Missing book: What happens if the book is listed as Not Checked Out but is not on the shelf?

Hale Library

Sometimes an item doesn’t make it back to the shelf for several days after it was returned or someone took it off the shelf to look at it (we call this browsing).  Other times, items get lost in the library and it takes us some time to find it. Don’t worry, you still have a few options:

First, check at Library Help on Hale's 2nd floor--it may be waiting to be reshelved. Our staff will look for the item in this area or go with you to the shelves to see if we can figure out how it was misshelved. If we don’t find it, you can:

  • Request it through Interlibrary loan. When you place the request, write a comment in the note field saying that the item wasn’t on the shelf and you asked at Library Help for help finding it. It may take 5-10 days to get an item like a book or movie through Interlibrary loan.
  • Ask us to search for it. We call this a "search request." You will need to fill out a paper form at the Library Help with your information and information about the book. We’ll search our collection 3 times: the day after you place the request, 7 days after you place the request and again 14 days after you place the request. If we find the item, we’ll hold it for you at the library help desk. You’ll receive an email from the libraries telling you the item is being held for you. We usually hold the book for 7 days.
  • In a pinch, you can sometimes preview a book on Google Books. Your success rate will vary wildly but sometimes you can get lucky and find a very robust preview or possibly even an entire book.
  • For more popular titles or children's books, we also recommend your local public library. In Manhattan, that's Manhattan Public Library.

Fiedler Engineering, K-State at Salina, Math/Physics, Weigel Architecture, and the Veterinary Medical Libraries

To learn what to do if you can not find a book on the shelf at one of these libraries, contact the individual library directly.

Last updated: 07/31/2013