People throw away a lot of stuff, including books – sometimes boxes of books at a time.

It bothered Grand County Solid Waste administrative assistant Susan Thompson, an avid reader, to see perfectly good volumes being discarded. She wondered if some of those books might never be printed again.

Thompson and three district employees, Dan Crouch, Adam Watkins and Shan Knighton, decided to do something about the waste.

“We had a shed (at the solid waste district recycling center) and cleaned it out and put up shelves,” Thompson said.

The shed was filled with books and became available to peruse in May. There’s now a bin for books at the recycling center that are placed on the shelves for people to take.

“It’s better than letting them get destroyed,” Thompson said.

She’s seen cookbooks, school work books, encyclopedias, hardback and paperback novels, and kids’ books.

Thompson herself scored a history book on the Roman Empire, a beginning chemistry book and the Twilight series books, of which she is a big fan. She has also found children’s books for her grandkids.

There were about 50 Readers Digest volumes with four novels to a book – “one guy took the whole set,” Thompson said.

Ten years’ worth of National Geographic magazines have also come and gone.

Currently, Thompson said, there are a couple hundred workbooks, and 50 to 60 novels.

“You can take a book home, read it and bring it back,” Thompson said.

Community members may visit the book shed during the recycling center’s business hours, Monday through Saturday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The center is located at 1000 E. Sand Flats Road.