Carole Thomas, who served as a librarian in Boston for 28 years, says she loves Madison Public Library because she can get almost any book she wants, anytime she wants it.

“I grew up in California in a very small country town, and the library was kind of a way to open up to the rest of the world,” she says. “I went faithfully, and it was like a lifeline to me. So I became a librarian, I liked it that much.”

An avid reader who goes through about 100 books per year, Carole says being connected to a larger network of libraries is important.

“It’s active, lively,” Carole says of the library. “The best thing is everything that’s available. I use books and films, and I download e-books. I use it all.”