Painted boxes filled with books are popping up throughout the San Gabriel Valley. With signs that read “Take A Book, Leave A Book," these Little Free Libraries stand on residential streets in Pasadena, South Pasadena, Arcadia, and Monrovia, and residents can freely take, donate, or borrow books, World Journal (世界日報) reports. The Little Free Libraries also bring communities closer together as neighbors meet around the boxes and chat.
Monrovia High School graduates Travis Stone and Stephanie Cox set up five Little Free Libraries in Monrovia. The libraries have no lock or librarian, but Stone does not worry about the books being stolen. There are about 44 books in the Little Free Library in front of his house at Melrose Avenue and Hillcrest Boulevard, and the number of books has only increased.
Stone told World Journal that the Little Free Library in his community has helped him get to know his neighbors. “We have never in 11 years talked to our neighbors," Stone said. "But the Little Free Library brings us together."
Pasadena resident Kimberly agrees that the Little Free Library in front of her house on Las Tunas Drive has helped neighbors get to know one another. “The library connects the community,” she said.
South Pasadena couple Randy and Mary drop by two Little Free Libraries at Marengo Avenue and Oak Street almost every week. According to Randy, they accidentally found the libraries during a walk and have seen the number of books increase as more people find it.
Anyone who would like to set up a library can buy a box online from the Little Free Library.You can find established Little Free Libraries on the map below.
View Little Free Library in a larger map
A version of this article was originally published in World Journal. This story was translated from Chinese to English. If you notice a mistake in translation, please email our editors at [email protected]