I needed a book to suggest for this review, but I didn't want to write about any of the eight books I had recently read or heard. Though they were good and I enjoyed reading them, I wasn’t inspired to share them in this column.

Sometimes a book is so exciting and/or thrilling, or warm and fuzzy, that I want to tell everyone about it! When it’s my turn to write a review for this column, and I don't have a book to share, I often turn to the NoveList Plus database. It’s what we call in the library world, a reader’s advisory tool.

Because I don't always know what I’m looking for, I thought, "If this program helps me why not let our patrons know about this service that can help me find new authors, titles, and give them a choice of genres. It may help them, too! "

I’ve written a brief description for you on how to utilize this helpful database, Novelist, from your home computer or one at the Knox County Public Library. This amazing database is what you need when you’re wanting to find a new author or series or try a different genre.

Log-on by going to www.kcpl.lib.in.us. Our page will come up, and you will see all kinds of information from special events such as book sales, author visits, story-time schedules, painting classes, and much, much more. Scroll down to the lower right-hand corner, where you will see a large blue bar labeled, “Links," and under that bar is a list of sites and tutorials to which you have free access through the library. Click on the NoveList Plus, and you can start looking right away.

The orange bar I saw in the top left side shows five options: Home, Browse By, Especially For, Quick Links, and How Do I. These tabs are a great help when I am looking for a particular topic or want to know if a book is available in this library. When I hover on a tab, a drop-down list will help me look for a genre, award winners, or audiobooks.

When I selected NoveList Plus, a purple bar gave me information about hot topics. Below that box, I found I could look for books based on my mood! I also look for books under the headings-Adult, Teen, Ages 9-12, and Ages 0-8 giving me the appropriate group I want to target.

By using these useful topics such as "Heartwrenching and Lyrical" or "Courageous and Dramatic," I had a choice in the type of book I might want to read. Right under those headings were the intriguing words, beautiful words, breaking hearts. I could look at the images of the books that were displayed. A click on an image gave me a description of that book. I clicked on the first Adult Fiction book entitled "GIRL" by Edna O'Brien. I thought the summery was titillating! "Abducted by Boko Haram, a young woman makes a hair-raising escape from her northeast Nigerian prison before confronting the hostility and bureaucracy of being the mother of a child fathered by enemies. Sounds exciting, doesn't it? Even though I read, the tone was "Heartwrenching." Since the book is being released in October that meant I could suggest a purchase. I can hardly wait for it to arrive.

Furthermore, you can read about this book in reviews such as Publishers Week, Library Journal, and Kirkus. You can follow many links to find similar books based on genre, character type, storyline, tone, writing style, location, or subject matter. While exploring NoveList Plus, you can even search by material type such as Large Print!

A favorite search tool on Novelist is “Read Alikes.” If your favorite author is unable to write novels fast enough to quench your reading thirst, search under the heading, “Read Alikes” for authors whose writing style and/or subject matter is similar to your favorite author’s.

Try browsing in NoveList Plus! If you have trouble navigating this program, please feel free to ask for help from any of our friendly staff members.

Check it out on your home computer or at any of the terminals available at KCPL. Happy browsing!

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