Summer Reading Sur-Prize!

By Fontaine Alison, Five Points West Regional Branch Library

I’ve always said I was someone who never wins prizes, but this summer proved me wrong when I won the drawing for the 2019 Staff Summer Learning prize: a Samsung Galaxy tablet! Isn’t it great when something you enjoy doing has so many benefits?

Fontaine Alison, storyteller at the Five
Points West Library, compares her new
Samsung Galaxy to her phone
When my sister Olivia was in first grade, she would come home and play “school” with me, so I learned to read at age 4. It didn’t take me long to realize that being a reader got me noticed—quite the cachet for a middle child.

Later, reading was also a great way to avoid chores. Mama never liked seeing an idle child: she would find something for us to do. But I discovered that reading could pass for “homework” as long as she didn’t notice I was reading yet another book in Walter Farley’s Black Stallion series.

I went on to study literature in college, but these days, I confess to reading mostly thrillers and mysteries…the literary equivalent of a diet of ice cream and French fries. I’ve also switched to audiobooks, which I can download free from the library. I enjoy listening while driving, gardening or, well, eating ice cream! Using the tablet is easier, and it’s saving the battery of my aging cell phone.

I can also take advantage of many other digital resources available at the Birmingham Public Library. My phone’s tiny 4” screen is fine for audiobooks, but with my tablet, I can read the New York Times, browse favorite magazines on Flipster, check email, or even stream free videos from Hoopla and Kanopy. Yes, I’ve always said that summer reading pays off, but this summer, I hit the jackpot!