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  • Shortlisted in the stacks

    Following up on last week's admission that not all my book advice is golden, I resorted to my favorite source of literary expertise: co-workers. I polled library staffers, requesting names of books they've recommended and later heard described as someone's new favorite, "best book ever"...
    Posted to Reader's Exchange (Weblog) by Linda Sappenfield on 06-29-2010
  • Gambling on the perfect book

    For someone who's not a big risk-taker, I venture possible rejection and failure on a daily basis. I can't decide which is the more serious gamble--recommending books to total strangers, or assuring friends and family that I have just the title for them. People near and dear to you generally...
    Posted to Reader's Exchange (Weblog) by Linda Sappenfield on 06-22-2010
  • Technological scene-stealing at the library

    Here's one for the life-is-unjust archive. Library staffers devoted an entire week (and then some) to applying thousands of RFID tags in our books, DVDs, and CDs--and what is our reward? We are constantly upstaged by four square devices with touch screens, flashing lights, and multiple-item checkout...
    Posted to Reader's Exchange (Weblog) by Linda Sappenfield on 06-14-2010
  • Crying fowl at the box office

    Do we agree that "cult classic film" is frequently euphemistic for "awful movie"? And that dreadful flicks can be wonderfully entertaining? Take Plan Nine from Outer Space , so uproariously unfortunate that my family felt we had to own it on DVD. If you haven't added that one...
    Posted to Reader's Exchange (Weblog) by Linda Sappenfield on 06-07-2010
  • Sense and Similarities

    Certain phrases always catch my eye as I'm scanning book reviews: "debut author", "projected series", "only die-hard fans", "shortlisted", for example. This spring, "beach read" has been much in evidence. That's a loaded term, isn't it? Sure...
    Posted to Reader's Exchange (Weblog) by Linda Sappenfield on 05-31-2010
  • Poolside books: the other economic indicator

    Our vacation is just winding down. During this time, my husband and I have been hauling around two sorts of baggage. There's the bulky but uncomplicated variety encompassing scuba equipment (his) and heels for Formal Night (mine), also the cumbersome should-we-be-taking-a-vacation-in-this-economy...
    Posted to Reader's Exchange (Weblog) by Linda Sappenfield on 05-24-2010
  • Vintage is the new old

    Because three co-workers and I celebrate a "palindrome birthday" this year, we decided to be thrilled about the milestone and splash out with a dessert buffet. Amid the crumbs and frosting, one colleague declared that none of us look our age. Our library staff is noted for the qualities demonstrated...
    Posted to Reader's Exchange (Weblog) by Linda Sappenfield on 05-08-2010
  • Who's in your Rolodex?

    My listening-while-driving highlight this morning was an NPR story about EMILY’s list. Now a mighty political action committee celebrating 25 years of success, it arose from commonplace record-keeping. It seems that a group of women assembled to share the contents of their Rolodexes. That little rally...
    Posted to Reader's Exchange (Weblog) by Linda Sappenfield on 04-30-2010
  • What would Ranganathan do?

    This week, two activities necessitated caution on my part. The first, easier one, stems from the fact that we're still applying RFID tags to nonfiction books. Some are weighty reference volumes; my goal is to avoid slinging them on and off the high shelves too quickly so they don't clonk one...
    Posted to Reader's Exchange (Weblog) by Linda Sappenfield on 04-23-2010
  • No trivial pursuits

    Reference librarianship is a green occupation. Work at the reference desk long enough, and you'll find a use for any scrap of trivia you have ever picked up. You even have opportunities to recycle; some questions present themselves repeatedly. Librarians note, too, that special nuggets of data that...
    Posted to Reader's Exchange (Weblog) by Linda Sappenfield on 04-19-2010
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