Thursday, February 22, 2007

What to Read Next...

One type of question that we often answer at the Reference Desk, is "What do I read next?"

We all have our favorite recommendations, but there are many tools to help find just the right "read" as well. We often track down more books by your favorite author via interlibrary loan borrowing. Sometimes we can get the next title in a series in a day or two from a nearby library. Other days we have to search far and wide throughout the state and even the whole of the U.S. to locate a copy to borrow and the hunt takes weeks to complete.

To get the consecutive order of a series, Contemporary Authors database, available to Merrimack card holders through our website, is an excellent source. It lists series in order, with separate lists for Ed McBain's Matthew Hope series and the 87th Precinct titles. You can also find other pennames like Evan Hunter and Richard Marsten for Ed McBain.

Another readers' database is NoveList. Pick a favorite author and you will be referred to read-alikes according to categories you select. If you enjoy Tony Hillerman, Aimee and David Thurlo or Margaret Coel might appeal. This resource includes articles on some authors as well.

A fun listserve to join is "Review-a-Day" from Every day you will recieve a new book review in your e-mail. Topics vary widely, and older materials, classics and hot new releases are all included. The only problem may be that your "What do I read next" list will get too long for one lifetime!

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