Todd Bol, the founder of the Little Free Library movement, has passed away, and far too soon. The Little Free Libraries—75,000 of them worldwide—are a tribute to the power of one good person with one good idea.
My Portland neighborhood is blessed with at least five Little Free Libraries. There is the tiny Tardis that plays the Dr. Who theme when you open the door (apparently one of many such Tardii, a reminder that books are time travelers). There are two little libraries on the main business street of our Multnomah Village neighborhood. Hopeful children check them often, although these boxes frequently offer only religious screeds and adult self-help titles. I try to add picture books whenever I can.
Our poodle Keiko is fond of the Little Free Library that includes a drawer filled with canine treats. Another library, a miniature replica of the owner's house, offers a water dish for dogs.
These little book stands have vastly expanded the promise of all libraries and bookstores, that a book you find there might change your life!
I am an author and folklorist based in Portland, Oregon.
The Great Dictionary Caper, illustrated by Eric Comstock (Paula Wiseman Books, Simon & Schuster, 2018)
**Starred reviews from Publishers' Weekly, Kirkus, and Booklist.
Wild About Books, illustrated by Marc Brown. (Knopf Books for Young Readers, 2004). New York Times Bestseller, ALA Notable Book, and winner of the E.B. White Read-Aloud Award.
Imagine That! How Dr. Seuss Wrote 'The Cat in the Hat"
(Random House, 2017). Illustrated by Kevin Hawkes.
*Starred reviews from Publishers' Weekly and Kirkus.