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Friday, April 15, 2016

Publisher’s Weekly Best Books of Summer-- 2016 and Backlist Options

Readers of the blog know that while I like lists of the best of new or upcoming books, I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE when those lists include a link to backlist options. And if said list includes a breakout of genre fiction too, I am in danger of exploding with happiness.

That is exactly what we have today with the annual Publisher’s Weekly Best Summer Books 2016 list and corresponding website.

Click here to see the site, but here is a quick screen shot of how awesome it is for us as a tool to help readers:

As you can see, all in one place you have this year’s best summer books on the front page.  On the green bar across the top you can then choose to see more by genre. AND, you can do the same thing for summer books each year back to 2012.

But wait, there is more. You can do the same thing for their BEST of the year lists too.  ALL FROM ONE PAGE.

Do you all realize what a treasure trove of information this is? Do you realize how happy you will be able to make a patron with just a few clicks?

And, each book comes with an annotation. You can do everything from identify a good book AND book talk it all from one resource.  You will look like a book wizard-- because you are if you use the site to help readers.

Yes, it is great for us to know about the big books of summer ahead of time.  We can make sure we have them ordered, we can start preparing “while you wait” readalike lists, and we can talk them up to patrons. But, these books are not going to be on the shelf. Some of out readers may come in for The Fireman by Joe Hill in May and have to wait until July to read it. [It’s worth the wait by the way].

But, Publisher’s Weekly has your back. Yes this list of Summer 2016’s best are going to not be available ASAP, but last year’s, or the year before’s will be.

I wrote about this at length in November in regards to end of the year best lists, but the advice holds true for summer reads too:
Again, you need to remember that they just want a “best” book. Most of them do not care when it was “best.” Trust me. I have done this switcharoo dozens of times over the last 15 years.  People love it. They often feel like they got a “secret” best book when it is one I found from a previous year’s list.
Most patrons will be happy with any best book. Yes, many will want to read the new John Hart, of course, and they should, it is going to be good, but while they wait why not give them the hot Summer Mystery/Thriller from 2014, I Am Pilgrim by Terry Hayes.

So right now, use the page to make sure you have these hot titles ordered. If they made the PW site it means that the publishers are going all out on these titles.  Your patrons will see and hear plenty of media buzz on these books, so get them on-order now.

But then, bookmark the page for use all year long, to find patrons a “best” book.  Between this backlist trove and the Library Reads lists, you have hundreds of sure bet options complete with a quick book talk right at your fingertips.

Anyone who can click a mouse on the Internet can turn these pages into effective service to leisure readers.  Give it a try.

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