Happy Valentine’s Day from the Moline Library!

10 BOOKISH VALENTINES FOR YOUR FAVORITE NON-FICTIONAL CHARACTER

Valentine’s Day is here, and whether you’re romantically involved or not, I think we can all agree that bookish Valentines make the best Valentines. Here are ten great cards and greetings (some downloadable for you procrastinators out there!) to give to your favorite non-fictional character. Or fictional character. We don’t judge.

I Love You Almost As Much As I Love Books

I Love You Almost as Much as I Love Books Valentine's Day Card

The Valentine that expresses your affection while also being open and honest about your feelings!

 

Dewey Belong Together?

Dewey Belong Together? Valentine's Day Card

For the library pun lover! The answer is HECK YES.

 

Meet Me at the Library

Meet Me at the Library Card

This is a great one to express your priorities and also kick off the perfect (imo) date night!

 

If Life is a Book, Then Our Love is the Story

If Life is a Book Then Our Love is the Story Valentine's Day Card

It may be sappy, but it’s bound to melt a few hearts.

 

You Have Bewitched Me, Body and Soul

You Have Bewitched Me Body and Soul Jane Austen Valentine's Day Card

For the Pride & Prejudice fan, this Darcy quote is unbeatable.

 

Nothing Beats the Smell of Old Books…Except You

Nothing Beats the Smell of Old Books Valentine

And I mean, books smell AMAZING.

 

You’re the Rhysand to My Feyre

For the partner who loves A Court of Thorns and Roses as much as you do…

 

You’re the Best Thing to Happen to Me Since Books

You're the Best thing to Happen to Me Since Books Valentine's Day Card

Is there any higher compliment that you could pay someone than this?

 

I Like Long, Romantic Walks Through the Bookstore With You

I Like Long Romantic Walks in the Bookstore With You Card

Because why go to the beach when you could go to the bookstore?

 

Thank You for Being My Bookish Friend

Thank You for Being My Bookish Friend Valentine's Day Card

Because sometimes having a true book friend can be just as valuable, if not more so, than having a romantic partner, and that deserves to be celebrated!

By , February 
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11 Delightfully Delicious Book-Themed Restaurants

If you’ve ever wanted to try Butterbeer or meet a friend for a Jane Austen–inspired high tea, we recommend checking out these delightfully delicious book themed restaurants. Each place on this list features bookish elements in both design and menu, from dishes named after characters to foods actually described in your favorite books. These dining establishments are perfect for readers who have been tempted by literary cookbooks in the past, but aren’t quite confident enough to make these dishes themselves!

1. The Jane Austen Tea Room in Essendon, Melbourne, Australia

As one of the world’s most beloved authors, it’s no wonder that Jane Austen has an entire restaurant dedicated to her novels. This tea room, situated in Melbourne, Australia, offers an elegant high tea with sandwiches and sweets as well as dishes like “Mrs. Bennet’s Raisin Toast,” named for Elizabeth’s meddling mother in Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. Just looking to grab dessert? No problem! The menu also offers a nice little selection for Emma fans with “Lady Emma Woodhouse’s Desserts and Treats.” Charming and sophisticated, you’ll feel like you’re having tea with Mr. Darcy!

2. Hogsmeade in Orlando, Florida, USA

This one is a little tricky as you can only get access with a ticket to Universal Studios’s Islands of Adventure, but if you’re headed to the theme park anyway, then Hogsmeade is definitely worth your time! Detailed and elaborate, Universal’s Hogsmeade is designed to look like the village in J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series. It includes all kinds of treats sure to please the wizard in your life. You can swing by Hog’s Head for a Butterbeer or stop at the Three Broomsticks for a feast. (There’s also a Three Broomsticks at Universal Studios’s Hollywood location.)

3. The Lovecraft Bar in Portland, Oregon, USA

The Lovecraft Bar might be named after famed science fiction writer H.P. Lovecraft, but general horror fans will also get a kick out of this spooky spot! The bar and nightclub embraces the macabre, drawing inspiration from classic books and movies. It’s definitely not a sit-down place, but the bar’s got a great bizarre-o vibe. It also features some fun cocktails like “Los Vampiros” and the “Sleepy Hollow” (named after Washington Irving‘s iconic short story of the same name).

4. Alice in a Labyrinth in Tokyo, Japan

This restaurant, inspired by Lewis Caroll‘s Alice in Wonderland, is perhaps one of the most visually stunning places on our list. The decor is incredibly lush, complete with teacup booths and playing card tables. The hostess is even dressed like the Mad Hatter! While Alice in a Labyrinth does charge an entry fee just for going inside, we think it’s worth it for the decor alone!

5. Wilde Bar & Restaurant in Chicago, Illinois, USA

If you’re looking for more of a library feel, we recommend this Irish pub. Not only is the restaurant named after Oscar Wilde, but the layout is also designed to give guests the sense of sitting by the fireplace in a comfortable library. The menus feature select quotes from the maestro himself and there is a portrait of Wilde framed above the fireplace.

6. KonyvBar & Restaurant in Budapest, Hungary

The KonvyBar & Restaurant boasts some lovely bookshelves, but stopping in for a bite does require some planning ahead of time. The menu here is designed around a different book each week. Previous themes include Harry Potter and the Goblet of FireThe Pillars of the Earth, and The Jungle Book. To find out the title of the book currently featured, visit the restaurant’s website.

7. Action Burger in Brooklyn, New York, USA

There’s plenty to do at Brooklyn’s comic book-themed restaurant and bar, where you can eat like a “hero” or a “villain.” Board games are available for visitors to rent, plus the bar has videogames set up near the tables and a number of impressive pinball machines.

8. Gulliver’s Restaurant in Irvine, California, USA

Established in 1970, Gulliver’s Restaurant is set up to feel much older. The interior is styled to mirror 18th-century England, the time period in which Jonathan Swift first published Gulliver’s Travels. The dishes are quintessentially British too, with “Gulliver’s Prime Cut” slow-roasted beef, Yorkshire Pudding, and a scrumptious English trifle complete with berries and Devonshire cream. Cozy and classic, Gulliver’s is definitely one to check out if you’re in the area!

9. Onegin Restaurant in New York, New York, USA

Decorated in the spirit of 19th-century elegance, Onegin is a culinary tribute to Alexander Pushkin. In fact, the name of the restaurant comes from the novel, Eugene Onegin. The Russian cuisine here is served in a setting reminiscent of old St. Petersburg. With such a rich design and decadent menus, Onegin is perhaps the fanciest establishment on our list.

10. The Shire in Killarney, Ireland

The Shire is a cool visit for anyone who loves J.R.R. Tolkein. This Lord of the Ringsinspired pub features live music every Sunday and drinks named after some of Tolkein’s most popular characters. The Shire has a fun Middle Earth vibe — the passageway to the bar area is even a hobbit hole!  If you need a place to stay nearby, you can check into The Sugan Hostel located within the pub.

11. The Westeros in New Dehli, India

Ever since HBO adapted George R.R. Martin‘s Song of Ice and Fire series for the small screen, it’s hard to find someone who isn’t obsessed with Game of Thrones. Finding a Game of Thrones eatery, however, is another matter. Fortunately, there’s The Westeros in New Dehli. The walls are adorned with all kinds of Game of Thrones paraphernalia, including the Iron Throne, and the bar even hosts viewing parties!

By Emily Verona

IT’S OKAY TO RECYCLE UNWANTED BOOKS

The great Marie Kondo War on Books seems to be simmering down. While some book lovers have moved all their books into a steel and concrete safe room just in case Marie Kondo kicks down their door to seize their most beloved books from their hands and throw them into her flaming wood chipper, many more people agree with herexceedingly gentle actual approach.

Thousands of people now have boxes of books that have served their purpose or were never wanted in the first place and are wondering what’s next. While Rioter Abby has some great ideas for what to do with those books, you may find you want them out of your house ASAP. The best and fastest way to do this is to donate them. I’m an avid reader, an author, and a library employee, so I say this from the bottom of my bibliophile heart:

Some books don’t deserve to be donated.

I chatted with the manager of my library’s used bookstore to find out what kinds of donations are more a burden than a gift. Our books store is sizable and moves quite a bit of inventory, but there are still books they can’t sell. Keep in mind that these items will change depending on the organizations needs and resources, so check with your intended beneficiary before proceeding.

Obsolete nonfiction books are the biggest culprit. This includes guides for software no longer in use, cookbooks relying on old technology (think 1970s microwave cookbooks), out-of-date information, disproved theories, out-of-use textbooks, and encyclopedias.

Books that are damaged in any way: water stains, mold, tears, or marks on the pages. If there is any chance your books might have bed bugs, please don’t bring those near the library — those little creatures can infect everything else in the building! Books with strong smells, like those kept in the house with a cigarette smoker or smelly animals, will be disposed of before they can transfer their odor to nearby books.

Fiction books that everyone has too many of. These books are a victim of their own popularity.

Our bookstore manager did share with me one type of book that she can always sell, no matter its condition. Classic books on school reading lists get snapped up every semester when the hold list gets too long.

If you’ve tried a couple places and no one will take your books, what can you do? Don’t drop them at your library and run, hoping no one will notice. Library workers and volunteers are already over-tasked and under-funded, so please don’t add to the burden. All we can do is recycle or trash it, so you’re simply transferring that responsibility to us. While we’re on the topic, don’t get nasty with them when they say they can’t accept your donation. It’s nothing personal, we promise.

It’s okay to recycle truly unwanted books.

I know it’s painful. If it helps, “each ton of paper recycled saves 3 cubic yards of landfill space, 380 gallons of oil and 17 trees, not to mention 4,000 kilowatts of energy and 7,000 gallons of water.” (source) Your recycled books could become new books or the box that delivers your new books!

To bring it back to Marie Kondo, one of her methods from The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up had a profound impact on my ability to remove unwanted objects from my life. When I first read that she wanted me to thank items for their time and service, I thought that was a little too wacky for my tastes. I’m pretty sure I literally rolled my eyes. But then I tried it. It’s amazing how much guilt and shame that simple, silly act assuaged for me. Try it!

Make sure to look up your local recycling policies. With their binding and glue, books are mixed materials so the recycling process is different. You may not be able to toss them in with other paper recyclables, but you might be able to drop them off at a local recycling center instead. Paperbacks can be recycled as-is, but hardcovers must be removed before being sent to recycling. Books with moldy pages cannot be recycled, but must be tossed in the trash before they can spread their mold to other books.

If a book cannot be reused or given new life in some other way, it’s perfectly okay to recycle it.

By , February 

This Literary Wrapping Paper Will Take Your Holiday Gifts to the Next Level

The holiday season is officially underway, and you know what that means—it’s almost time to start wrapping presents. To make the process a little less painful, I usually combine the activity with two of my favorite things: wine (so I don’t spiral into a procrastination-induced panic), and festive music. But this year, I’m stepping up my gift wrapping with another item: adorable bookish wrapping paper.

There’s no better way to make your presents look great (and make the act of wrapping presents more fun) than to use some stylish wrapping paper. And although I like snowman-patterned or red, green, and gold paper as much as the next person, this literary-themed paper just speaks to my book-lovin’ heart. Plus, it’s perfect for any gifts to fellow readers, whether that be friends, family, or members of your book club.

The one catch: This specialty book wrapping paper isn’t as readily available at local pharmacies as the conventional kind. So where can you find it? Read on for some cute and festive options!

Zazzle has some great choices, including this two-toned “Once Upon a Time” gift wrap that will appeal to any fairy tale fans.

The Literary Gift Company is also a great site to scour for bookish items, for obvious reasons. It has a lot of festive wrapping paper perfect for avid readers, but my personal favorite is this one featuring various vintage typewriters:

This Literary Life package from Amazon sticks with the bookish motif and comes with 12 sheets of wrapping paper, along with 24 gift tags:

Give your presents an antique feel with this matte craft paper from the Etsy shop, SoChroma.

Have any superhero fans in your life? Wrap their gifts with this wrapping paper that pays homage to some classic comic book sayings, from PartyEleganza on Etsy:

Prefer to stick to solid-colored wrapping paper? No problem—you can add a little bookish magic with this tape from Etsy’s ColourSplashSupplies store:

Last but not least, you can simply download this printable Word Search paper from Something Turquoise. The best part? It’s customizable, so you can include the gift recipient’s name or any other words you wish to feature.

Happy wrapping!

By , December 

Wish List for Readers

Grant Snider. New York Times Book Review: Sketchbook, 11/30/18

We completely understand. But don’t forget that you can find many of those at the library for free.

50 AMAZINGLY UNIQUE GIFTS FOR BOOK LOVERS (THAT AREN’T BOOKS)

Trying to find the perfect gift for a book lover can be tricky. After all, the most perfect gift is a book, but which book? Almost as good, however, is some sort of bookish gear, and there are lots of options out there! This list of great gifts for book lovers (that aren’t books) will give you a place to start your shopping.

GREAT GIFTS FOR BOOK LOVERS THAT ARE UNDER $10

Paper Fan made from book pages

Book Fan. This paper fan looks like the edge of a hardcover book when closed and opens up to reveal vintage book pages and images.

Tiny Felt Keychain that looks like a book

Book Keychain. This keychain that looks like a tiny book will ensure your book lover can always have a book with them (even if they can’t read it).

Trio of badges: One reading "Just one more chapter", One with an open book, and one with a closed book with a heart on it

Book Lover Badges. These three 1-inch pins are an easy way to wear your book love on your chest. Or check out our 22 Pieces of Flair to Show How Much You Love Books for more possibilities.

Set of five solid black pencils with bookish phrases in silver

Book Lover Pencils. Treat Yo’ Shelf to these sleek black pencils with slogans about the love of books.

Laptop with decal in black lettering that reads "Bookish AF"

Bookish AF Decal. This Bookish AF sticker may remind book lovers to get off the laptop and back to their first love.

GREAT GIFTS FOR ORGANIZING BOOKS

Personal library kits: Box of library checkout cards and date stampPersonal Library Kit. This personal library kit comes complete with checkout cards and a date stamp for keeping track of any books you lend.

Silver book embosser on a wooden stand

Book Embosser. This embosser ensures that book lovers can make their permanent, personal mark on their own library.

Ex Libris book plate with owners' name and image of a woman

Personalized Book Plate. Another way to add a personal touch to your personal library. Or check out this list of Beautiful Bookplates of Etsy.

Wooden bookend with engraved name and vase for flowers

Personalized Bookends. Keep books in place and looking lovely with a personalized oak bookend with a built in vase. But if these bookends aren’t quite right, the Book Riot archives offer many more possibilities, from dragons to pineapples and more.

GREAT READING AIDS FOR BOOK LOVERS

Wooden ring on a reader's finger, holding book openWooden page spreader. This little tool can help readers hold books open with one hand.

Three wire bookmarks shaped to form names

Custom Wire Bookmarks. Every reader needs bookmarks, lots of them, so why not a custom bookmark? Or visit the Book Riot archives for leather bookmarks, metal bookmarks, and free printable bookmarks.

Read pillow with book propped open

Book Seat Reading Pillow. This reading pillow is a great option for hands-free reading. I use mine for reading when folding laundry—it holds the book at just the right angle.

Cover of Book Lover's Journal

The Book Lover’s Journal. This journal has space for listing books read, books to read next, and books lent out to friends.

GREAT WEARABLE GIFTS FOR BOOK LOVERS

Beige necktie that looks like a library card

Library Card Necktie. This necktie is a fun way to get dressy and bookish. And check out this post for more ties and pocket squares.

Woman wearing blue scarf and handwarmers

Love Live Read Hand Warmers and Scarf: This scarf and matching hand warmers are perfect for staying warm all winter.

A necklace shaped like a tiny open book

Book Locket. This book-shaped necklace can have your own secret message inside. Or you can shop from these lists of necklaces and earrings.

Short sleeved pajamas that say "I read past my bedtime"

I Read Past My Bedtime Pajamas. These cozy pajamas are great for readers who love to stay up reading late into the night. Or look through these snuggly bookish PJs.Black boxers with library date stamps

Library Stamp Boxers. These boxers are just one example of the bookish underthings available for some special someone.

Sleeveless dress with vintage book covers

To Thrill a Mockingbird Dress. A print of vintage books makes for a pretty summer dress.

Slip-on shoes with book print

Book Lover Casual Shoes. These casual canvas shoes are just one example of the many bookish shoes out there.T-Shirt with the text of Pride and Prejudice shaped like a picture of a woman by a tree

A Litographs T-Shirt. Get the entire text of a favorite book—Pride and PrejudiceOutlanderThe Count of Monte Cristoand more—on a T-shirt. Litographs also sells posters, scarves, and tote bags. If these T-shirts aren’t quite right, there are many more options.

GREAT BAGS AND ACCESSORIES FOR BOOK LOVERS

1984 by George Orwell Tote Bag

A Classic Book Cover Tote Bag. Pick out a tote bag with a vintage book cover (any many other designs) from Out of Print books. (Out of Print also has T-shirts, mugs, and much more.) Or check out these bookish totes.Backpack shaped like a vintage dark-blue book

Olde Book Backpack. This cute backpack let readers carry their books in a book. (And it looks a little like a TARDIS, a bonus for Doctor Whofans.)

Neoprine lunch bag with book spines printed on it

Book Spines Lunch Bag. Because books aren’t the only nourishment a reader needs.A wallet and iPhone case with a bookshelf with cats

Purrrrfect Books Wallet and Phone Case. Book and cat lovers can keep their phone and cash handy with this fun wallet, adorned with purrrfectly punny book titles.Blue Umbrella with book spine on the border

Color Changing Bookshelf Umbrella. When it rains, it pours…books! When this umbrella gets wet, the books around its border appear. Find more bookish umbrellas here.

GREAT DECORATIVE GIFTS FOR BOOK LOVERS

Beige pillow that says "Reserved for Beatrice and her Book"

Personalized Book Lover Throw Pillow. This pillow makes sure readers always have a spot on the couch to curl up with their book.

Poster that looks like a classic Penguin paperback that say "Not Now I'm Reading"Penguin Not Now I’m Reading Poster. An important reminder not to disturb a reader immersed in a book. And check out these 13 Literary Prints (and 13 more) for more options.

Cover of Reading Woman CalendarReading Woman Calendar.  The women in this calendar are inspiration to keep reading all year long.

Paper light shaped like a book that says "Once upon a time"

Paper Book Light. This pretty book light adds ambiance to any room.

Ideal Bookshelf Custom Print. Artist Jane Mount will create a custom print of a reader’s favorite books. Ideal Bookshelf also offers pre-made prints, mugs, and shirts with bookshelves of specific book series, genres, and themes.

Wreath made from book pages shaped into roses

Book Wreath. This pretty wreath is a nice adornment for any book lovers’ door (as long as they don’t mind art made from book pages).

Car Seat Covers with book spines printed on them

Library Nook Car Seat Cover.  Book lovers can take their passion on the road with these car seat covers.

GREAT DRINKING GIFTS FOR BOOK LOVERS

White mug with I Heart Books engraving

I Heart Books Mug. This elegant mug is just one of many mugs available for book lovers. See our list of 28 Bookish Mugs for more options. Silver charms shaped like books, a pen, a typewriter, etc., attached to a wine glass

Book Lover Wine Glass Charms. Book club hosts will find these wine glass charms to be especially handy.Six shot glasses with quotes and author images

Great Drinkers Shot Glasses. A fun gift for anyone who’s wanted to have a drink with Dorothy Parker or Oscar Wilde.

Book Coozie for Canned Beverages that read "I am simply a book drunkard"

Book Drunkard Koozie. Keep those canned drinks cool with a koozie featuring a quote from L.M. Montgomery.

Square coasters that look like used library checkout cards

Library Card Coasters. Library lovers can protect their furniture with these fun coasters.

GREAT EDIBLE GIFTS FOR BOOK LOVERS

Bag of Literary Fortune Cookies

Literary Fortune Cookies. Instead of the usual fortunes, these cookies feature quotes from great authors.

6 tea tins shaped like books

Novel Teas and Tea Tins. Book lovers can enjoy a cup of Oliver Lemon Twist or Don Quixotea, stored in its own special tin from Novel Teas. Choose just one or get the whole set.

Book cookie cutter with dough and cookie cut out

Bookish Cookies. Make your own cookies or give a cookie cutter to the bookish baker on your list.

GREAT FUN AND GAMES GIFTS FOR BOOK LOVERS

Book lover Scrabble board and box

Book Lover’s Scrabble. This version of Scrabble is like the regular version, with a view variations, such as the option to use author names.Image of a room full of books

Readers Paradise Puzzle. Working this puzzle won’t be quite as nice as being in this gorgeous room, but it’s close. See this list of 18 Great Bookish Puzzles for more options.

Bring Your Own Book game box

Bring Your Own Book Game. This game asks players to look through their favorite books for the cleverest dating advice, tabloid headlines, and more.

Box of Lit Chat cards

Lit Chat Conversation Starters. Get a conversation about books and life going with the 100 questions in this deck of Lit Chat cards.

GREAT KIDS’ GIFTS FOR BOOK LOVERS

By the Book Game Box

By the Book: A Novel Stacking Puzzle. This puzzle will get little ones started early with the constant book lovers’ challenge of strategically stacking books to fit your space.A bookcase with three shelves shaped like a yellow barn with a red roof

Barn Bookcase. This whimsical bookcase is a fun addition to a young reader’s room

Custom Onesie. Add a favorite quote to this onesie for the future reader in your life. Literatee also has T-shirts and other gear for adults and kids.

White baby cap with storybook text

Storybook Baby Hat. A section from Alice in Wonderland adorns this sweet hat for newborns. You can also choose from Black Beauty, Peter Pan, and other classics. Or you can choose a Storiarts scarf, T-shirt, or tote for adults.

A little girl wearing a sleeveless dress printed with book spines

Book Spines Kids’ Dress. Get your littlest reader all decked out in this adorable dress.

By , September