How To Recommend a Book To Your Public Library

I love my public library!

It's where I started reading books when I was a stay-at-home mom. Every week I'd be hauling bags of books for my kids. Okay, okay... One bag for me and one for my 3 kids.

One day, I was looking for a book title and it wasn't in the system. I was so disappointed, because it was the third book in a series. I was on a very tight budget, like many may be now.

Well, if you know me I don't give up easily, so I went to the information desk to ask if the book was going to be ordered, and if not, how to make a request.

That my friends, was like discovering GOLD

I will share this service with you, which is often overlooked by many. I'm not sure if all libraries offer this, so ask! Here goes...

First thing's first, you must own a library card. If you don’t, you can sign up and get one. *It’s free!

3 Ways You Can Suggest-a-Title

  • Go to your nearest library and ask a staff member at the information desk if the item you want to suggest is not owned by the library. If it isn’t, let them know you would like to suggest a title for their collection. They will take your request there. 

  • Call your Library System and tell the staff member that you would like to recommend a title that the library does not own. They most likely will fill out your request over the phone or tell you where to fill out the form online.

  • Go online to your Library System’s website and log into your account. Every Library System is different, so if you don’t see “Suggest a title,” “Recommend a title,” or find a tab that says “Using your Library Card” on the menu bar, simply do a search. Last resort, call your library and ask a staff member to help you find it.   

The easiest way to find all the book information needed in one place is by searching for the title on Amazon.
Scroll all the way down to where it says Product Details.

Make sure you select the right type of material and the following:

  • Material type (Audiobook on CD, Book, Digital Audiobook, DVD, Ebook, Large Print Book, Music on CD)        
  • Title   
  • Author   
  • Publisher   
  • Year Published (YYYY)  Example: 1999   
  • ISBN or ASIN   

They may ask you the following questions:  
How did you hear about this title?  
Can you provide any additional information about this title? 

Your suggestion will be reviewed for possible inclusion in the Library's collection.
Depending on many factors such as volume of requests, the vendor, and meeting material management policy, your book may or may not be approved.

You will get a notification via email letting you know of their decision. Also, they decide how many books they will purchase to share with other branches.

Some believe borrowing books from the library does not help authors. I beg to differ.
When you suggest a book to the library, they are going to purchase it, if approved. Sometimes they order many books.

If your request is not approved, you can call and ask why. You can also wait and request it again at another time. Sometimes it is due to too many requests submitted that month. The number of title suggestions you can request will vary.

My public library allows up to 5 requests per day. Thankfully we have a great collection, so I haven’t needed to make that many title suggestions.

Make good use of this service when needed. I don't recommend making too many requests at a time. Use it wisely.
Remember, libraries belong to the community.

Another way to help authors is by recommending their books. Share what you thought about it with others, and consider leaving an honest review on social media, Goodreads, or Bookbub.

I can show you how to write a quick and easy book review  for Non-Fiction and  fiction books. Give it a try!

Happy reading!

*(This information is based on my personal experience. Please check your local library for their procedures and policies.)