Fridays Just Got More Fun With Free Books

By Madison Gaston

Looking for the perfect book to read over the weekend? Oak Hall’s “Free Book Friday” allows students to take home books that Oak Hall’s Upper School Library typically gives to Alachua County’s “Friends of the Library” (FOL). 

Oak Hall’s Upper School Library is continuously weeding out books to make the collection current, appealing, accessible, and to make space for new books. “We weed books from the library just like a gardener removes weeds from a garden,” said Oak Hall’s Upper School Librarian Evelyn Smith. In order to meet these requirements, the Upper School Library uses the acronym MUSTIE to tell if books make the cut:

M = Misleading or factually inaccurate
U = Ugly or worn beyond mending or rebinding
S = Superseded by a new edition or by a much better book on the subject
T = Trivial or of no discernible literary or scientific merit
I = Irrelevant to the needs and interests of the library’s community
E = Elsewhere – the material is easily obtainable from another place

Oak Hall’s Upper School Library also takes books donated by Oak Hall families to FOL if the book cannot be used in the Upper School. Previously, these books were offered to teachers or students; however, this year Smith decided to set up “Free Book Friday” to encourage reading in the Oak Hall community. 

Smith also claims the concept is similar to the “Free Little Library”, an organization that encourages people to set up a community book shelf where people can exchange books. “We have tried to include a diverse array of fiction and nonfiction books for younger and older readers in our baskets,” Smith mentioned. “We encourage anyone to take books home and give them to friends and family or keep them for their own!”