A blog from the Ontario Library Service

Have you heard about Loan Stars?

 Loanstars Logo

Created specifically for the Canadian library community, Loan Stars is a readers’ advisory service that allows library staff across Canada to collaboratively nominate their favourite forthcoming titles. Library staff have the opportunity to read books prior to their publication and vote for the titles they think their patrons will love. The program launched in spring 2016 and over 150 books have since earned the title of Loan Stars top pick.

Curious if your favourite titles made the cut? Check out all the lists in our top 10 archive. You can also sign up for our mailing list to receive the monthly top 10 lists, reading recommendations, and more great updates!

The Loan Stars program is a joint collaboration between BookNet Canada and the Canadian Urban Libraries Council (CULC/CBUC), in partnership with the British Columbia Library Association (BCLA) Readers’ Advisory Committee, the Ontario Library Association (OLA) Readers’ Advisory Committee, library vendors, independent Canadian publishers, multi-national publishers, and others.

What’s in it for you?

Library staff can get access to books pre-publication and then contribute to the Loan Stars lists by voting. Each vote automatically enters you into monthly contests for free books.

Getting involved is easy and exciting. As library staff, you have the privilege to read books first.

Sign up for CataList, a free tool that allows library staff access to up-to-date publisher catalogues. Only titles listed on CataList are eligible for voting.

Log into CataList to search or browse for titles — the NetGalley catalogue or the Loan Stars catalogues are good places to start. Once you’ve found a title you want to read, click the READ ME button (you must be logged in to request and vote for titles) to request the title, either from NetGalley (you’ll have to create an account) or directly from the publisher.

Vote for the books you think patrons will love by clicking the VOTE button! There’s no limit to the number of books you can vote for, so vote and vote again! When casting your vote, you also have the option to write or link to a review, which may be used to promote the title of your choice.

Finally, sit back and wait for the release of a fresh top 10 list at the beginning of each month. Share the list over social media, and spread the love for your favourite forthcoming titles!

What books should I look for?

Currently, the Loan Stars program focuses on Fiction and Non-Fiction adult titles, in every genre. To simplify your browsing experience, we’ve created genre-specific catalogues of forthcoming titles on CataList.

When does voting close?

The voting period for a particular book will close two months prior to its publication date. For example, the last day to vote for a title publishing December would be Oct. 31. There’s no rule for how early you can vote — as long as the title is available on CataList, you can vote for it as many months in advance as you’d like.

Enter our contests!

Loan Stars runs multiple publisher-sponsored contests throughout the year, with the goal to get great books in your hands. By voting for a title publishing in a specific month, you will be entered into a draw for a chance to win a set of books!

Need more tips on how to sign up and vote? Check out our visual guide below:

Loanstars Guide

Connect with us on TwitterFacebookGoodreads, or Tumblr, or email us at mailto:loanstars@booknetcanada.ca!