Learning from a Variety of Review Sources

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Microsoft Office clip art image

After locating professional and alternative review sources for R. J. Palacio’s book, Wonder (New York, NY: Alfred A. Knopf, 2012), and Madeleine George’s book, The Difference Between You and Me (New York, NY: Viking, 2012), a small study of literature reviews led to the following discoveries and reflections:

  1. Informed and effective readers’ advisory skills require that young adult librarians study both professional and alternative reviews.
  1. A critical stance is beneficial when studying any review; reviews from alternative sources may or may not be authoritative or reliable, but by nature, no review can be completely objective.
  1. Reviews from professional sources are more likely to be concerned with critical literary analysis than are reviews from alternative sources.
  1. Reviews from alternative sources can place a title in popular context, which in turn can help librarians connect with young adults.
  1. The existence of a variety of review sources demonstrates that significant numbers and a great variety of readers find literature important, enjoyable, meaningful, and valuable in their lives.

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