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I know libraries have limited space.


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#1 pencil

Posted 13 November 2012 - 08:59 AM

But who decides which books to no longer carry? I was just on the search engine for the library trying to find some books I loved as a kid for my DD. I typed in Caroline B Cooney and there was only about 5 results! Why? Christopher Pike, same deal, lucky I have most of those here anyway. I'm too scared to even try Monica Hughes!

But when you go to the library there's shelf upon shelf of those churned out by the dozen fairy series, or sparkly generic 'girl' books. There's way too many low quality vampire and 'joke' books, but no great classics of the 80s and 90s!

#2 GamerMum

Posted 13 November 2012 - 09:04 AM

My mum is a librarian and I have asked her this before too. She said it's all down to stocking issues. Books that are of high demand (like Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, and many classics like those you mentioned) get borrowed out and never returned. This happens so often that eventually they can't find replacements.

She says that sending out fine notices is next to useless, as it's rare that people pay the fine or return the books.

#3 Futureself

Posted 13 November 2012 - 09:32 AM

Unfortunately physical space issues means that Libraries can't operate as 'archives' either. If it hasn't been borrowed x number of times in y years then it has to go.
I know what you mean though, when quality books don't seem to be available, yet the shelves are full of 'modern fluff'. It's a vicious cycle in a way: if it's not there people aren't going to be exposed to it and therefore borrow it; but it can't stay on the shelf if it's not borrowed and so gets discarded.

#4 Oriental lily

Posted 13 November 2012 - 09:34 AM

I gave up on libraries years ago. Being a fan of the fantasy genre were there can be up ten books that need to be read in chronological order meant that more often than not he library would be missing books. These books would never be replaced making the rest of the books useless. So I think now the stock books that are popular and once they are gone they just replace with the most recent best seller. After all those would be the ones most people would be requesting.

Annoying but I tend to just wait until I see the classics I loved as a child in the op shop and buy for a couple of dollars. Or eBay.

A couple of years ago I bought the whole series of Walter farleys black stallion series and my friend flicka series in a moment of nostalgia. Real old copies that I remembered as a kid.

Pity my eldest dd has not got the horsey bug.

But I had fun re reading them biggrin.gif .

#5 ubermum

Posted 13 November 2012 - 09:40 AM

It all comes down to supply and demand. If demand was high everywhere for the books you want, they would be reprinted. Your child will probaby feel the same in years to come about fluff fairy books of some description.

#6 feralgreenthumbs

Posted 13 November 2012 - 09:48 AM

QUOTE (futureself @ 13/11/2012, 10:32 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Unfortunately physical space issues means that Libraries can't operate as 'archives' either. If it hasn't been borrowed x number of times in y years then it has to go.


Yep, this is how it works. DP is a librarian and they regularly 'weed' out unborrowed books. They do usually keep classics though, but perhaps that has to be a very small selection due to available space.

#7 Floral Arrangement

Posted 13 November 2012 - 09:53 AM

Having worked in libraries for over 20 years I have seen the other side. One of the positions I have held is debt collection/accounts. The books that always disappeared were the sci fi/fantasy books, best sellers, car manuals and fancy coffee table type books. We repurchase if possible and if the budget allows and if the book is still in print. The  sci fi/fantasy sets are a real issue the copy people want is never in. I had the same problem with a series I read and luckily I like it so much I purchase it online book by book. I did an amnesty a few years back sending letters out to all the clients that had very overdue books saying that they could return during a set time frame with no fines and no questions. Out of $125 000 worth of stock we got $40 000 back. I was pleased but that is still $85 000 worth of stock gone.

Hopefully with the SA system now being on the one system, titles will be more readily available. The face of libraries is really changing, to make them viable. with technology focuses, programs to target different groups ie storytime, children's programs, book clubs.

I can suggest asking for a title to be brought in from another library service. So you read number 1 and the library doesn't have number  2 in a series so request as you loan number 1. Hope that makes sense. The title generally arrives in a few days. We have a courier system that connects all of the public libraries.

Edited by FloralArrangement, 13 November 2012 - 09:55 AM.


#8 Floral Arrangement

Posted 13 November 2012 - 10:17 AM

And to answer your actual question an audit of stock is done periodically. Computer reports printed out and titles that have not been out for a considerable amount of time are taken out of stock. Wear and tear also see titles constantly removed from stock, often falling to pieces. Always keep an eye on the book sale table if your library has one.




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