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:
- Informed and effective readers’ advisory skills require that young adult librarians study both professional and alternative reviews.
- 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.
- Reviews from professional sources are more likely to be concerned with critical literary analysis than are reviews from alternative sources.
- Reviews from alternative sources can place a title in popular context, which in turn can help librarians connect with young adults.
- 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.