Finding love in a book

Blind Dater's Invercargill city library learning connections coordinator, Tracy Pasco and librarians  Andrew Eng and ...
John Hawkins/Fairfax NZ

Blind Dater's Invercargill city library learning connections coordinator, Tracy Pasco and librarians Andrew Eng and Mandy Stenton worked as literary cupids connecting readers and books through a blind date.

Invercargill City Library has taken Valentines Day into its own hands in an effort to rekindle Southlanders love lives.

Love of books that is.

To honour Valentines day this February the library is running a book dating service. 

Blind Dater's, Invercargill city library learning connections coordinator, Tracy Pasco and librarian Mandy Stenton  ...
John Hawkins/Fairfax NZ

Blind Dater's, Invercargill city library learning connections coordinator, Tracy Pasco and librarian Mandy Stenton worked as literary cupids connection readers and books through a blind date.

The programme, called Blind Date with a Book, pairs readers with a book through personal ads. 

Library Learning Connections coordinator Tracy Pasco said the librarians had taken up the role of literary cupids, wrapping their favourite books and then writing a "personal ad' from the perspective of the book and sticking it on the cover.

The reader selects a book based on the personal ad, takes it home on a date and reads it.

In a similar way to television dating shows, the books are then rated on compatibility, with readers saying whether it was love at first sight, they would consider "going steady" or there was no chemistry.

The programme started on February 1 and had so far proved extremely popular, with 60 books already borrowed, she said.

People loved the mystery, she said.

Matching a book through a personal ad without knowing its true identity was fun, she said.

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More than 100 books have placed a personal ad.

"We haven't necessarily wrapped popular books but instead books we thought were unsung heroes."

From non-fiction, fiction, kids books, cooking, biography, sport, gardening, there was something for everyone, she said.

The programme is open to children and adults. 

At the end of the month readers will go into a draw to win a real date, dinner and a movie for two.

 - The Southland Times

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