From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.
Saricks' book Readers' Advisory Service in the Public Library (3d ed., 2005) remains a standard text, as does the first edition of The Readers' Advisory Guide to Genre Fiction (2001). The most obvious difference in this second edition is the use of appeal factors to organize the genres Adrenaline Genres (adventure, romantic suspense, suspense, and thrillers); Emotions Genres (gentle reads, horror, romance, and women's lives and relationships); Intellect Genres (literary fiction, mysteries, psychological suspense, and science fiction); and Landscape Genres (fantasy, historical fiction, and westerns). Appeal has become an important aspect of readers'-advisory service (thanks in large part to Saricks' own work), so adopting it as the organizing principle of this new edition makes sense. The genres themselves are the same as in the previous edition, which makes for continuity but does not always reflect current trends in genre fiction. For example, romantic suspense has been eclipsed by paranormal romance as a subgenre of romance. Each genre chapter includes an introduction, a definition, the genre's appeal characteristics, key authors, What We Know about Fans, and suggestions for the RA interview (including a selection of Sure Bets ). Expanding Readers' Horizons with Whole Collection Readers' Advisory is a new section that suggests ways to lead the reader outside the genre. The final section of each chapter discusses trends. Tables in each chapter list author read-alikes as well as authors to try in other genres. This emphasis on connections across genres is another positive difference in the new edition. The lack of annotations for the authors in the tables and the majority of the author and title information embedded in the narrative will make this a challenge to use at the readers'-advisory desk. Nevertheless, it remains a must for any librarian who wants to hone his or her genre smarts and readers'-advisory skills. An important contribution to readers'-advisory literature.--Moyer, Jessica Copyright 2009 Booklist