Reference books such as encyclopedias are a great place to do some preliminary research. You can get a good overview about your topic, perhaps narrow down your topic if it was too broad before, and most importantly, identify seach terms to use when you begin your search for books and/or articles.
Here are some PRINT reference works:
If you are interested in browsing the shelves of the library for books, keep in mind the Library of Congress classification system:
|Section of Library
|QD 1-65||General Chemistry|
|QD 71-142||Analytical Chemistry|
|QD 146-197||Inorganic Chemistry|
|QD 241-441||Organic Chemistry|
|QD 450-801||Physical & Theoretical Chemistry|
|QD 625-655||Radiation Chemistry|
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