Deck the Shelves This Holiday Season!

by Renee Holden, Head Editor, INALJ Nebraska

Deck the Shelves This Holiday Season!

reneehI am a collection development librarian in a public library that also specializes in reader’s advisory for my library.  Around the holidays, I get a lot of patrons that are looking for some books to get themselves in the holiday spirit.  I created this list to let men and women, young and old, starve off that mean old Mr. Grinch!


Sleigh Belles by Beth Albright (2013)

  • With her hair coiffed, nails freshly manicured and a heavy trail of perfume wafting behind her, local reporter, Dallas Dubois is sure she’s about to kick her career and maybe her love life into high gear.  The director of the children’s Christmas play has fallen ill, and Dallas is ordered by her station manager to take the reins.  Everyone is shocked, especially Cal Hollingsworth, ho still remembers her as the Ice Queen from high school.


Duck the Halls by Donna Andrews (2013)

  • When someone rigs a cage full of skunks in the choir loft of the New Life Baptist Church, Meg Langslow must stop holiday pranksters from destroying the annual pre-Christmas concert, but when murder enters the picture, Meg must save Christmas from a vengeful killer.


The Dogs of Christmas by W. Bruce Cameron (2013)

  • While nursing a broken heart, Josh Michaels is outraged when a neighbor abandons his very pregnant dog, Lucy, at Josh’s Colorado home.  Soon in over his head, Josh calls the local animal shelter for help and meets Kerri, a beautiful woman with a quick wit and a fierce love for animals.


Spirit of Steamboat by Craig Johnson (2013)

  • Sheriff Walt Longmire is reading “A Christmas Carol” in his office on December 24th when he’s interrupted by the ghost of Christmas past: a young woman with a hairline scar across her forehead and more than a few questions about Walt’s predecessor, Lucian Connally.  Walt doesn’t recognize the woman, but she seems to know him and claims to have something she must return to Connally.  Walt is at loose ends, and despite the woman’s reticence to reveal her identity, he agrees to help her.  She whispers “Steamboat” and begins a story that takes them all back to Christmas Eve 1988, when three young people died in a terrible crash and a young girl had the slimmest chance of survival…back to a record-breaking blizzard, to Walt’s first year as sheriff and to a World War II vet ready to fly a decommissioned plane and risk it all to save a life.


Starry Night by Debbie Macomber (2013)

  • Carrie Slayton, a society-page columnist, longs to write more serious news stories.  So her editor hands her a challenge: she can cover any topic she wants, but only if she first scores the paper an interview with Finn Dalton, the notoriously reclusive author.  When she finally finds Finn, she discovers a man both more charismatic and more stubborn than she ever expected.  And soon, she is torn between pursuing the story of a lifetime and following her heart.


Silent Night by Robert B. Parker (2013)

  • It’s December in Boston, and Spenser, busy preparing his menu for Christmas dinner, has a confrontation with a young homeless boy whose predicament becomes the famous PI’s newest case.

Naomi House

Naomi House, MLIS, is the founder and publisher of the popular webzine and jobs list (formerly I Need a Library Job) and former CMO (Chief Marketing Officer) of, a crowdfunding platform focused on African patrimony, heritage and cultural projects. INALJ was founded in October 2010 with the assistance of her fellow Rutgers classmate, Elizabeth Leonard. Its social media presence has grown to include Facebook (retired in 2016), Twitter and a LinkedIn group, in addition to the interviews, articles and jobs found on INALJ. INALJ has had over 21 Million page hits and helped many, many thousands of librarians find employment! Through grassroots marketing, word of mouth and a real focus on exploring unconventional resources for job leads, INALJ grew from a subscription base of 20 friends to a website with over 500,000 visits in one month. Naomi believes that well-sourced quantity is quality in this narrow job market and INALJ reflects this with many new jobs published daily. She has also written for the 2011, 2012 and 2013 LexisNexis Government Info Pro and many other publications in the past decade. She presents whenever she can, including serving on three panels at the American Library Association's Annual Conference in Las Vegas; as breakout presenter at OCLC EMEA in Cape Town, South Africa; as a keynote speaker at the Virginia Library Association annual meeting; at the National Press Club in Washington DC; McGill University in Montreal, Canada; the University of the Emirates, Dubai, MLIS program and the University of Hawaii at Manoa. Naomi was a Reference, Marketing and Acquisitions Librarian for a contractor at a federal library outside Washington, DC, and has been living and working in Budapest, Hungary and Western New York State. She spent years running her husband’s moving labor website, fixed and sold old houses and assisted her husband cooking delicious Pakistani food. She is preparing to re-enter the workforce and is job hunting. Her husband is now the co-editor of INALJ, a true support!  She has heard of spare time but hasn’t encountered it lately. She pronounces INALJ as eye-na-elle-jay.