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Library Services Overview: Books

How to find information about authors and works of literature, and also literary criticism.


The Library has a substantial collection of works of literature and information about literature or authors.  You can find books in the Library Catalog.

Literature call numbers begin with P.  Dictionaries in English or other languages begin with PA for Latin and Greek, PC for Romance languages, PE for English, PF for German, PG for Russian, and so forth.  Guides to writing papers may be found in PE, but also may be found in the subject area, for example, in BF for Psychology and QH for Biology papers.

General literary topics begin with PN.   French and Spanish literature and books about French and Spanish literature are shelved under PQ.  British, Irish, and Canadian literature is assigned to PR.  American literature is found in PS

The same call number system is used in the Reference Collection and in the Circulating Collection, that is books that can be checked out of the Library.  Some call numbers in literature are very long.  Ask the Librarian for assistance.

Library Locations


Elizabeth Sturm Library, Dandini Campus (the Main Library)


Redfield Branch, Health Science Center

Library Reference Collection 

Reference books are condensed, authoritative books such as encyclopedias.  Many reference books contain primary sources and original documents. 

General Collection  

Very large and very good collection, shelved mainly on the second floor of the Main Library.  Ask the Reference Librarians for assistance.  These books are allowed to leave the library.

Online Books in the Book and Video Catalog

To limit your search to online books, select ‘Advanced search.’  Select ‘Online Library’ on the Location line.  The title will include this phrase in brackets:  [electronic resource]. 

Poetry Anthologies

This is an example of a collection of poetry by a single American author, and a book of criticism about that author:

Often a multi-author poetry anthology is a good way to read the very best poems by several authors.  This is a typical anthology built around a particular theme:


Examples of Books about Authors


While some novels are shelved on the first floor of the Library in the Paperback Collection or Popular Fiction Collection, most are considered works of literature.  They are given a call number and are shelved on the second floor.