Monday, August 29, 2016

SLC Adult New Readers Book Group Dilemma

You're on the book selection committee. 
You have to make a choice. 
Which book would you choose? 

Sarah, Plain & Tall 
by Patricia MacLachlan

26 Fairmount Avenue 
by Tomie dePaolo

Bunnicula: A Rabbit-Tale of Mystery 
by Deborah & James Howe


Only one of these books won. Which one?
Which book would you choose?

That was our dilemma. Which book? 
How would we choose?

Since speed dating worked so well for us in the past, we decided to do it again. This time under Salt Lake City librarian Stephanie Goodliffe's direction.

Seven learners speed-dated the three books pictured above. The readers' goal was to select the first book to be read by the New Readers Book Group. (See details at the bottom of this blog.)

First, the readers came up with their criteria for a "good book." They developed a list of 5 must-haves: a plot that captured their interest, a hook that kept them turning the pages, a story-line that inspired them, a set of problems that they could relate to, and a group of characters who were life-like. Their rating scale was:
One reader rates a book.

A. plot - (1) don't like it; (3) ok; (5) love it
B. hook - (1) nothing grabbed me; (3) ok; (5) can't put the book down
C. inspires - (1) no; (3) ok; (5) feels good
D. problems - (1) can't relate; (3) ok; (5) can relate
E. characters - (1) don't like them; (3) ok; (5) like them

Either in pairs or individually, readers spent 7 minutes with each book. This time was focused on reading the dust jacket, the table of contents, and the first page of the book. At the end of 7 minutes, the readers recorded their scores.

Which score look like the winner to you?
Stephanie tallies the data.
After everyone dated each book, Stephanie and David compiled the scores on the board. Rather than tally all five categories, the group narrowed their examination to only the plot and hook. Their results were:

                      Plot*     Hook*
Sarah             4.0          4.0
Bunnicula       3.8          3.2
(*scores were averages)

Based on these two criteria, Sarah, Plain & Tall was the winner. The numbers were as plain as day, but the group wasn't quite satisfied with the results.

An alternative was offered by one group member - count how many 5's were listed for each book in the plot category only.

When they looked specifically at this set of numbers (Sarah three 5's & Bunnicula four 5's), Bunnicula: A Rabbit-Tale of Mystery was declared the winner.

Read Bunnicula: A Rabbit-Tale of Mystery
Beginning Monday, September 19, 2016

This group, co-sponsored by The City Library, Friends of The City Library, and Literacy Action Center, will meet 1st and 3rd Mondays of each month (beginning Monday, September 19th, 2016) from 4:30-6:00 PM in Conference Room D at the Main branch (210 East 400 South, SLC). 

Call Stephanie at 801-322-8131 or Deb at 801-265-9081 to enroll in this group. 

New Readers Book Group is Free 

and Open to the Public!

No comments: