I’m going to propose what some may see as a radical departure from current library culture, while others may scoff at it as old-fashioned: The most important part of your library is your readers, both on your staff and in your patron base. The symbiotic relationship between the building that provides storage for a host of knowledge and entertainment and the librarians in charge of that building has been lost.
Posts Tagged ‘readers advisory’
Barnes & Noble’s list of reads for the biggest travel day of the year wins big.
They come up to the desk and, for the most part, they do not look particularly sad. Most of them look tired–very tired. I look over or approach and ask if I can help them, and as they edge closer to the desk, sometimes dropping their voices at the same time, they ask: “Do you have books for when somebody has died?”
With great book groups comes great responsibility—to be open to tough conversations. Since the 2016 presidential election, many of Kansas City (MO) Public Library’s book clubs have been asking for reading that exposes them to different viewpoints. They want fiction that humanizes the news accounts they read; they want nonfiction that helps explain the issues.
Chicago was more than ready for the merriment that thousands of librarians brought to the American Library Association’s 2017 Annual Conference. Keep the spirit of Chicago alive this summer with some of these books, films, podcasts, and cultural touchstones.
Ken Burns and Lynn Novick’s ten-part documentary film, The Vietnam War (2017), will be the centerpiece for many conversations this fall for veterans, protestors, historians, and others seeking answers to the what, why, and how questions.
Once per month, from September to May, program participants discuss literary powerhouses like Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales and Garcia Marquez’s One Hundred Years of Solitude. The program is a collaboration between PRPLD, the English department at Colorado State University (CSU), and a local Fort Collins (CO) business, Wolverine Farm Letterpress & Publick House. Graduate students and faculty from the English department are our expert guides, providing background on the author, historical period, significance of the work, and thoughtful prompts for discussion. The program is drop-in and open to all community members.
Readers’ Advisory Queen Becky Spratford gave us some great advice last month. The conversation continues here.
Whether it’s learning to ski or how to sew a straight seam, a great teacher shows contagious enthusiasm while breaking down the skill into manageable pieces. Becky Spratford is no exception.
The unsteady political climate and unsure footing of American foreign policy has led many readers to find solace in books that they feel they can relate to: dystopian novels.
At the time of this writing, many of us are angry and sad and frustrated, if the news and social media are any indication. And for many of us, books serve as a refuge when life becomes difficult. Yet while books can provide an escape from harsher realities, they can also provide a lens through which we can better view and understand what is unfolding around us.
I’m a children’s librarian at a smaller library with one reference/circulation desk, so I make recommendations to people of all ages. One of my favorite patrons is the guy who gets a new library card because he now has some time on his hands maybe due to a surgery. Or the guy who gets dragged into the library by his wife who insists he has something to read on their beach vacation. I can identify with this guy because he sounds an awful lot like my husband. As an electrical engineer, my husband reads manuals at work all day. When he’s home, he’d rather work in the yard or catch a game if he has any downtime. But what kind of librarian would I be if I didn’t bring him home books occasionally?
The traditional approach to reader’s advisory interviews presupposes that the patron is already a reader. However, when a patron doesn’t know, or can’t describe, what they like, try this unconventional question: what is your favorite TV show?
I’ve been a children’s librarian for almost seventeen years, but 2014 was the first time I participated in a book award committee. While the award might not be as well-known as the Newbery–publishers were not inclined to print our potential choices in paperback just because we were going to select them as nominees- our committee nevertheless had a daunting task.
It’s taken quite a bit of time to put series information on all our chapter, tween, young adult, adult, and large print books. However, the response from the community has been tremendous, and it’s taught us a few things about our collection as well!