Sammy Nickalls
September 01, 2015 10:29 am

As hard as we try to be kind to books, we’ve all accidentally ripped a page or spilled a drink on the cover of a beloved piece of literature. And it feels TERRIBLE, because books are precious things that should be treated like gold! Well, when eight-year-old Jackson Dowler in Toronto accidentally damaged a book, he felt so guilty that he included a note with his favorite Asterix comic book when he gave it back to the library. . . and the note is absolutely precious on its own.

On August 15, the day after public services assistant Aron Johns discovered the note, the Toronto Public Library tweeted a picture of the note written in turquoise magic marker. “I am sorry that a page ripped when it fell out of my bed when I fell asleep reading it,” the note read, breaking our hearts. “It won’t happen again. I’m sorry. From Jackson.”

“Found in the book drop @ Main Street branch,” the library tweeted, along with the picture. “Here’s to many more nights falling asleep with a good book, Jackson!”

At first, the library wasn’t sure who Jackson was. “I was struck by how genuinely apologetic the mysterious ‘Jackson’ was,” Johns told People. “I had a good chuckle over it – it was so charming – and shared it with my supervisor.”

Branch manager Daniel Colangelo decided to share the note to the library’s social media platforms. After the photo was retweeted hundreds of times and shared over 1,300 times on the library’s Facebook page, they tracked the note down to Jackson Dowler, who had taped the letter to the comic book before dropping it off in the overnight drop box.

“We tried to tape it, but I wrote the note so I could tell the library it was ripped so they could fix it better,” Jackson told People. “Other kids who want to read it don’t want to be missing a page. It was my dad’s favorite book and it’s mine too. It’s full of adventure!”

Jackson’s mother, Alison, wasn’t surprised by her son’s insistence to send the note in. “When it comes to reading, he’s always thinking of other kids,” she told People. “He’s considerate about other people’s feelings, when we walk down the street, he uses any pocket change he has to drop in the hats of people asking for money.”

We’re pretty sure the library forgives him, because on August 19, he was honored via a ceremony put on by the library. . . and was even sent a few Asterix comics by an anonymous man from Ottawa. “He had been a fan himself growing up and thought the story was so heartwarming he wanted to give back to Jackson,” Colangelo told People.

“We get ripped books all the time,” librarian Ella McLeish told CBC News. “For this little one to apologize, we thought it was very, very sweet. I was just really touched by it.”

So with Jackson’s vast love and respect for all the books in the reading world, is he considering being a writer? “It’s a possibility, because I do love to read, and it’s important for kids to read for half an hour a day,” Jackson told People. “My friends usually do TV and electronics, but I like reading because it tells an adventure that you can’t get from playing on the iPhone or iPad.”

YEP, JACKSON IS THE CUTEST. And he speaks a ton of truths. Any friend of books is a friend of mine. You’re the best, Jackson, and thanks for being the grand protector of all books in the world.

(Images via Twitter.)

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