Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Second Thoughts on Harriet Klausner

I have been fretting for several days over my post about Harriet Klausner from last week. It sounds a little mean-spirited and elitist. Who am I to suggest her work is not honorable and worthwhile?

Ms Klausner is a former librarian and has worked in bookstores. While I question how she can read so many books and write so many reviews, I should consider that I am sometimes driven to do things out of the mainstream, like blogging very early in the morning.

I did a little research, wondering if Ms Klausner was really a group of people using a common name. She appears to be real, as there are profiles of her in the Philadelphia Inquirer (October 18, 2000) and the Wall Street Journal (March 29, 2005, page D6). She reads 400 pages per hour! (There are no photos, perhaps she still isn't real.)

Ms Klausner's book review output is interesting in that it is so positive and prolific. In the Wall Street Journal she states that she sees little purpose in reviewing books she does not enjoy. She is certainly promoting reading and reviewing books that you would never find in the professional journals. She is very dedicated.

We need to get her back into libraries. OCLC should hire her to contribute to Open WorldCat. She already has over 10,000 reviews she could load into the database!

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