Brad Meltzer: Don't close the book on libraries

For Immediate Release
Tue, 05/03/2011

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CHICAGO - Brad Meltzer, best-selling author of “The Inner Circle” and host of the History Channel’s “Brad Meltzer Decoded,” wrote an opinion piece in the Miami Herald this week urging legislators to preserve library funding.

In the piece, Meltzer speaks passionately about one of his most vivid childhood memories - how his grandmother took him and his sister to get their first library cards.

He writes, “We both had an almost silly pride in those cards. Back then, we didn’t have money, but those cards gave us books, which served as passports to a better life.”

He credits the Brooklyn Public Library with changing his life, expanding his view of the world and helping him become an author.

Meltzer says libraries play an important role in any potential economic recovery, but expresses his alarm that “the very legacy that was passed down from my grandmother to my sister and myself is being snatched away,” as budget cuts force libraries to whittle away hours, services and staffing and even force them to close branches.

He urges readers to contact their legislators and raise their voices in support of libraries.

“These days especially, we’re all worried about life. But what we’re forgetting is our legacy. Libraries are vital to our nation in ways that go far beyond dollars and cents. They lift us from our small universe and plant us in an infinite one. They remind us of our own potential. And when you think of the books inside them: Stories aren’t the beauty of what did happen. They’re the beauty of what could happen.”

Meltzer's support of libraries has led him to participate in "Our Authors, Ours Advocates," a national library advocacy campaign and key initiative of American Library Association President Roberta Stevens. View the public service announcement Meltzer recorded in support of libraries.