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ENGLISH 434: Books

Find Books

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contains books / ebooks, articles, audio, video, and other media from all CSU Libraries.
Sign in to request books from Pollak Library South and other CSU libraries. 

Find in a library with WorldCat
The collections of more than 10,000 libraries worldwide, including the Pollak Library.
Illiad Interlibrary Loan Service available.

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Library of Congress Catalog offers the largest collection of books among libraries in the US. A great place to discover the latest books. Try searching: "Dracula and Stoker"

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A comprehensive index of one million plus full-text books. Searches full text.


  Millions of monographs digitized from Image result for hathi trustlibraries worldwide. 






Image result for project gutenbergProject Gutenberg offers "the world's great literature... with focus on older works for which U.S. copyright has expired."

Search Examples


A significant word or concept. Keyword search is the most flexible way to research a topic.

Young adult literature 
Fantasy fiction

Young adult literature AND mental health
Fantasy fiction AND identity

(Young adult literature OR children's literature) 
(Novels OR Fiction)


"Controlled vocabulary" assigned by information organizers to capture a subject.
You can discover what subject words are in the description of a book or article. 

Young adult literature
Young adult literature -- study and teaching
Young adult literature -- history and criticism
Youth -- books and reading

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Search Strategies

Be Elastic & Be Specific. 

Both are necessary. Research is a fluid, creative and elastic process. For example, you can narrow down your topic when it is too broad or when you find too much information. Using specific words can make your search results more precise. You can expand, refine, and revise your search words when you do not find enough information or the right information. Always, pay attention to new keywords and subject words that you will discover in the book or article citation/description. Add them to your notes. You may be surprised that your essay will miraculously grow from your words, thoughts, and notes over time.

The following techniques will help you create more effective search statements in computerized database searching.

  1. AND -- To narrow down/refine a topic by combining keywords

    Young adult fiction AND censorship
    Young adult fiction AND sexism 

  2. OR -- Nested search to include synonyms or related words

    (phobia OR fear)

    (xenophobia OR nationalism)

    (gothic OR horror)

  3. NOT--Use not to exclude a keyword

    Young adult literature NOT children's literature 
  4. "   " -- Use double quotes to search topic as a phrase

    "mental health"
    "queer theory"

  5.  -- Use the asterisk (also called wildcard) to truncate words so you can retrieve letters after the word stem

    multicultur* ->  multicultural, multiculturalism 
    sex* -> sexes, sexism, sexual, sexuality