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Library Lines 11/21/01 by Mary Rindfleisch
A service of the Connecticut State Library and your local library

The Library's AM Book Group and Critics Circle book discussion groups are in the process of making their selections for their winter and spring meetings. If you have attended either of these groups in the past, or think you might like to do so, pick up a ballot at the Circulation Desk and make your choices by December 15th. It is not necessary to attend every session, and new participants are welcome at any time. And don't forget about the books scheduled for January: Barbara Kingsolver's Poisonwood Bible (Tuesday the 15th at 7 PM) and Gabriel Garcia Marquez's Love in the Time of Cholera (Wednesday the 16th at 10 AM).

Here's another way we would like your input. We have spruced up our Suggestion Boxes to make them easier to locate and have put boxes in more convenient places around the building (one in the magazine area on the first floor, one in Children's Services, and one in the Fiction Room). Use the slips of paper provided to give us your comments - suggestions, complaints, or compliments are all welcome. Or you can send your comments via e-mail to me at MFRind@biblio.org. Then look in Library Lines for periodic responses and explanations.

Have you made the Connecticut Digital Library (iCONN) part of your research routine yet? Whether you are a grade schooler looking for information on a country for a social studies report or an adult searching for timely health or financial information, logging onto www.iconn.org will bring you access to directories, databases, periodical articles, and a whole range of specialized research tools. The staff at the State Library is always working to add more useful resources and to make the site easier to use. Two new additions you may find particularly helpful are Wilson Biographies Plus, featuring illustrated profiles of over 72,000 individuals from antiquity to the present, and the iCONN Newspaper Collection, which offers full-text coverage of the Christian Science Monitor, New York Times, Washington Post, and the daily and Sunday Times of London.

Another improvement at the Connecticut Digital Library is the revamped version of reQuest, the statewide library catalog that we have been using in one form or another for many years. A colorful new interface allows you to perform more precise searches, offers plenty of online, context-sensitive help, and provides much more useful information. Among the features we like best are the ability to limit your search by media (audiobooks or videotapes, for example) and by form (large print or electronic books, etc.) or to combine search terms using words like "and" or "not" as we do in Web search engines. You can also sort your results by date, title or author. Taking a cue from Internet-based book sites like Amazon, the new reQuest also features small icons identifying audio and video items and features annotations and photos of actual book jackets for many items. Access reQuest via the Library's homepage at www.ridgefieldlibrary.org or through the Connecticut Digital Library at www.iconn.org. Try it today!

*** Mary Rindfleisch is Adult Services Librarian at the Ridgefield Library. She may be reached in the Library's Fiction Room at 438-2282 or at MFRind@biblio.org.

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