January 17, 2018

Mile High | ALA Midwinter Preview 2018

The American Library Association (ALA) Midwinter Meeting returns to Denver, February 9–12, at the Colorado Convention Center. While the later-than-usual timing pushes the conference closer to March’s Public Library Association (PLA) biennial gathering, a potential bottleneck for some, Midwinter offers plenty of compelling content to pull librarians to the Mile High City.

Best Media 2017: Audiobooks

The best audiobooks of 2017 include short story collections, debut novels, memoirs, true crime, astrophysics, and poetry.

Best Media 2017: Games

LJ’s new gaming columnists have chosen their favorite games of the year. The titles include board games, video games, and a mobile title that will appeal to a wide range of patrons with differing interests and experience.

Best Media 2017: Music

This year, our ears were graced by many great albums—even a few brilliant ones. But two stood out from the crowd: Nicole Mitchell’s Mandorla Awakening II: Emerging Worlds—my pick for album of the year—and ­Thundercat’s Drunk.

Growing Home | Design Institute Design Challenges

Librarians from around the country convened on October 20 in Washington State, at Fort Vancouver Regional Library’s Vancouver Community Library for an exploration of community engagement, sustainable design, and adapting to changing needs. The building, a 2015 LJ New Landmark Library, serves as gathering place and convener for the midsize city and exemplified the day’s themes from start to finish.

Light in the Dark: Facing the Challenges Ahead | Editorial

We spend a lot of time as the year turns reflecting and anticipating what’s to come. This year, such reflection is intensified by a seemingly relentless assault on basic rights in a polarized political climate. This calls on us to fight for what our communities need as never before.

Do Librarians Discriminate? | BackTalk

Suppose a librarian receives an email from a man named Greg Walsh, wanting to become a cardholder or simply inquiring about the open hours. Would the librarian reply? And, if so, would the reply be polite, including for instance some form of salutation, such as “Hello” or “Good morning”? Does your answer change if the guy is called Tyrone Washington? Is a librarian treating Jake Mueller differently from DeShawn Jackson?

Lance Werner: LJ’s 2018 Librarian of the Year

If you ask Lance Werner, executive director of the Kent District Library, MI, and LJ’s 2017 Librarian of the Year, what makes him a strong leader, an effective legislative advocate, and a champion of access for his patrons, his answer is simple: it’s all about forming relationships.

Reviewers of the Year 2017

In honor of all our reviewers, and especially those whose work made an indelible impression this year, LJ editors thank you for your dedication, expertise, and trusted insights. Here’s to many more years of working and learning together.