Lynn: We are starting Mystery Month with a post especially for all the librarians and library clerks out there!
Oh, the joys of checking in books . . . what mysteries they hold. Back in my undergraduate days at Purdue, I worked in the reserve book room at the library. This was a rotating collection of supplemental books, magazines, and pamphlets that professors assigned to their classes. Students could only check out the materials for two hours or overnight, so we clerks spent a lot time checking things in and out. We routinely found student IDs, money, checks from parents, used tissues, letters home, and other odd items. The weirdest, most mysterious thing I ever found, though, was an egg-and-bacon sandwich, smashed between the pages of a particularly large reference book! There was one large bite out of the sandwich. Must have been quite an all-nighter . . . .
Cindy: I don’t know whether I can beat an egg-and-bacon sandwich, but this find sure made me want to do some detective work. End of the year locker clean-outs unearth some mysterious finds, but this returned book from an unidentified eighth-grader takes the cake. We collect library books on book carts placed in the hallways during locker clean-out sessions. A few years ago, a book that appeared to have something in it showed up on the cart.
I opened the book and was a little surprised to find these:
And when I closed the book again and looked at the title, what could I do but laugh?
We need to hear from you. Let’s kick off Mystery Month with your mysteries. Clue us in by leaving us a comment about the strangest, most mysterious thing that you’ve found returned in a library book. We’re sure that there are some good stories out there.