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Book Nook: A Cozy Reading Community For The Entire Family
PHOTO BY YOUTUBE/ SPerience by Smart Parenting
  • SPrience is a YouTube web series where Smart Parenting curates vacation, family getaways, and other experiences perfect for every member of the family! Subscribe to watch new episodes every Wednesday, 6 p.m.

    Do you like the thought of libreng books? And are you the type of person who jumps at the chance to enjoy a neighborhood library experience together with your family? Ronna Capili-Bonifacio, Parenting Editor of Smart Parenting, and her kids Vera and Mateo, share their SPrience at the Book Nook.

    The Book Nook free community library allows people to read books for free, offering a restive space for families inside SM Aura. The best part is you can even choose a book to bring home. In the middle of the bustling mall, this community library is a reader’s (or introvert’s) oasis. Discover new reads or share your favorite books with other people, and be part of a thriving community.

    Reasons to love reading 

    Is your little one an avid reader? The Book Nook may be a perfect experience for children regardless of reading level, or reading hilig.

    RELATED: Want To Raise A Reader? 20 Baby Books For Your Child's First Library

    Siblings Vera and Mateo love books! Vera says she loves reading “because it’s fun.” Mateo says, “I can imagine what’s happening in the pages, and I can imagine up a book I can make.”

    Designed to maximize interaction, the Book Nook space features an oval-shaped bench and open-shelving that create a flowing, friendly space.

    The Book Nook has a great selection for young people and adults, too. Ronna gives us a quick tour of the space, sharing that they have everything from fiction and nonfiction to coffee table books from local publishers, young adult and children’s books -- including Ronna’s favorite throwback books.

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    Family-friendly, community spaces 

    Ronna chats with Erika Locker, Assistant Mall Manager at SM Aura Premier, to explain the origins of Book Nook and how it works. “The Book Nook opened in December 2020, actually, it was still a bit the height of the pandemic because when we were trying to welcome [people] back to the mall, we also wanted to complete the services we had for them. We also wanted to make sure that our community and the people around us learn to continuously love reading, spending [sic] the time with the family."

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    How the Book Nook Works

    Read a book.

    Book Nook is a free community library, so you can easily spend your time there and share some time with fellow bookworms. 

    Give a book.

    Are you decluttering or want to help out? You can donate to the Book Nook by leaving your pre-loved books in their designated drop box. You’re entitled to a free book when you do so!

    RELATED: 9 Things You Didn't Know About National Book Store

    Get a book.

    You can bring home books that are already available at the library when you donate.

    Share your story.

    Personalize and leave a note when you share your books -- this really fosters the feel of a neighborhood library and community.

    Building community through reading

    Community and free libraries have been around for as long as there have been books. In fact, free libraries continually pop up in neighborhoods around the country (and online). 

    The Book Nook checks the quality of the books they receive and books that pass muster are sanitized in a built-in UV light disinfection station. The Book Nook also donates books to charities. Books that don’t meet the standards are recycled, don’t you worry! 

    The Book Nook is a venture with The Book Stop Project, WTA Architecture and Design Studio, SM Aura Premier, and SM Cares. According to the website, The Book Stop Project is a pop-up library network that explores and innovates the concept of the library. They encourage reading by redistributing books.

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    Fostering a love of reading

    After spending some time in the Book Nook, Mateo and Vera shared their finds with their mom. The siblings both chose tie-in science books of the popular series Ada Twist:Scientist, and also donated their own books (with some great personalized notes) to the library. The family rated the Book Nook as a 5-star SPerience -- actually “6000 stars!” says Mateo.

    RELATED: Mom Writes Book To Help Kids Here And Abroad Learn Filipino

    The next time you’re in the neighborhood, make sure you drop by. It’s perfect for the teen who loves YA, your younger kids who are just getting into reading, or a toddler needing a bit of quiet time. It’s also great for moms and dads who need some downtime. You can never go wrong with a community library.

    What other parents are reading

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