Monday, November 25th, 2019

LibraryThing Holiday Store is Here

holidaystore

holidaystore_collage2

LibraryThing’s favorite time of the year is finally here! With our 13th annual SantaThing exchange in full swing (signups close next Monday, December 2nd, 12pm EST) and our 6th annual Holiday Card Exchange on the horizon (details coming soon), it’s time to release the LibraryThing Holiday Store so you can stock up on all of your bookish gifts for the holidays.

This year’s Holiday Store offers our classic CueCats for just $5 apiece*, plus our favorite organic-cotton tote bags, American-made book stamps and more, all at a great discount.

Extra special: we’re clearing out our entire shirt inventory so we can bring some new, fun designs your way. All shirts are going for just $5 to $7 each*, so be sure to stock up on any designs you’ve been eyeing before they run out for good.

The Holiday Store is running now through Epiphany**—shop the deals here.


*Prices do not include cost of shipping. Shipping is included on Store pages.

**Epiphany is also known as Little Christmas, the night before Orthodox Christmas or the day after the Twelfth day of Christmas—surely your loved one deserves twelve LibraryThing tote bags?

Labels: barcode scanners, cuecats, events, holiday, LT swag, sale, tshirts

Tuesday, November 19th, 2019

SantaThing 2019 for Litsy Members

SANTATHING_2018-Litsy

Every year LibraryThing members participate in “SantaThing,” our Secret Santa for book lovers.

This year we’re inviting Littens to join in!

The idea is simple: You sign up and pay $15–50 and choose your favorite bookstore. We match you with someone to pick books for, and someone else will pick books for you. We try to match people with similar reading tastes, and members help each other out with suggestions. LibraryThing staff does all the ordering and everyone gets surprise books for the holidays!

SantaThing is a joint effort between LibraryThing and Litsy. When signing up, you can opt to give and receive from members of only one community or the other, or either.

LibraryThing/Litsy takes no cut: this is a community project, not a money-maker. And it’s a lot of fun.

The first 15 Littens to sign up for SantaThing will get a free Litsy mug! (1)

» Sign up here!

Questions about SantaThing? You might find this post about SantaThing helpful.

Hoping to see you in SantaThing this year,
Tim, Kate, and the Litsy/LibraryThing Team


1. We’re defining Litsy members as members who posted to Litsy at least once in the last 14 days—this to favor regular Litsy members, not LibraryThing members who signed up for Litsy once upon a time. If there aren’t enough of these, we’ll open it to any Litsy member.

Labels: Litsy, santathing

Tuesday, November 19th, 2019

SantaThing 2019: Bookish Secret Santa!

It’s the most wonderful time of the year: the thirteenth annual SantaThing is here at last!

What’s SantaThing? SantaThing is “Secret Santa” for LibraryThing members.

Done this before?

» SIGN UP FOR SANTATHING NOW!

HOW IT WORKS

You pay into the SantaThing system (between $15–$50), and pick your favorite bookseller. We match you with a participant, and you play Santa by selecting books for them. Another Santa does the same for you, in secret. LibraryThing does the ordering, and you get the joy of giving AND receiving books!

SantaThing is a joint effort between LibraryThing and Litsy. When signing up, you can opt to give and receive from members of only one community or the other, or either.

Sign up once or thrice, for yourself or someone else.

Even if you don’t want to be a Santa, you can help by suggesting books for others. Click on an existing SantaThing profile to leave a suggestion.

Every year, LibraryThing members give generously to each other through SantaThing. If you’d like to donate an entry, or want to participate, but it’s just not in the budget this year, be sure to check out our Donations Thread (here), run once again by our fantastic volunteer member, mellymel1713278.

IMPORTANT DATES

Sign-ups close MONDAY, December 2nd at 12pm EST. By that evening, we’ll notify you via profile comment who your Santee is, and you can start picking books.

You’ll then have a week to pick your books, until MONDAY, December 9th at 12pm EST. As soon as the picking ends, the ordering begins, and we’ll get all the books out to you as soon as we can.

» Go sign up to become a Secret Santa now!

WHAT ELSE?

Once again this year, we’re thrilled to be partnering with Print as our official local SantaThing store once again. Print is a great indie bookstore located in Portland, ME (not far from LibraryThing HQ!). Other new additions: Amazon.de has expanded their free shipping options, which is good news for all. Sadly, Audible still doesn’t allow for the gifting of individual audiobooks. If you’d like audiobooks, be sure to say so in your SantaThing profile, and your Secret Santa can select CD copies of those from your store of choice.

Just like last year, the Kindle option is available to all members, regardless of location. So long as your Kindle is registered on Amazon.com (not .co.uk, .ca, etc.), you can elect to receive your SantaThing gifts as Kindle ebooks. See more information about Kindle and SantaThing here.

SHIPPING

Some of our booksellers are able to offer free shipping, and some are not. Depending on your bookseller of choice, you may receive $5 less in books, to cover shipping costs. You can find details about shipping costs and holiday ordering deadlines for each of our booksellers here on the SantaThing Help page.

Go sign up now!

QUESTIONS? COMMENTS?

This is our THIRTEENTH year of SantaThing. See the SantaThing Help page further details and FAQ.

Feel free to ask your questions over on this Talk topic, or you can contact Kate directly at kate@librarything.com.

Happy SantaThinging!

Labels: santathing

Monday, November 4th, 2019

November 2019 ER batch is live!

Win free books from the November 2019 batch of Early Reviewer titles! We’ve got 86 books this month, and a grand total of 3,798 copies to give out. Which books are you hoping to snag this month? Come tell us on Talk.

If you haven’t already, sign up for Early Reviewers. If you’ve already signed up, please check your mailing/email address and make sure they’re correct.

» Request books here!

The deadline to request a copy is Monday, November 25th at 6PM Eastern.

Eligiblity: Publishers do things country-by-country. This month we have publishers who can send books to the US, Canada, the UK, Israel, Australia, France, Germany and many more. Make sure to check the flags by each book to see if it can be sent to your country.

Thanks to all the publishers participating this month!

Kaylie Jones Books Akashic Books Candlewick Press
Candlewick Entertainment Ballantine Books Greenleaf Book Group
Revell Black Rose Writing Unsolicited Press
New Harbinger Publications Run Amok Books Entrada Publishing
William Morrow Vesuvian Books Prufrock Press
Artisan Ideas Provisioners Press Tantor Media
Real Nice Books HighBridge Audio Berlinica
Literary Wanderlust LLC Soul*Sparks Black Spot Books
Zimbell House Publishing Temptation Press Bellevue Literary Press
Caitlin Press Inc. ScareStreet City Owl Press
World Weaver Press Red Adept Publishing WaterBrook & Multnomah
Scribe Publications Coach House Books BookViewCafe
EDGE Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing Open Books BHC Press
Orca Book Publishers

Labels: early reviewers, LTER

Monday, October 7th, 2019

October 2019 Early Reviewers batch is up!

Win free books from the October 2019 batch of Early Reviewer titles! We’ve got 107 books this month, and a grand total of 4,090 copies to give out. Which books are you hoping to snag this month? Come tell us on Talk.

If you haven’t already, sign up for Early Reviewers. If you’ve already signed up, please check your mailing/email address and make sure they’re correct.

» Request books here!

The deadline to request a copy is Monday, October 28th at 6PM Eastern.

Eligiblity: Publishers do things country-by-country. This month we have publishers who can send books to the US, Canada, the UK, Israel, Australia, France, Germany, and many more! Make sure to check the flags by each book to see if it can be sent to your country.

Thanks to all the publishers participating this month!

Akashic Books Candlewick Entertainment Candlewick Press
Walker Books US Chronicle Books Tundra Books
Puffin Books Canada Bloomsbury Ballantine Books
Turner Publishing Zimbell House Publishing Black Rose Writing
Jamii Publishing Cayena Press Open Books
William Morrow Yali Books Lucid House Publishing
Revell The American University in Cairo Press Prufrock Press
City Owl Press Tantor Media Artemesia Publishing
HighBridge Audio Plough Publishing House Suteki Creative
Unsolicited Press Best Day Books For Young Readers Red Adept Publishing
CarTech Books Coach House Books Greystone Books
Scribe Publications ScareStreet Poolbeg Press
BookViewCafe BHC Press Melange Books
Oneworld Publications NewCon Press Harper Perennial
Chicago Review Press Tiny Fox Press Run Amok Books
Fontreal

Labels: early reviewers, LTER

Tuesday, October 1st, 2019

TinyCat’s September Library of the Month: Pine Tree Academy Library

To read more about TinyCat’s Library of the Month feature, visit the TinyCat Post archive here.

TinyCat’s Library of the Month for September, in honor of Back-to-School season, goes to a school library very close to LibraryThing’s Headquarters in Portland, Maine. Hailing a few minutes away from the town of Freeport, congrats to the Pine Tree Academy Library!

School Librarian Laura D. was kind enough to take my questions this month:

First, what is your library, and what is your mission—your “raison d’être”?

We are the library of Pine Tree Academy, an Adventist school spanning pre-K to 12th grade. The library serves mostly the elementary wing. Our “raison d’être”, bottom line, is to give our students the love of reading—for life. It is perhaps a tall order, but one that is definitely worthwhile. How rewarding to witness young minds fall in love with a book, an author, a series or an entire branch of human knowledge! We are here to ignite their minds through the printed page, to counterbalance the pull of the electronic screen. Our school strongly values literacy and chose two years ago to transform the computer lab into the new library when it converted to laptops. Students are attracted to the new room, which they experience as an oasis in the busy school day. We also come alongside the teachers in complementing their curricula, providing books covering everything from friendship for kindergarteners to American national symbols.

Tell us some interesting ways you support your community.

Right now we are conducting Orientation for K to 6th grade, which focuses on caring for and valuing the books. We teach the students that the books are theirs, and that borrowing them means sharing them with the whole community, which comes with responsibilities. We discuss rules for book care in detail with the help of the P.E.T. Patrol, which includes Officers Finnigan Magee and Tartar O’Sauce (pictured right).

Our next focus is to bring to our students a framework by which to understand the wealth and breadth of Creation, which they are discovering. Through the Dewey Decimal System, we can show them how human knowledge has been organized to be accessed. In this digital age, it is vital that the students understand what constitutes information, how it is used, and can be retrieved. Walking into the library to research a topic or find a book provides the missing link to the Google search box with its instant hits. In contrast to the virtual display, the children can experience directly the permanent information on the printed page.

What are some of your favorite items in your collection?

I am crazy about children’s picture books—unique stories with beautiful illustrations that ignite the imagination and make a new world come alive each time we open the book and read. I am also proud of our ever-growing Maine collection, which includes titles signed for the students by local authors and illustrators, as well as ancient and out-of-print stories, harkening back to a Maine of long ago.

Among our older collection, I discovered a little gem: The Family Nobody Wanted, by Helen Doss (pictured left), recounting the adventures of a “one family United Nations”, comprised of twelve children of mixed ethnic groups in the 1950’s, then considered un-adoptable. It was amazing how the Dosses’ love and care overcame the prejudices of the times.

What’s a particular challenge you experience as a small library?

With some 200 books added each year, we are running out of space! We also need more “people power” for circulation and shelving as the library is becoming a victim of its own success. Through TinyCat, patrons discover our lesser known titles, bringing more interest and more circulation, a good problem!

What’s your favorite thing about TinyCat? Anything you’d love to add?

One favorite thing? No, there are many things to love about TinyCat:

  • The clean design and simplicity of use.
  • The ability to offer public access to a search platform and online catalog like the public library—we’ve joined the Big Leagues! Now we can provide our teachers and students with more book info than before—reviews, related titles, lists from awards, etc.
  • It is wonderful to create links tailored to the interests of our patrons, ready to go right on the home page!
  • Last but not least, I appreciate how Kristi and her colleagues are so responsive and willing to assist us with all our questions. Belonging to TinyCat makes us part of a special group of books lovers that spans the world, and though very diverse, all sharing this desire to enrich the lives of others and open new horizons to them, regardless of our size or resources.

Want to learn more about the Pine Tree Academy Library? You can explore their library on TinyCat.

To read up on TinyCat’s previous Libraries of the Month, visit the TinyCat Post archive here.

Calling all TinyCat libraries: become TinyCat’s next Library of the Month—just send us a Tweet @TinyCat_lib or email Kristi at kristi@librarything.com.

Labels: libraries, Library of the Month, TinyCat

Thursday, September 5th, 2019

September Early Reviewers batch is up!

Win free books from the September 2019 batch of Early Reviewer titles! We’ve got 92 books this month, and a grand total of 3,312 copies to give out. Which books are you hoping to snag this month? Come tell us on Talk.

Hi all, I’m Kate Krieger (katemcangus) and I’ll be running ER from here on out. Feel free to direct your questions to me, by reply or by emailing kate@librarything.com. I look forward to getting to know y’all!

If you haven’t already, sign up for Early Reviewers. If you’ve already signed up, please check your mailing/email address and make sure they’re correct.

» Request books here!

The deadline to request a copy is Monday, September 30th at 6PM Eastern.

Eligiblity: Publishers do things country-by-country. This month we have publishers who can send books to the US, Canada, the UK, Israel, Australia, France, Germany, and many more. Make sure to check the flags by each book to see if it can be sent to your country.

Thanks to all the publishers participating this month!

Beacon Press Akashic Books Candlewick Press
Chronicle Books Tundra Books Penguin Teen Canada
Black Rose Writing Revell All Points Press, LLC
ECW Press NYRB Collections Prufrock Press
William Morrow Provisioners Press Suteki Creative
Hybrid Global Publishing Red Adept Publishing Marina Publishing Group
Plough Publishing House Saqi Books Wynkoop Press
HighBridge Audio Tantor Media EDGE Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing
Tiny Fox Press BookViewCafe Apache Creek Publishing
Bauhan Publishing CarTech Books ScareStreet
Poolbeg Press Algonquin Books University of North Georgia Press
Entrada Publishing IVP Formatio KaliOka Press
NewCon Press BHC Press

Labels: early reviewers, LTER

Thursday, August 22nd, 2019

TinyCat’s August Library of the Month: The Human Venture Library

To read more about TinyCat’s Library of the Month feature, visit the TinyCat Post archive here.

This month we highlight an interesting organization that studies “Human Learning Ecology”, and whose very interesting library helps support this research.

Laura Kennett, Volunteer Board Member of Human Venture Leadership, fielded my questions this month:

First, what is your library, and what is your mission—your “raison d’être”?

We are facing enormous challenges from local to global: poverty, crime, fledgling businesses, inequalities, cultural clashes, illnesses and diseases, human rights abuses, resources depletion, population growth, climate change, and the list goes on. And now more than ever, we need to come together to learn from our historical and current patterns of human striving, failure, and achievement to develop the adaptive capacities to innovate, problem solve, and avoid progress traps. The Human Venture—and its resource library (pictured left)—works to fill this role.

The Human Venture is a community of caring volunteers and life-long learners, based primarily in the politically-charged energy hub of Canada (the province of Alberta), who create a mutual learning community. This community supports increasing numbers of resourceful, resilient, responsible, life-ranging human beings who look at the bigger story in which we are all embedded to think and care across economic, social, and political divides, from the local to the global scale. The Human Venture draws from the lifetime research of Ken Low, as well as the research of others across many fields of endeavor, to create a meta-framework to help see the patterns of human learning in all the noise. Ken Low calls this discipline: Human Learning Ecology, or in other words: Learning how humans learn (or sometimes, how humans fail to learn).

Tell us some interesting ways you support your community.

The Human Venture is made up of two parts: The Human Venture Institute, which focuses on research and development of resources in the field of Human Learning Ecology, and Human Venture Leadership, which is a charitable organization focused on delivering human venture learning programs. Members within each organization take the time to sense and interpret what is happening in the world, in a mutually supportive environment, and then assess their own capacity to respond appropriately to the situation before taking action. Much time is spent looking at current events and how the patterns of thought and action may be similar or dis-similar to historical events. (It’s the patterns that are observed across time and geographical distances that are important for informing wise action and that’s why the Human Venture Library contains such a wide and deep variety of non-fiction books.)

What are some of your favorite items in your collection?

Some of the books in the Human Venture collection that I found to be most awakening are: Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed by Jared Diamond (pictured left), An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth by Chris Hadfield, and Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me): Why We Justify Foolish Beliefs, Bad Decisions, and Hurtful Acts by Carol Tavris.

What’s a particular challenge you experience as a small library?

Categorizing! The purpose of categorizing is to help people navigate the immense information-scape contained in books. There are many conventional methods to categorizing books. However, life is complex and categorizing books in a coherent manner to help people methodically learn from life is a challenge that we’re still wrangling with. Also, it takes time to reflect an analog collection of several thousands of books that have been compiled over the past 50 years into a digital catalog.

What’s your favorite thing about TinyCat? Anything you’d love to add?

The two things that are great about TinyCat are: 1. That it is so adaptable and we can categorize and re-categorize books as new connections are made between pods of books; and 2. That it has a simple widget that we can display on our website.

Something that would be helpful is if the tags that are applied to books by other users in other libraries could be shared across all libraries. It takes a lot of time to tag books, but the tags applied across library users of many libraries could create a wonderful, community-shared tag list.


Want to learn more about The Human Venture? Visit their website, follow them on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, and be sure to explore their library on TinyCat.

To read up on TinyCat’s previous Libraries of the Month, visit the TinyCat Post archive here.

Calling all TinyCat libraries: become TinyCat’s next Library of the Month—just send us a Tweet @TinyCat_lib or email Kristi at kristi@librarything.com.

Labels: libraries, Library of the Month, TinyCat

Tuesday, August 6th, 2019

August 2019 Early Reviewers

Win free books from the August 2019 batch of Early Reviewer titles! We’ve got 111 books this month, and a grand total of 3,989 copies to give out, including new books from Nicci French and Ali Wong, along with another chance to win one of our most-requested books from last month, Between Worlds: Folktales of Britain and Ireland.

Which books are you hoping to snag this month? Come tell us on Talk.

If you haven’t already, sign up for Early Reviewers. If you’ve already signed up, please check your mailing/email address and make sure they’re correct.

» Request books here!

The deadline to request a copy is Monday, Aug. 26th at 6pm EDT.

Eligiblity: Publishers do things country-by-country. This month we have publishers who can send books to the US, Canada, the UK, Israel, Australia, France, Germany, and many more. Make sure to check the flags by each book to see if it can be sent to your country.

Thanks to all the publishers participating this month!

Beacon Press Akashic Books Candlewick Press
Black Rose Writing Chronicle Books Puffin Books Canada
Tundra Books Random House ClydeBank Media
Westminster John Knox Press Apex Publications Revell
Greenleaf Book Group Red Adept Publishing Diversion Books
Literary Wanderlust LLC Bantam Dell Books by Elle, Inc
Prufrock Press Avery William Morrow
She Writes Press Shaking the Tree Press Inner Traditions / Bear & Co.
Henry Holt and Company First Steps Publishing Tantor Media
HighBridge Audio Gefen Publishing House Consortium Book Sales and Distribution
Mirror World Publishing CarTech Books Telemachus Press, LLC
ScareStreet Scribe Publications Greystone Books
Icon Books Zimbell House Publishing Tiny Fox Press
Turner Publishing Algonquin Books Month9Books
New Harbinger Publications Open Books Plough Publishing House
Cayena Press NewCon Press ECW Press
Hawaiian Heritage Press BHC Press Crystal Peake Publisher

Labels: early reviewers, LTER

Friday, July 26th, 2019

TinyCat’s July Library of the Month: The Children’s Diversity and Justice Library

To read more about TinyCat’s Library of the Month feature, visit the TinyCat Post archive here.

Teaching children the value of diversity and social justice is so important, and our next Library of the Month helps to educate our youth with such values through their community library—the Children’s Diversity and Justice Library.

Co-founded with Catherine Farmer Loya, Miriam Davis was kind enough to field my questions about the library:

First, what is your library, and what is your mission—your “raison d’être”?

The Children’s Diversity and Justice Library is a free community library rooted in values of equity, justice and compassion that empowers young people to celebrate diversity and use their voices for social change. We provide books and programs featuring under-represented identities that demonstrate diverse individuals, including children, who raise up justice in our world.

This all volunteer run library hosted by the Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church in Knoxville, Tennessee is organized around 12 diversity and justice elements: African American, Bodies and Abilities, Diversity, Gender, Families, Latinx, Justice, LGBTQ+, Cultures and Traditions, Refugees and Immigrants, Religion, and Women and Girls.

Tell us some interesting ways you support your community.

We provide a constantly growing collection of nearly 1000 books (to date), all authored by people who identify as a member of one of the twelve diversity and justice communities (or topically related to these elements). We also host programming such as thematic story times and related service projects including a Native Voices story hour, Celebrating the Stories of Refugees and Immigrants, and the east Tennessee event for the Human Rights Campaign’s “I Am Jazz” National Community Book Event. We look forward to hosting a Not My Idea discussion with older elementary and middle school youth concerning white privilege and the challenges of living within systemic white supremacy.

In June, we took about a third of our library with us to Knoxville’s Children’s Festival of Reading where we set up an inviting shady space for community members to flop down with their favorite diversity and justice read or browse new ones. We were happy to see how well received and enjoyed the library was during the festival and how many new patron accounts were set up that day. At the festival, we also debuted our adult “Parenting and Educating for Social Justice and Diversity Awareness” collection. Through our social media presence and online catalog, we also provide information and resources for anyone interested in diversifying children’s literature choices and availability.

What are some of your favorite items in your collection?

We are particularly happy to offer books in our collection that are not easily available locally through our school or public libraries and bookstores, or that are hot off the presses and don’t have the wait lists that can develop at our local public libraries. For example, we have made a point to purchase all the Flamingo Rampant* collections (screenshot left) as well as many just published award winning titles as we can.

*Flamingo Rampant is a micropress that produces feminist, racially diverse, LGBTQ positive children’s books. Their stories and illustrations are wonderful and always reflect the true diversity of children’s lived experience within their pages. They have been well received by our audience and are among our most popular titles.

What’s a particular challenge you experience as a small library?

We are limited in that we are entirely volunteer run and donation dependent while committed to making sure our collection is available, usable, and free. We use LibraryThing and TinyCat to create a self-serve library through which people with library accounts can check out books themselves online. However, with no gate keeper or security system in the physical library, one of our biggest fears is that our books will simply walk off the shelves never to be returned. (So far, we have been lucky in that our users support our mission and understand our limitations. We have only lost a few books in the nine months we’ve been operating.)

What’s your favorite thing about TinyCat? Anything you’d love to add?

TinyCat is what has allowed us to operate as well as we have with no staff because we have set it up so that patrons can request accounts electronically and check out books to themselves. The fact that it is a true OPAC also increases our reach greatly.

Given our circumstances, we’d love an automatic due date reminder system via email or text. Having an automatic feature would save us a lot of time and probably ensure more of our materials return on time.

I hear you—emailed, automatic checkout reminders and overdue notices is a common request from our libraries, and it’s something that we’re hoping to add sooner than later. We’ll be sure to announce if/when anything changes on that front, so stay tuned!


Want to learn more about The Children’s Diversity and Justice Library? Visit their website here, like them on Facebook here, and be sure to explore their library on TinyCat.

To read up on TinyCat’s previous Libraries of the Month, visit the TinyCat Post archive here.

Calling all TinyCat libraries: become TinyCat’s next Library of the Month—just send us a Tweet @TinyCat_lib or email Kristi at kristi@librarything.com.

Labels: libraries, Library of the Month, TinyCat