Covert Library Ops…
The notice came in from one of my strategically placed scouts on the west side of town. There was a tempting book in the Little Free Library on the walking trail along the drainage ditch that runs behind the big church. Despite scant details, it sounded like a promising tip, but who knew how long it would be before some other fan of historical true crime sagas might snag it. As I planned my strategy, the knot of nerves in my stomach gradually drew tighter.
The weather forecast was stormy, but my opportunities were few, so as I headed home from work – armed with my waterproof bibliosatchel – I made my move. Quietly pedaling my way through the unsuspecting neighborhoods, I found the trail, overgrown with the vigorous weeds of summer. After several twists and turns, ignoring the roar of a nearby lawnmower and concealing my intentions from the boys playing on the path, I found it. As far as I could tell the library and the bench adjacent to it were completely unoccupied.
Casually leaning my bike up against a light pole, I gently opened the library door and peeked inside. There it was, buried under all the usual Dan Brown and Janet Evanovich paperbacks. A Serial Killer In Nazi Berlin – written by Harvard educated lawyer Scott Andrew Selby – tells the true story of madman Paul Ogorzow, who terrorized the women of Berlin during World War II. Despite the depressing premise, it looked like a promising read, so I stuffed it in my bag. In its place, I left behind a book that I hoped might lighten the mood a bit, The Days Are Gods, a memoir by a writer who moves from Los Angeles to a small town in northern Utah.
As I made an inconspicuous getaway, I reflected on the fact that even the smallest Little Free Library contains a vast world within it, spanning time and space and transporting readers to places as different as Nazi Germany and Mormon Utah. Open to everyone all the time – check out the many worlds inside the Little Free Libraries near you!