Celebrity Librarian

Monday I went to a big librarian get-together and met Nancy Pearl, one of the very few librarians who might qualify for celebrity status. She is, after all, the model for the librarian action figure. She talked all day, which was very impressive. I didn’t buy the action figure, even though I could have had it autographed. I will not tell you about how to run a book club (unless you want to know), or about marketing older fiction, something my library does very poorly, but how in the world would we fit it in? Anyway.

She had very nice things to say about reader’s advisory, which is librarian speak for being able to suggest books that a patron might like based on a couple minutes of chatting with them. Her basic formula is Mood Appeal point Motivation. Appeal is what allows most people to get into the book, and she says there are four major ways that books do this – Character, Story, Setting, and Language. Some books – she cited The Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter as two – have all four appeals, and thus are popular with lots and lots of people. We all wrote down recent favorite titles, discussed all the aspects, and figured out what aspects were most important to us. It turns out that I am most attracted to character and setting. Fast stories often annoy me – I don’t like to feel forced to stay up late to find out what happens next.

So, what appeals to you the most? Or, tell me 3-5 favorite books and one sentence about why you like them and I will try to figure it out.

About Katy K.

I'm a librarian and book worm who believes that children and adults deserve great books to read.
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