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Literary Criticism and Author Research

This guide will help you get started with research into authors and literary criticism. Use the tabs below to navigate through the guide.

Books By & About Authors

For books by your author, search the LIBRARY CATALOG. Use the pull-down menu to select 'Author' then search with last name first, eg Austen, Jane.

For books about your author (including biography and literary criticism), search the LIBRARY CATALOG. Use the pull-down menu to select 'Subject' then search with the last name first, for example, "Blake, William" or "Jordan, June"

You can also try general 'Subject' searches such as "Poetry Medieval--History and Criticism"

Search the holdings of the Pace Library Collections:


Access the full Library Catalog here:​

The Pace Library Catalog tells you what print books are available in the three Pace Library locations, and also which e-books you have access to, from on and off-campus. Most print books are available for delivery between campus library locations including Mortola (PLV), Birnbaum (PNY), and Law (WP).


Reference books available in the Reference area

These books are available in the Birnbaum and Mortola Library Reference areas.  If the item is only found in one library, the library is listed just before the call number.

These are selected sources and not a comprehensive list. Be sure to check the catalog for other helpful items as well as handbooks, dictionaries and guides to researching literature.

Contemporary Authors Ref Z1224 .C599
Biographical profiles of authors; check the cumulative index located at the reference desk to find out if your author is included in this or another set published by the Gale Group.

Specific Categories

In addition to the general works listed above, you might find your author profiled in a reference book with a more specific scope. Please keep in mind this list is just a sample of titles available - browsing through the PR, PS and PS area of the Reference collection, you will find even more.

    African American Lives Mortola Ref E185.96 .A446 2004
    American Ethnic Writers Mortola Ref PS153 .M56A414 2000
    Profiles 136 American poets, playwrights, novelists, short story writers, autobiographers and non-fiction writers of African, Asian, Jewish and Native American descent.
    Asian American Literature: Reviews and Criticism Mortola Ref PS 153.A84 A82 1999
    Asian American Novelists: A Bio-Bibliographical Critical Sourcebook Mortola Ref PS153 .A84A825 2000
    British Writers Mortola Ref PR85 .B688
    Covers major British authors from Langland to Browning.
    Cyclopedia of Young Adult Authors Mortola Ref PS490 .C93 2005
    This three volume set covers American and British authors of Young Adult literature.
    Dictionary of Literary Biography Mortola Ref (various locations)
    100+ volumes published and shelved by category.  Check the Biography and Genealogy Master Indexto see which set your author appears in.
    The Feminist Companion to Literature in English: Women Writers from the Middle Ages to the Present Mortola Ref PR111 .B57 1990
    Hispanic Writers Mortola Ref PQ7081.3 .H58 1999
    Entries on 20th century Hispanic writers, adapted from Contemporary Authors.
    Latin American Writers Mortola Ref PQ7081.A1 L37 1989 (vols. 1-3)
    Includes lengthy articles with bibliographies.
    Native American Literatures: an Encyclopedia of Works, Characters, Authors, and Themes Mortola Ref PS153.I52 W47 1999
    Covers Native American poetry, fiction, and prose. It lists more than 300 entries, divided into four types: individual authors, individual works, important characters in works, and terms or events of historical importance. Summaries and interpretive information on texts.