Science fiction book returned to library. 45 years late.

Contributed by
Dec 14, 2012, 4:09 PM EST

Don't feel bad if you've got some Blockbuster videos sitting around from last month: Your lateness doesn't compare with the person who checked out a paperback of the sci-fi book Quatermass and the Pit from a U.K. library and only returned it now. Forty-five years later.

The staff at the Dinnington library in Sheffield, South Yorkshire, Great Britain, got the paperback first edition of the book, which we presume was the 1960 script of the classic British sci-fi TV series, which aired on BBC in 1958-'59. The book, by Nigel Kneale, had been borrowed on Sept. 24, 1965, the Reuters news service reported:

"I thought at first it was just a normal return, until I saw the colour of the pages: they were very brown around the edges," said Alison Lawrie, the Principal Library Assistant.

"It's true that some people like to take their time with a good book, but 45 years is an incredible amount of time!"

The library doesn't know who borrowed the book—records don't go back that far—but whoever it is had better come forward soon: They owe six pounds in fines, about $9 U.S. (That's the maximum fine charged for late returns.)

If they don't come forward, someone will be looking for them in another 45 years or so.

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