A couple of stories spotlighting the matter of graphic novels in libraries– GNs remain among the most popular books to check out, and libraries have been a major force in getting younger readers exposed to comics. But their popularity is not without controversy, as this story shows: Two Kentucky librarians were fired for not allowed a child to check out LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN.
“Residents in Jessamine County do not realize that these books that are so graphic are available in the library let alone to their children,” former Jessamine County librarian, Beth Bovaire, said.
Beth Bovaire worked at Jessamine County Public Library up until a month ago. She and Sharon Cook worked as librarians- the two were fired last month when they say they didn’t allow a child check out a book from the league of extraordinary gentleman series.
“My friend Sharon had brought it to me on Wednesday, and she said ‘look at this book it’s filthy and it’s on hold for an 11 year old girl,’ and I said well okay, lets take it off hold.”
A follow up shows local opinion divided.
§ On the PLUS side, the New Jersey State Library has awarded $3000 grants to 14 libraries to “assist them with establishing and growing graphic novel collections.”
This grant was specifically designed to help smaller libraries in the state with their graphic novel collections.
“We recognize that our smaller libraries face funding challenges when it comes to providing their customers with the variety of products they’d like,” said Norma Blake, New Jersey State librarian. “Although it’s rare for the State Library to fund a core collection like this, we believe it’s important to bring this popular genre to smaller libraries who otherwise couldn’t afford these books.”
As part of the grant, the State Library conducted workshops featuring experts discussing various aspects of graphic novel collection development, and furnished a core graphic novel bibliography for the librarians to use to purchase books for their collections. Workshop panelists were John Cunningham, vice president of marketing for DC Comics, Laverne Mann, librarian with the Mercer County Library, David Inabnitt, librarian with the Brooklyn Public Library, and Sophie Brookover, librarian with Eastern Regional Senior High School, Audubon.
[Both links via Kevin Melrose.]