T0day the developers of the new homework-helper website, Shmoop, sent an email to the Reference Department asking us to take a look at their site. Shmoop, currently in beta (testing) mode, has three sections: Literature, American History and Poetry. Each section critiques classic books, poems or frequently-assigned historical events in a way that will help students understand, review and write about the work or topic.
I chose to read the section about The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger and found it to be fun to read and thorough in its scope. The website developers are scholars and teachers who hope to inspire students to enjoy literature and history. Take a look and tell us or the Shmoopers what you think. Remember that BHPL also subscribes to databases of literary criticism which are accessible from our website like Granger's Poetry, Contemporary Authors, and the Literary Reference Center. These databases have signed articles and can be used for highschool and college research because they are edited and authoritative sources which teachers will allow as valid "works cited" for term papers.