Meet Friends board member Karen Roemer

What are your earliest memories of reading and books?FAL Board member Karen Roemer

Because we moved frequently when I was young, criss-crossing the country by car, I always carried stacks of books with me, even before I could read the words.  I would “read” the books to my little sister as we sat in the back seat, and both of us would make up stories to go along with the pictures.

Do you enjoy “actual” books? Ebooks?

I used to prefer books, but as my eyesight has deteriorated, I have discovered the joys of e-readers.  One advantage to them is the ease with which I can manipulate the text size; another is the light provided, so reading at night or on planes isn’t disruptive to those around.  Finally, I can carry many books on my one device, a very real convenience!

What are you reading these days?

I am currently reading Jesmyn Ward’s Sing Unburied Sing, Tara Westover’s Educated, and Dashka Slater’s The 57 Bus.  All three are powerful, moving stories.

You are hosting a literary dinner party in your favorite Alameda restaurant. Which authors (alive, dead or imaginary) would you invite and why?

I’d love to hear Jane Austen, George Elliot, and Gloria Steinem, three women from three different centuries,  discuss feminism and the place of women in their societies versus the place of women in today’s world.

Tell us a bit about your personal involvement with the Friends, the Free Library Foundation…

I’ve only recently become a member of the Friends’ board and I have enjoyed becoming involved in the activities to support the library, such as the book sale, the docent programs, the Live @ the Library concerts and Dewey’s Café.

What are your hopes for the future of the Alameda Free Library?

I hope the library will continue to offer the excellent literacy programs, reading programs,  the wonderful children’s services, teen study programs and book clubs, the data bases for our K-12 students as well as adults, and continue to serve as a great resource for all education, learning, and literacy it has been.