This may take a while.

23 July 2007, 2:37 pm

Then again, maybe not.

I just requested Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows from my library. It doesn’t provide a lot of information on the queue structure, but it did tell me:

1106 holds on first copy returned of 428 copies

My first thought was “holy crud, 1106 holds!?” But my second, presumably smarter, thought is “holy crud, 428 copies!?” I don’t know what percentage of the total acquisition budget for the month of July that represents. I don’t think I want to, either.

6 comments on “This may take a while.”

  1. Sue T.

    I returned both copies of Harry Potter that we’d checked out of the library on Saturday this morning, figuring I’d make someone on the waiting list happy. I had the same thought re: the acquisition budget, but heck, it’s pretty obvious that this is what the people want to read right now. I hope the libraries were able to buy them at a discount off the $35 cover price!

  2. Paula

    I used to work in a public library, and I vaguely remember this practice, ordering huge numbers of hot titles basically on loan, and then, after the hubbub subsided, sending them back to wherever, keeping only a few copies. Maybe Janet can fill in the details. I’m sure the public library will not keep 400+ copies.

  3. Sue T.

    Our library sells its discards for 50 cents or $1 at sales every other month.

  4. Ezra

    I assuming you are going to the Somerville Library: is that count for the Somerville Library, or for the whole Minuteman Network? ‘Cause if it’s just for Somerville, that means that 1.43% of the entire population of Somerville is on the waiting list!

    Either way, I think it means that 428 copies isn’t too crazy: either there are more people in the network and the person/book ratio isn’t so crazy, or it means that the demand is high enough in Somerville alone to warrant the purchase. I guess.

  5. summervillain

    That’s a Minuteman Network count. I usually get my books from Cambridge Valente, actually, coz I can make it be on the way home from work and the hours are far more convenient.

    The funny thing about the demand is it’s a very transient spike. I feel like a couple months from now the country is going to be awash in surplus copies of Deathly Hallows. At the same time, I feel like I want to be in the queue so I can read the darn thing before someone spoils it for me.

    In tangentially-related news, I listened to Harry and the Potters’ “Save Ginny Weasley” yesterday. I thought it fell quite a ways short of competent and didn’t enjoy it much while I was listening to it, but the darn thing was stuck in my head all evening. Your mileage might vary according to your tolerance for indifference to pitch, the galloping cutsie-poos, and thumbing one’s nose at the very concept of rhyme scheme. It’s from their first album so I assume a) it’s free of Deathly Hallows spoilers and b) the band can only have improved.

  6. Steve

    Forget the country, in a couple of months, the entire globe will be awash with surplus Hallows. A whole mass of six-pound paperweights that used to be worth $40, but are now worth $4-5.. I hope Al Gore doesn’t find out about this!


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