Teen Librarian Toolbox
Inside Teen Librarian Toolbox

Selling a Book in Just 3 Words (Let the #3wordbooktalk fun begin!)

Reader’s Advisory is an awesome concept in theory, but it assumes that the people sitting behind the Reference desk at a library have a ton of time to chat with patrons about the books they read and why they like them.  The reality is, sometimes we are so busy we can be lucky if we get an uninterrupted minute with them.  My favorite moments are when I walk into the teen area and find an unsuspecting teen – I will pounce.  But again, you have to be able to recommend books on the fly and often in a short amount of time.  Teens are often just as busy as we are.

Sometimes you want to Tweet about a book but you only have 140 characters.  And I don’t know about you but I hate writing long text messages on my phone, the keyboard is itty bitty and prone to typos.  It is totally my phone that does that by the way, not me.  It is always the phone’s fault.

But I have an answer for us all: the 3 word booktalk!  You’ve no doubt heard of the 6 word memoir.  (If you haven’t, check it out because it is lots of fun).

In the Beginning . . .

I have hosted quite a few author panels.  And I have attended many more.  One of the favorite questions authors get asked is to describe their book in only 3 words.  Author Victoria Scott describes her book, The Collector, with these 3 words: “Sexy, Snarky, Demon.”

Author Sherry Woods recently described The Burning Sky with “Cross-Dressing Harry Potter.”

Author Mindy McGinnis recently described Not a Drop to Drink with “Apocalypse, Thirst, Murder.”

And every time – IT WORKS!  I’m all, YES – sign me up for this book.  But I also thought: This is the way to sell a book – the 3 WORD BOOKTALK.  Designed for a texting, tweeting world where friends speak to each in text lingo.  Also designed for the Reference librarian who also has to answer phones, run over to computers and answer those questions, all the while trying to sneak in a few book recommendations in the stacks or at a busy desk.  It works for anyone who loves and wants to share their favorite books.

Let the Games Begin . . .

So here’s what we are going to do this week: Tweet us your #3wordbooktalk (or leave it in the comments) and be entered to win a signed copy of both The Collector and The Liberator by Victoria Scott.  You can enter as many times as you would like with as many books as you would like.  All it takes is 1 Tweet and 3 words.  Quick, easy, fun.  (See what I did there?  Clever).  Technically, anyone can Tweet their #3wordbooktalk and we love to hear all book love, but because of the cost of mailing, 1 U.S. Resident will be selected as our winner by Victoria herself.  Contest runs October 13 through the 19th.


  1. Gated= creepy, real-life cult

  2. A Bad Day for Voodoo: Revenge, Chaos, Friendship.

  3. Asylum by Madeleine Roux: mind over murder

  4. Demons. DEATH. Ducks. (Good Omens)

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