Library books 'edited'

ISOBEL EWING
Last updated 05:00 09/06/2014
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Never, it's sacrilege.

Yes, they're just books.

Only to correct a spelling mistake.

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Bruce Stevens says he is sick of opening a library book to find a previous reader has assumed the role of editor.

The New Plymouth man has come across six books issued from Puke Ariki library in the last six months that have had typos or entire sentences rewritten with a pen or pencil.

Inside the fly leaf of one book someone had written "What a total load of rubbish", he said.

"It incenses me."

The book he was currently reading has three handwritten corrections in its first three pages.

Stevens said he was brought up to respect books; not to write in them and not to dog ear the pages.

"For people to do that is the height of ignorance."

He said people had no right to edit library books.

"These books are not your property to deface, they belong to all of us. Have the decency to leave them alone and let other people enjoy them without having to put up with book graffiti."

Spokeswoman for Puke Ariki library Danielle Vazey said writing in books was not a widespread issue but it did happen and was something all libraries dealt with.

"We often find that people put their initials or a mark in a book so they know that they have read it and in some books people can't help but fix typos."

Vazey said it was rare to get offensive remarks in a book, and if so the book would be removed from circulation.

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- Taranaki Daily News

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