Library Lures Potential Readers With Guitar Hero


A library in Iowa, is using Guitar Hero as tasty bait to draw in teenagers as part of an effort to encourage them to read.

The Humboldt Public Library offers free access to the popular game, and while they wait their turn at the axe teenage gamers may also find themselves at the end of some reading suggestions. Sam Lenz, a 14-year-old member of the Humboldt Public Library Teen Advisory Board, said, “While they’re sitting here fidgeting and waiting, we pounce on them and say, ‘Read this.'”

The Teen Advisory Board is made up of 15 students who help put together the library’s Young Adult section. As well as assisting with the book selection, they also make recommendations to classmates, which they say are generally well-received. Demi Johnson, the current young-adult librarian and Board advisor, said that recommendations from their peers can carry more weight than those made by adults. “Maybe if they like it, it’s way cooler than if the librarian (likes it),” she said.

But not everyone waiting their turn is interested in literary discussion; some just come for the game. “The half that doesn’t read – they don’t really talk to us too much,” Lenz said.

About the author