Weekly Reading – Week 8
Library Catalog and Nonfiction
By reading Tarulli’s article (2011) on Readers’ Services and the Library Catalog, I understood that the library catalog of any public library has to constantly evolve due to fast development of technologies in order to serve the patrons’ needs efficiently. Presently, many public libraries have reader’s advisories blogs where they suggest new books and bestsellers every year. But I also think that today’s patrons want interaction that is offered on majority of websites; therefore, libraries’ websites (including their catalogs) should offer features such as allowing patrons to post reviews, ask questions to reader’s advisers, discuss books, find reviews when searching the catalog, similar books features and so on.
Searching the library’s catalog should not be as plain as it was before. I think that libraries should learn from book sellers such as Amazon, where they provide detailed information about books, more about the author, and similar titles suggestions. Since Amazon allows the buyer to look inside the book, read the summary and reviews, buyers can definitely decide whether they would enjoy the book or not. Providing audio book samples is also an interesting feature, which can be possibly used on reader’s advisory pages of library websites. In short, a library’s catalog should be simple but rich at the same time by providing quick, interesting, and interactive features in order to help patrons in selecting new materials.
In her article, “Taking on Nonfiction Reader’s Advisory” Saricks (2005) stresses out the importance for readers’ advisers to learn about nonfiction materials and include nonfiction in their reading. She explains, that “as readers’ advisers who work with fiction collections learned long ago, we all need to read books popular with our readers. Make an effort to include nonfiction in your leisure reading if you’re normally a fiction reader.”
Likewise, Saricks provides useful ideas to promote readers’ advisory for nonfiction readers. For instance, putting up displays with popular nonfiction titles; making nonfiction lists; paying attention which nonfiction titles are popular; and including nonfiction in discussion groups and book events is also an interesting way to introduce the nonfiction collection to the community.
Trott, B., & Tarulli, L. (2011). Readers’ Services and the Library Catalog. Coming of Age Fiction? Or Nonfiction? Reference & User Services Quarterly, 51(2), 115-119.
Saricks, J. (2005). Taking on Nonfiction Reader’s Advisory. Booklist, 101(13), 1141.