Fahrenheit 451 may be the temperature at which books burn, but Fahrenheit 112 is just hot enough to make books melt! We are all aware of the heat wave that appears to have found a home in Oklahoma, and while books provide an excellent escape from the sweltering heat, they, just like us, need to stay nice and cool.
According to an article by Judy Hedding on summer car safety, the interior of a car can reach up to 200 degrees (this of course is dependent upon the exterior temperature, your car, and its length of time in the sun.). Leaving a book in your car for just a few hours gives the glue that holds the book together ample time to melt. Although the glue will harden again, this process weakens the glue and therefore, the book's binding. With weak binding, the books usually require mending, and are sometimes beyond repair.
In addition to books, audio cassettes, DVDs, CDs, and video tapes are susceptible to excessive heat, and it is recommended that individuals keep these in covered compartments and out of direct sunlight. We know it's easy to keep your books in your car throughout the day before returning them after work or school, and sometimes, this is the only option. But for those of who are able to return your books before starting your day, or are willing to leave them at home until you are free to come to the library, I challenge you to save those melting books!