Bangor Daily News profiles Whitten ’94, romance writers’ Librarian of the Year

When Whitten's blog post recommended Slave to Sensation, there was a run on the book at Maine libraries.

After Whitten’s blog post recommended Slave to Sensation, there was a run on the romance novel at Maine libraries.

In its profile of Sarah Whitten ’94, recently named Librarian of the Year by the country’s romance writers, the Bangor Daily News explains the influence Whitten wields over Maine’s romance readers.

An active blogger for the Bangor Public Library blog Not Your Ordinary Book Banter — “for readers who love popular fiction, edgy and uncensored” — Whitten announced in February 2011 that Nalini Singh’s Slave to Sensation was the blog’s top vote-getter for book of the month.

Within 24 hours of her post, every copy in the state library system had been borrowed.

The organization Romance Writers of America recognized Whitten as Librarian of the Year for “making a significant online library presence supporting the romance genre.”

Whitten, a circulation assistant at Bangor Public Library who several years ago co-founded the library’s Not Your Ordinary Book Club, tells reporter Ardeana Hamlin that her interest in romance novels was “kept that under wraps” at Bates, when the literary genre was anything but appreciated.

“People would be surprised by how much romance novels have changed,” Whitten says. “No longer does a woe-is-me heroine need to be rescued by the hero. Heroines are much more independent, confident and strong.”

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