Choosing the Book of the Week

You may have seen the Book of the Week feature on our website, social media, or digital signs. But have you ever wondered what makes a book the Book of the Week?

Tamar, the library’s Adult Services Coordinator, began picking books in 2007 with her Assistant Coordinator. “At that point, we weren’t sure exactly what we were doing, so we just picked books that we liked,” she recalls. But even a librarian can’t read everything, and the Book of the Week needs to reflect more than just a couple of people’s tastes.

Now, Tamar makes selections from several lists of the best books of the year. Some of these lists come from popular sources like Amazon, but others are published in specialized magazines for librarians like Library Journal or Booklist.

Narrowing it down can be tricky. “I’ve only got 52 slots, and there’s so many I’d love to put in that I have to pick and choose,” she says. She works to make sure there’s a good variety of books, including fiction and nonfiction from a mix of genres and subjects that reflect diverse experiences and points of view.

“I’ll include books that have no appeal to me,” Tamar admits. “But if you’re not interested in a book one week, there’s a good chance you will be the next.”

She does try to choose books that you might have missed. “I try to use less ‘buzzed about’ titles,” Tamar says. “They’re great books that I’d like to see get more exposure.”