Why I Do Not Lend Books

books from my library

The Frampton Flora, my wife paid a dollar for this book at a sale. I won't sell for 50. I will not lend this book. Bob Ewing photo
The Frampton Flora, my wife paid a dollar for this book at a sale. I won't sell for 50. I will not lend this book. Bob Ewing photo
a look inside, Bob Ewing photo
a look inside, Bob Ewing photo
Charles de Lint, a favourite Canadian author. I won't lend this either but... Bob Ewing photo
Charles de Lint, a favourite Canadian author. I won't lend this either but... Bob Ewing photo

I do not lend books

Books, I am very fond of books. I do not want to imagine a world without them as I believe it would be a dreary place, lacking grace and imagination.


The public library is a favourite place to visit. The books are priced right, free, as long as you return them on time. The library card is free, how can one go wrong?


I enjoy book sales, where unknown treasures await and second hand book stores are one of the essential businesses any town must have, even more important than a coffee shop; however, the two side-by-side, would be ideal.


I have a personal library, not too big but growing by the week, it seems. The majority of the collection is comprised of books on gardening, food and agriculture. There are some fiction books, and among those are works by Charles Dickens, H.G. Wells, and a Canadian author Charles de Lint.


My wife has her own library. She is a intrigued by the era that includes Henry the VIII and Elizabeth the 1st.


I do not lend books. Some were hard to find and are out of print, replacing them would be difficult if not impossible, and when found they could be expensive. The books have been purchased from stores and individuals in a number of countries and to me they are priceless.


I will share the knowledge held between their pages. That is one reason I began to write to share what I was learning, and to tell people about the source of that knowledge.


I do not lend books; however, I will give them away. I do not give away simply any book, but, for example, I have two copies of a book written in the 1950s about rose gardening. I do not need two copies so one is going to a person who appreciates roses and knows there is much to learn in some of the older books.


There are also books given away because there are more then enough in my collection on a given subject, organic gardening is one area where I have a umber of books and a few repeat very similar information so why hoard them, they get passed along to others who may benefit from reading them.


Fiction, I do not lend fiction but will give books, I have read and know well, to people I have met who might enjoy reading them. I do not expect anything in return, I want to share the experience the book was, knowing that each of use will react or fell differently from a personal reading and an opportunity to take one’s own sweet time savoring the experience.


Books enrich life, to be able to give someone a book, with no strings attached, also enriches. I do not lend books.

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Comments 17 comments

Uninvited Writer profile image

Uninvited Writer 7 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario

Well said. I don't lend books anymore either, I lost too many in the past. Like you, I will give books away but I will not lend them...


Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 7 years ago from New Brunswick Author

I have lost a few but hopefully the homes ther ended up in appreciate them. Thanks for dropping by.


packerpack profile image

packerpack 7 years ago from India, Calcutta

I too lost a book lending it ..... Mayada, The daughter of Iraq ...... gave it to a very good friend but she lost it ...... :(


Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 7 years ago from New Brunswick Author

It happens, books do go astray. Thanks for dropping by.


Katherine Baldwin profile image

Katherine Baldwin 7 years ago from South Carolina

I agree,Bob. I could live in a bookstore,lol. I have a collection of cookbooks gathered through the years on my many business travels. One of the best "finds" I have is a huge cookbook that I found when I was antiquing with my Mother. It is one of my best, with great recipes from all over the world. When I'm not using it to research recipes, I use it as a doorstop - just kidding, but it's that big. After having some cookbooks not "find their way home" after being lent out, I will happily scan a recipe for someone that requests one instead of lending them the book. Ain't technology great!


Uninvited Writer profile image

Uninvited Writer 7 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario

I've also "released" books through http://www.bookcrossing.com , that is satisfying, a copy of The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison ended up in Australia after I left it in the lunch room at work in Niagara Falls, it eventually got released again and turned up in Niagara-on-the-Lake.


Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 7 years ago from New Brunswick Author

Thanks UNW, that was the web site I was thinking about when I began this hub, I picked up a book in Saint John NB, read it and released it in Ottawa. ON.

Katherine, copy relevant sections makes sense.

Thank you both for droppng by/


Catherine R profile image

Catherine R 7 years ago from Melbourne, Australia

I agree - I don't like to lend books either unless it is to someone I know will give them back. I have a lot of books that I have collected over the years especially cook books. Cook books were usually expensive. They must definitely not leave my house. Sometimes I just go to a book shop for an outing. I will happily spend a couple of hours browsing in a large book store. I love going to book shops in different countries too.


Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 7 years ago from New Brunswick Author

I like visiting book shops when we travel, treasures await. Thanks for dropping by.


LVM profile image

LVM 7 years ago

Then, give us some more!!!


Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 7 years ago from New Brunswick Author

Ok, stay tuned, thanks for dropping by.


hubby7 profile image

hubby7 7 years ago from Chicago

Count me in on that too: I don't lend books out either. The very first book that I read on investing by Terry Savage, I lent out and the person I lent it too lost it. Like all of you, I have a library at home. However, I hope to purchase either the Sony Notebook or the Amazon Kindle so that I can read my books digitally and not have to lull all of my book around each time I move. It cuts down both on space and expense. More importantly, it reduces the need to cut down trees.


Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 7 years ago from New Brunswick Author

Books are heavy to move, we have done so four times in past four years. Thanks for dropping by.


stacebird profile image

stacebird 5 years ago from Washington DC

A lovely hub about books, they are treasures indeed. I am excited to look at your recipes! I discovered you through another of your followers and seeing you hailed from NB, thought I'd take a look..I worked for a summer studying warblers in the Bay of Fundy NP..what a gorgeous area you live in! I miss it :)


Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 5 years ago from New Brunswick Author

I am further north now along the Restigouche, but it i indeed beautiful thanks for droping by.


OldRoses profile image

OldRoses 4 years ago from Franklin Park, NJ

Thank you for this hub. I'm bookmarking it and will send it to people who tell me that I'm selfish for not lending out my books. I used to, but they came back to me in poor condition. The last book I lent out was never returned. When I asked the person I had lent it to if she was finished with it and ready to return it to me, she became enraged, insisting that it was HER book, not mine. My books never leave home now.


Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 4 years ago from New Brunswick Author

If value your books, keep them at home' some can be very hard to replace.

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