Art of Storytelling

March 8, 2010

In 1974 the eminent Augusta Baker authored, along with Ellin Greene, Storytelling: Art and Technique. Now this classic has been brought into the twenty-first century by Greene and Janice M. Del Negro. As they state in their preface, the fourth edition “reflects the radical cultural and societal changes that have taken place since the first edition was published in 1977.” A case in point—the chapter “Storytelling to Young  Children” has been greatly expanded based on recent research into emergent literacy. Also new to this edition are a section on international storytelling and the full text of 13 stories. More than 700 titles have been added to the bibliographies in the volume, which affirms the importance of an old tradition and provides librarians and others with the tools to help keep it alive. 

Indexed  400p. $55 from Libraries Unlimited (978-1-59158-600-5)

Reader's Advisory Redux

We’ve seen a number of new books on readers’ advisory service lately, ranging from those that provide the framework to those that dig into particular genres. Stephanie Maatta’s A Few Good Books: Using Contemporary Readers’ Advisory Strategies to Connect Readers with Books is a bit of both. What distinguishes Maatta’s approach, however, is her emphasis on emerging technologies and trends—Library 2.0 tools such as blogs, wikis, and social cataloging, alternative formats such as e-books. There is also a chapter on RA service for special populations. A good complement to Joyce G. Saricks’ Readers’ Advisory in the Public Library and Jessica Moyers’ Research-Based Readers’Advisory.

Indexed. 400p. PBK. $69.95 from Neal-Schuman. (978-1-55570-669-2)

What it means to be green

Sustainability is fast becoming a mainstream concern. To the growing list of titles on living green we can add How Green Is My Library? by Sam McBane Mulford and Ned A. Himmel. Intended for “novice to intermediate ecological sophisticates,” the book follows discussions of what it means to be green and why it matters with checklists and other tools that libraries can use to assess their current state, develop goals, and achieve greater greenitude. Solutions range from the big (build a new library that meets standards for LEED certification) to the small (banish flyers, walk or bike to work).

Indexed  176p. PBK. $40 from Libraries Unlimited (978-1-59158-780-4)

Through the Ages

When the first edition of Fred Lerner’s The Story of Libraries: From the Invention of Writing to the Computer Age was published in1998 the World Wide Web was just a glow on the horizon. Lerner presciently predicted that the Internet would have “far-reaching socioeconomic consequences for 21st-century civilization.” In the second edition, he adds discussion of the impact of recently developed  technology to his survey of library history over the past 5,000 years. Despite all the changes, he states that none of the librarian’s essential functions will disappear. Good to know.

Indexed  249p. PBK. $27.95 from Continuum (978-0-8264-2990-2)

New from ALA

“Think small” seems to be the mantra these days, as libraries look for easy and cheap ways to be effective. The original plan for Bite-Sized Marketing: Realistic Solutions for the Overworked Librarian, was to offer 10-minute marketing solutions for libraries, but authors Nancy Dowd, Mary Evangeliste, and Jonathan Silberman soon realized that “nothing worthwhile can get done in ten minutes.” Instead, they offer 10 manageable strategies, among them word-of-mouth marketing (WOMM), outreach, advocacy, and branding.

Indexed. 140p. PBK. $48 (978-0-8389-1000-9).

Although the term urban calls to mind the big city, it can embrace suburbs and smaller metropolitan areas as well. In Urban Teens in the Library: Research and Practice, editors Denise A. Agosto and Sandra Hughes-Hassell take a broad view. This means the book covers school and public library services to an extremely diverse group. The chapters offer a mix of research and best practice on topics including street lit, social networking, and programming designed to keep teens engaged with their libraries.

Indexed. 208p. PBK. $60 (978-0-8389-1015-3).


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