Friday, 15 June 2007


I hope you recognise my picture to the right as being from Disney's Beauty and the Beast, as it's one of my all-time favourite films. Belle, who is naturally one of my all-time favourite heroines, shares my passion not only for books, but also for libraries. The Beast's library, and its splendour, are actually quite a significant part of the film. Here's the Beast's library:

Somebody once said, "I'd marry the Beast if I could have a library like that!" Personally I like the Beast, and I think he's much more attractive as a Beast. He's a bit of sissy when he becomes a man. Anyway, I love the part when he gives the library to Belle as a gift. It's one of the key turning points in their relationship:

And they've made a real-life copy of the library at Disneyland:

Putting my love of Disney aside for a minute, and as your resident Library Princess, I thought I'd show you some photos of the libraries which have really taken my fancy lately:

This is Melk Abbey.

Queen's College Library, Oxford.

Oxford's Bodleian Library.

This is in Peru!

Theological Hall, Strahov Monastery, Prague.

Philosophical Hall, Strahov Monastery, Prague.

Biltmore Estate, North Carolina.

However poor I am when I'm older (and as a writer/academic, I will be), I am determined that my home will have a library. Even if I have to section off part of a room that's being used for something else. I will have all of my (and hopefully my husband's and childrens') books together, and there will be somewhere to sit. And I will have a desk. I accept that I'm not going to be a wealthy woman, but I must have that. As Cicero said, "To add a library to a house is to give that house a soul."


Mary Paddock said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mary Paddock said...

A young lady after my own heart.
I completely agree about preferring the Beast, by the way. The only men in my life (the ones who predated my husband) who I truly ever loved were the men who gave me books as gifts. And I knew he "got me" when he would sit for entire afternoons and listen to me while I read from Ray Bradbury, Douglas Adams, George R. R. Martin, and a variety of poets. And I knew he really must love me when I found him reading Nortons Anthology of Poetry so he'd have something to talk to me about .

Best of luck with finding your own personal Beast. :)


alternatefish said...

I consider a personal library less a luxury and more a safety feature. Getting from my front door to, well, anywhere else in my apartment is becoming dangerous because of my amazing book-stacking storage system. I stubbed my toe on the "Complete Works of William Shakespeare" the other day. Still hurts.

Definitely a safety feature.

Autumn said...

Yes, I recognise Belle, one of my favourite character.

Good luck with your library. :)