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From Vinton, Virginia USA
Age 46
Joined Tuesday, September 24, 2002
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Extended Profile
Wow...I'm famous! Excerpts from an article from The Roanoke Times profiles me as a bookcrosser (this is not the full article but you may follow the link to read the whole thing)


They're out there waiting for you

At least 150 people in Roanoke are abandoning books around the valley, hoping people will pick them up, read them and pass them on.

By Robert Samuels
The Roanoke Times

There are at least 74 of them waiting for you out here in Roanoke. They're hiding out, lurking in unusual places, waiting for you to pick them up.

You can tell them by their symbols, which say they have been waiting for someone like you for a while. They want you to pick them up, open their cover and read.

They're books.

More than 150 people in Roanoke are participating in a reading program through the Web site Members are encouraged to register books with the site, then leave them in unusual places with a label saying: "This book was left here on purpose, just for you to find."

Passers-by are supposed to pick up the book, read it, report finding it and then deposit the book in another unusual place.

A Roanoke Times reporter found a romance novel, "Summer Rainfall" by Kerry Allyne, at the Roanoke main post office last month. The placement of this tawdry tale was the work of Stephanie Holcomb, a Roanoke County resident.

"I started doing BookCrossing because I just had these boxes of books lying around my house," said Holcomb, a 32-year-old student at Virginia Western. "The program cleared out my bookshelf."

She added that she doesn't read romance novels but has a bunch of them from her mother.

Holcomb, who has registered about 600 books since 2002, said the post office was one of her favorite places to leave books. She also leaves them on park benches near her home.

One time, she said she got a little creative and left a fitness book near some yogurt cases in Wal-Mart.

It's always a good feeling when someone finds the book, Holcomb said, although it doesn't happen often.

"Sometimes people get freaked out if you leave them in places that are too unusual," Holcomb said. "One time I got a message from a man saying he picked up the book with a plastic bag just in case it was poisoned."

There have been security problems with the program in the past, according to owner Hornbaker. In 2002, security shut down Seattle-Tacoma Airport when a bookcrosser left a book titled "O1-01-01" on a window ledge.

"We recommended that they not leave books in the airport," Hornbaker said. "You encourage people to do things, but then the realities of the post-9/11 world set in."

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