the bus to the library almost every weekend, and I would tell him to just go crazy and pick the books he liked. We would also get his sleep time music as well. His favorite to listen to? Mozart!

It was interesting watching this little person choose what he liked and be steadfast in those choices. I loved seeing what he wanted to check out and bring home. As he grew up, he swapped the music out for video games, but he made sure to get his books and add them to his little temporary library at home. He’s much older now, but I do hope he remembers these times as he thinks back on his childhood. And I hope those trips made an impact on him as they have made on me.

Quiarah B / Vphan, Editorial

For more Boostr team sweet memory takes, click here.

Be sure to check out our wide variety of bookshelves here, especially our A Young Reader’s Escape into Fantasy and Sci-Fi shelf, for more Coraline and other children’s fantasy stories.