Jan 01 2007

Book review: The New OPL Sourcebook

Published by rachel at 12:16 pm under book reviews, careers

Siess, Judith A. The New OPL Sourcebook: A Guide for Solo and Small Libraries, rev. ed. Medford, NJ: Information Today, Inc., 2006. ISBN 1-57387-241-5. $39.50. Purchase from Amazon.com.

Siess effectively updates her earlier The SOLO Librarian’s Sourcebook (Information Today, Inc., 1997) with this new edition, continuing to provide useful and valuable information for solo librarians. This edition is divided into “The Basics” and “The Resources.” The Basics describes the history of and issues facing OPLs in detail, and provides practical advice on matters such as communication and advocacy. Siess peppers her own thoughts with quotes from key figures in OPL research, mainly Guy St. Clair. The Resources focuses in on the tools available to assist the solo or small library staff member with providing the best service. (Since many of these resources are web-based, there is the possibility that some may now have broken links.) Siess’ explanations are helpful for daily tasks, as well as yearly or semi-regular tasks, such as writing annual reports. She offers useful and practical information that can be used by all librarians, not just those in small libraries.

Paula Seeger, Circulation Librarian, University of Minnesota Law Library. Ms. Seeger was formerly branch librarian at the Dane County Legal Resource Center, Madison, WI, a solo librarian in a small library.

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