Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Shopping with other people's money

Buying books used to be my favorite part of the job, but I admit that it's become a little overwhelming.  It seems like every year there's more to choose from, but my budget certainly isn't getting any larger.  I purchase the YA books for all of our three buildings--I took on the third building in December--so I do my best to stretch the budgets as far as I can by not duplicating much between buildings.  Having to put things on hold is a drag, but for now I think it's important to have as many TOTAL TITLES available as possible.  Obviously there are some books we'll need to have a duplicates of-- we've got 4 copies of Divergent and Insurgent and something like 23 copies of The Hunger Games.

Because my budget is so limited I have to pass up on a lot of books that I'd like to give a chance.  It's also extra disappointing when I give a book a shot and it doesn't do well.  I run reports and talk to teens and try to figure out what will do best at each building, but it's not a perfect science.  There are some things I know to avoid--historical fiction doesn't do well in any of my buildings (authors, take note).  I buy a few here and there, because I know the local schools still do genre specific assignments, but that's the only time they get read. For the most part I just steer the teens towards the shelf of Ann Rinaldi books, which still do okay compared to other historical fiction.

Sometimes when I'm weeding in the teen areas, I notice that the alphabet leans heavily toward the first half.  You can almost tell, alphabetically, when I get tired of reading VOYA.  Today I'm tackling the February issue backwards, hopefully I'll catch a few good ones that I would have missed before. 

The top books from our"New" teen fiction collection right now:
Catching Fire (still "new" because I haven't SEEN the books to take them off)
Defiance (Redwine)
Shadows (Bick)
Underworld (Cabot)
Until I Die (Plum)
My Life Next Door (Fitzpatrick)
Rapture (Kate)
Hemlock (Peacock)
UnWholly (Shusterman)
Ultimate Comics the Ultimates V. 1 (Hickman)
The Dark Angel Saga 2 (Remender)

We haven't had it very long yet, but I'm glad to see that Rookie Yearbook 1 is doing well, too. It's gone out twice already and it's been available less than a month.  (The books on the list have gone out at least 5 times in the last 3 months, and the Manga collection is never "new" or else the list would have been exclusively Manga!)

If you work with teens, I'd love to know what's popular at your library right now

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