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Book Blog - Likely Stories, by Keir Graff - Booklist Online

Likely Stories

A Booklist Blog
Keir Graff and editors from Booklist's adult and youth departments write candidly about books, book reviewing, and the publishing industry

Archive for the 'Readers’ Advisory' Category

Wed, November 19th, 2008
First W.’s Job–and Now O.’s?
Posted by: Keir Graff

Writing in the New York Times, Motoko Rich asks, “For Books, Is Obama the New Oprah?” If he is, he’d better get more specific or he’s going to drive everyone crazy. When President-elect Barack Obama appeared on “60 Minutes” on CBS on Sunday in his first interview since winning the election, he mentioned having read “a […]


Mon, November 17th, 2008
A Fraction of A Fraction of the Whole
Posted by: Keir Graff

To avoid unintended merriment at my expense, I’ll keep this short: Cynthia Crossen thinks A Fraction of the Whole, by Steve Toltz, is too long (“A Book in Need of a Good Editor,” The Wall Street Journal): But the blurbers and reviewers were so enthusiastic — Mr. Toltz was compared to Mark Twain, John Irving, Martin Amis, […]


Fri, August 8th, 2008
Ahead of His Time
Posted by: Keir Graff

And now for something completely different. Looking for a successful post-9/11 novel, Adam Kirsch finds one in the 19th century: Dostoyevsky’s Demons (“Demons Inner and Outer,” New York Sun). He asks: Why is it that our novelists, despite their best efforts, cannot write a politically informed, psychologically convincing book about Islamic terrorism? Why is it so difficult […]


Mon, July 7th, 2008
What We Did at Our Summer Conference
Posted by: Keir Graff

Sunday, June 29, the morning of the Booklist Adult Books Readers’ Advisory Forum: Post-9/11 Fiction (that’s the short title; I’d give you the longer version but we’d have to change this blog’s hosting plan to include more bandwidth), I thought I’d look over my remarks one more time while I ate breakfast. So, I went […]


Tue, June 24th, 2008
Why stop there? Why not have the computers read the books they recommend for us?
Posted by: Keir Graff

I’ve been meaning to take a look at BookLamp for awhile, a site that describes itself as being like Pandora for books. Where LibraryThing helps readers find books based on similarity of taste, BookLamp takes a more technical approach, scanning the books and, well, here it is in their words: So the first thing that we did […]


Fri, January 4th, 2008
Fiction vs. Nonfiction Factionalism
Posted by: Keir Graff

I’ve been enjoying the posts at Book Group Buzz. Yesterday, Misha Stone’s “When Fiction and Reality Collide” addressed–well, you’re probably one step ahead of me on that one. Says Stone: As a Fiction Librarian, I often get a little annoyed when patrons distinguish the difference between fiction and non-fiction as "fake" versus "real." As a […]


Thu, December 13th, 2007
Book Group Buzz
Posted by: Keir Graff

  Just one post today–to let you know about the launch of Booklist Online’s second blog, Book Group Buzz. We had some interesting conversations at the old Booklist Book Club, but what people kept telling us was that what they really wanted were resources to help them with their in-person (I disdain the digirati’s use […]


Sat, August 18th, 2007
Saturday Book Suggestions
Posted by: Neal

Two books to consider: Rengen by Patricia Martin Natural Born Charmer by Susan Elizabeth Phillips Besides having a flat-out fantastic name, Patricia Martin’s book explores a very interesting idea about a cultural shift in America: the creation, rise, and influence of a cultural consumer. … individuals who are hungry for innovative ideas and ways to […]


Fri, August 17th, 2007
What They Teach Us
Posted by: Neal

In my readers’ advisory (RA) class, I often include an assignment that asks students to visit any book store they wish and look around. What I hope they will see are examples of RA in action – in a different setting than their library. The Regulator Bookshop in Durham, N.C. offers some great RA moments […]


Sat, August 11th, 2007
Saturday Book Suggestions
Posted by: Neal

It is hot here and thunderstorms are brewing – which makes it the perfect time to escape into a story. The Religion by Tim Willocks is a nice way to disappear for a while. The first of an expected trilogy, The Religion chronicles the escapades of Mattias Tannhauser, a truly resourceful man. He is set […]





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