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Shelf Renewal Blog - Booklist Online

Shelf Renewal

A Booklist Blog
Nobody puts backlist in a corner—readers'-advisory experts Karen Kleckner Keefe and Rebecca Vnuk bring attention to older titles by featuring "dusty books" and offering read-alikes for what’s hot on the holds list.

Thursday, August 28, 2014 4:43 pm
Web Crush of the Week: The Booklist Reader
Posted by: Rebecca Vnuk

OK, so we’re taking some liberties with this one.

But we wanted to announce that we’re going to sign off here for a little while and then come rarin’ back on the new blog, The Booklist ReaderShelfrenewal will still exist, no worries, but we’ll be part of a larger, more streamlined blog experience. You can find out more information here, but basically, the five current Booklist blogs are going to be consolidated into one, beautiful, brand-spanking-new blog called The Booklist Reader.
So stay tuned—we already have some new Web Crushes planned as well as the backlist booklists you’ve come to love!
Rebecca and Karen

Friday, August 22, 2014 10:48 am
Web Crush of the Week: Tales from the RAT Queen
Posted by: Rebecca Vnuk

No, she’s not actually a rodent (she’s really a quite nice librarian). Lucy Lockley, Booklist Editorial Board member and collection development manager for the St. Charles City-County Library District in Missouri, coordinates the district’s Readers’ Advisory Team, also known as the RATs. Hence, she is the RAT Queen.

The RAT program uses a combined book-discussion and booktalking format and covers multiple genres. With the combination of a book-discussion meeting, where everyone has read the same title, followed by a booktalk meeting, where each participant speaks about their selection, everyone reads two titles in each genre, and the results of their discussions can be found on the Tales from the RAT Queen blog.

Useful genre stuff here, including benchmark titles, as well as links to various RA resources. Give it a look!


Wednesday, August 13, 2014 11:53 am
Secrets and Lies
Posted by: Karen Kleckner Keefe

big little liesLiane Moriarty’s Big Little Lies is burning up the charts. Fans of Moriarty’s smart, suspenseful women’s fiction may enjoy these other engaging domestic dramas.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014 1:56 pm
Do You Have a Feel for Steel?
Posted by: Karen Kleckner Keefe

steelIf you include her children’s books, Danielle Steel has over 100 books to her credit. She has been delighting, and indeed creating, fans of women’s fiction for five decades. With a fan base like that, you better believe they get itchy when they have to wait for a new one. Die-hards have probably already devoured July’s A Perfect Life, so turn them onto some other easy-to-read contemporary fiction focusing on women’s lives (and, a lot of the time, loves.)

Friday, July 25, 2014 7:00 am
Web Crush of the Week: Bustle
Posted by: Karen Kleckner Keefe

bustleBustle is a pretty great website/brand/online presence that is, as they say, “for and by women who are moving forward as fast as you are.” Less snark than Jezebel more meat than The Mary Sue (both of which I love, BTW) this is a great great site for a quick fix of pop culture, lifestyle, and current events. And, of course, everyone smart and awesome also writes about books. As do the fabulous ladies and men who write Bustle’s lively book section. Recent articles include Child of the ‘90s? These 16 Books and Series Will Send You Back, 11 Moving Beach Reads That’ll Have You Weeping Into Your Pina Colada and read-alikes for Meg Wolitzer’s The Interestings (to which I would totally add Joanna Smith Rakoff’s A Fortunate Age.) In summary–books: good; smart ladies: good; really good.



Wednesday, July 23, 2014 2:04 pm
Not Happily Ever After
Posted by: Karen Kleckner Keefe

californiaWhen our best writers imagine a new society, it’s rarely filled with happy people, flying cars and Jetsons-style yummy food packs. No, these near futures or imagined places often emerge as the result of some catastrophic event of our own making. From classics like 1984, Brave New World, and Fahrenheit 451 to popular teen titles The Giver, Hunger Games, and Divergent — things are not looking good. Edan Lepucki’s California is the latest tale of scarcity and survival to keep worried readers up all night. Readers eager to explore other apocalypses and dystopic dramas may enjoy:


Monday, July 14, 2014 7:00 am
For Fans of Factory Man
Posted by: Karen Kleckner Keefe

factory manSubtitled “How One Furniture Maker Battled Offshoring, Stayed Local–and Helped Save an American Town,” Beth Macy’s Factory Man is one of the most buzzed about books this summer. In addition to Macy’s engaging, approachable writing style, readers are responding to this book for what it makes them think and how it makes them feel. For one reader the appeal might be the story of  one guy willing to take a stand–for others it will be the illuminating look at global economics. Talk to your readers about what they liked or why they’re on the waiting list, then make their day by recommending something else right up their alley.




Thursday, July 3, 2014 4:04 pm
Road Trip
Posted by: Karen Kleckner Keefe

carsickThe 4th of July is a time when we reflect on our nation’s history. The rest of the summer, we focus on its breadth–making the most of long days, no school, and our beautiful lakes, streams, and oceans. The Great American Road Trip is a part of our cultural history. Want a very modern take? Ride along with cult flm director John Waters in his hilarious hitchhiking adventure Carsick. Not tickled by the idea of hours alone in a car with Mr. Waters? (Can’t imagine why.) Then test your luck with these travel tales that explore our shining seas, mountains majesty, and everything in between.

Friday, June 27, 2014 8:00 am
Web Crush of the Week: Lee Goldberg
Posted by: Karen Kleckner Keefe

goldbergAuthor and TV producer Lee Goldberg offers a unique perspective on mysteries of page and screen. He’s written scripts for and/or produced such hits as Spenser: For Hire. Diagnosis Murder, Nero Wolfe, and Monk.  He has written books based on the  Diagnosis Murder series and the Emmy-award winning Monk.

Goldberg’s blog covers everything from insights on new mystery TV series picked up for fall to what it was like writing the Fox & O’Hare books with Janet Evanovich. An encouraging kindred spirit for those wanting to break into crime-writing and a jovial introduction for those content to wach from the sidelines.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014 7:00 am
Good Sports
Posted by: Karen Kleckner Keefe

Yes, the World Cup is pretty exciting. Wimbledon, too. And how about golf phenoms Lucy Li and Michelle Wie? No denying it, it’s a good week to be a sports fan. But let’s not forget the little guys. The balls and pucks and shuttlecocks that live outside the limelight. Let’s give the second-stringers some love with a little backlist shove.

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