She Needs More Book Reviewers!

NEW YORK. April 24, 2012.

Library Journal (LJ) Book Review’s senior editor, Margaret Heilbrun, otherwise known as @magsthebookie, was found by book review colleagues today buried under galleys awaiting review assignment in her cubicle in LJ‘s west Soho offices.

Photo courtesy Henrietta Thornton-Verma

Upon seeing her colleague thus encumbered, Henrietta Thornton-Verma (also known as @ettathornton), LJ Book Review’s reference editor (see her most recent expert feature here) immediately jumped into action: she snapped pictures of Margaret under the galleys and asked her what she could do.

“Ay-ay-eeee-mmm-phooh,” said Margaret.

“What’s that you say?” asked Etta.

Whereupon Margaret flung the galley of Clutter Busting Your Life, by Brooks Palmer (to be reviewed in LJ‘s May 15th issue) off of her face and repeated, “I need more reviewers!”

After being helped back to her feet and settling once again at her desk, Margaret elaborated.

“I need more reviewers in most of the subject areas that I cover. ”

“So you should post a call for reviewers,” said Etta. “And name the subject areas where you’re looking for reviewers!”

“History (all eras, especially pre-20th century),” said Margaret. “Biography (ditto); political science (both U.S. and international); religion (especially Judeo-Christian, but also Islam); literary biography and literary criticism (all eras); professional reading for librarians (especially public librarians); LGBT studies, women’s studies, African American studies, general social sciences‚ ”

What a list,” muttered Etta

“‚ and sports and gardening!”

“The pre-requisites,” went on Margaret, as Etta returned to her own desk to edit reference reviews, “are eagerness to read new books in your stated subject areas‚ subjects in which you have a sound understanding. You simply need an ability to clearly define, describe, and evaluate, within 3 weeks, the forthcoming book sent to you, taking into consideration your familiarity with other books on the subject.”

“You don’t need to tell me,” remarked Etta. “You need to put up a post! And include a link for them to see LJ‘s reviewer guidelines. You might mention that reviewers are unpaid, although they do get their byline in the magazine and online‚ and usually get finished copies of the books they review.”

“Okay,” said “That’s easy. And I’ll ask them to email me directly to receive the application form and contract. Thanks, Etta!”

“You’re welcome,” said Etta. “By the way, can you review Occupational Ergonomics: Theory and Applications for me?

“Let me get back to you on that!” said Margaret.

And she hurriedly began typing this blog.

Margaret Heilbrun About Margaret Heilbrun

Margaret Heilbrun is a former Senior Editor, Library Journal Book Review.


  1. Dodie Ownes says:

    Occupational hazard, I suppose… Poor poor Margaret, can’t you LJ readers please help her out?!