Case Studies in Library Security

Article excerpt

Case Studies in Library Security. By Bruce A. Shuman. Westport, Conn.: Libraries Unlimited, 2002. 252p. $40 hardbound (ISBN 1-56308-936-X).

For most librarians, members of a profession dedicated to helping others, security is usually something to be discussed in whispers or, better yet, left to somebody else. Unfortunately, this attitude leads to problems when the inevitable occurs and a situation requiring quick and correct action develops. It is always better to have put some thought into procedures before the fact than to worry about what one should have done after the fact. Case studies provide opportunities for discussion and reflection without real world consequences, and this collection of case studies on library security is an excellent tool for any librarian who may someday have to face some of the situations delineated here (all of us).

To give the cases described in this book more immediacy, the author has created a community, library system, and cast of characters to set them in. The effect is that of a collection of short stories. …