A Complete Foundation of Literary Reference Works

Literary Reference Plus provides relevant information on thousands of authors and their works. In addition to contemporary and classic full-text poems, short stories, novels, and critical essays, the database includes: 

  • More than 27,000 plot summaries, synopses and work overviews
  • More than 217,000 author biographies
  • More than 14,000 author interviews
  • More than 680 full-text literary journals
  • More than 2,900 full-text e-books
  • More than 1.2 million book reviews
  • More than 840 critical analysis essays about popular young adult (YA) and children's literature titles, including film analyses
  • More than 190 Critical Insights volumes

Additional Content Highlights

Literary Reference Plus includes full-text resources focusing on plays/drama, poetry, religious literature and children's literature. The database also includes volumes of fantasy/science fiction, contemporary literature, world philosophy and religious literature, and literary study guides covering American Literature, English Literature and literary genres.

Literary Reference Plus includes new contemporary literature titles from Salem Press, including:

  • Critical Survey of Shakespeare’s Sonnets that provides historical context and analysis for 25 of the Bard's sonnets
  • Introduction to Literary Context series that introduces students to great works of literature such as The Cask of Amontillado, Frankenstein, The Bell Jar and Heart of Darkness, providing historical context and illuminating key concepts and vocabulary

It also includes:

  • Informational texts on numerous literary genres, themes and forms
  • Full-text literary journals and magazines including Commonweal, The Edgar Allan Poe Review, Kenyon Review, Nathaniel Hawthorne Review, and South Atlantic Review — featuring thousands of essays, fiction and poetry
  • Continuum Encyclopedia of American Literature, Continuum Encyclopedia of British Literature, Continuum Encyclopedia of Children's Literature, The New Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics and The Columbia Companion to the 20th Century American Short Story
  • Nearly three dozen interactive study guides for American and British novels and plays including Animal Farm, Romeo and Juliet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Macbeth, Hamlet, Lord of the Flies, The Catcher in the Rye and The Great Gatsby
  • Literary glossary featuring more than 1,700 terms
  • Research guides

Intuitive User Experience

Available through Explora, Literary Reference Plus offers a variety of features and functionality to support research success and productivity. In addition to simple and advanced search options and powerful filters, researchers have the ability to explore topics by category, including:

  • Authors
  • Works
  • Themes
  • Literary Periods and Movements
  • Literary Forms, Styles and Techniques
  • Mythology and Folklore
  • Literary Characters
  • Book-to-Film Adaptations
  • Writing
  • Electives

Each category breaks down into popular, colloquial or curriculum-based subtopics that are logical for all users and friendlier to younger or novice researchers. Clicking on the subtopic brings the user to a page with a topic overview, related subtopics and overview articles, sample search results (with the option to view all results) and a carousel of relevant e-books (if available).

Visit the Explora page to learn about additional features, functionality and integrations.

Literary Reference eBook Collection

The Literary Reference eBook Collection is offered as a companion to Literary Reference Source databases, containing reference books from top educational publishers and presses, as well as several classic fiction titles. This encompasses a broad range of literary-related subject coverage, with selections including literary criticism, study guides, and classics such as EmmaDracula and Frankenstein.

School Curriculum Support

Literary Reference Plus also features dozens of lesson plans and a link to EBSCO's Curriculum Standards Module, a tool that can help teachers in the U.S. and Canada to correlate EBSCO content quickly and easily to Common Core, state- or province-specific curriculum standards. The module provides browsing of specific benchmarks, many which have recommended search strings for successful content retrieval.

The database also contains proprietary infographics to support teaching and learning. These include elements of literature and character maps.