Howard County Library System
About the Collection

What We Own
Selecting from the enormous variety of published books, magazines, newspapers, pamphlets, databases, recordings and videos, our job is to provide access to what our customers want. The library's How We Choose: Materials Selection Policy, provides information on how materials are selected for the library's collection.

  • Fiction: We purchase popular fiction by authors such as John Grisham and Mary Higgins Clark. Genre fiction includes mysteries, science fiction, romances, and literary award winners.
  • Nonfiction: Examples include home repair, child rearing, medical information, travel or cosmology. You can use materials from this part of the library to satisfy your curiosity or do a research project.
  • Reference: We have up-to-date encyclopedias, directories, dictionaries, handbooks, guides, etc.
  • Magazines and Newspapers: Howard County Library subscribes to over 1,200 magazines and newspapers, including non-English titles.
  • Children's: In general, our collection for children mirrors what we provide for adults. Children and their caregivers appreciate the many picture books, toys for birth to three, easy readers, fiction and nonfiction, magazines and databases we provide.
  • Music: There is a large collection of popular and classical music compact discs for all ages, as well as audiocassettes for children.
  • Audiobooks on cassette and CD: Try these to relieve the pain of long commutes or family car trips.
  • Videos and DVDs: The Library buys travel and "how-to" videos; children's and family titles; documentaries; as well as selected current and classic feature films.
  • Databases: Search our outstanding number of electronic databases including full-text access to magazines and newspapers, telephone directories, dictionaries and encyclopedias. All can be used in the library and many from your home or office PC.
  • World Language: We are enhancing this collection of books, magazines, audiocassettes, videos, and DVDs to serve the needs of an increasingly diverse community.
  • Literacy: These materials serve the needs of adults seeking to improve their ability to read, write, and speak English.

If you can't find what you want - just ask us. If we don't have what you need, we'll try to find a way to get it for you.

Finding What You Want in the Library
Materials in branches are arranged to help you quickly find what you need. Items that share common characteristics are usually kept together. If you need help finding a particular item or using the Library catalog, just ask at the Information Desk. We are ready to help you.

Suggest an Addition to the Collection

Special Collections
Health Education Resources
American Sign Language Video Collection
World Language Resources