Hold it! How to reserve a library book | SierraSun.com

Hold it! How to reserve a library book

In the not so distant past, library users rarely requested books from other branch libraries. It may have been that most people weren’t aware that putting a hold on a book ” making a request so that when the book is returned to the Library, it will be held for you rather than returned to the stacks ” was an option. But all that has changed, and holds are currently Big Business at the Library. In fact, when you request the hottest bestseller these days, don’t be surprised to hear that there are more than 40 people on the list ahead of you.

The past five years have seen an explosion in the number of holds placed by Nevada County readers, resulting in a pretty staggering UPS bill to fund the transport of heavy boxes of books back and forth. The shelves behind the circulation desk are typically filled with books on hold, and staff members spend time each day sending and receiving holds as well as calling patrons to notify them that the book they requested has arrived. (If you’re wondering why librarians don’t leave the title on your answering machine message, it’s a privacy thing. Imagine coming home after a tiring day at work to discover a message notifying your spouse that the book on divorce is being held at the library…)

One of the advantages of having public library systems ” our Truckee Library is one of six libraries in the Nevada County Library system ” is that libraries can share resources: Books purchased by and residing in one branch may be requested by patrons of another branch. So, rather than each branch buying that obscure book on building stone walls or making soap, one library can buy a copy that is then available to users of all the branch libraries in that library system.

The same system of holds can, however, work against smaller communities. Because we are far outnumbered by library users over the hill, our hot new books often spend a lot of time in Nevada City and Grass Valley communities. It was to solve this dilemma that the Friends of the Library started an “independent” collection of bestsellers that are purchased by the Friends rather than the Library.

These books are then catalogued and shelved separately (on a shelf to the right of the door as you enter) so that they are available only to the Truckee community and available for one-week checkout to encourage people to read and return them quickly; but this also means that you cannot place holds on the book in the Bestseller Collection.

Yes, our little library is too small to house any book you might want. But if you can wait a few days, you can put your hands on most any book in the county-wide library system. Except of course that in-demand, just-released, everybody-wants-to-read-it book like “The Kite Runner” or “Three Cups of Tea;” for those you’ll have to keep a close eye on the Friends’ Bestseller Collection so you can pounce when it returns to the shelf.

Monday 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Tuesday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Wednesday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Thursday 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Friday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Saturday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Read Malcolm Gladwell’s “The Tipping Point” and watch for information about a weekend of related events in the spring, sponsored by the Friends of the Truckee Library and Sierra College’s Institute for Sustainability.

Meets monthly at the Library. The book for the January meeting is “The Tipping Point” by Malcolm Gladwell, the selection for this year’s Truckee Reads event. Participants at the book group meeting will receive a coupon for 15 percent off a one-time book purchase at the Bookshelf at Hooligan Rocks. Everyone is welcome.

Now through February, 2008 for ages 5 and up

Sign up anytime at the Library

Toddlertime Tuesdays at 10:30 for ages 2 to 3 years

Wednesdays at 10:30 only, for ages 6-24 months

Thursdays at 11:15. For ages 3-6

Stories, songs, and fingerplays in Spanish and English

When school is in session: Fridays at 10:30 and 1:30, for ages 3-5

The Library’s Literacy Program is in desperate need of more tutors to serve a waiting list of learners. Training will be held at the end of January. For more information call Rolann at 575-7030.

Portraits by Truckee artist Raphael Jolly

Over the fireplace: “Evening Light on Dry Mountain”, acrylic on canvas by Mike Bond.

d. all of the above

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