Database of the Month: Salem Press

Salem Press is a collection of online reference books published by Salem Press, Grey House Publishing, and H. W. Wilson. These 150+ titles provide excellent overviews and set the stage for successful research projects.

Why use Reference Books?

Locating background information in subject specific encyclopedias and other reference resources will help you put information in context.

  • Get an overview of the subject.
  • Note key concepts/developments.
  • Identify significant authors.
  • See a chronology/timeline.
  • Develop a list of search terms.
  • Obtain primary sources.
  • Use the bibliographies to locate other information on your topic.

The Salem Press database is divided into five categories: LiteratureHistoryScienceHealth and Careers.

Researchers can keyword search the whole platform, the individual categories, or just search a specific title.  Clicking the Filter By arrow provides more control over what and where you search.

Unsure of what keywords to choose? Browse a category to a specific title and use the table of contents to help narrow a topic or find additional keywords or the names of significant authors to search.

Need a primary source for a history paper? There is a wealth of primary sources included in the titles on this platform.

Three titles of particular interest right now are:

Staff Favorites

In addition, to the titles highlighted above, our reference librarians have a few additional favorites to share:

Macee’s pick is Masterplots (2011). This fourth edition of Masterplots provides information about English-language and world literature published up to 2010. Each entry includes a synopsis of the story, a critical evaluation essay and suggested further readings.

Dominique’s pick is the “H. W. Wilson: The Reference Shelf” series which provides big picture overviews of topics of current interest such as “Rethinking Work” and “New Frontiers in Space”.

My pick is The Value of a Dollar, 1860—2019 which is a great source for not only seeing price differences of specific consumer goods but also differences in salaries and awards over time. Here are some examples of the kind of information available in this resource:

  • In 1915, a Goodrich Stag golf ball cost $0.29, which equates to $7.30 today’s dollars, and in 2019, a Bridgestone Tour B XS golf ball costs $3.74. (Golf ball, 2019)
  • In 1934, Horton Smith won $1,500 at the Master’s, which equates to $28, 295 in today’s dollars, and Tiger Woods won $2,090,000 in 2019. (Golf Master championship earnings, 2019)

The Value of a Dollar as well as all the other recommended resources above help to give information context. As you incorporate these resources into your papers, remember to cite it right. Salem Press helps by including a citation for each source in MLA 8th, APA 7th, and CMOS 17th format.

If you would like more information about any of these titles, the Salem Press database or recommendations for your specific research needs, please contact a Reference Librarian.

Reference List

Golf ball. (2019). In S. Derks (Ed.), The value of a dollar, 1860—2019. Salem Press.

Golf Master champions earnings. (2019). In S. Derks (Ed.), The value of a dollar, 1860—2019. Salem Press.

Database of the Month provides a very brief introduction to useful library databases, highlighting key features you should know about. If you would like more information about this resource (or any of the library’s databases), please contact us for research assistance. If you would like a demonstration of these resources for a class, please schedule a research instruction class using the instruction request form.

Frighteningly Good Reads

The Bentley Library staff created an online display that is full of chills and thrills. Including both downloadable audiobooks & ebooks, this selection helps you celebrate all things spooky.

In addition to the above collection, plenty of spooky content is available through our streaming film collections, Kanopy and Swank.  If you are interested in learning about horror as a medium, why not start with the master and stream a Talk from Hitchcock himself available through Films on Demand.

Other horror tales and ghost stories are available on our shelves, including the classics, Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein and Bram Stoker’s Dracula and newer authors, Stephen King, Octavia Butler, or Joe Hill. Don’t have time to commit to a whole novel? Why not check out a collection of short stories such as American Fantastic Tales or Flight or Fright!

Do you have a favorite pick you would like to recommend to fellow Bentley Horror Fans? Just drop us a line through Instagram or Twitter.

Happy Haunting.

Unwind with Free Ebooks & Audiobooks

Come to an OverDrive Virtual Drop-In. Bring your own beverage, snack and device to the session, we will bring the content.

Planning to cozy up with some reading over the weekend? Register here and then virtually drop in at 3:00 p.m. any Saturday starting October 10 until November 21 to learn how to get free downloadable audiobooks and ebooks from OverDrive. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meetings (any that you would like to attend).

The Bentley Library’s OverDrive Collection provides thousands of eBooks and audiobooks, with an emphasis on popular fiction and nonfiction titles. You can enjoy many titles immediately online, download them for offline use, or send borrowed content to a specific device. Titles in this collection may be downloaded to laptops, PCs, iPads, Android devices, Kindles, Nooks, smartphones, and mp3 players through a web browser or through the OverDrive or Libby apps.

Don’t know what to listen or read next? We can provide a recommendation, tailored to your specific reading tastes, when you identify a few titles, authors, narrators, or genres that you enjoy.

If you think we are missing something, please suggest a purchase by sending an e-mail to Recommendations are always welcome.

Can’t want to wait to get started? Visit our OverDrive Library Guide for more information.

Try Something New! Checkout our Cookbooks

Ready to try something new on your menu? We have got you covered with an online display of cookbooks for you to devour.

Try a new or spice up an old recipe. Pair one with a movie for date night or dinner with the family. Learn a little about other regions, countries or cultures by experiencing different cuisines. Recipes of all types are represented from the traditional to the exotic.

Download the free OverDrive app on your device to view the titles, or borrow them directly from the OverDrive Downloadable Books database and choose the OverDrive Read format to view them in a web browser.

In addition, the Library’s physical collection of cookbooks is now available with Contactless Pick-up. Did you know you can virtually browse the physical collection online?

  1. Search for a title in our library’s catalog.
  2. On the results page, click on the title to view the full record (See below).
  3. In the Items area, click on the hyperlinked Call No. to launch the virtual Browse. (See above image).

By checking out this content, we hope you are inspired to create something great.

Need help with Overdrive or with accessing our physical collection? Please contact us for assistance. We are happy to help.

New Faculty Publications

Did you know the Library collects and provides access to publications authored by Bentley Faculty? Scholars @ Bentley is our newest initiative for digital publications, but the Bentley Library’s Faculty Publication book collection has been around for years.

This spring we join the Valente Center in celebrating Bentley faculty who have published books during the past academic year! The following publications have been added to the Library’s Faculty Publications collection:

Available as an ebook through EBSCO eBook Collection:

Available as a digital audiobook through Overdrive:

  • How Language Began by Daniel Everett, also available in print in our collection, is now translated into many languages, including English, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Chinese & Ukranian.

Available as an e-book through Amazon:

Print additions to the library’s physical collection:

The Faculty Publications Collection highlights the most current 10 years of books authored by Bentley Faculty. The physical collection is located in a special area next to the Reference Desk, making them more visible and available to the Bentley community.

Although we cannot currently access our book collection, each title is discoverable through our catalog and through The library also purchases some titles in e-book format. Search our catalog for the phrase “Bentley faculty publication” to view the list of online titles.

We congratulate our Faculty for all your hard work. We also encourage adding and promoting your research through Scholars @ Bentley

For Faculty with New Publications!

If you would like to include a citation for your book in Bentley’s institutional repository, Scholars @ Bentley, please email with a full citation and a link to where the book may be purchased (publisher website, Amazon, etc). If you have not yet submitted work to Scholars @ Bentley, you will need to fill out a one-time Contributor Agreement Form which you can submit online.

Familiar Tales

June is Audiobook Month. It is a time to celebrate the spoken tale. Give your weary screen focused eyes a break and sit back and relax while someone reads to you for a change.

We have put together a collection of familiar and/or classic stories for you to enjoy. Included is some “comfort food” such as J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone and Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. Plus some with a new twist on an old classic. For example, And the Ocean Was Our Sky by Patrick Ness evokes the images of Moby Dick but from the whales’ point of view. In addition, Eligible: A modern retelling of Pride and Prejudice by Curtis Sittenfeld and Longbourn by Jo Baker told from the staffs’ perspective, both extend enjoyment of the original tale. 

Need more selections? Check out the 2020 Audie Award Winners available in the collection. The Audies – the Oscars of the audiobook industry – are awarded annually by the Audio Publishers Association.

So much content so little time. In addition to listening in the car, here are some suggested activities that pair nicely with an audiobook.

  • Take a walk (Watching out for traffic of course!)
  • Sitting in the sun (Don’t forget your hat and sunscreen, safety first!)
  • Folding laundry or other important household tasks.
  • Gardening (Not recommended when using power tools!)
  • Tuning out other members of the household and finding a happy place. (Oh, did I think that aloud?)

Where do you enjoy the audio versions? Is there a particular author, narrator, title that you really enjoy? Please share by posting a comment below or shooting us a message through social media. We love to hear from you.

New to OverDrive? Check out our Getting Started page or contact a librarian for help.

Happy Listening.

Staff Picks: E-books & Digital Audiobooks

Click to browse Staff Picks on OverDrive

One of the questions librarians hear a lot is, “What should I read next?” We all read book reviews but know that our best advice happens when we actually have read the book from cover to cover. I put the call out and the Library Staff responded with the following recommendations from our Overdrive Collection.

Ebook recommendations:

Audiobook recommendations:

If you would like a recommendation, tailored to your specific reading tastes, reach out to us and identify a few titles, authors or genres you enjoy and we will be happy to recommend similar titles to explore. If you think we are missing something, please suggest a purchase.

Happy reading.

Top 10 Most Utilized Library Research Guides

The library building may be closed but Research Guides are open for business. Our 87 research guides were viewed 9,541 times in the last 30 days.

Most popular 10 guides by views:

Views Guide Name
2336 Citing Online Business Resources using APA Style
1214 Expository Writing Research Guide
736 Bentley Library Coronavirus Updates & Remote Services
546 Online Micro-Volunteering & Crowdsourced Projects
452 Pro/Con, Position Papers or Debates
352 GB214 Team Project Library Research Guide
335 Current News
286 Copyright Information & Guidelines
182 Film & Television Research
172 PS388: Abnormal Psychology (Nash)

There are guides for specific topics (American Political Elections), programs (GB112), and courses (HI200: Researching a Person). Some guides support specific assignments (Pro/Con, Position Papers or Debates) and some provide excellent information about special collections, such as Archives and Scholars @ Bentley. We’ve also built a guide to support our patrons’ need for remote access.  

Search by keyword or browse the complete list. Need more support for your project than the guide provides? Just open the chat box to get connected with a reference librarian for more personalized assistance.

Don’t forget, you can Ask a Librarian for help!

Faculty please take note! The library team will be happy to collaborate with you to create a guide or point you to an existing one that will meet your needs. Please reach out to your Library Liaison for assistance.