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  1. a.the practice of leaving a book in a public place to be picked

     up and read by others, who then do likewise.

   (added to the Concise Oxford English Dictionary in August 2004)

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Periodically, the South Shore Regional Library in Bridgewater, Nova Scotia, holds a book sale. This both raises money for the library and gets rid of books that the library no longer needs. I always attend these sales and come away with one or two boxes of books. Of course it takes me quite a while to get around to reading all these books; sometimes it takes months.

I got a surprise in the summer of 2005 when I got around to reading Lake Wobegon: Summer 1956 by Garrison Keillor: someone had written inside the cover. They said that, in August 2004, they had left this book on top of a container of five-cent candy in the General Store in Crescent Beach, hoping that someone would pick up the book and take it home to read. It went on to say that the book had been registered at and asked me to go to the website and report where I found the book and what I thought of it. Finally, it asked me to leave the book somewhere for someone else to find.

So I did. And that was the start of my interest in bookcrossing.


Who knows how the book got from the General Store in Crescent Beach to the library book sale. After reading the book, I left it in the Saltspray Café in Mahone Bay, Nova Scotia and went to the website to record the fact; the book quickly disappeared but unfortunately, the person that took it has not been to the website and left any record of where they left it after that.

Since then, I have recorded and released over 400 books. I’ve left books in restaurants, in hotel rooms and in bars but mostly in the Saltspray Café. Some books disappear quickly, others take time, but they all go eventually. However, very few people go to the website to record the book’s travels. But of those that do, some live locally, some in different provinces and others in different countries. Those books are traveling!


In 2005 my bookcrossing activities were the subject of an article in a local newspaper, The Progress Enterprise.


I released my final book in June 2009. It was The Meaning Of Night: A Confession by Michael Cox.

If you think you might be interested in bookcrossing, take a look at their website at or click on their logo at the top of this page. The bookcrossing site is free and there are no hassles.


28th April 2011: Doing a clear-out, I came across a stray book that I had registered but had not released. So I released it while on a trip to Bermuda, nearly two years after my last release.

3rd June 2011: Surprisingly I received an email from bookcrossing to tell me that someone had reported in with one of my books. It’s a book that I released in St. Pierre et Miquelon over five years ago! It just turned up in Thailand!!