Submitter: A student brought the following book to our attention for review and weeding…because he wanted it. Why is this book awful? Well, it is a book that claims to be the most important book since The Bible. It is bad science fiction from 1979. We are an academic library so I’m not sure why we still had the book. My guess is that it was hiding among the quality science fiction.
Holly: I had to dig a bit to figure this one out. It is a fiction book that is formatted like a non-fiction catalog of alien beings. The author is a horror film critic. So, unless you have a run on sci-fi about intergalactic confederations and alien life, you can probably let this one go now. It might have done well in a teen department in a public library in the early 1980s, but it seems like an odd choice for an academic library.
One of my secret guilty pleasures is occasionally watching the show Ancient Aliens. It’s probably because of that guy with weird hair. I am also a big fan of ghost stuff, Bigfoot, the Mystery Spot, and all other types of “unexplained” phenomena. You will be happy to know that my family of engineers/scientists mock me constantly about this.
Anyway, this is one of those books that puts forth the idea that flying saucers have been around and were part of some of the major Biblical miracles: parting the Red Sea, the Resurrection, angels, etc. This is considered a seminal work in the UFO reading world. My particular copy was well used and checked out often. (This book came from a college library). You can read the entire book in pdf form here. This kind of material is popular and fun for a public library and worth collecting.
As a public librarian, I have had a few patrons over the years that have told me the stacks were haunted, or that they really were sure they saw a ghost in their house. (I also love this stuff for my reluctant young readers.) In Michigan, we have had our fair share of Bigfoot sightings, haunted places and Detroit’s own demon Nain Rouge. Naturally, we should have a collection that reflects this interest. I also like telling Holly that I intend to haunt her after I’m dead.
Beam me up!
Submitter: My local library has a whole shelf of dusty old books on UFOs and aliens. There must have been a serious need for the collection as all of these books are from the 1960’s and 70’s. Now they seem to languish on the shelf. I think newer books on this topic might spur interest in the older titles, but all they have are these older ones. Are they worth keeping?
Holly: Nope. A few, sure, and really “important” or well-known old ones if there is a flying saucer “problem” in your town. (Roswell, NM can keep all the flying saucer books they want!) Everyone else needs to identify their flying saucer and alien collection goals and collect accordingly.
*See below for two bonus books from Submitter!