Wednesday, July 2, 2014

The Bagthorpe Saga: An Interlibrary Loan Story

What happens if you'd like to read or watch or listen to something not in the ABC Library catalog?  You can Suggest a Purchase, especially if it's new. But if it's older, and possibly out of print, or if it's something the library doesn't usually carry, such as sheet music, you might try an Interlibrary Loan. Interlibrary Loan is a cooperative service among libraries for obtaining materials not available in local library systems. Items requested are located, ordered, and, if available for loan, shipped by mail or other delivery services to your local library. Best of all, they're free!

For instance, we recently read a Vanity Fair interview with director Wes Anderson, wherein we learned that "The Royal Tenenbaums is often compared to J. D. Salinger’s fictional Glass-family stories, but Anderson says the idea for the movie was partly inspired by 'The Bagthorpe Saga,' a children’s-book series by Helen Cresswell; it follows the lives of several relentlessly precocious siblings whose domicile is called Unicorn House. The series made a 'very big impression' on him as a child."  Further digging on the Bagthorpes indicated that the series had won many kudos, including two International Reading Association awards, and was the basis of a BBC comedy series in the '80s. We were intrigued!  We must find these books!

We looked in the catalog - before requesting any material through Interlibrary Loan, check the Albuquerque/Bernalillo County Libraries Catalog to make sure that the material is not owned by any of the system's 17 libraries. ABC Library staff are only able to request items through interlibrary loan that the library system does not own - and discovered our system only owns Bagthorpes Liberated.  A quick check in our NoveList Plus eResource - very handy for looking up series if you like to read them in order! - indicated that this was Book Seven in the series, and the first book is called Ordinary Jack.

We then filled out an Interlibrary Loan Book Request form. These are available at any branch library or online. If you fill it out online, just bring it to your branch library for processing. Make sure your request (unlike this one) is signed and dated!

The librarian checked Worldcat to make sure the book was available in the United States (we cannot do Interlibrary Loans with institutions outside of the U.S.).  Anyone can take a look at Worldcat, if you are interested.

After turning in our form at our local branch to be processed by Interlibrary Loan staff, we just wait to be contacted!  Occasionally, the library will be unable to borrow the item, and you will get an "Unfilled" notice.  Most of the time, however, you will be called or emailed when your item arrives at the branch and you just go pick it up!  Please note, the lending library sets the due date and there are no renewals.  Also, Interlibrary Loans must be returned to staff (not in the bookdrop) at the branch from which you requested it.

We often make use of this helpful library service and encourage you to do so as well!  However, we recommend that you read the "Interlibrary Loan Policies", helpfully listed on the back of the request form, and/or visit our Interlibrary Loan LibGuide to check out the FAQ. If you have any remaining questions about Interlibrary Loans, we encourage you to call Interlibrary Loan Services at 505-768-5155, Monday through Friday, 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM.

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