Become a patron of a community-building venture
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Team

Larissa Kyzer

The library’s steward
Librarian, student, and American Fulbright grantee, in Reykjavík to study Icelandic as a Second Language
  • Social Media
  • Fact-Checking
  • editorial
  • cultural and critical analysis
  • Basic .html

Plan

Build the Library’s “Amish Shed” Unit

100%
  • Purchase Little Free Library Kit
  • Stain wood
  • Assemble kit
  • Build unit base

Print library materials, prepare books for collection

100%
  • Collect books (donations and any necessary purchases)
  • circulation log/guest book
  • stickers for inside each book, book covers
  • laminate book covers

Install library on site and make ready for use

100%
  • Finalize necessary permits
  • LFLR added to UNESCO literary map
  • library installed on site

Further information


Blindur er bóklaus maður.
Blind is the man without books.

Icelandic Proverb

Take a Book, Leave a Book: But Better

We’re all familiar with the prototypical “take a book, leave a book” system, the well-intentioned but probably neglected shelf where moldering copies of unread magazines, out-of-date how-to manuals, esoteric textbooks, and, occasionally, a single beloved novel gather dust—unread and unnoticed in coffee rooms and common areas the whole world over. Now, imagine instead a thoughtfully curated, well-maintained, and well-used book depository. A publicly accessible, aesthetically pleasing mini-library, designed with a specific community of readers in mind.?

The Little Free Library project takes the basic “take a book, leave a book” concept and turns it into both a literacy initiative and a community-building venture. This project began with one Little Free Library in Wisconsin in the United States, but has now become an international network, with somewhere between 5,000 - 6,000 branches in 36 countries all over the world. As of yet, however, there are no Little Free Library branches in Iceland, and this is what, with your help, I hope to change.



Reykjavík: A Literary City

Literature is an integral element of cultural life in Iceland, a fact that is reflected in the yearly jólabókaflóð, or Christmas book flood, when vast quantities of new books are published and become the topic of eager and heated conversation throughout the country. It is reflected in Reykjavík’s 2011 designation as a UNESCO City of Literature in 2011—one of only five cities in the world to be so honored, and the only one in which English is not the native tongue. It is reflected in the frequent claim that “everyone in Iceland is an author,” and the incredible fact that this very small country (population 320,000) is thought to publish more books per capita than any other country in the world. For more information about literary life in Reykjavík, check out: “Ten Things To Know About the Literary City.” 

Little Free Library, Reykjavík

Reykjavík is a perfect city for a Little Free Library, and in a spirit of transnational collaboration and multilingualism, LFLR will be a multilingual branch filled primarily with Icelandic and American literature. Books in the collection will represent a wide variety of genres and reading interests, including narrative fiction, crime novels, science fiction, comic books, picture books, and even audio books. The collection is being curated by librarians, literary organizations, academics, publishers, book store owners, and avid readers with an interest in Icelandic literature.

The library structure itself will be built (by me!) using one of the Amish Shed Kits sold by Little Free Library, resulting in a beautiful, weather-proof structure (very important in wet and windy Reykjavík) which will contain somewhere between 2-3 dozen books. It’s worth noting that the shed itself will be made from recycled materials of a particularly fascinating provenance: the wood used in these library kits is from an American barn that was leveled by a tornado nearly 100 years ago!

The final location of Little Free Library, Reykjavík has yet to be determined, but I am delighted to be working with the Reykjavík UNESCO City of Literature office to find a central location for the library. The library will be placed either along one of Reykjavík’s Literary Walks or near one of the forthcoming Literary Markers–highlighted spots around the city which have literary significance. Wherever LFLR is placed, it will be included on the City of Literature’s literary map and will be easily and readily accessible to members of the public, be they longtime Reykjavík residents, university students, or even tourists eager to sample a great piece of Icelandic literature while they are in town. (Just bring back the books!)

I will be the library’s “steward” for the duration of my time in Reykjavík, but will place it under the care of other library-loving individuals when necessary.



Should this project be successful, I would love to build other Little Free Libraries all around the country. Any donations that exceed the fundraising total will be set aside for future Little Free Libraries in Iceland.



Get In Touch, or Get Involved!

For more information, answers to FAQs, and updates about the planning process, please see the Little Free Library Reykjavík website, here: http://littlefreelibraryreykjavik.wordpress.com/ or “like” us on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/LittleFreeLibraryReykjavik

And again, this is intended to be a community project (spanning oceans!), so if you have suggestions, carpentry expertise/tools that can be borrowed, or would otherwise like to be involved, please contact me via the LFLR website. 

Total execution progress

100%

Build the Library’s “Amish Shed” Unit

100%
  • Purchase Little Free Library Kit
  • Stain wood
  • Assemble kit
  • Build unit base

Print library materials, prepare books for collection

100%
  • Collect books (donations and any necessary purchases)
  • circulation log/guest book
  • stickers for inside each book, book covers
  • laminate book covers

Install library on site and make ready for use

100%
  • Finalize necessary permits
  • LFLR added to UNESCO literary map
  • library installed on site

No news yet, stay tuned!

Team

Larissa Kyzer

The library’s steward
Librarian, student, and American Fulbright grantee, in Reykjavík to study Icelandic as a Second Language
  • Social Media
  • Fact-Checking
  • editorial
  • cultural and critical analysis
  • Basic .html

FINISHED

This project is now finished.

€901

raised of €860 goal.

0

days to go.

105% Funded

Pledge €5 or more

Thank you for your contribution! You will be listed as one of our Library Patrons on the Little Free Library Reykjavík website.

Pledge €10 or more

Takk fyrir hjálpina! Your name will be listed as one of our Library Patrons on the website and also in the guestbook (or “circulation log”) which will be permanently included in the library collection.

Pledge €15 or more

In addition to the above thanks, you will also receive a “Reader’s Advisory” email once the library is complete, which will include descriptive summaries for each of the books in the collection, as well as suggestions for further reading, written by Larissa Kyzer and/or other of the library’s curators.

Pledge €17 or more

In addition to the above benefits, you will receive a handmade Little Free Library Reykjavík Library Card, designed by independent American designer and paper goods artist, Cecilia Ziko (of 16 Counties: http://www.facebook.com/16Counties).

Pledge €25 or more

You will receive all of the above patron benefits as well as a handmade, limited edition bookmark made by independent American designer and paper goods artist, Cecilia Ziko.

Pledge €35 or more

In addition to all of the above patron benefits, you will also receive a postcard with a photo of the library when it has been installed.

Pledge €50 or more

You will receive all of the above patron benefits as well as a handmade, silkscreen tote-bag designed especially for this project by independent U.S.-based designer and paper goods artist, Cecilia Ziko. The tote bag will be mailed to you shortly after the library has been installed.

Pledge €100 or more

You will receive all of the above patron benefits as well as copies of two of the novels included in the library collection--one Icelandic and one American.

Pledge €250 or more

You will receive all of the above patron benefits as well as a one of a kind, hand-produced, hand-colored block print of the Icelandic proverb "Blindur er bóklaus maður" or "Blind is the bookless man." The print will be designed and created by an American artist and the print will be framed.

Pledge €350 or more

In addition to all of the above patron benefits, you will assist in the library’s Collection Development, and choose any one Icelandic or American title to be included in the collection. Your name and a short description of why you selected the book will be inscribed inside the book’s cover.

Pledge €500 or more

In addition to all of the above patron benefits, you or your organization will be named as a Library Benefactor on a decorative plaque which will be mounted on the front of the library.

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