February 25, 2018

The Advocate's Toolbox

SLJ Reviews Reorganized into Librarian-Friendly Sections

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Longtime SLJ subscribers may notice some changes in the organizational structure of reviews, starting with the April 2015 issue. After conducting surveys and focus groups with subscribers and reviewers, the editors decided to institute some subtle but key changes, all with the goal of making collection development decisions easier and more efficient for our readers.

Reviews-Re-Org-2015Instead of the bulk of the reviews being divided into broad grade-level categories (Preschool to Grade 4, Grades 5 to 8, and Grades 9 & Up for Fiction; Preschool to Grade 4 and Grades 5 & up for Nonfiction), there are now several format-specific categories, all of which are designed to be “librarian-friendly,” using terminology common to most school and public librarians and reflective of how the majority of library collections are divided and how librarians purchase materials.

The new sections and subsections are as follows:


Picture Books (subsections include “Early Childhood,” “Elementary,” and “Beginning Readers”)

Chapter Books

Middle Grade

YA (subsections include “Middle School” and “High School”)

NONFICTION (divided into “Elementary” and “Middle to High School”)

Each individual review will continue to have a specific grade level recommendation to aid in selection. Graphic novels will still be highlighted in the age-specific categories, while special format roundups (such as Board Books) as well as Fiction Series Updates will run periodically as well.

SLJ readers are encouraged to continue to provide feedback about the reviews and reach out with ideas and suggestions.

Kiera Parrott About Kiera Parrott

Kiera Parrott is the reviews director for School Library Journal and Library Journal and a former children's librarian. Her favorite books are ones that make her cry—or snort—on public transportation.

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  1. PLEASE bring back INDEX. It is impossible to find specific titles. LBH