Awful Library Books

Hoarding is not collection development

Two Times the Fun with Eskimos!

The True Book of Little Eskimos

The First Book of Eskimos


Yikes! I don’t really know where to begin. Here we have two ancient books on Eskimos. Both of these titles are older than me! Little Eskimos bugs me as I didn’t think they were necessarily “small.”  The second book (pictured below) made me cringe when I saw the spine label.  Sometimes there are just no words.  Any of the kids in my library would think I was out of my mind if I gave them either of these books.

Native peoples of Alaska and Canada and other arctic regions are not one homogeneous group. I believe that in Canada, Yupik and Inuit are more appropriate descriptions, and Eskimo is considered a pejorative.  While Alaska has distinct groups, they are generally okay with the name Eskimo. ALB readers from these regions, please correct me!

By the way, neither book has been weeded as of this writing and both are in a children’s collection. (sigh)


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Hooker’s Holiday

Hooker’s Holiday


Yes, Holly and I have the mentality of your average 12 year old boy. This cover makes everyone laugh!

Hooker is the name of our protagonist monkey in this charming story.  No, there is nothing wrong with this book, although my copy was a bit worn. Animal welfare folks might be upset at the cage size and treatment, but other than that it is a cute story of a monkey that escapes the lab and causes trouble throughout the zoo complex. Personally, I would rather read Curious George.

Just Monkeying Around,


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Crap from Scrap

Art from Scrap
Reed and Orze

Submitter: A book about arts and crafts using recycled materials is always in demand. This one is clearly geared toward art teachers, and many of the pieces were made by students. A few items shown are inspired and creative; many are just bizarre or ugly. Don’t get me started on the dead rat! I was finally able to replace this title with some newer craft books with–gasp!–color illustrations! I wonder what Freud would make of hanging a flying machine made of ballcocks in my bedroom…

Holly: I have patrons looking for this kind of thing a lot, but thankfully we have books published in the last few years to choose from here.  If it’s the best you can do, it’s not too awful, but if you can afford a replacement, this one can go.  I’m kind of surprised they picked that pig for the cover of the book, though.  Is that the coolest, most visually appealing piece of artwork in the book? The tongue from a VW hood would have been better (see below).

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