Tag Archives: Vancouver Public Library

RA Roundup – Food and Booze Edition

Who doesn’t love a booklists that gathers the perfect pairing of a new read and an adult beverage or some bites? Or how about a list of food-centric books that’ll make your mouth water? Check out these fun booklists and share any of your recommendations with us in the comments below.

Vancouver Public Library’s Books and Beers Booklist

vpl books and beers booklist

VPL’s Readers’ Advisory team partners with Chester Carey, a cicerone and co-founder of the B.C. Beer Awards, to curate a beer lover’s dream booklist. The list features some amazing craft beers (and the Irish classic Guinness) paired with a range of titles that include fiction and non-fic titles.

Book Riot’s 100 Must-Read Books: Food in Fiction

A list of 100 food-centric novels? Don’t mind if I do! Check out this amazing booklist that gathers a wide range and diverse titles for any reader, including children’s and YA titles. The list is also broken down by different categories: sci fi and fantasy, historical, and contemporary. Also there’s a list of titles where food is used as magic!

Bustle’s 9 Book and Wine Pairings that are Perfect for a Boozy Book Club

Screenshot of a booklist from Bustle.com that pairs 9 book titles with the perfect wine.

A slightly older list from 2015, but it still holds strong with its recommendations! It’s an eclectic list for any reader including some excellent titles such as The Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood, The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde, American Gods by Neil Gaiman.

Bookstr’s 10 Perfect Food and Book Pairings

A list of some popular contemporary (soon-to-be classics) titles that include a match made food pairing. Some of the writer’s choices are obvious, whereas others are a little more tongue and cheek such as popcorn for Stephen King’s It.

Stephanie Hong is a library technician for Surrey Libraries and Vancouver Public Libraries. She often pairs her reading with donuts.

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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.

 

RA Roundup

Here are some cool RA-related things happening in libraries and other book-ish related topics. If you’d like to contribute anything your library is doing or something you stumble upon, send an email to raig.active[at]gmail.com or leave a comment.  Happy reading!

Adult Summer Reading Challenges in the Lower Mainland

Fraser Valley Regional Library’s Walk on the Wide Side Summer Adult Reading Club

FVRL’s Summer Adult Reading Club kicked off earlier this week by encouraging a reading challenge similar to the annual children’s one. Patrons can pick up their reading record at their local branch and start their summer reading with a chance to win fantastic prizes!

North Vancouver District Public Library’s Adult and Teen Summer Reading Club

NVDPL wants its patrons to Read Across Canada this summer in honour of celebrating Canada’s 150. Patrons can pick up a BINGO card at any of the branches and start reading across Canada. Once a BINGO line is complete, patrons can enter their cards to win prizes.

Teens have a chance to read across North Vancouver by completing various challenges and a chance to win amazing prizes. Check out the beautiful hand drawn map here.

Port Moody Public Library’s Adult Summer Reading Club

walkonwildside.jpg

Taking a note from the kids’ Summer Reading Club, Port Moody is also getting its adult readers to take a walk on the wild side through a “wild” themed BINGO card challenge. Readers have summer to fill up their cards and be able to win fantastic prizes. Patrons are also encouraged to share their reads throughout the summer with #wildreads on the library’s Facebook and Twitter pages.

Lastly, the library is also trying to boost its sign ups for both the children’s and adult SRCs by holding an epic water balloon fight on Saturday, July 8th, 2017.

Richmond Public Library’s Adult Summer Reading Challenge

Richmond PL is holding its Adult Summer Reading Challenge (from June 7-August 31) by encouraging its users to complete a BINGO card with a variety of reading prompts/recommendations. Once a BINGO card is completed, patrons have a chance to enter win an eReader and other great prizes.

Vancouver Public Library’s National Aboriginal Day Reading Circle Booklist

In honour of its National Aboriginal Day Reading Circle event on June 17, 2018, VPL curated a specialized booklist along with Aboriginal Storyteller in Residence Jules Koostachin. The list features a wealth of compelling titles by a variety of Aboriginal writers including Maria Campbell, Tracey Lindberg, Lee Maracle, Eden Robinson, and more.

Toronto Public Library’s Monthly Readalikes Booklists

Every month the Toronto Public Library creates a readalikes booklist for books/movies with buzz or genres. For instance, in the month of June, the library created a booklist for Shara Lapena’s The Couple Next Door

San Francisco Public Library’s Pride 2017 Book Recommendations

Need books and ideas to help building Pride displays for your library? Check out SFPL’s Pride 2017 booklist for LGBTQ fiction titles published in the last year.

BookRiot’s List of Upcoming Inclusive Mystery Titles

While the mystery genre tends to be dominated by white, male authors, Jamie Canaves at BookRiot compiled a phenomenal list of some upcoming mystery titles by a diverse set of authors who write inclusive characters and themes. As always, we need diverse books.

 


Stephanie Hong is an auxiliary Library Technician for Surrey Libraries and Vancouver Public Library

Readers’ Advisory as the Library’s Brand – David Vinjamuri in Vancouver

Tim McMillan is the acting Head of the Fraserview Branch of the Vancouver Public Library and an Adult Services Librarian. He is keenly interested in readers’ advisory as he finds it to be the library professional’s most challenging and essential task. He enjoys reading non-fiction, especially classics of Classical scholarship and hopes to one day connect a reader to a long forgotten 871 from compact shelving.

On May 20 the Vancouver Public Library hosted Forbes Magazine scribe and New York University adjunct professor David Vinjamuri for a colloquium on branding, merchandising and discovery in public libraries. While many of us may shy away from commercial-lingo, what stood out most from David’s presentation was his identification of our brand as being  readers’ advisory. Having library-professionals identified as the one indispensable resource by an expert from outside of the sector was most encouraging.

Vinjamuri defined Brand as “a promise of authentic and consistent expertise delivering a product or providing a service.” For us, this means our unique and deep understanding of reading trends and preferences. It is what makes us special. The statistical data he presented showed that people are aware of the full range of library programming and services, but that our knowledge of books is what defines us in the public’s eye. Since this is what we are known for, we have to be the best at it.

Easier said than done in today’s information saturated world! What is particularly challenging for library professionals is the sheer volume of books being published. The acquisitions of American public libraries in the 1950s could keep pace with the annual output of American publishers at the rate of approximately 11,000 volumes a year. In the 2010s, the latter number has increased exponentially. Today, public libraries are prevented from acquiring all but a fraction of what rolls off the presses of big publishers.

If individual systems are incapable of acquiring the totality of books produced, what chance do we as individual librarians have at reading our way through this mass? More importantly, how are we to know what to recommend to interested readers? How are we to be the best at readers’ advisory?

Vinjamuri offered a few suggestions. First, libraries should stop playing catch-up with best-sellers. The reading public is already well aware of the Kings, Baldaccis and Pattersons; these titles do not need a librarian to put them in the hands of their next reader. Instead, we could focus on mid-list titles that much of our user community may be unfamiliar with. By omitting the heavy-hitters from our reading lists and bulk acquisitions, we could concentrate on higher impact, lesser known authors whose buzz we could help nurture.

Anythink logo

Visual merchandising our collections could offer public libraries a means of paring down the reliance on best-sellers while providing opportunities to showcase rarely seen areas titles. Facing severe budget cuts, the Adams County Library in Colorado downsized their collection and re-branded itself as Anythink. The centrepiece of their new approach is visual merchandising and they have made their Visual Merchandising Guidelines freely available online. With a relentless focus on the user as a customer and a vocabulary steeped in the language of commercial retail the document’s subtext is that libraries must adopt the visual layout and tactics of the bookstore to successfully compete for the public’s attention.

A Naked Singularity            Wool

The burgeoning self-publishing market offered by the online giant Amazon was recommended as another area where librarians could refine their brand as reading experts. Author-published titles have come a long way since the days of vanity press: Sergio de la Pava’s Naked Singularity and Hugh Howey’s original Wool novella are critically acclaimed and literary examples of titles whose popularity has outstripped many titles by recognized authors from established publishing houses. With an English-language title base that is manageable enough to individually vet, self-published works offer opportunities for public libraries to promote their advisory expertise. The recent example of Illinois public libraries’ Soon to be Famous Illinois Author Project of 2013 was particularly compelling: the Chicago Public Library system and two other urban systems in Illinois curated a successful contest to discover the next great self-published book.

David Vinjamuri’s presentation gave the audience a great deal to think about. Certainly, several British Columbia libraries have successfully adopted a more retail-centric approach to promoting their collections and the example of a library-curated self-published author search is feasible for a large system. Hopefully, the Anythink Libraries Visual Merchandising Guidelines will prove useful to smaller systems as well.

For more information please see the slides from the presentation, linked here with the kind permission of the author: http://www.slideshare.net/dvinjamuri/maximizing-the-library-experience-real-data-from-real-libraries

Naomi Eisenstat on Horror

Naomi Eisenstat covers the basics of the horror genre at our RA in a Half Day event at Vancouver Public Library last October:

Definition: Horror fiction’s most basic definition is it’s designed to scare the reader. Its tone can vary from comedic to dour or hectic to suspensful, but all stories tend to maintain an atmosphere of menace. Unresolved or unhappy endings are the norm. Monsters of some kind usually frame the story. Horror fiction also has more graphic violence or sexual situations than most other genres.

RA Tips and Tricks

Instead of recommending horror by which type of supernatural force menaces the protaganists, look at how soon violence erupts and match that to the reader’s taste on the Storyteller vs. Visceral spectrum.

The graphic violence and sexual content in most horror can be shocking to some new readers.

Potential New Horror Reader Checklist

  • Patron enjoys thrillers of any kind.
  • Patron does not mind blood and guts.
  • Patron prefers character-driven plots over action-stories.
  • Patron does not mind fantasy elements in their novels.

Resources for Great Picks

—  The Bram Stoker Awards

—  Weird Tales Magazine

—  MonsterLibrarian.com

—  Raforallhorror.blogspot.ca

—  Hellnotes.com

—  Spratford, Becky Siegel. The Reader’s Advisory Guide to Horror (2nd Edition). 2012.

—  Saricks, Joyce G. Readers’ Advisory Guide to Genre Fiction (2nd Edition). 2009.

—  Spratford, Becky Siegel. The Horror Readers’ Advisory: The Librarian’s Guide to Vampires, Killer Tomatoes, and Haunted Houses. 2004.

—  Fonseca,  Anthony J. and June Michele Pulliam. Hooked on Horror: A Guide to Reading Interests in Horror Fiction. 1999.

 

Important Horror Authors and a Selection of Their Work

 

 

Stephen King

Carrie

The Shining

Everything’s Eventual

 

Anne Rice

Interview with a Vampire

The Vampire Lestat

 

Shirley Jackson

The Haunting of Hill House

We Have Always Lived in the Castle

The Lottery and Other Stories

 

Dean Koontz

Odd Thomas (Series)

From the Corner of His Eye

Phantoms

 

Clive Barker

The Hellbound Heart

The Damnation Game

Books of Blood, v. 1-3

 

Daphne du Maurier

Rebecca

The Birds

Don’t Look Now: Selected Stories

 

H.P. Lovecraft

The Dunwich Horror and Others

Dagon and Other Macabre Tales

The Horror in the Museum and Other Revsions

 

Peter Straub

Ghost Story

In the Night Room

A Dark Matter

 

Joe R. Landsdale

Mucho Mojo

Writer of the Purple Rage

Mad Dog Summer and Other Stories

 

Kathe Koja

The Cipher

Skin

 

Robert Aickman

The Collected Strange Stories

 

Ray Bradbury

Something Wicked This Way Comes

 

Max Brooks

World War Z

 

Mark Z. Danielewski

House of Leaves

 

Neil Gaiman

A Study in Emerald

 

Mira Grant

Feed

 

Junji Ito

Uzumaki

 

Henry James

Turn of the Screw

 

M.R. James

Ghost Stories of an Antiquary

 

Caitlin R. Kiernan

The Drowning Girl

 

Robert Kirkman

The Walking Dead

 

Richard Matheson

Hell House

 

Joyce Carol Oates

Zombie

 

Dan Simmons

Carrion Comfort

 

Robert Shearman

Remember Why You Fear Me

 

Scott Smith

The Ruins

 

 

 

 

Tanya Thiessen on the New Adult Genre

Surrey Libraries’ Tanya Thiessen gives audience members an education on the new “New Adult” genre at our 2013 RA in a Half Day workshop at Vancouver Public Library:

“New Adult” Romance Resources

Description & History of Genre:

  • So what is “New Adult”? Developed by St. Martin’s Press in 2009, “New Adult” (NA) is essentially a marketing term for the post YA reader, a hot subgenre of the larger Romance category. Some say this genre signals an intermediate step for readers between YA and adult fiction because the protagonists/main characters are in the 18-25 age range tackling issues of “new adulthood”. Often placed in a contemporary college setting, these characters deal with issues of identity – exploring their sexuality, often experiencing peripheral issues stemming from family/childhood abuse, substance abuse, suicide, sexual assault. And these titles are usually heavy on romance, sometimes bordering on erotica – many e-titles come with explicit sex warnings, so how much they are actually an intermediate step post-YA literature is somewhat debatable.
  • Storylines are compelling, as the authors work to translate the intensity and passion of new adulthood into their stories. Often these novels will follow a formulaic theme of “Good Girl” meets “Bad Boy” with anger management issues. Many titles told from both the male and female POV, which is one of the reasons why the genre is so popular, as readers are hungry for the male voice (for example, Walking Disaster is the sequel, male “answer” story to Beautiful Disaster, and Charade alternates chapters told by the male and female main characters).
  • Another reason why these titles are so poplar is because of accessibility – most titles are available in e-format, if not exclusively as an e-title. There’s a lot of “word of mouth” advertising for these titles – New Adult book groups and NA booklists on Goodreads, blogs (Maryse’s Book Blog is often cited for reviews), websites, etc. Replacing the old Harlequins, titles are cheap, or free (you can find a lot of free books in the New Adult or Adult Contemporary Romance in iBooks) and read your guilty pleasure in private on your phone/ereader/tablet. In fact, the development of the genre has come from titles that were originally self-published online, for example, Colleen Hoover’s NA novel, Slammed, was originally self-published on Amazon. Slammed was on the NY bestseller list and the author was still getting rejection letters from print publishers. Readers are driving demand – Cora Carmarck wrote her first novel, Losing It, about a college girl desperate to lose her virginity, in 3 weeks. Carmarck’s goal was to make $1000 – at a price point of $3.99, she ended up making about $200,000, and landed a six-figure deal with HarperCollins.
  • From a publishing perspective, the New Adult genre developed from a desire to continue a relationship with all those voracious YA readers who got interested in the YA genre by reading The Hunger Games and Twilight – just like E.L. James’s inspiration for Fifty Shades… was Twilight. (Ah, yes, Twilight – like a gateway drug!) Readers seem to crave this new genre, and it’s creating a new source of revenue in an industry that is looking for an injection. A Publisher’s Weekly article talks about how the avid YA readership is getting older, and there is a hole in the larger Romance genre that NA fills with its more mature themes. Publishers are keen to keep this group of readers happy, and I think that these themes of identity, not to mention the heavy romance, attracts older female readers…after all, who doesn’t want a little romantic escape in their life?
  • Just as with Romance generally, there are lots of New Adult titles that offer the paranormal aspect. Jamie McGuire of Beautiful Disaster/Walking Disaster fame is working currently on a NA zombie/post-apocalyptic novel. There is so much potential in this category that some YA authors are dabbling with the NA genre – Meg Cabot’s new book features a young college woman and more sexually explicit themes.
  • Abbi Glines’s The Vincent Boys & The Vincent Brothers books were self-published in YA, but she recently released uncut versions of these titles that are labelled appropriate only for ages 17 and up. And a NY Times article on the NA boom notes that publishers are looking seriously at the idea of titles coming in 2 versions in the future so that they can be marketed to both YA and Adult audiences – the double dip, so to speak, to include older readers as the majority of book buyers are over 18.

Considerations for Libraries

  • Content and classification. How do we catalogue 2 versions of the same title? How will this impact readers? Sometimes it is unclear whether the title is YA or Adult Romance – the New Adult subgenre essentially covers everything from John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars to the Fifty Shades… trilogy and a lot in between.
  • It’s unclear at this point if the “New Adult” tag will mean anything to readers – online, readers seem to see it more as a sub-genre of Adult Romance than YA. I don’t think we’re going to need to create another pull-out genre of our larger fiction collection at this point, but given the popularity of these titles, you will want to be aware of this sub-genre for those coming in for readalikes.
  • While sex and coming of age themes are not new in YA, the more explicit sex in NA makes it important for us to make sure we can discern readers looking for fast-paced stories in the New Adult age range and those looking for more descriptive/explicit content (erotica).
  • Looking to purchase New Adult titles for your library? The “Romance/Erotica” sub-section of “Fiction” in Publisher’s Weekly lists New Adult titles.
  • Note that many titles are part of a series, often a trilogy.
  • Many titles are self-published, in e-format exclusively, so can be hard to purchase. Although as the genre grows, these will likely be available in print depending on e-sales.

Helpful Resources:

Charles, John. “Core Collection: Adult Romances for New Adults.Booklist, 15 Sept 2013, pg. 46.

Driscoll, Molly. “Is a ‘new adult’ genre the step between YA and adult books?The Christian Science Monitor, 3 Jan 2013.

Hunter, Sarah. “Core Collection: YA Romances for New Adults.Booklist, 15, Sept 2013, pg. 76.

Kaufman, Leslie. “Beyond Wizards and Vampires, to Sex.The New York Times, 21 Dec 2012.

Rosen, Judith. “New Adult: Needless Marketing-Speak Or Valued Subgenre?Publisher’s Weekly, 14 Dec. 2012.

Wetta, Molly. “What is New Adult Fiction, Anyway?Novelist, Aug 2013.

Graphic Novels with Matthew Murray

SLAIS student Matthew Murray explains Adult Graphic Novels at our 2013 RA in a Half Day on Oct. 30th at Vancouver Public Library:

Adult Graphic Novels Resources:

Awards

American Awards:
Eisner Awards
• Most extensive awards
• Many different categories
www.comic-con.org/awards/eisners-current-info
Harvey Awards
• Voted on by comic book industry professionals
www.harveyawards.org
Ignatz Awards
• Generally focus on “indie” comics and creators
• Small press creators or creator-owned projects published by larger publishers

Canadian Awards:
Doug Wright Awards
• Awarded to “alternative” comics and creators
• Best Book Award
• Best Emerging Talent
Joe Shuster Awards
• More “mainstream” comics (ie. superhero)
• Awards for best writer, artist, cartoonist, etc.

Publishers

Dark Horse
IDW
Image
• The third through fifth biggest comic book publishers in America (after Marvel and DC)
• Major sources of genre (science fiction, etc.) graphic novels
• Publish many media adaptations
• Dark Horse also publish manga

Drawn & Quarterly
• Canadian literary/artistic publisher
• Publish manga/international work
Fantagraphics
• “Alternative” comics publisher
Oni Press
• Small, well-respected popular fiction publisher
Dynamite
• Publish many adaptations of existing books and movies
Vertigo
• DC’s “mature readers” imprint
Viz Media
• Leading manga publisher

Best Seller Lists
Comixology
• Website where users (not librarians) can buy access to comics
• Lists what’s currently selling well digitally
www.comixology.com/comics-best-sellers
Diamond Comics
• The biggest comic book and graphic novel distributor in North America
• They release monthly lists on their website of the top selling graphic novels, manga, and comic books
• Reports sales to comic book shops
www.diamondcomics.com (click on Industry Statistics in the sidebar).
The New York Times
• Features weekly lists
• Reports sales through bookstores and websites
• Paperback: www.nytimes.com/best-sellers-books/paperback-graphic-books/list.html
• Hardback: www.nytimes.com/best-sellers-books/2010-07-11/hardcover-graphic-books/list.html
Reviews, News, and Info
Comics Alliance
comicsalliance.com
Comics Beat
comicsbeat.com
The Comics Journal
www.tcj.com
Diamond Bookshelf
www.diamondbookshelf.com
Graphic Novel Reporter
www.graphicnovelreporter.com
Publishers Weekly
www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/industry-news/comics/

Previews
Comixology
• Features free digital previews and sample issues
www.comixology.com
Net Galley
• Offers digital galley proofs of upcoming grapic novels
www.netgalley.com
Developed and Presented by Matthew Murray
thematthewmurray@gmail.com
thematthewmurray.weebly.com