Featured Resource of the Month: Opposing Viewpoints inContext

The DRC (Digital Resources Committee) is starting a new monthly feature we’re calling the Featured Resource of the Month.  Each month we’ll feature one of resources Allegheny County eResources and provide a quick overview with helpful tips. This month’s resource is Opposing Viewpoints in Context.

Opposing Viewpoints in Context

  • Primary audience: Middle School and High School Students.
  • Excellent resource for projects and reports on social and political issues. (i.e. Capital Punishment, Climate Change)
  • Good complement or replacement for students search for Point/Counterpoint book series.
  • Includes more than 13,000 topics.
  • Easily build balanced bibliographies by choosing resources by delineated categories: Academic Journals, Magazines, Reference Books, News, and more.
  • Patrons can quickly save PDFs of the resources, email them to their selves, or save directly to Google Drive.
  • For other patrons OVIC is a quick and easy tool to provide an objective overview hot button topics in the news.



Dustin, Sewickley

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Better Book Discovery Tools in NoveList

We all use NoveList to find what title comes next in a series, but did you know there are new, rather fun browse features, “Browse by Genre” and “Browse by Appeal,” to help you find that next book to match your, and your patron’s, personal reading styles?

Try out the “Appeal Mixer” found on the “Browse by Appeal” page.

Image of NoveList Appeal Mixer

Are you in the mood for a particular style or mood?  There are some popular combos already there, for instance, something light and heartwarming, or something sweeping and dramatic.  But, you can also mix you own factors and limit by an age group. Examples of appeal factors include:

  • Character (e.g. character duos, flawed, quirky, etc.) NEW!
  • Storyline (e.g. action-packed, character-driven, sweeping, etc.)
  • Pace (e.g. fast-paced, leisurely paced, etc.)
  • Tone (e.g. bleak, funny, sarcastic, etc.)
  • Writing Style (e.g. descriptive, gritty, lyrical, etc.)
  • Illustration (e.g. cartoony, impressionistic, realistic, etc.)
  • Audio Characteristics (e.g. folksy, energetic, read by the author, etc.)

You can also download a copy of the pamphlet The Secret Language of Books: A Guide to Appeal which can help you have conversations with patrons about why they like the kind of books they do, and how to find similar books.

Take note: The top menu bar of NoveList has been redesigned. You’ll find the “Browse By” tab there to get to the new browse features. Take a look at the options in the “Quick Links” tab. You’ll see frequently used sections like book discussion guides or author read-alikes. Use the “How Do I?” tab to take you to help pages which are actually very helpful!

novelist menu bar

Try out the new Novelist features soon and you just may help a patron find their new favorite book they didn’t even know they were looking for!

Helen (USC)

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You heard it here…

You know that OverDrive offers audiobooks for kids—in fact there are over 800 of them.

And of course there are thousands of fiction ebooks for kids and hundreds of nonfiction ebooks for them too. But did you know that 60+  of them (with more to come) in the OverDrive Read format include narration? Children can simultaneously read and listen to these titles, including favorites by Robert Munsch, the frantic antics of Scaredy Squirrel, and selected nonfiction from DK among others.

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There’s even a graphic novel series for teens, My Boyfriend Is a Monster, that includes the option of narration.

VL August 20154

At present, to browse the complete collection of narrated ebooks, do an advanced search and specify ebooks as the format. Then filter the search by format feature to OverDrive Read with narration. A more direct search may be available in the future.

Parents of struggling readers are likely to be especially interested in this option, though it will also be appreciated by adults who have already read a title aloud a number of times and just want to take a break.

If you have customers who are especially excited about this feature, check in to make sure that they know about Tumblebooks and Bookflix too.

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