In some ways the year that ends with this month—the year covered by the eighteenth volume of The Library World—has been a definitely bibliographical and indexing one. Librarians were never before furnished with so many aids to book‐selection, for example. Hitherto they have depended for exhaustive statements of the literary output of England upon The Publisher's Circular and The Times Literary Supplement, which invaluable aids they will continue to use, and for selective guides they have had recourse to the lists of best books in The Librarian and in The Library Association Record, with auxiliary service from the A.L.A Book List for American books. Now a formidable competitor to all these has arisen in the fully annotated, classified, and comprehensive monthly lists in The Athenæum, which are being published with the co‐operation of The Library Association. These lists, which are classified by Dewey, are in a sound library cataloguing form—and thus are superior to those in The Times Literary Supplement—and have been made selective by the starring of the best books. This work of starring has been undertaken by librarians, and in consequence of the appearance of the lists the Library Association has decided, wisely as we think, to cease publishing its own lists of best books in the L. A. Record. In guides to periodical literature we have the famous Readers' Guide, the excellent monthly issued by the H. W. Wilson Company, which is almost exclusively American—it indexes only eight British periodicals out of a total of ninety‐four—and for special and current use the excellent International Military Digest, issued monthly from New York, which reviews the current literature on military matters. British librarians, however, are most interested in The Athenæum Index to Periodicals, which is appearing under the regis of the Library Association in the form of class lists, which are eventually to be cumulated. It is a most valuable work, but it depends so largely on voluntary effort, and in spite of its merits its value is so little understood by all but advanced librarians, that we are apprehensive as to its continued existence. Bibliographers of the Great War, notably Lange and Berry, have proved of considerable service. For all these bibliographical tools, which mean much help, but also much ill‐paid labour on the part of compilers and publishers, librarians cannot be too grateful. And they cannot show that gratitude better than by supporting and using them systematically.
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