Friday, April 28, 2017

Week 16 Prompt

As a child, I read a lot of print fiction books, specifically when I was "bored" (which was very often in the tiny town I grew up in). Now, my reading of print fiction is similar. I still read all day in bed during times I have more free time than usual, usually the summer. However, technology have also introduced many new reading habits that I do not even consciously think about! For example, when trying to find a good book to read as a child, I would often just scan library shelves for a long time until I found a book that stood out to me. Now, I rely on online resources such as Goodreads, blogs, or even Twitter to find new book recommendations. This has led me to read more small publisher or independently published books.

I also do a lot of reading online, but I do not sit and think about it as reading. I am getting news stories, reading friends essays and writing, but if someone had asked me if I had read that day I would still say no! When I "read" and acknowledge the reading is when I am reading a print book. I think technology will continue to fill our time and our days and reading will be a passive experience of reading shorter articles, news stories, or short stories in the online format. However, I think that print books will still remain an option and will still be checked out frequently from public libraries.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Week 15 Prompt

Clear signs and arrangement of collections are important to promote a library's fiction collection. I think going along with this, if you have the collection arranged how you see best fit using the signs you think are best fit, you still need to be open and receptive to change based on the patron's needs. For example, at the IU Education Library where I work we have a sign above the reference desk that says "Ask ? Here". However, no one seemed to ever approach the reference desk to ask their questions but would go to the circulation desk instead. The circulation workers would direct them in the reference desk location or attempt to answer the question themselves, but overall there was something about the reference desk location or signage that was not working and needed a change. Fiction collections can suffer similar problems. Even using clear and simple signs and arrangement that makes sense, this still may not work for the patron. Being open to suggestions and noticing repeating problems is essential in rearrangement of your collection. Librarians become so used to their environment that it is hard to see problems patrons may have. It could be useful to have an honest friend who is not familiar with your library visit your fiction collection and see if they can easily navigate the area and take any feedback they have on ways in which it was confusing or difficult.

Book displays seem to be a very effective method of showcasing your collection. Book display areas should ideally be open and easily accessible to the patrons. When I worked at high school library I would make displays throughout the library on any available surface. The displays that were at hip level and without barriers by far circulated the quickest. However, administration also requested displays in locked glass cases. These displays were still open to circulation but the patron had to come ask me to unlock the case for them to get the book they wanted. I would put many signs around the display to make it clear that these books were available to check out, however oftentimes no one would check out books from these displays because of this extra layer of work.

Bookmarks are also a great tool for displaying information about a library's collection. I have also found them effective to use to promote upcoming library programs and events. If the bookmarks are in convenient locations such as the circulation area or even throughout the fiction section, patrons of all ages are likely to reach for them to use for the book that are about to check out. Bookmarks do take more time to make and also may be easily lost by patrons, however even if the bookmark only lasts for one book, the patron may better remember the information that was on the bookmark. Also, if they find the information handy, they are more likely to keep the bookmark around to reuse.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Week 14 Prompt

 would not promote segregating LGBTQ and African American fiction from the rest of the fiction section because I believe the potential negatives outweigh the potential positives of this arrangement. The potential negatives are restricting free discovery of a book or genre you may not typically seek out and promoting safety and privacy of patrons. If these books are segregated away from the collection, many readers may not read great LGBTQ or African American fiction because they do not typically seek them out. If they are integrated into the regular fiction shelves, it greatly improves the chances of random discovery. Specifically with LGBTQ, though in some libraries certainly also African American fiction may be books that patrons could be embarrassed or sensitive about checking out because of the nature and attitude of the town concerning these groups of people. If the collections were segregated, patrons may be more timid about going into the segregated sections for fear of being seen by peers.

The main potential benefit from segregating these sections from the rest of the fiction is making these collections easier to find for people do who seek out these specific genres. Yet, this benefit can still be achieved using different methods rather than segregation such as book lists, reader's advisory, or book displays.

Friday, April 14, 2017

Urban Fiction Annotation


By: Keisha Ervin



Mo has been through it all with Quan. Nine years together has brought along more than just love, including three miscarriages, many flings, fights, and reconciliations. However despite it all, Mo remains infatuated and in love. Quan's hustle keeps her well-taken care of financially, but Mo wants more than fancy cars and a nice home, she wants Quan's full heart. But is Quan a perpetual player who will never settle down? Should Mo move on? Can she move on even if she wanted to? Reader's are in store for a wild ride of lies, betrayal, and rebirth in this street lit novel that weaves together themes we all are familiar with, no matter where we call home.


Plot: Like much street literature, the plot is full of bold and shocking events. There are explosive fights, intense betrayal, death, and steamy affairs. The fast pace and continual shocking events keep reader's on their toes.

Characters: The characters, as common with this genre, are facing hard times but looking to rise to the top. They are understanding the need for a better life and working to reach their goals, despite the hardships and setbacks. Also common with this genre are strong female characters. In the first half of the book Mo faces many trials and finds it difficult to stand up for herself or work for her own well-being. However, in the second half of the book, the tides change and Mo finds newfound strength and resilience to accomplish her goals and work for what she needs.

Theme: The common theme in street literature of betrayal is also present in this novel throughout the relationship between Mo and Quan. Along with this theme comes themes of resilience, love, and sacrifice.


A Deeper Love Inside by Sister Souljah

Every Thug Needs a Lady by Wahida Clark

Mafia Princess by Joy King

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Week 13 Prompt

 I was the girl growing up who played softball her whole life but sat in the outfield shamelessly applying stick-on nails and touching up my lip gloss instead of engaging in the game. So, I am no stranger to "guilty pleasures" and have lost any reservations about "liking what I like". When I first heard someone criticizing adults for reading YA novels or graphic novels I was actually shocked. Out of all the things to criticize, reading anything, despite the topic or style, seems strange to me. Since being in library school, I have even heard some future librarians discussing worthy versus unworthy literature in libraries.  I do not believe in the hierarchy of literature necessarily. I also believe that the adults who read exclusively graphic novels or children's books would not suddenly begin to read classic literature if it was the only thing available, instead they would likely just not be reading. Librarians need to steer away from self-censorship. The idea of promoting worthy literature and not promoting unworthy genres is a form of self-censorship. People can and should have varying ideas of what makes good literature and what is worth reading. It is the librarians job to help the people find their own idea of a good book.

Some ways librarians can promote graphic novels, YA books, and children's books to adults is by putting them on display, making book lists, and forming programs and book clubs centered around these genres. A good example is the book club I observed for this class, the Forever Young Adult Book Club.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Young Adult Annotation

Ask the Passengers

By: A.S. King


Synopsis: Astrid Jones is a high school senior in Unity Valley, Pennsylvania, a small and close-minded town that is leaving her feeling more alone everyday. Between her high-strung, New York loving mother, her quiet and reserved pot-smoking father, and her sister who does not want to spend any time with Astrid, she spend much of her time instead laying in her backyard and talking to the passengers of the planes that fly overhead. When Astrid's secret relationship with a girl at work begins to become more serious, she is faced with even deeper loneliness and confusion. Unable to turn to her family and friends to help her figure out questions of her sexuality and identity, she again turns instead to the airplane passengers to ask these important life questions. However, when Astrid's secret is revealed and her life is flipped upside down, suddenly she must face the people in her life rather than the ones in the sky. But will they understand her and accept her? King uses a familiar YA plot line to open up difficult discussions on identity, sexuality, and questioning. Her use of magical realism and interesting characters help further differentiate this novel from other YA novels.


Pace: This novel, as per usual for young adult novels, is fast-paced. The action stays moving and new events keep happening throughout the novel. 

Young Characters: The young characters in this novel are likable and relatable for young people. All of the characters have flaws and strong points that are both highlighted. The characters struggle with real issues that other teenagers likely face such as bullying, acceptance, and figuring out your own identity and beliefs. There is also a lot of family drama and navigating family relationships throughout the novel.

Character-driven storyline: The story is very character driven with the plot being born out of the characters in the story and their inner conflicts.


Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz

What Happened to Lani Garver by Carol Plum-Ucci

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Week 12 Prompt

Reader's Advisory Matrix

Women in Clothes by Sheila Heti, Heidi Julavits, & Leanne Shapton

Where on the narrative continuum?
This book is all narrative with no facts or non-narrative research. Much of the book consists of surveys, pictures, and conversations; so while the information is narrative, there is no one narrative arch.

This book looks at the ways in which various women from various backgrounds, ethnicities, careers, and ages view clothes, adornment, and fashion in relation to their own life.

Type of Book?
This book is described as an anthology. It is a collection of 639 surveys intermixed with photographs, projects, and discussion.

Articulate Appeal?
  • Pacing: This book does not necessarily have a "flow" or "pace". It is the type of book where most readers probably flip around until they find a part that interests them. When trying to read the book start to finish, the book would probably seem hard to get through to many people. Interviews and specific sections are never too long in and of themselves, there is just so many of them. A fast-pace per section, just many, many sections.
  • Characters: One goal of the book was to provide as many different types of women represented as possible. So in terms of "characters" there are 639 of them! However, the three main editors voices are intertwined throughout the book making them to be the "characters" that help you through. 
  • How does it feel: Warm and open- like chatting with your friends, aunts, mothers.
  • Focus: The importance of dress in our daily worlds, the vast array of opinions on clothes and how they affect each of us differently or similarly.
  • Does language matter: Language varies depending on which section or person you are reading. 
  • Is Setting Important: Overall no- but some respondents choose to describe their home/city more than others. However if "setting" is an important appeal factor for a reader I would not recommend this book.
  • Are There Details: Yes- lots of detail into descriptions of clothes, jewelry, and conversations.
  • Charts and Graphic Material: No charts, but pictures are used to show collections of items or other photographic projects such as scans of hands wearing rings, pictures of people's mothers, etc.
  • Does the Book Stress Learning: Learning through understanding more viewpoints but does not stress learning new concepts or ideas.
 Why would a reader enjoy this book?
1) Characters 2) Details 3)Focus