Growing up, my home away from home was the library. Each book was a gateway to a world of knowledge, or of wonder, or of something so crazy my young mind had trouble grasping it. I always felt more comfortable there than in my own home. When I came to discover that people could have a library in their homes, that became a goal of mine. And I’ve managed to pull it off.
But it never occurred to me someone could actually live in the library. Something like that would be like in a fairy tale. Wouldn’t it?
Actress and playwright Sharon Washington has a one-woman stage show called Feeding the Dragon. It’s all about her true life experience living in a large 3-bedroom apartment over the New York City Library. She tells of her father, a Southerner, worked there seven days a week, keeping the furnaces lit and the library clean. She tells of her mother, a New York native, of her dog Brownie, and the baby grand piano they had in the living room. Of the school she attended, of the neighbors who ran the shop next door… You get the idea. It’s an intimate portrait of how Ms. Washington grew up to become the creative soul she is today, completely believable, heartwarming, and inviting in the telling.
Audible is taking the route of many streaming video content providers, offering “Audible Originals.” These are inexpensive titles with some considerable variety. Some are stage shows, like this one. Some are full cast productions. With far too many interests and the wish list that reflects that piling up beyond Audible’s technical ability to manage (though that bug seems to have been fixed — yay!), it’s inconceivable that I’d otherwise have actively looked for something like this. I don’t know that I would have found it even if I did go hunting for “something different.” I’m prone to do that from time to time, and I’ve never stumbled across something like this before. But… one of the newest perks of being a member is that every month they pick six of these Audible Originals titles, and I get to pick two for free. I just discovered this, so I decided to take advantage of the offering. I’m glad I did.
Even without the visual of the book-laden stage, Washington’s story comes to life, complete with a myriad of accents. It’s 75 minutes that allows you to sit in someone else’s shoes for a little while. I found it quite charming and well worth the listen. I think the word I’m hunting for here is “adorable.” It’s about a girl who lived in a library. For a bibliophile, what’s not to love here?