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Libraries

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Rowan
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Interest in HF: I love history, but it's boring in school. Historical fiction brings it alive for me.
Preferred HF: Iron-Age Britain, Roman Britain, Medieval Britain
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Libraries

Post by Rowan » Wed April 25th, 2012, 12:46 pm

Okay I know at least one member here is a librarian (or works in a library in some other capacity), maybe more than one, I just can't remember who. So I'm tossing this question out to the general membership:

Do libraries conduct inventories? If so, how often, usually?

I ask this because I found a wonderful new historical mystery series and am stuck at the first book. When I first made the list of all of the titles in the series, I went online to the local library's website and searched for all of them to see what my chances were of being able to read most, if not all, of them through the library. Out of approximately 20 books, only 2-3 were not at the library. I thought, great! I'll see if I can get those 2-3 on my Kindle and be able to read the whole series. So I requested book 1 from the library and when I went to pick it up, I saw how small the book is and decided to go ahead and get book 2. I looked up where to find it in the card catalog (which showed that the main branch, where I go, was the only branch that had a copy) and the system said it was on the shelf under mysteries. I checked there. Found a bunch of the other books by the author, but not book 2. I went ahead and checked the general fiction area because I know books are occasionally misshelved. No big deal, but it wasn't there either. I explained all of this to the librarian as I checked out book 1 and he said he'd place a hold on it and that might prompt the book to be found.

On Monday I decided to look at my library account to see if the book was available yet and they just hadn't called me. The book was still showing as requested, but instead of the book cover image that should've been there, it was a plain blue square. Something then prompted me to look up the book in the online card catalog. Not there. :confused:

Now I have no way to read book 2 unless I spend money for a physical copy of the book since it's not at the library (not even in the Orleans Parish system either) and that particular book is not available on Kindle. I don't want to spend money on a book I don't intend to keep.

After all that, my question is, again, do libraries conduct inventories at all so that they know when a book is completely gone from the library and can then be removed from the system?

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Misfit
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Post by Misfit » Wed April 25th, 2012, 5:07 pm

Have you tried requesting it via interlibrary loan? I use the WorldCat website to see what libraries have a book, and I can get a good feel from that what my chances are, especially if I recognize a library system I've received ILLs from before.
At home with a good book and the cat...
...is the only place I want to be

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Rowan
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Interest in HF: I love history, but it's boring in school. Historical fiction brings it alive for me.
Preferred HF: Iron-Age Britain, Roman Britain, Medieval Britain
Location: New Orleans
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Post by Rowan » Wed April 25th, 2012, 5:19 pm

I feel like an ass.

annis
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Post by annis » Wed April 25th, 2012, 5:47 pm

Library books do go missing, unfortunately, despite security systems. Sometimes, though, they are just misplaced by unhelpful readers who don't realise libraries actually have a system and stick them back any old where on the shelves. Yes, libraries do periodically run reports to establish when books were last seen /taken out, and also take note of cases like yours where a book is wanted and can't be found. In that case the book may be declared "missing" until it has been established that it's gone for good. The book you're after would have be declared "missing", i.e. unavailable, before your library could inter-loan it for you - if a library has an available copy of a book themselves , they're not meant to inter-loan a copy from another library - that's how it works here, anyway..

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Misfit
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Post by Misfit » Wed April 25th, 2012, 6:04 pm

[quote=""Rowan""]I feel like an ass.[/quote]

Why?

I've had a couple I've requested be listed on someone else's hold shelf forever until I finally inquired and they deemed it lost. One of those was a HB of Wheel of Fortune, and I specifically wanted a HB 'cause I didn't want a 1,000 + pages MMPB. They said I could request an ILL if I wanted, although I ended up getting one via swap.
At home with a good book and the cat...
...is the only place I want to be

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Rowan
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Posts: 1462
Joined: August 2008
Interest in HF: I love history, but it's boring in school. Historical fiction brings it alive for me.
Preferred HF: Iron-Age Britain, Roman Britain, Medieval Britain
Location: New Orleans
Contact:

Post by Rowan » Wed April 25th, 2012, 6:21 pm

[quote=""annis""]Library books do go missing, unfortunately, despite security systems. Sometimes, though, they are just misplaced by unhelpful readers who don't realise libraries actually have a system and stick them back any old where on the shelves. Yes, libraries do periodically run reports to establish when books were last seen /taken out, and also take note of cases like yours where a book is wanted and can't be found. In that case the book may be declared "missing" until it has been established that it's gone for good. The book you're after would have be declared "missing", i.e. unavailable, before your library could inter-loan it for you - if a library has an available copy of a book themselves , they're not meant to inter-loan a copy from another library - that's how it works here, anyway..[/quote]

I just thought it very strange that within a matter of days, it's not even showing up in a general electronic card catalog search. I understand if it's misplaced, but that's no cause for removing it entirely from the system, is it?

[quote=""Misfit""]Why?

I've had a couple I've requested be listed on someone else's hold shelf forever until I finally inquired and they deemed it lost. One of those was a HB of Wheel of Fortune, and I specifically wanted a HB 'cause I didn't want a 1,000 + pages MMPB. They said I could request an ILL if I wanted, although I ended up getting one via swap.[/quote]

Because I've never thought to look up the ILL thing. Never used it because apparently now, I can go to at least one parish (county) over from where I live and get a card from them. I've never thought beyond that. :o

SGM
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Post by SGM » Wed April 25th, 2012, 6:24 pm

One of the university libraries I use has recently radio-frequenced all their books to assist finding them in the library. They already had electronic gates so that theoretically the books could not be pinched without being checked out so it wasn't to do with that.

I still really rather feel that I would have preferred the library to spend the money on books.
Currently reading - Emergence of a Nation State by Alan Smith

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Rowan
Bibliophile
Posts: 1462
Joined: August 2008
Interest in HF: I love history, but it's boring in school. Historical fiction brings it alive for me.
Preferred HF: Iron-Age Britain, Roman Britain, Medieval Britain
Location: New Orleans
Contact:

Post by Rowan » Wed April 25th, 2012, 6:26 pm

Yeah I can see both sides of that SGM. LOL

annis
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Post by annis » Wed April 25th, 2012, 6:57 pm

Posted by Rowan
I just thought it very strange that within a matter of days, it's not even showing up in a general electronic card catalog search. I understand if it's misplaced, but that's no cause for removing it entirely from the system, is it?
I would assume that's becuase the library has declared it "missing" and so unavailable. This is done so people don't keep looking for or requesting a book which can't be found.

Do get back to them and ask if they can interlaon you a copy if their one is now considered lost.

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Misfit
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Post by Misfit » Wed April 25th, 2012, 8:07 pm

If it's a newer release, there's also the purchase request option. 9 out of 10 times they'll buy it.

ILL is not just the county/city next door. I've received books from Alaska, New Mexico, the midwest and the east coast. Only once have I had to pay a handling fee. I just fill out the online request form and wait to see if it shows up on my holds list.

I never go searching for a book in the library, plus a lot of the older books that I'm interested in are in what they call "Central Storage". Not all branches in the county carry every book in the catalog, so I place my hold online, and in a couple of days the book magically appears on my hold shelf. Walk in, scan it and I'm out the door.
At home with a good book and the cat...
...is the only place I want to be

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