Rebecca Vnuk was promoted Booklist’s editor of collection management and library outreach last fall. She edits two of our e-newsletters, Corner Shelf and Top Shelf Reference, and acts as “on-air talent” in Booklist’s newest venture, the production of live events, including a recent series of readers’ advisory programs sponsored by EBSCO and presented in partnership with the Illinois library consortium, RAILS. She also writes books, including the recent ALA Editions bestseller, The Weeding Handbook: A Shelf-by-Shelf Guide.
What do you do when you’re not at Booklist?
I run after my two very active, very fun boys (ages 6 and 8).
What are you an expert on?
Well, in the library world, I’m an expert on weeding books! Outside of libraries, I’m an expert at being able sing at least a snippet of nearly every song from the 1980s. (Try me!)
What’s the first book that made an impression on you?
I’ve actually just come to this realization recently (look for an upcoming Booklist Reader blog post about it!)—Ramona Quimby, Age 8. My third-grader is reading it right now, and watching him delight in Ramona’s antics reminded me of what I look for most in the books I read: that sense of connection with a character or situation. I was Ramona. She set me off on my life-long love of women’s fiction, I think. I’ll explain more soon.
Which book made you cry the most?
Oh, Gone with the Wind, for sure. Not the very end, even, but the point just before that when Scarlett realizes that her obsession with Ashley was completely misguided and she’s ruined everything. “I made a pretty suit of clothes and fell in love with it. And when Ashley came riding along, so handsome, so different, I put that suit on him and made him wear it whether it fitted him or not. And I wouldn’t see what he really was. I kept on loving the pretty clothes—and not him at all.” Waaaaaah!