Kris Wiley new mug

Kris Wiley

Soon after Roseburg Public Library opened, I realized we have a lot of serious readers among our staff and volunteers. Not a day goes by that I don’t have a conversation with at least one team member about what we’re reading.

What I learned quickly was that between all of us, we cover just about every subject area in the library.

We are harnessing all of that reading in several ways for patrons. First, we encourage patrons to stop by the main desk or children’s room and have a conversation about books. Whether you’re looking for a recommendation or want to tell us about the last great thing you read, chatting about authors and titles is always fun.

Second, stop by our Staff Picks shelves located near the new adult materials. Patrons will find something for nearly every reading mood along with a form that explains in a couple of sentences why the library team member loves the book.

What I enjoy about Staff Picks is learning which people have similar reading tastes to me, and then I seek out that person for more recommendations. I also sometimes grab something completely out of my comfort zone when I know it has a seal of approval from one of our team members.

Third, our Staff Picks shelf just went virtual; patrons can see the entire list by going to the library’s online catalog at Under the green banner titled What’s Hot, click on Booklists and Staff Picks. Click on the individual book titles for a summary or to place a hold.

Items with a pink background are currently checked out; items with a green background are available. There also are links to electronic books and audiobooks available through the OverDrive electronic books platform.

In addition, the library subscribes to the cloudLibrary electronic books platform. We are unable to integrate cloudLibrary into our online catalog, so patrons can go to the cloudLibrary app and search for staff recommendations by title.

Staff Picks is just getting started. We’ll rotate out our physical display in September for a new round of books, audiobooks and DVDs, and our online booklist will be a running list of all of our recommendations.

Patrons who go to the online booklists will see lists for the 2019-2020 Oregon Battle of the Books (OBOB) titles for elementary, middle school and high school students.

Patrons who visit the library can find printed lists of the books in the junior and young adult areas; stop by the main desk or children’s room for assistance.

Finally, we encourage patrons looking for even more booklists and recommendations to explore the Gale Books & Authors database; a link to the site is available at under the yellow banner titled Electronic Resources.

Try the Who? What? Where? When? feature. Select from a character, subject, location and/or time period, and the database will show the results of the combination. I just learned there are several librarian mysteries set in Europe that I need to read.

The goal for our recommendations and booklists is to ensure patrons always have a good book (or 10) at hand. After all, a to-be-read pile can never be too high. Happy reading!

Kris Wiley is the director of the Roseburg Public Library. She can be reached at 541-492-7051 or

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