Reviewed by:
  • From Boardbook to Facebook: Children's Services in an Interactive Age
Adele M. Fasick . From Boardbook to Facebook: Children's Services in an Interactive Age. Santa Barbara, Calif.: Libraries Unlimited, 2011. ISBN 978-1-59884-468-9. CAN$45.00.

Services for children is one of the pillars of the public library's mandate. Public libraries have traditionally felt a special responsibility to support children's reading and have provided them with a wide collection of recreational and educational print materials. However, as Adele Fasick points out in her newest book, as the twentieth century has given way to the twenty-first, the ways in which we read, learn, and interact have changed dramatically, and children of all ages, from toddlers to teens, are affected by these changes. In From Boardbook to Facebook, Fasick provides practical and pragmatic ideas for strategies libraries can use to bring their collections and services into the twenty-first century by making them more interactive and engaging.

From Boardbook to Facebook is divided into four main sections. Section I lays a foundation by outlining the social and technological changes that have taken place in children's lives and the impact of these changes on traditional library services. Section II explores changing concepts of literacy, including visual and media literacy, multicultural literacy, and information literacy. Section III, perhaps the most provocative and original part of Fasick's analysis, considers how library spaces themselves need to evolve to meet changing needs and also discusses new forms of libraries such as digital libraries, hybrid libraries, and blended libraries. The final section of the book provides practical suggestions of strategies for facilitating change in a children's department. It includes ideas for identifying allies for change, starting change, and marketing the library's services.

Adele Fasick, professor emerita of the faculty of information studies at the University of Toronto, is a well-known authority in children's services who has also written Child View: Evaluating and Reviewing Materials for Children and Managing Children's Services in the Public Library, 3rd edition. From Boardbook [End Page R4] to Facebook provides a concise overview of the impact of new technology on children's perceptions of books, reading, and libraries and includes a selective list of references for those who wish to read more. This is an accessible and useful reference which provides practical and immediately useful suggestions for any public librarian wishing to make greater use of interactive media in the children's department. It would also be an excellent supplementary text for classes in library services and resources for children and teens. [End Page R5]

Vivian Howard
School of Information Management, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia