Note: I am going to be shortening reviews unless I really adored the book, because I’m working full-time, moving, and still trying to work on a novel each day.
48. Librarianship: An Introduction – G G Chowdhury, Paul F Burton, David McMenemy, and Alan Poulter - 301 pages
Rating: 4.5 stars
This is an excellent beginning text for the beginner interested in pursuing a career in Information & Library Sciences. I read it as I plan to pursue my MSc in Information and Library studies beginning in 2011 (why yes, I did emphasize with Hermione Granger when I read Harry Potter, how did you know?).
The book is organized cohesively, and introduces the concepts, gives the history of, describes the different types (academic, public, special, digital, etc), design, the future, different services provided, collection management and development, preservation and digitization, classification and cataloguing (good lord, this was a boring chapter…not looking forward to a semester of it!), indexing, and the information retrieval of libraries. My favourite section was the bit of the book that examined libraries as a social institution and gave more insight to the services provided and the government’s role in libraries. Next, the book discussed various technologies and databases that are frequently used. The role of management in the context of libraries was discussed, along with education and research to continue to develop the field.
As is obvious, quite a lot of different topics were covered clearly and effectively. As a more or less novice, I feel far more confident that this is the field I wish to pursue, although I feel well-informed by the problems facing librarianship in the days of mass digitization and economic recession. The authors of this book are all professors of the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow, and so it is more targeted for the UK, but much of the information crosses over to other countries. This book is an excellent starting point for anyone contemplating going into librarianship or becoming an information professional.
49. Interzone #229: Jul-Aug 2010 – edited by Andy Cox et al – 63 pages
Rating: 3 stars
This is the first full science fiction magazine I’ve read in a awhile, although I do enjoy reading the odd science fiction story online. The issue included four main pieces of fiction: “Mannikin” by Paul Evanby, which was set in the slavery era of the US, with a scientist creating golems to replace the slaves, “Candy Moments,” by Antony Mann, which was a little similar to the idea of Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, The Melancholy by Toby Litt, a short piece about an artificial intelligence that goes far into space and returns, each time losing a bit more of herself, “Alternate Girl’s Expatriate Life” by Rochita Loenen-Ruiz, which I tried to read thrice and could not finish, and “Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark Matter” by Jim Hawkins, which was interesting and about an orchestra in a virtual reality. None of the stories in this issue truly jumped out at me (Jim Hawkins’ was my favourite of the four), but I found the book reviews very hopeful and have added a few more to my ever-expanding TBR list. I am going to read another issue before I decide if I wish to take out a subscription for it.
PS - Hello, world. booksforfood is my book review journal, but I also write about library issues and ruminate on being an ex-pat American in Scotland. I'm always looking for fellow booky friends, so feel free to add!