Can You Recommend A Good Book On…

Some librarians are brilliant at this and some of us need a little help, especially on the more obscure requests. I’m sure we all read many of the books on our shelves and have become familiar with some of the more requested ones, but how can you stay on top of the depth and breadth of children’s literature and be ready to grab a list of books on, say, personification at the drop of a hat?

Other than keeping up with some of my favorite KidLitosphere blogs, I have two resources I’ve been drawing on this year. The Book-A-Day Almanac and LibraryThing.

For those with even a passing interest in the history of children’s books, the name Anita Silvey carries great weight. A former Horn Book editor, children’s book publisher and all round expert, she definitely knows her stuff. Since the fall she has been posting a lovely description of a book a day, usually making some connection to the day in question. Today being the birthday of the incomparable Mr. Darwin, she is highlighting Deborah Heiligman’s multiple-award-winning novel, Charles and Emma: The Darwins’ Leap of Faith.

As for LibraryThing, I’m more of a GoodReads person myself, but LibraryThing does do better when it comes to quick searches using tags. You don’t even have to be a member. Simply type in a search term in the upper right, then click the “Tags” link on the left sidebar. Choose the appropriate list and sort by title, shelf, or covers of the books most tagged as your search term. You can even do tag “mashes” using more than one term (though be prepared to wait for the wheels to grind a bit before the appropriate list can be found, especially if it’s a search that LibraryThing hasn’t yet encountered). It’s a great way to find books for teachers on a certain subject that will cover both classic and new titles.

Who knows, you might even find some things to add to your consideration file!

Here’s hoping to see you at the Children’s Lit. Conference in Athens next month!

Have fun,
Jim Randolph
Partee Elementary Library
Snellville, GA

link to Book-A-Day Almanac
link to LibraryThing
link to KidLitosphere Central

About Library_Jim

School librarian, dad, hubby, geek.

Posted on February 12, 2011, in Ideas, Reading, Web 2.0. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. I love to use GALILEO’s NoveList! Don’t forget to use GALILEO as much as you can….for if we don’t use it, we will lose it! NoveList is great for fiction at all ages….including yours!

  2. Love Library Thing as a resource. I just used it yesterday when a teacher came in asking for books that were good for teaching foreshadowing. She was thrilled with the books I pulled for her and it was super fast to use library thing and pull the books. Sure beats walking through the rows and rows of books thumbing through pages in the hopes of finding a treasure 🙂

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