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Libraries now offer online database of book reviews

Researchers looking for book reviews now have access to Book Review Index Plus, an online database offering citations to more than five million book reviews, with more than 600,000 of the citations including the full- text of the review as well. The reviews are drawn from a core of about 700 periodicals, including both scholarly and popular titles, supplemented on an occasional basis by hundreds of other periodicals. Readers can search by author or title or journal or reviewer or illustrator (or combinations of these), and limit the results to reviews of a specified length, or to reviews appearing in refereed journals, or only to full-text reviews. The database also includes reviews of audio books, e-books, and periodicals.

The database's historical coverage (including reviews back to 1965) allows comparative searches. A student researching Toni Morrison could compare reviews of her 2008 novel A Mercy with reviews of her earliest novel, The Bluest Eye, back in 1970. Readers can find reviews of the latest best sellers by Stephen King or Anne Perry as well as reviews of new scholarly works in Art, Linguistics, Philosophy, Genetics, and Political Science, and other academic disciplines.

Readers can connect to Book Review Index Plus from the front page of the Libraries website, through the Indexes and Databases page--listed both alphabetically and under the category "General and Multidisciplinary--Book Reviews."

Posted May 1, 2008