RA for your Friday

It’s summer, and nobody can tell me differently! I mean, you can try, but I’m stubborn and also craving strawberries. The bookish corner of the internet seems to agree – we’ve got summer picks from Lit Hub (fiction AND non!), USA Today, Time, NPR, Shondaland, Real Simple, Vulture, CrimeReads, and BookPage.

It’s a brand new month, so we’ve got June picks from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Shondaland, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and The Millions.

Did someone say June? My favorite month of the bookish calendar? Because yes – June is Audiobook Month! Between summer travel, tackling warm weather chores, or just relaxing, audiobooks are a great way to enjoy all kinds of stories. Three display ideas off the top of my head: Audiobook Recommendations for Podcast Listeners; In Their Own Words: Celebrity Memoirs Narrated by the Author; and Fun for the Whole Family: Audiobooks for All Ages. (And you know about the SYNC program, right?)

And as long as we’re talking about audiobooks, it’s not much of a commute to head over to podcasts. But, Angela, we don’t curate a podcast collection. Why should libraries care about podcasts? Because stories are stories wherever you find them, and knowing about what kind of stories people enjoy will only help you provide RA service. CrimeReads has 7 True Crime Podcasts to Listen to This Summer, Vulture has 8 Podcasts We Can’t Wait to Listen to This Summer, and Town & Country has 19 Best Podcasts of 2023.

In case you missed it, the new batch of Book Club bags will be available starting Monday. Here are the titles:

Trust, by Hernan Diaz

A Little Devil in America, by Haniq Abdurraquib

Great Circle, by Maggie Shipstead

Looking for a pop-culture display? Esquire has 15 Books to Read Now that Succession Is Over.

And speaking of displays, let’s talk about Pride Month. It’s impossible to ignore the fact that putting work by and stories about the LGBTQIA+ community into the spotlight is a highly charged issue right now. Some people might not like it. Some people might complain. Does that mean you should avoid doing it? Nope. Library displays are about increasing circulation and showcasing hidden gems, yes, but they’re also about giving space to communities that have been marginalized and told their stories don’t matter or shouldn’t be heard.

Book Riot has some tips for libraries with Pride displays, including how to track your stats, encourage engagement, talk up intellectual freedom, and be prepared for a challenge. Hat tip to Becky Spratford for putting it on my radar, and for these words in her recent blog post on the subject:

“We have collections that represent a world of ideas and identities on purpose… And while everyone has a right to decide what they read for themselves, no one has the right to decide for others. We must stand by that basic freedom. You cannot self censor and not participate because you don’t want to be challenged or because you are afraid.”

Finally, #FridayReads: I’ve been reading like it’s… well, like it’s summer reading. Just started Book Lovers by Emily Henry, and I’ve got a few beach-themed cozy mysteries on deck. In my earbuds is Grave Reservations by Cherie Priest, and I’ve been re-watching Ken Burns Jazz, which I remember originally watching on VHS tapes… checked out from my local library. Happy reading/listening/viewing!

Share Post

Recent Posts