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Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Best Books: PW Summer Reads 2023

It's here! One of my favorite RA resources is back: The Publishers Weekly Summer Reads database. Yes it isn't April yet, yes it snows by my house in the last week, but we are already planning summer reading at our libraries, so why shouldn't PW get their Summer Reads list out too.

They also expanded "Summer" this year in terms of pub dates as well. As the editor explains in the intro on the main page:
The only mention of the pandemic in this little intro is in this sentence, and it's only in service of saying, well, let's not. Travel is back big time, and so is the classic dilemma of deciding which book or books to take along with you, whether you're headed to the beach for the day, the woods for a weekend, or across the ocean for as long as you can. That's where we come in, with picks from our staff experts for readers of all ages and interests. Our editors sifted and sorted through the titles hitting shelves from April to August and landed on these can’t-miss selections to jumpstart your season. So, get that trip booked and bookmark this page. We've got a lot of summer ahead. Happy reading! —Jonathan Segura, executive editor
This database is one of your best YEAR ROUND Resources hands down. Why? Well I am going to let a picture do a lot of the explaining.

Click here to enter the Summer Books Portal 

The Summer Reads database is more than the sum of its parts, those parts being the wide swath of categories offered. As you can see, they also make backlist access of every Summer Reads and year end Best Books list going back to 2012 easily accessible from the top of the page.


Nowhere will you find a resource that puts this many "sure bet" options in front of you so easily. There are literally hundreds of titles here, at your fingertips, both old and new, that you can confidently suggest to readers immediately. And so many readers. Readers who read across all age levels [down to infants] and in just about every genre. 

And, since every title is annotated, you also have a book talk [or annotation] for each title right there. You don't have to have read the book to suggest it. [Reminder: Use the Words of Others.]

I could keep gushing about how much I love this resource but I would rather you played around with it yourself.

Click through, check out the upcoming titles, but also look back at older titles, read the annotations, check genres you love and those you don't normally read, especially those you don't normally read because you will learn much about the current state of that genre [trends, popular authors] this year and going back a few years. You can both get access to some great sure bet suggestions AND brush up on your genre knowledge all in one place.

Spend some time really getting to know this resource. And then use it-- all of it including past years and both summer and year end lists-- to make your own lists for your readers. Make displays [digital displays too], make suggested reading lists by genre, by year, by whatever you want. Just embrace the wealth of information available to you with one click and help readers in ways they would not think to help themselves.

Proof reading this post before publishing it, I realize how many times I am repeating myself about using the entirety of the information that PW is making available here, but I also know from years of suggesting this resource to people that you don't all listen to me. And so, I will keep beating this drum of using best lists all year long and especially checking the backlist until I run out of breath [or strength to type].

Go check out this database of "sure bet" reads for any season, and keep it bookmarked for use anytime you need a solid suggestion [especially for those hard  to satisfy readers].

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