Little Free Libraries bring neighbors together through books

Thursday, January 22, 2015
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Little Free Libraries - hand-built boxes where neighbors can trade books for free - are popping up across the globe. The movement's mission is to promote love of reading and literacy.

GLENDALE, Calif. (KABC) -- It's called a Little Free Library and the idea is simple: "It's free. You come take a book, if you want one, leave a book, if you want one," said Sherry St. Pierre of Glendale.

Little Free Libraries are popping up not only across the country, but the globe.

"It's worldwide, and I see more and more of them as I drive through neighborhoods," said Glendale City Councilwoman Laura Friedman. "Individuals put them in front of their houses and offer them to their neighbors."

Glendale has five city-sponsored Little Free Libraries, including one outside Glendale City Hall.

"This is a great program that brings the library out of the buildings and into the streets and into people's neighborhoods," Friedman said.

The movement's mission is to promote love of reading and literacy by building free book exchanges worldwide.

"I thought it would be great if our library could support this program and continue it because it really promotes literacy and community," said Glendale librarian Keith Kesler.

Even in this digital age, there is something about opening a good book that people really love and this program capitalizes on that.

"My husband has two Kindles, but he wants to feel the book," St. Pierre said.

With that in mind, she set up a Little Free Library in her front yard for her husband a few years ago.

"The hope is to share a joy of reading," St. Pierre said.

It's a way to bring reading to neighborhoods, allowing anyone to find free books in unexpected places.

"I get excited. I love that someone has come and used it. That's the point. Please use it," St. Pierre said.