There’s a new trend in the world of libraries: the miniature library, DIY reading rooms, and other micro book depots. Built around the idea of readcycling, these miniature libraries offer new methods for obtaining books. The micro library’s system is simple: take a book, return a book. This recycling of books is the foundation to hundreds of “little, free libraries” that exist all over the world—from the streets of New York to the malls and residential areas of Sweden.

Micro libraries can take many forms; old phone booths, miniature houses, and a number of other novel (pardon the pun) constructions. The Book Booth, pictured by the Department of Urban Betterment,is especially popular. Phone booths, no longer relevant for their intended use, offer an ideal micro library for urban areas, such as New York City, where there is an abundance of empty booths. In Sweden there is a book equivalent to Red Box, the well-liked movie rental system in America, called the Bokomaten.  Bokomatens are book-filled, automated machines with the capacity to handle book loans and returns.

Popping up in communities all over the world, micro libraries and readcycling makes books easily accessible. Check out The Atlantic and get the full scoop on micro libraries.

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