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Most Requested Books and DVDs at the Library

Do you wonder what the most requested items are at the Alameda County Library? Here is a list of the most requested books and DVDs in December of 2012.



People often ask me “what are you reading?” since I work at the library. Well, right now I’m reading two very different books: A Dance With Dragons by George R.R. Martin (book 5 of the Game of Thrones) and Steal Like an Artist: 10 Things Nobody Ever Told You About Being Creative by Austin Kleon.  Yes, they are both physical books. Why? Well, I dropped my eReader and the screen broke while reading the previous Martin books. Plus having your battery die while you are in the middle of reading a chapter is a pain.  Anyways, back to my article.  I check out a variety of items from the Newark Library including my eBooks, books, DVDs, and CDs.  I wanted to share what some of the most requested items by the public are at the library as of December 2012.

By looking at the list below on popular items, you can see that the most requested items are DVDs.  There are usually a few exceptions though; whenever a new series comes into the news media and is decreed the new “hot” item requests pile up and patrons comes in to get a copy.  i.e. 50 Shades of Grey, or the Hunger Games trilogy, or Twilight, or Harry Potter, etc. etc.  At that time we may see 400+ people on the waiting list for the new hot item, and it can be hard to keep up with demand.  Soon enough, the attention dies and requests slowly dwindle. There are currently 112 copies of 50 Shades of Grey, with only three people on our waiting list.  It will lose popularity until the movie comes
out, at which time there will be another rush to read the book.  As they say in the Lion King “It’s the Circle. The Circle of Life.”

Vending machine systems such as Redbox have taken the place of many large chain stores, however library circulation of DVDs continues to be high. Streaming videos are growing in popularity as studios sign contracts with Hulu, Netflix, and Amazon for (sometimes exclusive) distribution. The DRM, or Digital Rights Management, issues with feature films have not been ironed out for public libraries so we don't have the same streaming access to feature films at the moment.  (Right now our streaming collection is limited to shows through our "Access Video on Demand" guide which can be found here: http://guides.aclibrary.org/atoz )
We try to keep about a 10:1 ratio on our requests, meaning that if there are 277 requests we should have at least 28 copies. (It would be really frustrating to get the .7 copy, so I rounded up).  So why would someone not pay the $1 to rent the movie at the grocery store, stream it, or $15 to buy it?  I like to think it’s partly because:

a) You already payed for it with your property tax

b) You get it for 7 days rather than 1

c) It can get pretty costly to buy every movie that comes out

d) Your streaming service does not carry that studio, or you don't want to pay a monthly fee for streaming video.

Top DVD Requests

  1. Brave:  (277 patrons on the waiting list)
  2. Dark Knight Rises: (259 requests)
  3. Bourne Legacy: (250 requests)
  4. Men in Black 3: (225 requests)
  5. Ted: (218 requests)
  6. Total Recall: (210 requests)
  7. Hunger Games: (198 requests)
  8. Amazing Spider Man: (194 requests)
  9. Avengers: (178 requests)  
  10. Snow White and the Huntsman: (176 requests)
  11. Expendables 2: (170 requests)
  12. Hope Springs: (161 requests)
  13. Homeland-- Complete First Season: (159 requests)
  14. Lawless: (150 requests)
  15. Magic Mike: (149 requests)

Top Book Requests

  1. The Black Box: a novel by Michael Connelly  (151 patrons on the waiting list)
  2. Cloud Atlas: a novel by David Mitchell (94 requests)
  3. The Forgotten by David Baldacci (91 requests)
  4. Merry Christmas, Alex Cross by David Baldacci (77 requests)
  5. Divergent by Veronica Roth (74 requests)
  6. The Signal and the Noise: Why So Many Predictions Fail—But Some Don’t by Nate Silver (68 requests)
  7. Reached by Ally Condie (61 requests)
  8. Ninjago #4 Tomb of the Fangypyre by Greg Farshtey (59 requests)
  9. Proof of Heaven: a Neurosurgeon’s Journey Into the Afterlife by Eben Alexander (58 requests)
  10. Far From the Tree: Parents, Children and the Search for Identity by Andrew Solomon (57 requests)

Hope to see you all soon in the Newark Library. If not, Happy New Year!

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

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