The Fantastical Library in Wetzlar “I like to imagine: What would happen if ...?”

A place to dream
A place to dream | Photo (detail): © Anna Fein

Waldemar has a passion for science fiction literature. For him the Fantastic Library in Wetzlar has for years been a small paradise – with one tiny catch. 

As a child I was outdoors a lot. Then I discovered the world of books and preferred staying at home to read. When I was nineteen I came from Russia with my parents to Germany. Now I live in Braunfels. That Wetzlar with its Fantastic Library is only twenty kilometres away is for me a real stroke of luck. It has a huge selection of sci-fi literature.

Waldemar comes several times a month to the Fantastic Library to read his favourite authors. Waldemar comes several times a month to the Fantastic Library to read his favourite authors. | Photo (detail): © Anna Fein At least once or twice a month I go there and borrow several books – as reserves. But if you have time you can also make yourself comfortable at the library itself. The rooms are beautifully decorated and there are small reading corners everywhere.

A comfortable spot: the reading sofa A comfortable spot: the reading sofa | Photo (detail): © Anna Fein I can do without anything – but not books! I’m really taken above all with science fiction. I’ve been reading it now for twenty-five years. I like to imagine: “What would happen if ...?” – if we travelled to alien planets, discovered new worlds. In science fiction people’s dreams and wishes are fulfilled. How the world could develop – all this can come true in these books.
 
If an author writes well, it’s really great. I find it fascinating how people can create such complex worlds. I could never think up something like that. I have a few favourite writers whose entire works are here in the library. You wouldn’t find them in other libraries.

Here it’s seldom too full. I like that because then it’s very quiet. You can sit comfortably and simply read for an hour or two.

Waldemar H. on a Perry-Rodan chair: “Something of a shame for the books“ Waldemar H. on a Perry-Rodan chair: “Something of a shame for the books“ | Photo (detail): © Anna Fein Membership in the Fantastic Library is free. I can borrow one book after another, so I don’t have to buy them. But the opening hours are a bit awkward: Monday to Thursday, for only for a few hours in the afternoon – on Wednesday also in the morning. I always have to coordinate my schedule accordingly. But actually that’s okay. I’m very satisfied with the library. You can always ask the staff for help; they know just about every book here. I’ve often exceeded the lending period, but the staff is very friendly. If you’re late, you can simply ring up and let them know; usually it’s not a problem.

Mystical reading atmosphere in the Fantastic Library: every room is decorated according to theme. Mystical reading atmosphere in the Fantastic Library: every room is decorated according to theme. | Photo (detail): © Anna Fein Sometimes I come here with my two daughters. They love the place. There’s a great children’s section, with books like Harry Potter and fairy tales, but also toys. Everything is nicely and comfortably furnished. The kids like playing and browsing in books here. But even more of course they like when I read to them.

Play areas and children’s literature: fantastic worlds also for the kids. Play areas and children’s literature: fantastic worlds also for the kids. | Photo (detail): © Anna Fein

Waldemar H. was born in 1977 in Russia and came to Germany with his parent at the age of nineteen. He has been coming to the Fantastic Library in Wetzlar several times a month for more than ten years to discover sci-fi and fantasy literature.
The Fantastic Library in Wetzlar is unique of its kind in Germany. Ranging over five floors, it contains more than 270,000 books from all the genres of fantastic literature: fairy tale, myth, mysticism, adventure, science fiction, fantasy and horror. It also has children’s books and a large selection of secondary literature for research on science fiction.

 

 

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