ALB Celebrates 10 Years

soviet union text
Soviet Union 1968

10 years ago today, Holly and I went live with our first post. A couple of things were going on at the time: We had started on a crusade about collection quality and weeding, the economy was in free fall, especially in our community, and blogging was a thing. We actually wanted to learn WordPress, so we started goofing around. Holly and I have no discernible talent for anything exciting or artistic, so we talked about what we knew: weeding books. Since we are entertained by both books and oddities, ALB was born. The title Awful Library Books was used until we could think of a better title. We still haven’t thought of one.

So, to honor our decade of curating the wonderfully weird in library collections, we have decided to share our favorites.

Click on the picture to read the original post. I also want to take a moment to remind everyone that just because it appears on this site doesn’t necessarily mean that it is an automatic weed. Remember, each library has a different set of criteria for inclusion in their collection, and our opinion isn’t the litmus test for your library. Your mileage may vary.

Although there are some serious concepts discussed on this site, some of these titles are included because we think they are funny, or are just a fun relic from another time. If you have been hanging out with us for a few years, many of these titles will be familiar, since we probably included them in our annual favorites lists.

Please feel free to share some of your favorites in the comments.

Mary and Holly

Your Power as a Woman
Your Power as a Woman 1957
looking forward to being attacked cover
Looking Forward to Being Attacked, 1977

We also did a follow up to this title that showed some of the interior photos. Click here for that post.

Diet Crime and Delinquency cover
Diet, Crime, and Delinquency, 1981
Don't Make Me Go Back Mommy
Don’t Make Me Go Back, Mommy, 1990
Psychic Pets - cover
Psychic Pets 1978


  1. Your Power as A Woman

    Someone tell the model on the cover about her power to get dressed!

    Also, happy anniversary ALB!

  2. As a retired librarian, ALB has been both a great source of entertainment and place to identify books I just might want to acquire for myself.

    I wish you were around when we were moving our library and doing some serious weeding. ‘Dennis the Menace Visits the Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum’ would have been a hoot to submit.

    Happy anniversary to you and may you thrive for many years to come!

  3. Happy anniversary! May you continue to discover the true clunkers of the publishing world, and tell us all about ’em.

  4. I have been following ALB for years now,; it brought me many a chuckle working in my University’s library (probably because every collection has its own special ALBs!). Even though I no longer work in a library (albeit still across from one), I still find time every week to have a laugh and commiserate with you and others regarding more…interesting finds in library collections. Love your work; long may you continue!

  5. Jogging with Jesus will always be my favorite! I used to work at a travel call center until it closed down right after last Christmas and I told a lot of my colleagues about this site. We loved seeing new posts every day! I’m going to start a new job soon, and you ladies have always helped me feel better when I got rejected by a potential employer. It’s hard out there! I look forward to seeing more awful library books on here!

  6. Happy ten years! Your posts about Why Cats Paint and Dancing with Cats were my favorites. I remember staring at Dancing with Cats, boggled that such a book exists (my cats would just give me a “Seriously, dude?”-style glare if I tried any of those sweet, sweet moves with them). Thanks for all the many laughs and thought-provoking posts.

  7. Happy 10th Anniversary! A librarian friend introduced you to me when you were quite young, and I’ve been popping in ever since. My all-time favourites would have to be anything written by St Doris of Sandford and anything in the “Unexplained and Just Plain Crazy” category. I love a good ufology book – the more barking mad the better!

  8. At first I thought that last title was “Psycho Pets”. Entertaining either way, though. Keep these awful books coming!

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