On a major thoroughfare in Brisbane’s leafy Chelmer, you will find the Mighty Fine Book Swap filled to the brim with quality fiction – for free!
The Mighty Fine Book Swap is in the tiny suburb of Chelmer, Brisbane. If you drive north towards the Walter Taylor Bridge to go to Indooroopilly, you may well have gone past the house with its cream picket fence on Honour Avenue with a green cupboard outside full of books, and maybe you wondered what it was.
It belongs to me, editor and writer Susan Prior. It is my Mighty Fine Book Swap. And it costs you nothing to take a book.
The idea of a book swap, or a little library, was inspired by a US movement to set up free boxes of books in suburbs and towns. Now they are cropping up all over the world. In the United Kingdom, many villages are converting unused telephone boxes to this purpose. In other places, bus shelters have had shelves added that are then stocked with books!
Several years ago, I persuaded my partner that a book swap would be a fun idea. He kindly humoured me and set to work converting an old secondhand cupboard. Today, the book swap is a local landmark, and a very popular one.
If you are going past, feel free to stop and help yourself to a book. Readers are asked to either return the book they borrowed when they have finished, or to donate a book, or books.
Since the book swap was installed all kinds of interesting people have stopped to chat. It has been a great way to meet some of my neighbours. The books get turned over every day, with new ones being dropped off all the time; so, there is always something different to read.
Mighty Fine Book Swap users can borrow with no fees, no paperwork and no overdue fines!
I’d love you to come and enjoy it, but I would ask that you use the facility responsibly and sensibly.