Libraries in Sweden

Libraries in Sweden

As many of you know, I love to read. I always like to have at least one book on me, that way you always have something to do. Books can take you to places you can only dream of and tell amazing tales that can keep you entertained for hours on end. This is why I was so excited to see how Sweden, a country where Literature is taken very seriously and thousands of authors reside in, libraries compare to the USA libraries. Sadly, I would have to say that there is almost no comparison – Sweden wins hands down.

Now do not get me wrong I am well aware that in America we do have some stunning libraries, like the ones in DC, but in my opinion, Sweden just does the whole “library thing” better.

For example, the way they check out books is so much easier. They have these little Kiosk things all around the library and all you have to do is scan you card, put your little piles of books under the machine, and that is it! You can check out all your books in one swift motion with no line, no stamping of books, nothing.

Another thing about the libraries is just how pretty they are. Yes I know I feel as though I keep saying over and over again just how pretty things are, but it is true. Everything is so neat and well designed I cannot help as to fell very impressed by it all. The sections are clearly labeled (in Swedish though) and the library is kept very neat. The little coffee shop in the front really adds to the whole feel and it is almost always very crowded because you know the Swedes do love their coffee.

The selection of books is another aspect that amazed me for the library alone was 3 stories tall and took up an entire block! This is in my little town too keep in mind, I cannot imagine how big the libraries in the main cities are.

Finally one of my favorite parts is you get to keep all the books you check out for an entire month, rather than just three weeks.

I will admit there are a few things American libraries do better than Sweden’s, like renting movies for free. In Sweden libraries only the kid movies are free. Also, the fines for late books in Sweden are very high! That could be looked as a good thing though because then people will hopefully remember to turn their books in on time.

The English section takes up about two shelves and has a complete variety of books from classics, to romances, to biographies. it is nice and I look forward to reading all if them! So far I read “The Snow Child” and “Breakfast At Tiffanys”.

It has been snowing like crazy here all day! I get out of school at 14.00 then plan in doing a few quick errands, one of which includes going to the library of course, and then having a nice movie night with my host family.

Hope everyone has a bra (swedish word of that day that means “good”) weekend!


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