"Outside a dog a book is man's best friend, inside a dog it is too dark to read!" -Groucho Marx========="The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid." -Jane Austen========="I don’t believe in the kind of magic in my books. But I do believe something very magical can happen when you read a good book."-JK Rowling========"I spend a lot of time reading." -Bill Gates=========“Ahhh. Bed, book, kitten, sandwich. All one needed in life, really.” -Jacqueline Kelly=========

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Top Circulating books in GKHS Library

Here is a list of the top circulating books for 2011 in the high school where I am the librarian  (Jan. 2nd to present.)

Information in parentheses is (# times circulated during this time period: /# of copies of book in circulation: )

1. Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins (44/6)

 Hunger Games was one of the school's summer reading books.  Kids who read Hunger Games over the summer are still coming in for Catching Fire.

2. Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins (32/6)

 See comment above but note the drop off in numbers.

3. Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher (24/4)

 This book has been a top circulating book for three years. Girls and guys both like it.

4. Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (19/9)

 I have lots of copies of this book because it was chosen as a all-class summer reading book. I will be so sad when the movie for Hunger Games comes out because then circulation will drop way off for this whole series.

5. The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson (18/3)

 Girls love this romantic story.  The three copies are checked out all the time.

6. Linger by Maggie Stiefvater (17/3)

 Sequel to Shiver.  Girls move straight from the first to the second and are eager for the third which comes out this summer.

7. Ship Breaker by Paolo Bacigalupi (17/3)

 I'm glad to see that the #1 YA book in America is on my list of top circulated books, too. (Printz Award winner 2011)

8. Stolen by Lucy Christopher (17/1)

 Technically speaking this book should be at the top of the list because I only have one copy and it has circulated 17 times since January. (Actually I had two copies but one was stolen.  Note the irony!)  I love this book! (Printz Honor)
9. Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta (16/3)

 Fantasy fans really seem to like this book though a few have noted that it is a slow starter.

10. Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick (16/2)

 It has only recently come to my attention just how popular this book is.  I haven't read it so it is students recommending it to other students.

11. Awakened: House of Night by P.C. and Kristen Cast (15/2)

 There was a huge flurry of activity around this book when it first came out.  The House of Night series is still very popular in my library even though it now has eight books in the series.

12. Graceling by Kristen Cashore (15/3)

 This book has been so popular in my library for the past few years that I am shocked when I run across a kid who hasn't heard of it, like the boy who checked it out today on my recommendation.  This book works for boys and girls alike.
13. Halo by Alexandra Adornetta (15/2)

I  haven't read this book and not a single student has shared what the book is about so I wonder if it circulates so well because it has an awesome cover?

14. Revolver by Marcus Sedgwick (15/2)

 Another award winner that is very popular, hurray! (Printz Honor)

15. Shiver by Becca Fitzpatrick (15/2)

One of the few paranormal books that I've read that I really like.  I think I talk this one up a lot.

16. Library Wars #1 by Kiiro Yumi (14/1)

Back to technicalities this should be the second book on the list behind Stolen since my single copy has circulated 14 times since January.  This is the only graphic novel on the list. I've also got #2, with #3 and #4 on order!

Just a few thoughts about library circulations and this list---
  • Since I do not have infinite resources I only buy second and third copies of books if they are proven to be popular or if I am involved in some reading promotion like the Mock Printz Workshop.
  • Sometimes even popular titles languish in someone's backpack unread or even overdue.  Therefore the numbers do not always reflect the seeming popularity of a title. In addition, we offer three week due dates and many students keep the books for all three weeks which obviously effects how often a book can be checked out.
  • Hunger Games doesn't seem to be as popular as it is because so many students read it for their summer assignment or last year.  Thankfully, there is still enthusiasm for the whole series.
  • Next week I will post of a list of the most popular books in the library based on the circulation per copy.  As I mentioned above Stolen and Library Wars would be #1 and #2 on that list. In fact they are the only two books that will be on both lists.
  • When I generated this list I screened out all books that I felt were checked out for particular class assignments.  For example The Book Thief by Markus Zusak has circulated several times since January but part of the reason for that circulation is because it is one of the optional books students can pick for their English class assignment.  That doesn't diminish in any way how much the kids enjoy the book and the positive comments they make when they turn it in.  I did, however, leave in four of the books that were part of my Mock Printz Workshop because the workshop ended the first week of January so I felt they deserved recognition as popular books for their own merits. (There four books I'm referring to are: Ship Breaker, The Sky is Everywhere, Revolver, and Finnikin of the Rock.)
  • Word of mouth is probably the main determinant of how books become popular in a school.  Thirteen Reason Why has remained popular for three years now.  How?  Kids telling kids about the book.  I think just about everyone that checks it out says "I heard this book is good."


  1. Very interesting. Does this include your graphic novels? I'm sure those would fill all my top spots. But I should run some stats to see what comes after those... We also have interlibrary loan, so some of the check outs would be other than my students.

  2. This list helps me tremendously! I'm still in my year's leave of absence and trying to catch up on all the YA I've yet to sample. I'm hopping between this list and our local library to reserve all the ones I haven't read, particularly the ones that appeal to both girls and boys.
    Thank you so much for sharing this invaluable info., Anne.


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