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Finding Books| Literature Index/DatabasesPrint and Electronic Reference booksLiterary CriticismShort StoriesAudio Books & Electronic Books

Finding Books

The main library catalog provides information on all the materials that the library owns; videos, and music recordings, in addition to books. 

I-Share is the shared catalog of the over 70 university and college libraries that belong to the Consortium of Academic and Research Libraries in Illinois (CARLI).  You can use the I-Share catalog to see if books, videos or DVD’s are available for you to request to be sent here.  (You use a different procedure to get copies of articles.)  Items available in the I-Share catalog can be requested directly through a catalog link for delivery to Bradley at no charge.

Worldcat is the 3rd library catalog provided.   Worldcat is catalog that lists what materials are available through thousands of libraries located all throughout the world.   If a book, video  or DVD is not available through the Bradley library or I-Share, then Worldcat has a built in form for borrowing the item through the interlibrary loan office.

Literature Index/Databases

  • ARTFL Project Over 2600 French texts from the 13th-20th centuries are included, ranging from classical works of French literature to various kinds of non-fiction prose and technical writing.
  • Literature Resource Center Provides full-text access to biographies, bibliographies, and critical analysis of authors and their works from every age and literary discipline. It covers thousands of novelists, poets, essayists, journalists and other writers. Searchable fields include: Author Name, Title, Genre, Literary Movement, and Literary Themes. See also Scribner Writer's Series.
  • MLA International Bibliography 1926+. A bibliography of scholarship in literature, language, linguistics, and folklore. About 75% are language and literature journal articles.
  • Scribner Writer's Series Biographical and critical essays on the lives and works of more than 1,400 authors from around the world. Entries include concise essays, citations, and biographical information, placing the author's work in personal and historical context. See also a large database Literature Resource Center.

Print and Electronic Reference books

  • American Writers Ref PS 129 .A55 More historical than current. Provides biographical information, a selected bibliography of an author’s work, a bibliography of books and articles about the author, and a critical evaluation of the author’s works.
  • Beacham’s Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction Ref PN 56 .P55 B4 The first three volumes of this eleven volume set contain biographies while the remainder present analyses of individual works with commentary on characters, social concerns, techniques, and literary precedents. Intended to cover significant writers who have not yet received critical attention beyond book reviews.
  • British Writers Ref PR 85 .B688 Covers writers from the fourteenth century to the mid-twentieth. Arranged in chronological order by author’s birth date. Provides biographical information, surveys the author’s principle works, and assesses the importance of that work. Includes bibliographies of works by and about the author..
  • Cambridge History of English Literature Ref PR 83 .C22 Authoritative general history covering English literature from the earliest times to the end of the nineteenth century. Each chapter is written by an expert in the field.
  • The Companion to Southern Literature Ref PS 261. C55 Organized into twenty-one categories including author, title, locale, and themes. Also includes explanations of cultural influences such a Quadroon Balls, the Scope Trial, Patriarchy, and Demagogues.
  • Contemporary Novelists Ref PR 881 .C69 Latest edition of standard work. Critical biographies arranged by name of author, each with listing of separately published works.
  • Cyclopedia of Literary Characters Ref PN 44 .M3 Covers characters on 3,300 selected titles arranged alphabetically by the title of the work and subdivided by order of importance
  • Dictionary of British Literary Characters Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century Ref PR 830 .C47 D5
  • Dictionary of British Literary Characters Twentieth Century Ref PR 888 .C47 D53 Covers one thousand novels and over twenty thousand characters with a brief discussion of each and the role played.
  • Dictionary of Fictional Characters Ref PR 19 .F7
  • Dictionary of Literary Terms Ref PN 41 .G72 Defines and explains all literary terms, references, and allusions ( Accentual verse to Zeugma) likely to be encountered by today’s reader.
  • Dictionary of Literary Themes and Motifs Ref PN 43 .D48 Entries begin with brief description of word or term (e.g. Afterlife, Demonic Musician, Labyrinth) and its historical background followed by a brief discussion of the works in which the theme or motif is developed.
  • Fifty Western Writers: A Biographical Sourcebook Ref PS 271 .F5 Provides brief biographies, details of major themes in the author’s work, critical evaluations of the author, and a bibliography of work by and about the author.
  • Literary History of the United States Ref PS 88 .L522 Surveys American literature from colonial times to the present. Each chapter written by an authority in the field.
  • Oxford companion to African American Literature Ref PS 153 .N5 O96 Emphasizes fiction with the largest number of entries being devoted to biographies of writers, including the lesser known. Covers literary characters, customs (e.g. Conjuring), cultural expressions (e.g. Blues), and ethnically specific experiences (e.g. Blue Vein Societies). Also provides extensive overview of African American literature from colonial times to the present.
  • Oxford Companion to American Literature Ref PS 21 .H3 Includes short biographies and bibliographies of American authors, provides descriptions and summaries of important American works, gives definitions and outlines of literary schools and movements, as well as information on literary societies, magazines, anthologies, and awards.
  • Oxford Companion to English Literature Ref PR 19 .O94 Brief articles on authors, literary works, literary allusions, and characters in fiction, drama, and poetry.
  • Writing African American Women : an Encyclopedia of Literature by and About Women of Color, 2 Volumes Ref. PS153.N5 W756 2006

Literary Criticism

  • American Literary Scholarship PS 3 .A47 Narrative bibliography published annually since 1963 by Duke University to record and evaluate scholarly writing on American literature with major emphasis on the time between Emerson and the 1960’s.
  • Contemporary Authors Ref Z 1224 .C590 / .C6 Covers over 100,000 writers active in 1962 or later. Each volume is A-Z with Ongoing work with over 210 volumes; cumulative index issued twice yearly.
  • Contemporary Literary Criticism Ref PN 771 .C59 Excerpts criticism of novels, poetry, plays, short stories, scripts, and other creative writing by living authors or by those who have died since January 1, 1960.
  • Dictionary of Literary Biography Ref PS 221 .D5 Ongoing publication of over seventy volumes, each devoted to a specific topic such as “Chicano Writers” and the “Harlem Renaissance.” Each volume is arranged alphabetically by author with entries providing a critical biography along with a bibliography of publications and a list of references.
  • Magill’s Literary Annual Ref PN 44 .M35 Provides critical evaluation of two hundred outstanding books published each year from 1972 to the present. Books are arranged in twenty-two categories such as Fiction, Biography, Nature, and Fine Arts.
  • Masterplots Ref PN 44 .M33
  • Masterplots II American Fiction Ref PN 846 .M37
  • Masterplots II Nonfiction Ref PN 44 .M345 Extensive ongoing publication providing summaries and criticism of novels, short stories, plays, poetry, and literary philosophy. The several series have a master index.
  • New Cambridge Bibliography of English Literature Ref Z 2011 .N45 Covers English literature from 600 to 1950. Arranged chronologically; periods are subdivided by literary forms which are further subdivided by special topics and individual authors.
  • Nineteenth Century Literature Criticism Ref PN 761 .N5 Excerpts from criticism of the works of novelists, poets, playwrights, short story writers, and other creative writers who died between 1800 and 1900. Ranges from first critical appraisals to current evaluations.
  • Twentieth Century Literary Criticism Ref PN 94 .T83 Ongoing series with over 170 volumes containing excerpts from criticism of the works of novelists, poets, playwrights, short story writers, and other creative writers who died between 1900 and 1999. Ranges from first published appraisals to current evaluations.
  • Years Work In English Studies PE 58 .E6 Narrative bibliography published annually since 1946 to record and evaluate scholarly writing on English language and literature. Emphasis is on British literature but there is some coverage of American.

Short Stories

  • Critical Survey of Short Fiction Ref PN 3321 .C7 Seven volume set covering 480 world authors and a period of three centuries. Cross-indexed by country and category (e.g. Absurdism, Domestic Realism, Horror). Provides biography, bibliography, and critical analysis.
  • Short Story Criticism Ref PN 3373 .S386 Currently consists of over sixty volumes covering major writers of all eras and nationalities. Summarizes major criticism and provides bibliographies.
  • Short Story Index Ref PN 3373 .C6 Covers the period from 1952 to 2002 and indexes short stories of all periods by author, title, and subject.

Audio Books & Electronic Books

  • NetLibrary Electronic books, also linked from the Library Catalog.
  • TumbleBooks collection of TumbleBooks (animated, talking picture books) TumblePuzzles, and TumbleQuizzes, as well as TumbleResources for teachers. When checking out an E book, Bradley users should choose "Alliance Library System--CARLI" as the home library and use BU card bar code number as the library card number.

Charles Frey
Special Collections Librarian

Library 305
(309) 677-2823