Libraries do a lot these days. From being a location to pick up your free COVID-19 tests to 3D printing a bolt that is specific to your washing machine’s model, some folks wonder if we even are in the book business anymore. Good news – we still are! The bread and butter of libraries – books and information procurement – aren’t going anywhere.
In fact, one of our most popular and favorite services to provide to the public is reading recommendations. Be prepared to stay a while if you ask a librarian what they’re reading or if there’s “anything good on the shelves today.”
One way to save your time and to help us guide our answers for you a bit better is to utilize the Delaware County District Library’s Personalized Picks service. This special project is back again for Winter Reading Club now through Jan. 31, 2023. You will fill out a form online with the type of book recommendations you’d like to receive, and then within a few days you’ll receive an email back from a librarian with your personalized curated list of book recommendations. To participate in Personalized Picks, start by visiting www.delawarelibrary.org/personalized-picks with an idea of what type of book you’re in the mood for. It’s best to fill out the form for one genre at a time.
For example, if today you’re in the mood for something light and whimsical with well-developed characters, go ahead and fill out the form with that in mind. But if tomorrow you’re craving a fast-paced, plot-driven mystery with a strong female protagonist, you can fill the form out again and receive an entirely new bundle of recommendations.
When one patron used this service, they wrote to the Library to say, “Wow! All the books in my results looked great! I haven’t read any of them. They are now in ‘wanting to read’ status for my Goodreads account. Thanks!”
At the bottom of the form there is a link that will give users the option to click to subscribe to other genre-based book newsletters. Click on any of the links to preview what the content of that newsletter looks like and how often it is sent. For example, the new and popular “Page to Screen” newsletter lets subscribers decide if the book or movie is better by featuring books that have been put on the big screen. “Thrillers and Suspense” is delivered monthly for your fill of creepy footsteps, conspiracy theories, white knuckles and a racing heart. Check out some of this month’s recommendations.
• “A Tidy Ending” by Joanna Cannon. British housewife Linda Hammett lives a quiet (if unfulfilling) life with her husband Terry in a house she keeps spotless. Things start to get messy when she receives a fancy catalog addressed to the home’s previous owner, her husband starts working odd hours, and local women start to disappear. Ideal for fans of unreliable narrators, suburban malaise, and sardonic humor.
• “Run Time” by Catherine Ryan Howard. Adele Rafferty is a former soap star looking to revitalize her career with a part in a psychological horror film called Final Draft, replacing the original actress who abruptly quit. Adele’s first day on the remote movie set begins with an anonymous text message warning her that things aren’t safe. As production continues she starts to notice eerie similarities between her past and scenes in the script, to the point where she starts to question her own sanity.
• “You’re Invited” by Amanda Jayatissa. Amaya is a young Sri Lankan woman who lives a lonely, self-destructive life in Los Angeles. Surprised to receive an invitation to her former friend Kaavi’s lavish wedding, Amaya decides to fly home for the celebration. The problem – part of the reason Kaavi is a former friend is that the groom is Amaya’s ex-boyfriend. Determined to stop the wedding at any cost, Amaya gets more than she bargained for when Kaavi goes missing and she becomes a suspect in the disappearance.
• “Such A Good Mother” by Helen Monks Takhar. As much as her son doesn’t fit in with his peers at his fancy new private school, working mother Rose O’Connell knows she doesn’t fit in with the other moms. That’s until glamorous Amala Kaur reaches out to her, drawing Rose into an intoxicating, Instagram-ready world where nothing is as it seems.
• “The Rule of Three” by E.G. Scott. Journey to Kingsland, a Long Island gated community where the only way to move in is to be invited. Vicky Barnes returns home from her regular book club to find that her disgraced politician husband has been shot dead, and the same is true for the husbands of the two other women she spent the evening with.