Here are a few works to help get started, if you know nothing about this faith.
Buddhist Handbook, the Complete Guide to Buddhist Schools, Teaching, Practice, and History. Main BQ 4012 .S64 1998
6 parts: Why Buddhism? The Buddha himself. The basic teachings and practices. The development of Buddhism in India. Its spread into other parts of Asia. It's coming to North America and connections with psychology. Appendices: Who's who in Buddhism from a Western perspective (contains names of noteworthy 19th and 20th century Buddhists with short biographies). Useful addresses in the U.S.A. and Canada of associations and retreat centers. Information about major Buddhist festivals around the world. Further reading references.
Oxford Handbook of Contemporary Buddhism Main BQ 4055 .O94 2017
Buddhism, the Illustrated Guide Main BQ 4022 .B83 2001
Buddhism, a Very Short Introduction Main BQ 4022 .K46 1996 also online
Buddhisms, an Introduction Main BQ 4034 .S87 2015
History of Buddhist Thought Main BL 1420 .T5 1951; 1933 edition is online here
Mahayana Buddhism, the Doctrinal Foundation, 2nd ed. Main BQ 7405 .W55 2009
Tibetan Buddhism, a Very Short Introduction Main BQ 7604 .K37 2013
Heaven, Hell, and the Afterlife: Eternity in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam Main BL 535 .H43 2013 v. 3 covers Buddhism
Four Testaments, Tao Te Ching, Analects, Dhammapada, Bhagavad Gita: Sacred Scriptures of Taosim, Confucianism, Buddhism, and Hinduism Main BL 70 .F67 2016 An overview of the Eastern Religious Traditions with one major text from each of these faiths. See pp. 215-260 for Buddhism.
Here's a list of contemporary Buddhist monastics. Look for works by them in our online catalog, last name first.
Nhat, Hanh, Thich
Thubten Zopa, Rinpoche
Yongey Mingyar, Rinpoche
Here's a list of contemporary Western teachers of Buddhism. Look for works by them in our online catalog, last name first.
Goldstein, Joseph, 1944-
Glassman, Bernard (Bernard Tetsugen)
Red Pine (two words, no first name)
Thurman, Robert A.F.
Wallace, B. Alan
With thanks to local Buddhist Carolyn White for help with the authors in this section.