Thursday, December 03, 2009

What Books are Exactly Like...?

Amanda had to go out of town for a funeral, and is also taking it easy and resting up for her little one's big arrival, so teen librarian Amy Alessio was nice enough to step in and guest blog for us today!

If you're looking for some gift ideas for the bookworms on your holiday shopping lists, pay attention to her tips!


What books are exactly like _______?

This is the question I am asked most often by teens and adults alike in my work as a Readers Advisory Librarian. My real title is Teen Coordinator, and I get to run tons of fun programs, but I also work at the Readers’ Desk – a dream job where I talk to people about books all night long.

When busy folks like teens find a book they love – they want to find more! So where can they go to find more? The term ‘readalike’ in a search engine is usually a good way to go for a lesser known book or author. For example: Twilight readalikes. It will pull up a list from another library that may include your favorite. But for popular books or series like the Twilight books or the Cirque Du Freak series – here are some libraries with tons of good ‘readalike’ lists:

Allen County Public Library in Indiana has readalike lists for Twilight, A Child Called It – and many more!¶m=Readalikes

Long Beach Public Library in California has Alex Rider readlikes and many more also!

But there are mega teen reading sites to check out also. These have newsletters teens can subscribe to if they are interested. ( is part of the Book Report Network which has book review sites on Graphic Novels (, Christian Fiction, Adult and Kids Reading. They review the latest books and series – often with author interviews, publish surveys every month so you can see what other teens like to read, and much more.

Reading Rants ( has librarian reviews as well as room for teen comments on many popular teen books. ( is another fun teen review site with lots of new books all the time.

The Young Adult Library Services Association compiles lists each year of award winning teen titles, Quick Books for Reluctant Readers, Great Graphic Novels, Nonfiction Award titles, Teens’ Top Ten and more – even lists of audiobooks and books by topics. Go to the main site for YALSA and click on Book Awards and Selection Lists. There is something for every reading interest there.

So where can you go if you want to find out what to read next? First, I’d ask a librarian – we love those type of questions and have often read many of the teen titles. But if you are at home searching – try these sites to get your reading fix – fast.

Amy Alessio ( is the Teen Coordinator for the Schaumburg Twp. Dist. Library in IL where she has enjoyed the constant advice of her teen groups for over ten years. She reviews teen books for and Crimespree magazine. She is always looking for readlikes for the Blue Bloods series or the Margaret Haddix suspense books or new teen mysteries…


  1. Thanks for being here, Amy!

  2. Great ideas! Readalike is a neato word.

  3. Wow, these are GREAT reference links! THANKS for being our guest!!