Today, let’s talk about NoveList! This is one of my favorite databases offered at the library. It’s a great resource for finding your next favorite read. From author, title, and series readalikes to genre book lists and staff picks, NoveList has something for every reader! And today, we’ll be talking about my favorite feature of the site: The Appeal Mixer

What is Appeal?

I suppose before we start talking about the Appeal Mixer, we should first start off by talking about appeals. Appeal is something about a book that draws you in and makes you want to read that book. For example, I enjoy books with difficult (ie. unlikeable) characters and unusual situations. Some people prefer books that are very fast-paced or that have a lot of gore. These are all appeals.

NoveList uses six different categories of appeals:

Character (strong female, likeable, snarky, complex, etc.)

Illustration (bold, colorful, cartoony, delicate, etc.)

Pace (fast-paced, intensifying, leisurely, etc.)

Storyline (open-ended, sweeping, world-building, etc.)

Tone (creepy, romantic, spiritual, funny, etc.)

Writing Style (word-play filled, lush, spare, witty, etc.)

Using the Appeal Mixer

The Appeal Mixer allows you to take three different appeals and put them together to find a custom book list.

For example, let’s search for a book with Character–Strong Female, Writing Style–Lyrical, and Tone–Bittersweet. That brings up a list of six books. Some combinations will have more, some will have less, and some will have none at all (for example, I couldn’t find any books with Tone–Gruesome, Writing Style–Witty, and Character–Authentic. But, when I dropped that last criteria, I found 38 witty and gruesome books. Awesome!

But, what if you don’t know what you want? In these cases, the staff at NoveList also have put together a series of other appeal lists. These lists are updated periodically, allowing readers to sample a pre-made list without having to do with extra work themselves. For example, do you want books that are Sympathetic and Character-driven? NoveList has some books for you!

Where to Find This?

So, how do you find this appeal mixer? First, start by going to our website ( . Select the tab that says “Research” at the top of the page, and then select “Databases and Subscriptions” from the dropdown menu. The second category on this list is “Books and Writing”. NoveList Plus is one of the last options under that heading.

If you’re logging in from the library (whether on one of our computers or just through our wifi), clicking on NoveList Plus will take you directly to their website. If you are logging in from home or another off-site location, you’ll be taken to an EBSCO page and asked to sign in with your library card. Note: You will not need a library card to connect from the library.


I'm the Reader's Advisory Librarian at WPPL. My interests include old horror films, classic novels, manga and anime, paper-crafting, and plants. If you like my suggestions, you can request personalized recommendations from me on My Librarian page.