As more libraries are being closed in London, it is refreshing to see on Central Chinese TV that they are opening more and more libraries in China, especially in rural areas, such as Yunnan Province,where they are adding upto 2,000 new libraries over the coming year.
Some of the new libraries have had only about 15 visitors a month, but they seem happy with that, as the number of readers and interest in books is growing. People in villages are interested in books on farming, general science, mathematics and politics. Most people make notes when they visit the library, a good way of keeping a record of what they have studied.
Another refreshing really cheerful piece of news is the idea of a bookshop that is termed a mobile library but distributes books free of charge. Yes, two books free per visitor, on the promise that the borrower promises to pass on the books to another reader. One such mobile library, owned by a man who made his success in the advertising field, has given away neaarly 40,000 books in one year. Donations of books are accepted, and the books passed on to visitors each day. This will reintroduce the joy of in-depth reading to a growing number of people. "Giving is receiving," said the altruistic owner of the mobile library. "I give books, it brings me joy." The reward of altruism.