Serving Toronto's most liveable community with the Annex Gleaner

Little Library

April 8th, 2014 · No Comments

By: Beth McKay

Often it is the small touches which make the Annex the welcoming and exceptional neighbourhood that it is today; and neighbours Taya and Jamie Cook of Grace Street certainly understand the importance of inclusivity and sharing. The Cooks have recently installed a little free library in front of their home with the aim of encouraging literacy within this community. Their little free library also aims to build new relationships amongst neighbours.

In a letter to the Gleaner, the Cooks noted that the movement of installing little free libraries began in the United States and has now officially come to Canada. “We invite the community to take a book, return a book, or add a book,” the couple explained in their letter. There are a few little free libraries in the Beaches area and one in Parkdale, but the Cooks believe that their library is the first in the Annex neighbourhood. Perhaps the idea of building these libraries is not so far fetched as it is a common sight in the Annex to see boxes of books scattered on the grass outside homes, often warped and ruined due to weather. Little free libraries would extend the lives of many books while keeping the neighbourhood clean.

“We are hoping to get the word out so that people use it, and hopefully others will start popping up around the area,” explained Taya. Though the current winter weather may deter some from immediately making their own little free libraries, as well as discourage a few from making the trek to Grace Street, perhaps another way to contribute is by finding good quality books within your own home to donate to the small library when you do make a visit. “We have been pleasantly surprised by how much it is getting used. Almost every day the books change and people pick some up and drop some off so it has been a lot of fun,” said Taya.

There are many websites which define the goals of little free libraries, and some sites even contain building instructions. Please visit for more information. “It would be great to have more in the neighbourhood!” Taya further explained, so perhaps build one as a spring project for yourself and for the neighbourhood.

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