Life Is Stranger Than The Search For Fiction

| New Orleans, LA, USA | Books & Reading

(I work in a library system where the adult fiction is shelved by genre: general fiction, mystery, sci-fi/fantasy, and western.)

Patron: “There was a book I checked out once but I can’t find it now. The author’s last name was Hamilton.”

Me: “Do you remember the title of the book?”

Patron: “No.”

Me: “The author’s first name?”

Patron: “No.”

Me: “What was the book about?”

Patron: “I don’t remember, but I really liked it and the name was Hamilton.”

Me: *searching by last name* “There are several different authors with that last name. Do you remember which genre the book was? Was it a mystery?”

Patron: “No, it wasn’t a mystery. It was just a story with things happening.”

Me: “That sounds like it would be general fiction.”

Patron: “No, it wasn’t general fiction. It was definitely a mystery.”

Me: “Okay, let’s go look in the mystery section.”

Patron: “Well, it wasn’t so much a mystery, but it had a cowboy in it.”

Me: “That sounds like it would be in the western section.”

(We go look. There are no books there by a Hamilton.)

Patron: “Actually, maybe Hamilton was the title of the book.”

Me: “…”

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