When Sian Fitzpatrick was a little girl she became enthralled with the world of Harry Potter, as did millions of other children around the world.
On her own admission she was desperate to receive a letter from Hogwarts, and believed it was just a matter of time before she would be accepted into the school of witchcraft and wizardry.
Sian might not be making magic potions, but reading cast a powerful spell, to the extent that it is now part of her career.
The 24-year-old is one of Aberdeen’s youngest librarians and her job is all the more surprising considering the fact that she was once indifferent to libraries.
Believing them to be similar to school, Sian never thought she would become passionate about the services which libraries across the north-east can offer.
From introducing young children to reading to helping the elderly feel less lonely, Sian hopes other young people might consider a career as a librarian.
She works on rotation across the city’s libraries but has a soft spot for Tillydrone library.
“There was no one more surprised than me when I became a librarian full-time after a stint doing it over summer,” said Sian.
“I remember telling my friends and they were shocked as well.
“That was mostly because I’m probably one of the loudest in our friendship group.
“It made me laugh but I think my personality is a way of challenging a complete misconception about libraries.
“There is no such thing as a ‘shush’ culture in libraries anymore and we don’t go around telling people off for talking.
“Obviously you have to be respectful of people when they are researching, but I have conversations all the time.
“We don’t have tatty books either, that’s another misconception as many of our books are brand new.”
But who is the average library user in an age where we access almost everything online?
Sian sees an incredibly diverse mix of people every week, who use the library for a variety of reasons.
These can include seeking help from librarians with applications right through to young children who enjoy interactive story-telling sessions.
“That’s what I love about the library, every day is different,” said Sian.
“The Book Bug sessions are particularly good fun and I am actually hoping to become a reader at them.
“Sometimes the children can be really enthralled and that’s brilliant to see. It also helps to bring mums in the community together and that can only be a good thing.
“People can also come to us for IT advice and we help with things like blue badge applications.
“You get to know people who come in regularly and there is something very intimate about helping someone choose a book.”
Popular author requests include Ian Rankin and James Paterson.
“I can remember when everyone was asking for a book called A Confederacy for Dunces and it turned out that Billy Connolly had said it was one of his favourite reads,” said Sian.
“When I was a child I can remember loving anything by Jacqueline Wilson.
“She was dealing with all these problems that didn’t get talked about, like parents breaking up and bullying.
“She’s still relevant today and I admit I have revisited her books.”
Sian is naturally surrounded by books day in, day out, but what impact has it had on her own reading?
She confesses that she is now a “greedy” reader and can have several books on the go at once.
“I never used to do that before I was a librarian and now I can’t help myself,” said Sian. “I dip in and out of different stories because there is so much to choose from.”
One of her current reads is a Discovery of Witches, which is part of the popular All Souls trilogy.
Sian has always found herself drawn to fiction of a more mystical nature, but is also responsible for putting together a reading list for other people.
“If you’re elderly or have mobility issues, it can be really difficult to get out to the library,” said Sian.
“That’s why we have a mobile service with a library van which goes out every week.
“People will tell me the sort of things they like and then I have to pick out books for them.
“That is a huge responsibility because reading is very personal.
“It’s also one of my favourite parts of the job though, especially if people enjoy what I’ve picked.
“I believe books can be life changing because they open your mind up to a different point of view.
“Books can give you an insight into so many things and I think we still value books a great deal.
“I don’t dislike Kindles and I think they can be a brilliant resource.
“But for me personally, I’d always rather feel the solid spine of a book resting in my hand.”
To discover your local library, visit www.aberdeencity.gov.uk