It is the policy of Clare
County Library to actively promote the reading habit, not being content
to simply stack books on shelves, and hope that our clients will find
them for themselves. Our overall aim is to increase access to material.
Formal book promotions are one of the means through which the library
attempts to achieve this.
Initially, Clare County Library took its promotions from the Well Worth
Reading scheme, commencing in 1993 with ‘Voices from Europe’,
a collection of contemporary novels in translation which explored aspects
of life on the continent. Formal book promotions continued with ‘Better
Read than Dead’, ‘City Limits’, ‘With a Little
Help from my Friends’, ‘Obsession’, ‘Turning Points’,
and ‘Foreign Bodies’. These dealt with such diverse themes
as friendship, contemporary thrillers, and city life in Europe.
Teenagers have also been well provided for, with their own book promotion,
divided into three main subject headings namely ‘Books With Attitudes’,
‘Thrillers and Spinechillers’ and ‘Kiss and Tell.’
In recent years the library has been actively developing in-house promotions,
including 'Picture This', ‘The Modern Library - The 200 Best Novels
in English since 1950’, ‘Contemporary Irish Fiction’
and non-fiction book promotions such as ‘Eureka!’, a Popular
Science book promotion for both adults and children. It is the library’s
intention to continue to develop this area of operation.
In these promotions, readers are provided with reviews of the relevant
titles, ensuring a suitable and enjoyable read according to one’s
choice. Each promotion has an average of twenty-five carefully selected
titles. Multiple copies of these - in paperback generally - are displayed
together in prominent position on tables, similar to supermarket policy
for ‘special offers’ or bookshop display for lead titles/bargain
books. This informal display is undoubtedly part of the success of the
venture. Each promotion is circulated in turn - for a period of three
months - to our branch library network, ensuring a continuous supply of
fresh promotions. Once a promotion has “done the rounds” of
our branch libraries, the books are released into the general system,
and may then be reserved by library members.
Words Across Europe:
In 1995, Clare County Library joined forces with its European partners
East Midlands Public Library Authorities (Northamptonshire, Leicestershire
and Nottinghamshire), East Midland Arts Board and the Netherlands Bibliothek
nen Lektuur Centrum in Holland for the Words Across Europe project. This
focused on literature in translation, storytelling tradition, marketing
and promotion of literature and regional literature development networking.
The project culminated in a major conference in Northampton which brought
together librarians, authors, translators, storytellers and publishers.
Clare County Library’s involvement in this project (as one of the
three partners), was as a direct result of our active approach to literature