Category Archives: Uncategorized

BCLA Readers’ Advisory Interest Group on Hiatus

Dear BCLA members,

It is with much regret that we write to inform you that the BCLA Readers Advisory Interest Group is going on hiatus. The membership for this group has fallen dramatically over the past two years and with only a few members left and no co-chairs, we have decided to send this email as both an announcement and a call-out for anyone who might be interested in helping to resurrect the group.

The BCA Readers’ Advisory Interest Group [RAIG] is a community of library professionals and students in BC who are passionate about RA. We work to promote key library services and skills to connect adult readers with traditional and non-traditional collections throughout the province. We develop and promote adult readers’ advisory service in BC by:

  • Building readers’ advisory resources
  • Developing and facilitating a community of library professionals and library students with an interest in readers’ advisory
  • Promoting and advocating for readers and readers’ advisory
  • Recognizing excellence in readers’ advisory services

https://bclaconnect.ca/raig/

 

We will both be taking a step back from the group, but will remain active behind the scenes, i.e. on the Instagram account : https://www.instagram.com/bclaraig/

We would also gladly help anyone who is interested in taking over the group with the transition and can offer support if there are questions, etc.

We will remain the sole contacts for this group until someone else picks up the reigns.

Have a wonderful BCLA Conference next week! Hopefully some of you can get together and talk about Readers Advisory and may decide you want to be the one to save this group!

 

Thank you,

Stephanie and Alan

OMG – We’re Meeting!

finally

After a slight hiatus, the Readers’ Advisory Interest Group is meeting on Monday, March 4th from 6:30pm-7:45pm at VPL’s Central Branch (Level 3 Meeting Room across the Inspiration Lab). This is an informal meeting where we’ll be discussing the RAIG’s future and how we can move forward. All are welcome.

We’re excited to see what new directions we can take. See you on Monday!

Cheers,

Alan and Stephanie

Oh, the Horror!

October is the perfect month to indulge in the horror genre. I would love to share some of my favourite Reader’s Advisory horror tools, some spook-tacular display ideas, and one of my favourite horror novels.

Finding a wide variety of excellent horror suggestions can be difficult, especially if you don’t read the genre (and many people don’t). Most fans of the horror genre have read popular authors such as Clive Barker and Stephen King. Here are some great RA tools to help you find some new authors and the best possible selection of horror:

RA for All Horror

This is Horror-Awards

What Should I Read Next?

Literature Map

I also enjoy creating displays in the library to showcase different aspects of our collection, and in October I love to make spooky displays. Here are a few ideas to try at your own library:

 

Mariko Koike’s The Graveyard Apartment is a great book to recommend to customers who love to read horror novels.

horrorread

After moving to a new apartment complex next to a cemetery, a young Japanese family experiences strange and terrifying occurrences that send the other residents fleeing their homes, ultimately leaving them alone with a dark, evil something, or someone, residing in the basement.

If you are a fan of horror, please add your favourite reads in the comments below!

-Sally, Library Technician, Maple Ridge Public Library

 

NoveList Book Squad

Have you heard about NoveList Book Squad? Book Squad is a newsletter put out by NoveList that delivers RA tips and tricks, genre information, display ideas, and showcases interesting and relevant topics for discussion at your library.  You can select a number of topics to receive information about, just like how NextReads works.

topic selection

I find Book Squad most useful for unique and simple display ideas. For example, a recent newsletter featured a picture of a “Killer Summer Reads” display with a selection of horror titles to get started.  Most newsletters also come with readymade posters, bookmarks, and other printables that you can use in your own library.  Easy peasy lemon squeezy.

Poster 1poster-2.pngPoster 3

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s a good idea to make sure all the titles are in your library’s collection before you print out posters. Even if you’re not interested in printing out any of the materials, it is a good way to ideas for displays and then populate them with books right off your own shelves.  If you don’t like the display they’ve made, it helps to jump start the brainstorming process or bring new possibilities and topics to light.

Of course, NoveList is interested in self-promotion, so the newsletters also provides tips for using NoveList for your RA inquiries, links to NoveList training materials like genre outlines, and other ideas about how to use NoveList at your own library. And, because NoveList is an American company, a lot of the content tends to be more American in focus.

Have you used this resource and found it useful? Let us know in the comments below!

Sarah Jost – Information Services Librarian at FVRL

 

RA Roundup

Library Journal: Growing Readership Through Diversity ALA Panel

An insightful summary from the “Growing Readership Through Diversity” ALA panel from this year’s conference. The article discusses the important role that library staff have in terms of increasing visibility in books and authors by introducing their patrons to diverse readers.

Vancouver Public Library: Newly Added Literary Landmarks

VPL recently added new plaques for the Literary Landmarks Initiative for the following authors and creators:  Ivan Coyote, David Suzuki, bill bissett, and Madeleine Thien. If you’re not familiar with the initiative check out the website for the interactive map, information on the authors and their contributions to their neighbourhoods, as well as a list of their works.

Toronto Public Library: Toronto in Literature – Neighbourhood Booklists

Here’s another example of how public libraries are incorporating local fiction maps into their RA. Check out Toronto Public Library’s Neighbhourhood Booklists that feature a breakdown of the various neighbourhoods and how they’ve been captured in literature. The list includes a variety of formats from novels, graphic novels, short stories, and memoirs.

Book Riot: Indulgent Fiction and Food Pairings

Celine Low over at Book Riot has compiled fantastic list of fiction and food pairings (some even include a “pairs poorly with” offerings). The titles range from George R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones to Kevin Kwan’s Crazy Rich Asians.

 

Apps for your reading life

Here are some reading-related apps for all of us book nerds:

Litsy

litsyLitsy is basically Instagram for those of us who only care about book photos. In addition to the book cover galore, you can use Litsy as a way to track your reading. Search for a title, add to your reading stack, and when you are done, share your rating, short review, blurb or quote. I am especially fond of the “bail” rating. Thank you for giving me the permission to just close the book and say, “that’s enough of that.”

If you like hanging out with other book lovers, give Litsy a try. There is always good old Goodreads too of course. It’s June already. How are you doing on your annual reading challenge?

 

 

Ambient Mixer

I first heard about Ambient Mixer from this Lifehacker post, and it sounds like a fun way to add to the atmosphere while you are reading, and help you get immersed in the scenes. The website provides a wide variety of themed music loops and mixes so you can create the appropriate background soundtrack to match whatever you are reading. Jon Snow could be walking to the sounds of a “mysterious walk in snow storm”  beyond the wall. Transport yourself to Waystone Inn with the fantasy inn/pub/tavern loop. Or, how about some crowd noise for Ned Stark? (Umm, no thanks!)

 

Forest

forestSure, there are books that completely capture my attention, but alas, my phone has too much power over me, and I find myself reaching for it when I am supposed to be reading. There are lots of apps out there that can help you maintain focus. I chose Forest because of its genius use of guilt. And I love the UI.

When you are ready to start a task, set a timer of how long you want to read, and the app will plant a tree for you. The idea is to not navigate away from the Forest app to go check your email, or watch that owl pooping and fleeing the scene video for the nth time.  If you try, a warning will come up, asking you if you are really prepared to live the life of a tree killer. Not just any trees, as you can see, cute, little trees!

 

Libib

Libib is a super quick way to catalogue your personal book collection. The app is very easy to use. Just scan the barcode on the back of the book, and the book will be added to your collection. Because my husband and I are both SFF readers, we often stand at the bookstore wondering if we own a particular volume in the series or not. Libib solves that problem for us, well, as long as we add our purchases religiously.

What apps have you found useful in your reading life? Share your favourites in the comment section.

Virginia from the Port Moody Public Library

The Taibbi Trilogy

Well not really a trilogy, but Griftopia, The Divide and Insane Clown President all riff on the same general theme of a corrupt American society, run by a cabal of robber barons at the expense of the poor. Once you read the first, it’s pretty easy to move on to the next.

Taibbi is our generation’s Hunter S. Thompson. Yes, lighter on the shock-value prose and drug addled stream of consciousness writing, but heavier on the political analysis. And in our the complex world of incomprehensible economic and legal jargon, he’s the Rolling Stone political writer we need. To his credit, Taibbi approaches the material with same requisite snarl and bite as Thompson once did. He’s angry and incredulous, blending in dark humour to lighten the subject matter.

Griftopia

 

With less of an over-arching theme than The Divide, Taibbi tells some free association stories about various grifts and cons that have gone on the in the American economic system over the past decade. In it, Taibbi also provides probably the greatest all-time explanation-for-novices of the crash of 2007 (even better than Michael Lewis). If you’ve ever wondered what a credit default swap is, Griftopia is the place to start.

Perhaps Taibbi’s best work is a chapter on former Chariman of the Federal Reserve, Alan Greenspan, entitled The Biggest Asshole in the Universe. It chronicles the endless gaffs of a high-society-loving charlatan who was able to convince generations political elites that he was a financial Nostradamus. Taibbi argues that, as with most Friedmanites and Rand enthusiasts, Greenspan’s skill laid in pushing a tragically flawed philosophy, one that simultaneously exalts the pursuit of personal wealth while providing the ‘intellectual’ and ‘moral’ framework for a generation of thieves to convince themselves that they are doing what’s best for society. Taibbi destroys their methodology, point by point. It’s really something.

The Divide

The Divide juxtaposes the two courts of law in America: One for the rich and white and one for the poor and the minority. Taibbi exposes a society where a black man can be stopped, frisked, thrown in the back of a police car and given a court date, all for the crime of standing on the street, while a major bank can ‘illegally’ add five billion dollars off the top of a merger, while stiffing creditors and receiving no blowback, all through the power of their high-priced legal teams.

The Divide is a punch to the gut. It’s horrific, troubling, and illuminating. Easily my favourite of the three.

Insane Clown President

In his newest and most Thompson-esque work, Taibbi dispatches from the Trump campaign trail. It’s a collection of pieces cobbled together from his year writing for the Rolling Stone – much like HST’s famous books of the 1970s and 1980s. It’s hard not to compare Taibbi-Trump to HST-Nixon.

In the book, Taibbi details the fascist-like fervour of Trump’s rally’s, ultimately deciding that Trump is a fitting modern American President, A “human consumption machine with no attention span, no self-control, no beliefs and no hobbies outside of sex, spending, eating and talking about himself. Nixon at least played the piano and read the classics. He was an intellectual with a pig’s heart. Trump is just the pig part.”

Read it now, while it’s still topical, because hopefully time is running out on America’s most famous unhinged carnival-barker.

 

Nolan Kelly is a Library Tech student at Langara.