Library book strategies – managing (or not managing) holds on the new and popular books

Last week I scored big on a library book. My Facebook friends group is about to discuss Evvie Drake Starts Over by Linda Holmes. The holds list is a mile long, but I was able to grab the one-week rental copy (no holds allowed) and read it quickly! It worked out great. (Read my review here.)

But now I’m in a bit of a library holds bind. Many of my other holds on new and popular books have come in at the same time. I have one eAudiobook on my phone and three eBooks on my Kindle and the clock is ticking!

It’s a little ambitious to think I’ll be able to read the three eBooks in the two-week period, but I’m going to try. I’m not so sure if I’ll have time for the eAudiobook, though. The good news about that one is that my eBook hold of the same title is coming up soon!

Here’s what’s on deck. (All book blurbs are from Amazon.)

The Warehouse by Rob Hart

I’ve seen a lot of blog reviews about this one and have already started the audio of this one.


Cloud isn’t just a place to work. It’s a place to live. And when you’re here, you’ll never want to leave.

“A thrilling story of corporate espionage at the highest level . . . and a powerful cautionary tale about technology, runaway capitalism, and the nightmare world we are making for ourselves.”—Blake Crouch, New York Times bestselling author of Dark Matter

Film rights sold to Imagine Entertainment for director Ron Howard!

The Escape Room by Megan Goldin

I didn’t think I’d get this one so fast. My mystery book club at work is going to read it…next June! I’ll probably read it twice.


“One of my favorite books of the year.” ―Lee Child

“Cancel all your plans and call in sick; once you start reading, you’ll be caught in your own escape room―the only key to freedom is turning the last page!” ―Kirkus Reviews (starred)

“A sleek, well-crafted ride.” ―The New York Times

In Megan Goldin’s unforgettable debut, The Escape Room, four young Wall Street rising stars discover the price of ambition when an escape room challenge turns into a lethal game of revenge.

We Are All Good People Here by Susan Rebecca White

I saw this one reviewed by a few bloggers and it sounded interesting to me.


From the author of A Place at the Table and A Soft Place to Land, an “intense, complex, and wholly immersive” (Joshilyn Jackson, New York Times bestselling author) multigenerational novel that explores the complex relationship between two very different women and the secrets they bequeath to their daughters.

Refugee by Alan Gratz

Saw this reviewed and wanted to read it!



A New York Times bestseller!

JOSEF is a Jewish boy living in 1930s Nazi Germany. With the threat of concentration camps looming, he and his family board a ship bound for the other side of the world . . .

ISABEL is a Cuban girl in 1994. With riots and unrest plaguing her country, she and her family set out on a raft, hoping to find safety in America . . .

MAHMOUD is a Syrian boy in 2015. With his homeland torn apart by violence and destruction, he and his family begin a long trek toward Europe . . .

All three kids go on harrowing journeys in search of refuge. All will face unimaginable dangers — from drownings to bombings to betrayals. But there is always the hope of tomorrow. And although Josef, Isabel, and Mahmoud are separated by continents and decades, shocking connections will tie their stories together in the end.

We have a feature at our library that allows you to “freeze” specific holds and not lose your place in line. I haven’t tried that, but I’m thinking it would be a good idea.

I’m going to try to read all of them before they are due. Which would you read first? What’s your library book strategy?

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On Libraries and Cats

Have you ever wondered why librarians are crazy about cats? Did you know that many libraries employ a resident feline? Maybe you have seen a cat snoozing on a book cart or sauntering down the aisles. You may think this is a modern infatuation, but cats and libraries have gone together since the earliest of times. For thousands of years, from ancient Egyptian temples to the present, cats have “worked” in libraries. Their main job? Keep the rats and mice away!

But cats in libraries offer another benefit. Many of us know the pleasure of having a cat nearby, to pet or cuddle up with and their proud and independent natures make them funny to watch. Library cats also offer a sense of community. They bring people in the door and give patrons an opportunity to interact with the staff and each other on another level.


If you’re a librarian, you probably know who Baker & Taylor are. They are the largest wholesaler and distributor of books for libraries. About thirty years ago, they heard about a library cat at a small library in Douglas County, Nevada. He was a Scottish Fold, affectionately named Baker because of the Baker & Taylor box he liked to hang out in. Baker needed a friend, however, and the book company made it happen. They issued a grant to purchase and care for a second Scottish Fold named Taylor (of course!). Soon after, the Baker and Taylor cats became the company’s mascots and the Nevada library became a national attraction. Cat photo shoots led to a high demand for B&T posters, calendars and tote bags. A fan club popped up and the famous cats were soon portrayed at library conventions in specially made Baker & Taylor cat costumes. Baker and Taylor lived many years and enriched the lives of patrons, staff and visitors. Their images continue to grace the B&T totes and posters.


Jan Louch, a long-time employee at the small library and a lifelong animal lover was there for all the action and, together with Lisa Rogak, wrote The True Tails of Baker and Taylor, published in 2016. It’s a fun story, with great pictures and gives a good look into the small library scene, its patrons and two amusing cats with distinct personalities. I enjoyed reading this chronicle which led to my research on cats in libraries.

I read The True Tails of Baker and Taylor as part of my Build a Better World Summer Reading Challenge to read a book suggested by a librarian.

For more information about libraries and cats, visit the links below:

OEDB article:  “A Quick Guide to Library Cats”
Wikipedia:  “Library Cat”
American Libraries article:  “Library Cats Leave Some Sneezing, Others Feline Fine”
Mental Floss article:  “10 Cats Who Live at the Library” article:  “History of Library Cats”

Have you visited a library with a feline employee?

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10 Fun Facts About My Library Job

Library stacks public domain

If you ever played library as a kid, you’ll remember that the main part of the game was checking books out and returning them.  That was about all a kid figured took place at a library and a lot of people still think that.

It’s been almost five months since I started my job at our local library.  Now that I’ve seen the inner workings of the place, I thought I would share 10 fun facts about my job.

  1. You won’t find a stern librarian shushing you. Except for a designated area, people don’t whisper in the library.
  2. Libraries are run like a business and we keep track of many stats.
  3. Snacks and drinks are okay. We even have vending machines.  Just don’t eat or drink by the computers!
  4. The Dewey Decimal System is alive and well. Ask a librarian where the books on history and geography are and right away she’ll tell you, “They’re in the 900s.”  If you ask me, though, I’ll have to refer to my chart.
  5. We can’t wear open-backed shoes on the job. Danger of tripping.  Too bad…
  6. Many of the questions I answer at the adult reference desk are about how to use the computers.
  7. You can learn yoga at our library.
  8. Mobile hotspot rentals are very popular.
  9. We have a TV in our lobby. CNN is up with closed captioning.
  10. This week, an embarrassed woman returned what was left of a book she had borrowed. The excuse?  Her dog ate it!

Did any of these surprise you?

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