Endangered Series #19: Dear America
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.
School librarian Amy P. emailed with our candidate today, and it’s a good one to think about . . .
Dear America (Series) by various authors
This historical fiction series began in 1996 and ran until 2004(ish). It was also rebooted for a couple years beginning in 2010.
The Case for Keeping: Solid historical fiction series are hard to come by. The diary format of the book is unique and engaging. For fans, the series has meant a lot.
The Case for Not: As reader Amy P. mentioned, other historical fiction series have overtaken this one in popularity (like I Survived). Earlier books in the series are going out of print and no new installments seem to be in the horizon.
Refresh? While the series as a whole hasn’t seen any updates, one book from the series, Like the Willow Tree (about the Spanish Flu Pandemic of 1918), has been (in response to the COVID-19 pandemic) reissued in paperback with a new cover and introduction from the author, Lois Lowry.
They are still on our shelves, but early books in the series will likely be a candidate for weeding in the near future
What are you doing with this series at your library?
Filed under: Endangered Series
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 firstname.lastname@example.org, or follow him on Twitter: @100scopenotes.
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