What work or educational experiences does the author have?
With which institution, organization or company is the author affiliated?
Has the author written other publications?
Is the publisher well known?
Does the publisher stand to benefit from the research or argument presented in the book?
Does the title indicate that the book is too specific or not specific enough? Is there a subtitle with more information?
What audience is the book directed towards?
Does the book address a topic from a certain timeframe and/or geographic area?
What sources did the author use?
Is the information current and up-to-date? Does it need to be?
Published books go through an editorial process, however not all are peer-reviewed. Some publishers are well-known for providing well researched books, which are highly recommended by researchers, scholars, & librarians. The lists provided here are not an exhaustive list.
University Presses – Affiliated with universities & highly recommended by researchers, scholars, & librarians
Identified by 'university' & 'press' in its name
Some citation styles only use abbreviations for university & press
Examples – Cambridge UP, MIT Press, U of GA P
Commercial Presses – Profit is a part of their business model, but they do strive to print well researched books
Examples – Harper Collins Publishers, Knopf, Simon & Schuster, etc.
Professional or Trade Associations, Institution, or Research Center Publications
Written by experts in the field or experts in a given area
Examples – American Library Assoc., Modern Language Assoc. of America, & American Philosophical Society
Government Publications – published with taxpayer money, accepted as impartial or unbiased
Examples – websites beginning with .gov, Government Printing Office (GPO)
Vanity Publishers – self publishers, author pays for publication