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Staff Guide to Books & Authors:  

Staff Guide

Books & Authors is a readers's advisory tool, similar to NoveList, except it includes non-fiction titles. Both databases are handy for either staff or library users.


  1. ‚ÄčA valid Arlington Public Library Card and PIN. Be sure your Library card has not expired and has no excessive fines and fees
  2. Option! Free User Profile
  3. Access to the Internet - on a computer or mobile device

Video Tutorials

About this database

How do these databases differ? Important features are in bold


1. We subscribe to NoveList & NoveList Select which integrates with our library's online catalog. Patrons can find a title in NoveList and click a button to see if it is available in the library.

2. Includes description information that explains why a particular book was chosen as a read-alike for another.

3. Book discussion guides are available for many titles.

4. Has some great reading lists by suggested age level and genre

5. Includes children's and teen books

6. Lots of articles on readers advisory and fiction topics.

7. Pre-made book talks

8. Very, very easy search interface

9. Includes links to GoodReads reviews for titles - so if you belong to GoodReads you can Login from the title link and add your GR review there.

Books & Authors

1. Available to all Virginia libraries courtesy of the Library of Virginia.

2. Very, very easy to browse genres. Just click through from the database homepage

3. Finding read-alikes is also easy. Once you choose a title, you can click through to lists of titles by the same genre, subject, and setting. There's an easy "Read-Alike Wizard," too.

4. Expert Picks lists, like "15 Memorable Apocalyptic Novels."

5. Lots of ways to keep your own lists, from "My Author lists" to "My Book Lists" to "My Ratings and Reviews."

6. Non-fiction lists and read-alikes are included.   

7. Very browsable format. NoveList feels like a database. Books and Authors feels more like a web site.

8. Very easy to find award winners, bestsellers, and newly published titles from the home page.

9. Has a "Meet the Editors" link where you can see who did the work. NoveList staff do most of the selecting and writing recommendations whereas Books and Authors contracts outsiders.

Based on blogpost by Holly Hibbert


What's available?
Author search, title and series search, "if you like..." search, author, title and genre browse, awards search, who, what, when, where — graphical search, advanced search and  more.

Users can create a B & A profile,and sign up for ’My Reading Room’ to save books, authors, lists, and past searches; rate and review books and see what others have rated and reviewed. NoveList has a similar user account function.


When You Don't Know Where to Begin