Books in series: how to keep track

bookshelfHave you ever picked up a book, started reading it and realized it is the third book in the series? Believe me I have done this several times. Today there are many authors for adults, young adults, and children who create a character(s) and continue to run with them for a number of books. So how do you keep track of what books are in which series and in which specific order do they go in. You could check the most recent title in the series and hope all the books are listed in order in the front of the book or you could keep endless lists of the different series. This can get overwhelming, I know from personal experience.

There are many ways to look up where a book is in a series. There is always the handy use of Google and Wikipedia which you can easily access from anywhere. There are also websites with the books broken down by author and their possibly numerous book series. Yes I am talking about authors like James Patterson, Erin Hunter, Charlaine Harris, Nora Roberts, Janet Evanovich, etc.

One website I use on a daily basis at work is: http://ww2.kdl.org/libcat/whatsnext.asp  This is a great site as it breaks it down by author, series, book title, category, and genre. This is especially great when you are trying to figure out the placement of a kids book such as 39 clues which have several different authors writing for the series. Another website I have found to be helpful with children’s book series is www.kidsbookseries.com You can use Amazon and Goodreads, if you use both sites on a regular basis. I will say if you a series you have enjoyed has ended Amazon and Goodreads are great resources for looking at books which are similar to the one you may have just put down.

One thing I have sslloowwllyy started to do at the library where I work at, is to label the series and placement of a book directly on the spine label and in the record. So far I have gotten positive feedback from other staff members, volunteers, and patrons who appreciate seeing the series and number in a visible spot while perusing the shelves for a new book to read. This is very slow work given the fact I am re-cataloging the books in my free time when I am not processing new library materials, answering the phone, helping patrons, or you know just running up and down the stairs for a wide variety of reasons.

Until next time!

P.S. As I am writing this blog post I am actually sitting at my work computer eating lunch and working on other projects. Multitasking at its best.

 

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Social Bookmarking for Librarians

mzl.oogxgqofIn a world where we use computers in our daily lives for a wide variety of things, it is easy to get lost in the shuffle and confusion of endless websites to be used at a later point in time. One way to stay organized and less overwhelmed is to create a social bookmaking account. This is a great idea because your bookmarks are not confined to one computer, smartphone, or tablet. It is especially useful to librarians in a smaller library where staff members are encouraged to be cross-trained and work at different computers in the library.

There are two free social bookmarking sites to use for this purpose; they are called “Delicious” and “Diingo”. I found personally Diigo is the site that will work best for me. I can use tags to organize all the bookmarks I reference on a daily basis. I can send bookmarks to others and mark them to read at a later point in time. It will prove useful to me to have bookmarks on a social site for when I am working from home or at a different computer at work. A lot of the sites I use on a daily basis at work help me to figure out where a book is in a certain series or to figure out the volume number for a graphic novel. As a cataloger, I often use three main sites to figure out the placement of a book. In a lot of book series for children there will be the main series with a number of sub-series. These can be confusing and hard to keep track. The increasing popularity of Graphic Novels has introduced older book series like The Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew to a new generation of readers. A lot of people still like to read books in order. When cataloging books I try to label the book series and the number in the series. Diigo can be helpful in this area.

Diigo has an app you can download for free to your smartphone or tablet. The app will is great for when you are on the go at a conference and do not feel like bringing a lot of devices with you. This will come in especially helpful when I am at VLA (Vermont Library Association) conference in May. The app is user friendly and easy to use. Its a great way to stay organized on the go in this fast paced world.

Until next time.

Lesson # 8