Thursday, March 08, 2007

Booking Through Thursday: Lending Library

Booking Through Thursday

  • Do you lend your books to other people? If so, any restrictions?

  • Although I do not go out of my way to offer the loan of a book in most instances, I do like to share them with interested individuals. My parents and in-laws are my most frequent borrowers. Whether it's by the bag or box or just a few here and there, it's almost a tradition between us to swap, trade and borrow/loan books between each other. There are a couple of other people I sometimes loan books to as well. While it is my hope that the book will come back (when it's a loaner, I try to make that clear to the borrower), I do not expect it. And so, I have a tendency to loan my favorites out only to a handful of people I know will return them. If my not so favorites (good books and ones I'm not ready to part with that are not among my favorites) do not find their way back to me, it is not something I get excited about.

    I do expect the books I lend out to come back in a similar condition to that which I loaned them out. I expect a little wear and tear, but not so much that the book looks like it was splattered with coffee or pizza sauce, pages were ripped out, the cover torn, etc. Only once has someone returned a book to me in that awful condition with no apologies or excuses and that was the last time I loaned that person any of my books.

  • Do you borrow books from other people? (Friends or family—I'm not talking about the public library)?

  • I do borrow from other people, mostly family and sometimes a friend or two. I am terrible about holding onto books loaned to me for long periods of time. While with my family I can argue distance, the truth is that I do not always make it a priority to read the books. If the mood does not strike me to read a particular book, it can sit on my shelf for quite a while. This happens more so with family loans. With friends who live close by, I tend to be quicker about the turn around, and will either return the books unread or read them within a decent amount of time. Sad to say, they often get returned unread. I finally gave up bookrings and bookrays through BookCrossing because I find myself passing the books along unread more often than not these days.

    My disclaimer to anyone who offers to loan me books is that I am slow about returning them, but I will return them. I have even refused loans of books I really want to read because I know I will not be returning them in a decent amount of time.

  • And, most importantly—do the books you lend/borrow get returned to their rightful owners??

  • On occasion I have loaned a book to someone, and it hasn't found its way home. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time is still out there, for example. It's been a couple of years now. In an e-mail recently, my friend told me she still has the book, something I was sure she must have forgotten about by now.

    As for me, I do return books to their rightful owners. Do unto others and all that. My mom knows to tell me which books she wants back and which I can send on to my mother-in-law. I keep a list of the books loaned and who the lender is just to make doubly sure I do not forget. So, while you can be assured I will return your book, my biggest flaw is the length of time it takes me to return it.

      What about you?


      1. We have a lot in common in the book borrowing department!

      2. Interesting meme! I tend not to lend/borrow books, unless someone is over at my house and specifically asks to borrow something, as I feel it would be rude to say no. I do give a lot of books away via BookCrossing, though.

        And how rude of that person to return that book in such condition, and with no apology to boot!

      3. 'Neither a borrower or a lender be.' That's my policy.

        My sister is a terrible borrower. She's been known to totally trash books that she borrows, so when she wanted to read my copy of "Tim" by Colleen McCullough, I was on pins and needles hoping I'd get it back in good shape. I called her every other day checking up on it.

        Happy to report I got it back in great condition. My faith in my sister is partially restored.

      4. I'm like that too, slow at reading and returning the books to owner. Make me feel guilty sometime. So I try to return them if something doesn't get in the way for me to have the time to return it

        Great answers! Happy BTT and I hope you have a wonderful day! Here is Mine!

      5. I'm always on pins and needles whenever someone (especially whom I'm not very close with) ask to borrow a book from me, and I won't know of any excuse to turn him/her down by not appearing rude.

        And if I borrow any book from anyone, I always feel obligated to return him/her quickly, so ended up I couldn't enjoy the book fully.

        Happy reading!

      6. Thank you everyone for your comments!

        Chris - Yes, we do! Our moms will never run out of reading material if they keep borrowing from our libraries. :-)

        Lesley - I wish I was more willing to part with my books than I am. I love the concept of BookCrossing, but am still reluctant to let go. One of these days perhaps.

        The despicable borrower is famous for pulling stunts like that, and not only with books, I'm afraid.

        Kookiejar - I am glad your sister returned your book to you in great condition. I can just imagine how you must have worried! I get that way with books I really want to have come back home to me.

        Julia - The guilt can weigh me down sometimes too when I am not able to return a book in a decent amount of time. Now that I am more upfront about my inability to return books immediately, I feel better about it. I'm also getting better about saying no when offered a book that I know I won't have the time to read. It's better someone else has a shot at it than letting the book collect dust on my shelf.

        Melody - Fortunately not many people ask me to borrow my books. Those who do or those I offer to loan books to nowadays are ones I trust. There can be a nervous tension when I lend out a favorite of mine though. :-)


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