While we love helping you find great reads and want to find the right book just for you, we also recognize that many of us love to explore on our own. Being able to go into the stacks to scan the shelves, scout out the new book area, and check out what has been put on display all create a special feeling when one finds a great book by chance.
Whether you have been looking for a new author similar to your favorites or just want to completely dive into something unexpected, there are tons of great resources and tools online to help you get started. Consider this list as a starting point and know that there is so much more available out there, including blogs, video reviews, and personalized reading lists. Let us know what some of your favorite resources are in the comments!
General Reading Resources
- African American Literature Book Club: This website offers a comprehensive overview of authors and literature for all ages for books by or about people of African descent.
- Fantastic Fiction: This resource provides bibliographies on popular bestselling titles and is a great tool to look up lists of novels, novellas, series, and related content for authors.
- Fiction DB: This is a multi-purpose resource that allows you to search for lists of author’s fictional works tagged with classification, along with a metadata search tool to search by genres, themes, age levels and more.
- Gnooks: A unique database that suggests an author based on three names you submit. The results are especially interesting if you have several favorite authors who are not similar to one another.
- Jewish Book Council: An organization devoted to the support and celebration of Jewish culture. You can use this to read through reviews and browse recommended reading lists.
- Lambda Literary: This resource elevates and champions LGBTQIA+ literature and showcases literary awards annually. You can browse winners and nominees through the years.
- Latinx in Publishing: A great starting place to learn about Latino/a/x authors and books and where to find them within the publishing industry.
- Literature Map: This is an easy tool that allows you to type in author’s name to find more similar authors by how close they are to your input.
- Novelist Plus: This in-depth resource allows you to search by author, books, and appeals to find readalikes (a librarian’s secret weapon!). This resource is available on our website with the use of your library card and PIN number. Contact us if you are having trouble accessing this resource.
- We Need Diverse Books: This website is a great tool to learn more about diversity in publishing and literature. The link will take you to their suggested list of additional diversity resources to view.
- What Should I Read Next?: This resource pulls together a list of recommendations based on the title or author you submit, and you can also check out their blog for more suggestions.
- Whichbook: A resource that allows you to maneuver sliders for up to 4 factors to suggest titles, which is good tool if you are interested in exploring topics and genres more broadly.
- Christian Fiction: This is a large database that pulls together popular titles and authors within Christian fiction literature, including many genres.
- It’s all about Romance: This is a detailed review website dedicated to all books romance and allows you to explore different by tags and categories.
- No Flying, No Tights: This is a detailed review website dedicated to all graphic novels, comics, manga, and anime; note the “Browse by Intersectionality” function to expand on diversity picks.
- RA for All: Horror: Becky Spratford runs a general “RA for All” blog, this is her specialty in the horror genre, where she provides detailed reviews and further recommendations for appeals and readalikes.
- Smart Bitches, Trashy Books: This is an alternative romance-focused review website with detailed reviews, letter grades, and noted content warnings for readers.
- Stop, You’re Killing Me: This is a large resource for mystery, thrillers, suspense, and crime authors, including sub-genres, location, and diversity indexes.
- Tor: While primarily considered a publishing company, Tor offers a ton of information for science fiction and fantasy titles with reviews and recommended lists.
Content and Trigger Warnings
- Common Sense Media: This is an in-depth resource for families and individuals concerned with specific factors like language, violence, sex, and positive messaging.
- Does the Dog Die?: This crowd-sourced resource is best with movies and TV shows, but also includes many well-known books to identify specific content and triggers to avoid.
Children and Teen Resources
- ALA’s Rainbow Book List: This includes annual lists highlighting their top LGBTQIA+ picks for children and teens (ages 0 to 18) after evaluating hundreds of titles.
- American Indian Children Literature: This website provides a critical analysis of Indigenous people in children’s and YA literature and be sure check out their “Best Books” section.
- Beyond the Binary: This resource focused on elevating queer, non-binary, and trans voices in publishing, particularly focusing on #ownvoices.
- Disability in Kid Lit: This is focused on the portrayal of disability in middle grade and young adult literature, and includes reviews, recommendation lists, and interviews with authors.
- Hijabi Librarians: This is a book review website targeting children and YA literature that features Muslim characters and protagonists, particularly #ownvioces works.
- Queer Books for Teens: This is a good database for YA literature focused on LGBTQIA+ themes from 2000 to 2017, where you can browse by filter picks, best of lists, and the alphabetical list.
- Latinxs in Kid Lit: This is a resource that reviews Latinx voices in children’s and YA literature and highlights Pura Belpré Award winners.
- Novelist Plus K-8: This in-depth resource allows you to search by author, books, and appeals to find readalikes (a librarian’s secret weapon!). This resource is available on our website with the use of your library card and PIN number. Contact us if you are having trouble accessing this resource.
- Social Justice Books: The non-profit organization Teaching for Change developed Social Justice Books to highlight multicultural, social justice literature for children and teens, including recommendation lists, detailed reviews, and guides for picking anti-bias children’s books.