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Why I love my library

| January 14, 2021 | 0 Comments


I had the pleasure of interviewing Siphesihle Zita, a Grade 9 student at St. Andrew’s College in Makhanda in the Eastern Cape. Zita is a regular visitor to the Cawse library at the college and a self-confessed book lover. ‘Ma’am, I love the library, it is my place of peace,’ he informed me one afternoon.

Zita is one of those boys who indeed treasures books and is often to be seen in between the library shelves seeking a place to enrich his imagination. He recalls with ease his favourite quote during our interview: ‘Reading gives us some place to go when we have to stay where we are.’1

The moment it all falls into place

My discussion with Zita was characterised by references to his past, and I learnt early on how and where his love of reading began. It was influenced by an incident that occurred in his preschool years. Still today, he remembers the sheer joy and excitement he experienced when he was the first one in his class to learn how to read. This gave him the desire and courage to continue to improve his reading skills.

His love of reading continued to grow throughout his junior school years. He remembers the positive experiences of reading out loud in Grade 4, which developed into his discovery of the magic of stories in books. He himself is a born storyteller through and through; and is known amongst his friends as ‘the storyteller’. He loves listening to or telling any kind of tale.

He is also a fan of the arts, because through the media of film, theatre, music, literature or painting, people tell their individual stories.

The library’s the place to be

When asked if he thinks there is any link between reading and academic abilities, he says: ‘Reading has helped me with creative writing. It improves vocabulary as it paints a vivid picture in my mind.’ Zita was also quick to add that on the journey of reading, you discover many different genres, and descriptive writing, for example, can help with one’s own creative writing.

He is convinced that the Cawse Library at St Andrew’s College is the place to be. His favourite spaces in the library are the seminar rooms. He loves the openness there, and the natural light that the space provides. He feels safe there during this time of COVID-19 and believes that this space provides him with a place to escape to. He loves going to the library after school and appreciates the flexible opening hours of the library.

Zita is currently reading one of the CHERUB series called The Fall.2 The main character in the book is an orphan boy called James, who, together with his sister, is taken into a secret organisation and trained to become a spy. ‘He takes down the bad guys and helps the police to save the world! CHERUB agents have one crucial advantage that adults never suspect that children are spying on them,’ says Zita.

Vuyokazi Jamieson is head librarian at St Andrew’s College.


  1. See:
  2. Muchamore, R (2014) The Fall (7) (CHERUB). New York City: Simon

Category: Summer 2020

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