Because NPR books is such a great addition to a reader’s life, it is one to libraries too. The site and its mission fulfills each of the Shore’s stated criteria. With its breath and scope and free access it is certainly a model for others. Its mix of print and audio reviews, its graphic presentation of its best books of the year, and its charming gathering of art, text (and sometimes recipes) is innovative and advances how readers, and librarians, encounter reviews. Beyond this, a review on NPR can send a book soaring on Amazon, creating demand where there was none. The way NPR drives readers, incubates interest, and leads the bookish conversation helps librarians craft collections of high interest to readers. It is a beacon in the book world, arguing for the importance and use of reading, which alone is a significant contribution to our profession. Its genre focus, its great books of the year, and its range of diversity in reviews all serve an active role in the development of collections of all kinds, helping librarians fill in gaps, identify authors to know, and understand the appeal of certain kinds of books.
The Lewis Shores Award selection committee: Nanette Wargo Donohue, Chair; Sarah L. Johnson; and Edward Kownslar