In keeping with my theme this week of rhetorical diatribes, how important is a librarian to have a well rounded knowledge of the culture around them. That’s a long winded way of asking must a ya librarian read Twilight?
I don’t think anyone would argue that a librarian must be able to relate to their patrons, but just how much does that require? A colleague mentioned to me recently that they were looking forward to being able to read an adult novel over a vacation. Let’s think about this comment for a moment. A librarian is never going to be part of the target audience for any childrens or YA book in our collections, and while many adults can enjoy those books anyway (I’m certainly one of them), you can’t expect that from everyone.
So, how much exposure is necessary? And is it bad if watching/reading/playing like a child or a teen becomes work? Particularly as that’s work that must be done off the clock. Or, is it possible to get by on the How to Talk about books you haven’t read approach?