I feel like some of the best adventures anyone can hope to have take place in libraries.

My first job was in a library, and there's nothing better than wandering the stacks and discovering treasures. By which I mean books you otherwise would never have heard of or found.

People try to tell me that I can do just a well—better even—online. That the algorithms will do a better job of leading me to what I want to read, of helping me find the kinds of things I might like. And that might be true if I know what I'm looking for. But what if I don't know if I like something because I haven't been introduced to it yet? Amazon is just going to keep introducing me to the same kinds of books I already read, and/or the bestsellers, which is like being introduced to the same people over and over again. What if I want to meet someone totally new and different from anyone I've ever met before?

Libraries (and bookstores, too) are wonderful for making new "friends" (by which I mean finding new books and authors). And the online experience simply cannot live up to that of walking into a space filled with books—that smell of paper and ink, that sense of wonder that comes with knowing there are thousands of worlds in one place waiting to be explored.

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