professornana (professornana) wrote,

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List-ing dangerously

I saw at least 3 more of those lists today. This week's total for those lists is nearing 30. You know the ones I mean. "X number of Y books that every Z must read." It seems as though there are lists for everything. Do not get me wrong: some lists are quite valuable. I use the award winner lists from ALA constantly. I use lists from ILA, NCTE, and other professional organizations. I keep track of reviews, etc. I even make lists myself. I love looking at the lists shared by Donalyn Miller and John Schu and Colby Sharp and so many others. What I do NOT like about many of the lists I see on Facebook is the lack of information about who selected the books, why they sere selected, were the books from a "pool" of possibilities, etc? I want that information. Otherwise, do not ask me to care about someone's list of YA books for adults or perfect books for summer reading.

I posted to Facebook that I felt a rant coming on. Then I realized I have ranted about this before. The discussion on FB has been funny and spirited. I also had some folks propose some lists we could create:

Ten best books titles with 6 syllables (at least I know how this one came into being, right?) from Lester Laminack

Top 10 books that aren't making the publisher enough money so we're writing an article about them from Katie Muhtaris

Top 10 pretentious literary best sellers by Jan Chapman

Lists that made me feel listless from David Lubar

The Top Ten Books No One Would Read If They Weren't Required by Jennifer Weidenbenner

The book list links on FB are more clickbait than useful links to books I would want to add to my library or TBR stack. So, ask yourself before you click:

1. Who is sponsoring the list?
2. Who is making the selections?
3. What are the criteria?
4. From what pool of books are selections being made?
5. How does this list add to my library, TBR stack, knowledge of the field?

If you cannot answer those, questions, don't click!

And a P.S. Along with lists lately are the "challenges": how many have you read lists. Avoid those, too.
Tags: lists
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