Thursday, August 23, 2012

Praise for "Legal Information Specialists "

When Connie Crosby published her summer reading list on Slaw in early July, I noted she listed a new title from LexisNexis, "Legal Information Specialists : A Guide to Launching and Building Your Career". I was immediately intrigued, as I'm always amazed at the different paths my colleagues have taken (and continue to take) into, out of, and back to the law library world. The book is written by members of the legal community from across Canada, and discusses careers in the usual law library suspects (firm, academic, courthouse, etc.) as well as several alternative roles.

One of these colleagues, Karen Sawatzky, has just published a review of "Legal Information Specialists" at her blog, Library Technician Dialog, and she's pretty impressed with both the content:
"I read this text almost cover to cover – I skipped the academic library and law faculty chapters, as those avenues aren’t open to me. The very last chapter is titled Career Development Tips for Legal Information Professionals, but it is applicable to almost any career. ... This book should be in the library of all library schools in Canada, both university masters programs and college library technician programs. One of my colleagues calls working in a law library the “accidental career” – even a lot of librarians don’t realize it’s a career option. We need to do a better job of getting our career path out there and this book has taken a big step forward in realizing this."
... and the form!
"As to be expected of a book written by librarians, it is impeccably organized. The table of contents is extremely detailed. There is an Appendix of helpful resources and a glossary of acronyms. And of course, there is an index."
Gotta love a good table of contents! I haven't come across any other reviews of the title -- surprisingly, not even on Slaw, unless I missed it -- but you can read more on the story behind the book in this news item from the University of Windsor, in which general editor Annette Demers notes that:
"Ultimately, the book is much more than just a survey of the profession; it provides hope and insight about our transferability as information professionals, using the diverse range of knowledge, skills and networks that we have naturally developed to adapt to our changing environment."
I'm even more keen to start reading the book now that I've heard such a positive review, and fortunately Karen has agreed to lend me her copy. Have you read "Legal Information Specialists"? I'd love to hear what you thought of it.

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