One librarian jumped up and down with joy when she heard that her library would be included in our book, Heart of the Community: The Libraries We Love. And all over the country there are people rejoicing that others will be able to see the library they love. It was very difficult to pick the 80 to be included from an amazing array of submissions, and the job was even more difficult when it came to choosing Massachusetts libraries. We had four submissions from Berkshire County alone, and had to get help from our advisory board to make the selection. We chose the North Adams Public Library, and you can feel their excitement in this article from the North Adams Transcript.
The sample chapter we developed to show libraries what we were looking for (see it at LibrariesWeLove.org) is about our own town library. Mason Library is a beautiful building, and the photo my son Tom took of the interior couldn’t be more lovely, or more evocative of the kind of public place we’ll be celebrating in the book. Ironically, though, the Mason Library has a PR problem; a number of people told us emphatically that we should not include it in the book because the librarians are so unhelpful. Heart of the Community: The Libraries We Love will celebrate beautiful buildings, old and new, but much more important will be our celebration of the environment, service, and spirit that makes these great public libraries so vital to their communities.