Last week a woman came up to the Adult Services Desk with her young daughter in tow. The daughter had an armful of books from the Children's Department. The mother told me that she wanted a book to read so could set a good example to her daughter by reading along with her.
"But," she said. "I don't read, I just watch movies."
So there went 90% of the standard RA interview. She doesn't read, she doesn't have a favorite book, nothing she's hated, doesn't know what kind of genre she might like. So I asked her what movies she's liked recently.
"Harry Potter and Twilight"
Did she want to read the books?
"Well the story's pretty much the same isn't it?"
So I recruited my co-workers at the desk for some ideas and plunged into the stacks. What might be a good fit? Something magical? paranormal? romantic? historical? character driven? Nothing to heavy or dark. I thought perhaps something on which a movie might be based. AND, of course, something on the shelf right now that I can put in her hands and that I know enough about to explain and sell.
I gave her The White Queen by Philippa Gregory and One for the Money by Janet Evanovich (my co-worker's suggestion), we looked for a Neil Gaiman, but he wasn't on the shelf. She seemed pleased and hopeful that she would like the books and off she went.
Yesterday, I was home and got an e-mail from my co-worker, the woman had come back. She LOVED The White Queen and finished it in three days. Huzzah!!! A reader is born.
In the immortal words of Hannibal Smith, "I love it when a plan comes together."