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Welcome to the New (and Improved) RA Toolbox!

Post by Krista Biggs
Posted November 13, 2014 in NoveList Plus, Readers' Advisory News

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To be effective readers' advisors, it is important for librarians to be on top of professional and publishing trends, knowledgeable about the books on the shelves, and be ready to put together a display or program at a moment's notice! Okay, maybe not a moment. I'll give you an hour.

NoveList has a great deal of content designed to help professional staff meet each of these goals and we've made a concerted effort to group this content in ways that make it easily accessible! The RA Toolbox is your one-stop shop for all the resources you need to enhance your readers’ advisory skills. You’ll find links to a variety of helpful content like articles about current trends, genre overviews, and so much more.

Our newest content, the Seasonal Inspirations page is first and foremost. Rather than discussing a single genre or topic, this page collects content that spans the entire year. Big movie release coming up? Need a holiday book list? Is Summer Reading bearing down on you? We've got you covered.

Down to the nitty-gritty

A Better Readers' Advisor is what we all want to be, but when considered as a single goal it is very difficult to define. This category has materials to help you stay current in important topics and trends, identify areas for improvement, and brainstorm ideas for training.

Learning About Genres: I need say no more (but I will). Knowing something about all genres, whether you read them yourself or not, is a huge advantage when working with any population. All of these tools, whether general or more narrowly focused will win you the title of the "Go-To Librarian."

There is a heavier reliance on NoveList content in the Inspiration for Everyday RA section, which is where you can turn for a quick fix.

  • Your patron has read everything by author A and wants another author to try? You're in luck, because our Author Read-alikes have authors B, C, D, E, and F.
  • Do you have to get ready to lead a book discussion group in that hour mentioned in the first paragraph? Our Book Discussion Guides provide not only the questions for the entire group but the answers so you can feel better prepared.
  • Don't forget those Success Stories!  If you have a great idea for a program, it's possible that one of your colleagues has some tips to get you started.

And what does happen when A Reader Walks Up to the Desk? As we all know, it's a mystery until the question is asked. Then it can become a surprise. We’ve gathered not only common scenarios but information on award winners, appeal language, and the ever popular books-to-movies to help you out and hopefully make those questions a pleasant surprise.

The RA Toolbox is just a click away -- find it quickly by hovering over the “Professional Toolbox” dropdown on the menu bar inside NoveList and NoveList Plus. 

If you have suggestions for future readers' advisory content, be sure to send us feedback


Krista Biggs is a Content Specialist and Bibliographer at NoveList. She is also the Editor of RA News