Websites for Readers

Good Starting Points

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Bestsellers Lists

For bestsellers lists with links to the library's holdings and the ability to place holds, see the library's online catalog.
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Book Awards

  • Children's Literature Awards

    • Caldecott Medal
      Awarded annually by the Association for Library Service to Children to the artist of the most distinguished American picture book for children.

    • Coretta Scott King Award
      Awarded annually by the Association for Library Service to Children to outstanding African American authors and illustrators of books for children and young adults that demonstrate an appreciation of African American culture and universal human values.

    • Jefferson Cup
      The Youth Services Forum of the Virginia Library Association's award for an American biography, historical fiction or history book for young people.

    • NCTE Orbis Pictus Award
      The National Council of Teachers of English award for outstanding nonfiction for children.

    • Newbery Medal
      Awarded annually by the Association for Library Service to Children to the author of the most distinguished contribution to American literature for children.

    • Printz Award
      Awarded for a book that exemplifies literary excellence in young adult literature.

    • Pura Belpré Award
      Presented to a Latino/Latina writer and illustrator whose work best portrays the Latino cultural experience in a work of literature for children and young adults.

    • Virginia Readers Choice
      Awards are presented to noteworthy books in the field of children's/young adult literature representing each of the following reading levels: primary, elementary, middle and high school.

  • Literature Awards

    For lists of award winning titles with links to the library's holdings and the ability to place holds, see the library's online catalog.
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Book Discussion Guides

See also information on the library's book discussion groups and book discussion kits.
  • LitLovers
    An online community dedicated to books and book clubs. Unique features include free online literature courses, recipes to go with books and ideas for children's and teens' book groups.

  • Reading Group Choices
    Dozens of selections from a variety of publishers. Each discussion guide includes a brief biography and topics to consider.

  • — Find a Guide
    Browse by title, author or genre to find suggestions for book discussion groups.

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Book Reviews

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Children's Literature

  • American Folklore
    Short entertaining stories which include tall tales, folktales, ethnic tales and famous characters.

  • Database of Award-Winning Children's Literature
    Print out a custom list based on criteria such as suggested reading level, genre, format, gender of protagonist, setting or historical period.

  • Guys Read
    "… If you're looking for something to get a guy reading." Book recommendations from teachers, librarians, booksellers, publishers, parents and guys themselves.

  • Horn Book Magazine's Recommended Books
    A collection of annotated lists of literature for children and young adults, including their popular list of Children's Classics. Other interesting areas of the Horn Book website are their resources for educators, parents, authors and artists.

    Note: Adobe Reader is required to view the PDF files on this site.
    To obtain a free Reader, follow this link:

    Get Acrobat Reader

  • International Children's Digital Library
    A project of the University of Maryland and the Internet Archives, the International Children's Digital Library offers a large number of full-text children's books, including illustrations, in several languages. Enter the library to browse by subject, geographical setting or origin.

  • Juvenile Series and Sequels
    This database can be searched by author, title, series title or by subject. Books are classified by reading level as either juvenile easy, juvenile, or young adult. The website is produced by Mid-Continent Public Library, Missouri. Fairfax County Public Library owns many, but not all, titles.

    Part of The Book Report Network, this site for children's literature includes book reviews, articles, author profiles and interviews, information on series books, synopses of new releases and literary games and contests.

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  • Great Books
    A compilation of lists of classics in Western, Eastern and contemporary literature.

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Early Literacy

See also the library's booklists for preschool children and early literacy information.

Early Literacy is what children know about reading and writing before they can actually read and write. Below are some websites for parents, caregivers and educators which provide guidance to help children develop literacy skills and encourage reading.

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Fiction Genres

Fantasy/Science Fiction,   Historical Fiction,   Horror,   Inspirational Fiction,   Mystery,   Romance,   Urban Fiction,   Westerns

  • Fantasy/Science Fiction

    • Best Fantasy Books
      "Dedicated to helping you find the best fantasy books ever written."

    • Worlds Without End
      A science fiction, fantasy and horror fan website dedicated to identifying, reading and sharing the best science fiction, fantasy and horror novels. Free membership is available.

  • Historical Fiction

    • Historical Novel Society
      Review of historical fiction searchable by author, type, period or century. Includes novels for children and young adults.

    • Historical Novels.Info
      "More than 5000 historical novels listed by time and place, including more than 300 reviews."

  • Horror

    • Horror Novel Reviews
      Horror fiction news, reviews, interviews, featured articles and "Horror Story of the Week."

    • HWA's Horror Reading Lists
      The Horror Writers Association offers a list of classics and "bests" of dark fiction. In addition, there is a link to the Bram Stoker Reading List which includes new horror fiction worthy to be considered for the Bram Stoker Awards.

  • Inspirational Fiction

      For those interested in religion and the spiritual life. Includes reviews, book excerpts, study guides, author bios and more.

    • FictionFinder
      This project of the American Christian Fiction Writers seeks to inform people about the wide variety of Christian fiction available today.

  • Mystery

  • Romance

    • All About Romance
      "The back fence for lovers of romance novels." Reviews, articles, message boards and the "who's who and what's what in romance fiction today."

    • Romance Reader at Heart
      Features databases of romance titles by subgenre, romance novel news, book reviews, author interviews and more.

  • Urban Fiction

    • Street Fiction
      Author interviews, reviews and news of urban fiction.

    • Urban Reviews
      A resource for open and honest opinions on African-American fiction.

  • Westerns

    • Roundup Magazine
      Monthly reviews of westerns from the Western Writers of America's online magazine.

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Graphic Novels

  • Comics Worth Reading
    News and reviews of graphic novels, manga, comic books and related subjects.

  • Graphic Novel Reporter
    A comprehensive site for information about graphic novels.

  • No Flying No Tights
    A page devoted to graphic novel reviews with an emphasis on teens, but including reading ideas for graphic novel readers of all ages.

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Online Texts

  • eAudiobooks

    • LibriVox
      Access to public domain eAudiobooks read by volunteers.

    • Project Gutenberg
      Access to public domain eAudiobooks read by humans or generated by computers.

  • eBooks

      Full-text access to a wide variety of reference, verse, fiction, and nonfiction titles.

    • Digital Book Index
      Links to thousands of titles of electronic books from more than 1,800 publishers. The majority are available for free. Search by author and/or title, and browse by subject, author or publisher. Note: Free registration is required.

    • Online Books Page
      An index linking to thousands of online text resources in English as well as to works in other languages. Includes archives of freely accessible serials (magazines, journals, newsletters, etc.).

    • Project Gutenberg
      Links to the full text of thousands of books, including books written in more than 40 languages.

  • Poetry

  • Short Stories

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Teen Reading

  • Reading Rants!
    "Out of the ordinary teen booklists." A source of up-to-date book reviews and an interactive blog where teens can read reviews, respond to them or write their own.

    Comprehensive site for teen readers includes monthly reviews of books, manga and paperbacks; The Ultimate Teen Reading List; books into movies, reading group guides and more.

  • YA Book Blog Directory
    Links to blogs by readers and authors of Young Adult literature.

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