Imagine a library which provides secret identities to some of the very most important people in the country. A library that is so keen to protect those who visit it, that it can barely be made out between the crazy, topsy-turvy bookshops that surround it.
The Alibi Library is best described in the words of its proprietor and librarian Archibald Lib:
A place where everyone who’s anyone who needs a little… tittle tattle to cover his tracks can come and borrow something. You see, this is a reference library; people can consult, peruse, thumb through, but the intellectual property stays here. What we give are alibis, back stories, cover ups and if necessary downright lies, but when they go up those steps they leave with nothing more than a notion, a sketch, a diagram, an outline. Our clients are very particular too. Some of them, I regret to say, have become alibi junkies addicted to leading two lives, the false one they live with their families, or at work, or in the public service, and the alibi that hides the life, that society or their position, does not permit them to lead. But I mustn’t grumble. We rather rely on them
If you were to go into the library for the first time as Henry did this is what you might expect to see:
“Around him were piles and piles and piles of books piled high to the ceiling and bundles and bundles of newspapers and notebooks bundled together. The ceiling itself was low giving the whole room a cramped and claustrophobic feel. The books looked old and well thumbed. The colours of their spines were dulled to the point that, in the half light, it was impossible to tell which was green from which was blue.”
Here are some of the crazy titles you might find in a library like this one:
Making It Up – Ways Out of the Appalling Reality of Any Situation.
How to Look Like You Are Compromising Without Ever Really Compromising Anything At All
Making Promises That You Needn’t Keep
The Collected and Annotated Alibis of H. H. H. edited with a forward by Archibald Lib.
Lost Properties accompanied by a sister volume Found Wanting
Where Everything is in Relation to Everything Else or Why Nothing is Ever Really Hidden.
At losses -plans and maps of anywhere you don’t know