What barbarian writes in a library book in the first place? It isn't yours, respect it.
I can't even stand to highlight my own books.
I once had to read a book for a college class. The professor wanted us to read a fiction book or play and a non-fiction book and we could pick a topic from a list that had two accompanying books to go with it. All topics could only be chosen once, so we all had to read two different books. The play I had to read wasn't that big of a deal. Reading the non-fiction book on the other hand was a nightmare. It was a bit of an obscure academic 400-page book that I wasn't ever going to use again about the larger cultural historical perspective of the period during which the play I read was written. Do not ask me what the title is, I completely burned it from my memory due to the state of the book I got from the library.
I got a copy of the book from the library and figured I would go back to my dorm and read it for a bit. I arrive home, still unsuspecting and naive. I sat down to start reading the book and open it to find that the person who had it before me had underlined EVERYTHING IN RED PEN!!!!! SERIOUSLY! WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU??? WHO UNDERLINES EVERYTHING IN A 400-PAGE LIBRARY BOOK IN RED PEN???? (okay, maybe not everything, I believe there may have been two sentences that weren't underlined).
So you probably wonder why didn't I just get a different copy of the book? Because it was some barely printed academic book and the only other copy would have taken at least a week to arrive through interlibrary loan. So I had to read it...
Also, with regard to your second point that is why I turned off popular highlights on kindle. People highlight some weird and totally random stuff.
I agree with this sentiment. However ...
I once read a truly terrible library novel about a preposterous giant squid attack in which a previous patron had written in a series of sarcastic and generally valid editorial comments, including a final "Thank God. It's over!" I don't want to encourage this behavior, but it sure cracked me up.
It's despicable in a library book, but I own a couple of second-tenth-hand books, and a bunch of them have underlined random sentences and I must say I actually enjoy seeing what some previous owner considered an attention-worthy line.
I never underline stuff in my own books though, I think I did it for A.Smith's Wealth of Nations and N.Mailer's Executioner's Song, not proud of that, but I guess I had a reason.
Your second point is what drives me up the wall.
I ordered a book from an Amazon third party seller a few years ago. It was an older, out of print, how-to book, and I figured the odds of notation were very high if I bought a used copy. So I purposefully bought a copy that was listed as new, for that very reason.
My copy shows up in mail and it's used, and contains dozens of passages highlighted in just the first chapter, seemingly at random. None of the highlighted stuff was important. I couldn't bring myself to finish reading it.
Also, if you like to mark pages with sticky notes or whatever, TAKE THEM OUT BEFORE YOU RETURN THEM. I'm the library worker who pages through your fucking book return that you tagged with like 40 sticky notes. Fuck you. I have a lot of patience for the general shenanigans that the public gets up to (goes with the library territory), but that one makes me annoyed every goddamn time.
I agree! I also hate when people fold over pages in library books to remember their spot. Get a bookmark!
I must be the odd ball...
I LOVE marginalia, glosses, highlights, and the like. There's a whole field of study, whose name I can't recall, devoted to the study of marginalia and how we read. It's fascinating to ponder the choices and notes. I know then, I hold a tangible artifact that connects me incontrivertibly through time and space to another person.
I don't mark library books, but I intentionally buy used books for the hope that they've been marked and due to used books generally being cheaper.
A tangent pet peeve to this would be people who eat while reading library books but never remove the crumb debris and assorted yuck. And, yes, you people who smoke while reading library books and get your ashes inside the book somehow -- I'm talking to you, too.
When I was 10ish, there was this book I got from the library and on one of its pages someone had underlined a sentence and written on the side how inaccurate it was logic-wise. Some other person had also written a reply to it.
I got annoyed by that so I took a pencil and striked through them and continued with reading. Was a good book.
It's just rude. Don't deface public property. If you want to write in it, buy it.
Totally. On the flip side, I once found dozens of post-it notes all throughout a library book - some had thoughts on the book, one was a cocktail recipe, one a list of hiking trails they wanted to try, etc. I got so excited when I'd turn the page to find another note.
I love when I find books that are already annotated by someone. It’s like a look in their mind. I’m also a huge fucking nerd.
I am in the acquisitions dept. for a library. Books are more expensive for us than yhe public and we have to get rid of the marked up/highlighted/crayoned/coffee and kool-aid stained books through our booksale and only if they are legible. Sure, we get some money back, but at pennies on the dollar. Libraries are horribly underfunded so the public are the real losers when losers mark up our books.
That's why someone invented bookdarts.
Seriously, marginalia, dog folding or any other damage to a library book is heresy.
~~Unless you're an expert with a lot of time, marginalia in even your own copy adds no value.~~ I take this back. Some book owners enjoy this, some don't.