Desert Island Reference

Back in the days before iPods, there was a program called Desert Island Discs. The concept was that you were stranded on a desert island and had to choose only eight albums or CD’s to listen to forever.

Well, I am working a on a project I call Desert Island Reference. In a world where the Internet is the preferred method of beginning any reference search, followed by databases and then print sources, I am trying to plan a small and useful core print reference collection for cruise ship libraries.

Cruise ships sometimes have slow or limited Internet access. Therefore, it is important to have 25-50 volumes on hand to help Librarians answer a wide range of general reference questions. I know I need an almanac, atlas, biographical dictionary and single volume encyclopedia, regular dictionary, thesaurus and Leonard Maltin’s movie guide.

What would you put in your Desert Island Reference collection?


One thought on “Desert Island Reference

  1. I’d probably add a Biblical concordance, some sort of music and art sourcebooks (dictionary of art and artists, Oxford dictionary of music & musicians), and what about language dictionaries? Depending on where the cruise ship is going, Spanish/English dictionary, French/English, etc.Fun question! Made me think quite a bit. It would be hard to pare down a reference collection to 50 volumes!

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