The Reference Section of the Library is on on the Main (Second Floor) behind the Reference Desk (and Reference Librarian on duty to answer your questions.)
The Reference Section is arranged by the Library of Congress Classification system, the same as the Stacks upstairs on the Third Floor. The call numbers start with letters, and you will be able to browse the shelves to find similar books on any given subject. If you find a call number area that is useful in the Reference section, you can go upstairs and check the Stacks to see if there are additional books that you can check out.
(Note: The Reference books normally do not circulate, but the Reference Librarian may occasionally make an exception and allow you to take a book home overnight. There are photocopiers and scanners nearby to get the information you need from the Reference books.)
Reference books can give you a general overview of your topic and can help you identify key words to enter in library catalogs and article databases. The articles also usually contain References and may be written by top experts in the field.
Encyclopedia of the Cold War: a political, social, and military history / Spencer C. Tucker, editor.
This is an electronic book, available through NetLibrary. It is five volumes. You will have to authenticate with your IUS user name and password from off-campus. You may have to go in through the electronic books page: http://ius.edu/library/ebooks.cfm
American Decades / Judith S. Baughman, Victor Bondi, Richard Layman, Tandy McConnell, and Vincent Tompkins, eds.
This book series provides information about contemporary American social history. On the righthand side, by "Choose a volume" select the decade.
Provides an index to over five million book review citations from thousands of publications
Book Review Digest, REF Z1219 .C96