It is pretty much a given that Cochranites know the Cochrane Public Library lends books. However, as Jessie Pepin Community Outreach and Program Librarian points out, the pandemic has created an opportunity for people to realize how much more the library has to offer. “People are recognizing all the things that we can offer them. I think it was easy to think that we just offer books but from our borrowing stats, we can see that it’s the board games, it’s the snowshoes, the puzzles, power tools when people were renovating, and they couldn’t the equipment that they needed. That we really offer equitable access to more than just books.”

However, books remain a very popular borrowed item at our local library. As for borrowing trends, Pepin says they have some skewed results on actual borrowing. The cause is, no surprise, the pandemic. “Because a lot of libraries were closed during the first lockdown of the pandemic, our E-borrowing actually went up quite a bit, more than what it normally does, because people could access those books. But, now that people can come in person again, we are seeing people enjoying paper. But our E-borrowing did go up quite a bit and I think people became more familiar and more comfortable with those resources.”

So, what were the top reading trends for 2021?

Pepin says the highest circulation titles were all children’s books. She explains that is due to the fact that there is typically one book that is hugely popular and there is a big lineup for it and that book will go out hundreds of times. The top ones for 2021 were Dog Man and Unicorns Versus Goblins.

For adults, fiction remains the popular choice and familiar mainstream authors like Lee Child, Michael Connelly, Jodi Picoult, and Kristin Hannah make the list of popular reads in 2021. Pepin says there are some new authors showing up on the list including Taylor Jenkins Reid, and Canadian, Louise Penny.

When is it comes to non-fiction favourites, cookbooks remain supreme on the circulation list. Pepin says, “Really easy cookbooks One Sheet Pan, Ten Ingredient Meals so there are few interesting patterns showing up.” Pepin says the library has a huge cookbook selection with all the latest trends, tools, and fads.

What will 2022 bring as far as reading and borrowing trends? Only time will tell, and you can be guaranteed that the Cochrane Public Library will be working hard to be on the cutting edge.

The top circulating adult titles are provided by the Cochrane Public Library. 

Topic circulating books at CPL in 2021