On Saturday the Book Bingo initiative I set up for my local community library came to an end after 6 months. There was an event at the library (unfortunately I couldn’t be there) and there was a prize draw for a completed card. Was my card one of those up for the prize, I hear you ask? Well, judge for yourself……………..
Yes I did it! Completing the card just two days before the closing date. It was a tough challenge but I was determined to polish off those 24 relevant books. When I set it up, I actually didn’t think anyone would complete it. The intention was to get library users talking about books and the volunteers who work in the library talking about books and that certainly happened. It was also intended as a fund raiser with people paying to enter- getting the money off them right from the start meant financially it didn’t matter whether they finished or not. However, 16 people managed the twenty-four book tally and all were appreciative that they had read outside of their usual reading comfort zone and it had introduced them to new authors and new genres. There were also a number of people at the draw who hadn’t quite finished in time to be included but were determined that they were going to finish and complete all the squares. It does look like it is going to be an annual event.
I didn’t win the cash prize. That went to a lady called Janet, who is one of the library’s regular book borrowers. She told me she had struggled with poetry and a book published before 1900 as she had got used to not reading from either categories but that she had found the whole experience rewarding. (Financially so too, in her case!)
In my update last month I still had five squares to cover. So what were the five books that enabled me to complete my card? The second square in the second row said “From the library’s historical section”. I went slightly off-piste with this with a book called “Being Elizabeth Bennet” by Emma Campbell Webster which was a Create Your Own Adventure book with a Jane Austen theme. It was certainly not something I would have normally chosen from the historical section and my review of it will follow in due course. On the third row I had the two squares to complete the first being Recommended by someone else. My partner needed to read a biography for his card which he enjoyed a lot and recommended to me. It was actually my book and had been unread on my shelves for too long so I was delighted to get that recommendation. The book was “Margaret Rutherford: Dreadnought with Good Manners by Andy Merriman. My review for this book can be found here.
Next to that square was “Bought From The Library For Sale Books” and I went for a World Book Night title from 2014 “Confessions Of A GP” by Dr Benjamin Daniels. This was another non-fiction choice and my review of it will follow soon. As will the book for the second square in the fourth row. “From the Chick-Lit Racks”. I chose an author I had read and enjoyed before, Fern Britton, and the suitably summery “A Seaside Affair”. The book I was determined to get through as the closing date hurtled towards me was from the “Book Published Before 1900” category. Now, I do read a fair number of classics, so not sure why I left that until last. I had a free copy of Anthony Trollope’s “Dr Thorne” on my Kindle. I had read his two previous Barsetshire Chronicles and seen the recent TV adaptation so thought it would be a quick read. As it was on the Kindle I didn’t actually know until I started how long it was and when I discovered that it is actually quite a sizeable tome it was too late – I had started and had to finish it. I’ll review this alongside the previous two books in the series “The Warden and “Barchester Towers” soon.
So that’s it. Six months and twenty four books. I have read more than that obviously ( a quick count-up suggests 43 in the period) but it was choosing the books to fill the squares that intensified the challenge. I did certainly read books and authors that I wouldn’t have automatically chosen. I did use the library more too. But now….I’ve got to get cracking. There’s the Man Booker longlist to get through……………………………..