The Shelter Island Public Library is bustling on this mid-July afternoon. Children, out of school for the summer, fill the young reader section, identified by a giant giraffe poster on the wall. In the main room, adults sit in chairs, reading quietly while the main desk is nearly three deep with librarians and assistants.
It doesn’t look as if this library could handle anymore activity, but that’s exactly what it’s striving for with the new adult reading program, “Catch a Great Read.”
Adult Services Librarian Jocelyn Ozolins explained the concept.
“A lot of people have 20 books that they want to read and they know exactly what they want, while some people are done with all the Jodi Picoult books that they can read and ask what do I read next,” she said. “For those people that need some help finding a book, we try to help them find it. The idea for the program is that when you sign up, you get a packet with a form to do book reviews. Once you have read four books you get a tote bag and at the same time you get a raffle ticket to enter into a drawing to win a Kindle.”
Readers are not required to do a book review to be in the running for the Kindle, but Ozolins says they are greatly appreciated.
“It helps us and other patrons. If someone’s read something they love or hate, we’re posting them and it’s really useful to see what other patrons like, because there’s so much out there that we can’t read enough to have all the information.”
Reviews don’t have to be long, just a few sentences or short paragraph describing your thoughts on the book are fine. Ozolins paraphrases some of the reviews she’s received so far.
“This was a quick read, it was implausable, but I still enjoyed it or the first chapter was tough going, but after 50 pages you’ll be glad you read it,” she said.
Participants also receive a punch card to keep track of their reads and once they’ve read their fourth book, every time they read another book they get another raffle ticket.
Ozolins is happily surprised at how popular the program and reviews have been.
“We’re getting a pretty good response with book reviews and it’s great for me because I get some feedback. The key thing is they find stuff that they like,” she said. “Have a good summer of reading whatever you like and what you don’t know about, we want to help you find it.”
The Shelter Island Public Library is located at 37 North Ferry Road. “Catch a Great Read” runs until August 21st, 2015.
For more information go to www.silibrary.org or call the library at 631-749-0042.