Libraries and Reading Love: Neil Gaiman Lecture

Image by moriza. Retrieved from Flickr. Used under Creative Commons' licensing.
Image by moriza. Retrieved from Flickr. Used under Creative Commons’ licensing.

If you love libraries, books and reading, you are in for a real treat! As I read the text of a  recent lecture by British author Neil Gaiman, I fell in love all over again with these worlds. The funding, politics, and expectations  in library land can feel brutal at times, and far from the love relationship many of us feel with books and the world of books and reading.  Lectures like this are a treat, a reminder, a breath of fresh air.  Gaiman’s talk reminded me of what initially caused me to want to be a librarian. He  talks about fiction as having two uses. First, he describes fiction as  being the “gateway drug to reading”, which is endearing. He goes on to describe how reading fiction also builds empathy, which helps us function as more than self-obsessed individuals. The first time I experienced total escapism, I was hooked for life! Throughout this piece, Gaiman brings home the important  role of libraries and librarians too. Not a short read, definitely not a sound bite, but an absolute must read!