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Endangered Series #9: Pony Pals

Popularity comes, popularity goes. As librarians we’re always balancing between what will circulate like crazy and what we need to have in the collection. And we’re not the Library of Congress – we can’t (and shouldn’t) keep everything.

An endangered series is one that appears to be waning in terms of popularity. But popularity isn’t everything. Should it stay, or should it go? Or think of it this way – if you were starting a library today, would this series make the cut? Let’s discuss.


Pony Pals by Jeanne Betancourt

Ponies endure. Because of the widespread horse love out there, books featuring horses tend to stick around longer than you might expect. Take Pony Pals, for instance. This paperback series began in 1994, and I’m guessing they are still on the shelves of many libraries out there.

The Case for Keeping: The sustained popularity of the topic.

The Case for Not: There are similar, newer series that horse lovers might appreciate – here’s a sampling:


Refresh? Nope. Out of print. Used books sites?

My Verdict: We’ve been adding other horse series, but since Pony Pals still circulate some, we’re keeping them until age makes them fall apart.

What are you doing with this series at your library?

About Travis Jonker

Travis Jonker is an elementary school librarian in Michigan. He writes reviews (and the occasional article or two) for School Library Journal and is a member of the 2014 Caldecott committee. You can email Travis at scopenotes@gmail.com, or follow him on Twitter: @100scopenotes.


  1. Back in my school librarian days I did exactly what you’re doing — keeping older series titles in circulation as long as there was a continued interest in them. (Lots of younger kids saw their older siblings reading them and wanted to finally read ‘older kid’ books)

  2. I’m doing what you’re doing for this series. Currently, there are two of them left on the shelf.