The Upper School Library has recently begun to work on The Book Blog, an online source where students, teachers, and librarians alike can submit reviews of their favorite teen/adult novels.
Open for viewing at harkeruslibrarybookblog.blogspot.com, The Book Blog is currently being expanded and added as a resource for students to find new reading material. Upper School Librarian Lauri Vaughan has offered several students the opportunity to write for the blog during their free time.
“I’ve launched the blog to students who I hope will help build a critical mass over the summertime, and I’m hoping those people will stay as our core membership,” she said. “I think at that point it will draw attention to others who will ask [to write book reviews].”
Vaughan’s current targeted group of writers consists mostly of rising sophomores, though she has invited rising freshmen, juniors, and seniors alike to join The Book Blog.
“The large share of people invited are freshmen and sophomores […] because [they] are some of our biggest readers. I think they can still maintain their love for reading. When a lot of them hit their junior year, a lot of it just falls off,” she said.
Vaughan wants the blog to cater to “teens and adults” and advises reviewers to stray from “young teen” novels.
According to Vaughan, the aspect of the blog that sets it apart from other review websites is its peer-to-peer voice, as “most people get their next book from a personal recommendation.” The blog also has an RSS Feed to alert followers and writers.
Krishan Kumar (11) shares a similar sentiment and looks forward to discovering new books.
“It sounds like an exciting way for members of the community to share their favorite reads, and hopefully it will help us find some excellent books that perhaps we had not heard of before,” he said.
Upper School Librarian Meredith Cranston explained that The Book Blog is a continuous project for community members to read regularly.
“We’re excited because it’s going to be an ongoing and dynamic part of our new websites. It will just help connect students to the website,” she said.
The Book Blog is still, however, currently in its startup phase and features a total of four reviews. The site will continue to accept reviews and will be integrated into the library’s upcoming new webpage in August.