Finding the award winners

When you’re visiting the library in search of a good read, we have several collections designed explicitly for that purpose, including Library Reads, Staff Picks, and Book Group collections. Located near the Welcome Desk on the first floor, these displays of grab-and-go books often showcase award-winning writing. You may not know that we also have some great online links to lists of titles which have won publishing awards right in our BiblioCommons catalog. They’re a bit hidden, but once you know about the awards lists, you’ll want to explore them. These nominees and winners are recognized good reads.

With the arrival of fall comes announcements of two big literary awards, the National Book Award and the Man Booker Prize for Fiction titles.  In 2014, the Man Booker prize was opened to any novel written in English and published in Britain, broadening the field beyond Britain, Ireland and the Commonwealth nations. In our community, the Man Booker nominee titles are always much in demand. 2016’s winner, Paul Beatty’s “The Sellout,” marks the first year an American won the award. Here’s a nifty link to the 2016 Man Booker titles you can borrow from our collection.

Want to find more award-winning titles? BiblioCommons, our catalog website, offers a great launch point to explore book, movie, and music awards. Begin with our catalog and choose
Explore, then Awards.

Here’s how Explore shows on desktop browsers:

On tablet or mobile browsers, Explore is available on the menu bar (3 vertical lines).  Pop down the expanded options to show Explore, then choose Awards. (Explore>Awards)
The screens look like this on your phone or tablet.

The result page, where you land and where you want to be, is the BiblioCommons Awards page at this link: (Bookmark it!)

On a desktop and on mobile devices, you’ll see a selection of popular award winning titles currently available to borrow on the top half of the screen and links to specific awards lists by media and country as you scroll down.

Let’s look a bit closer at the link for the National Book Awards titles. Winners will be announced in New York on November 16, 2016.

For the National Book Award, BiblioCommons only lists the annual winners in each category in Explore>Awards.  Notice that you see the 2015 winners but no 2016 nominees.  For example, we won’t see Colson Whitehead’s The Underground Railroad in the BiblioCommons Explore>Awards list for the 2016 National Book Award– the winners haven’t been announced yet.

Here’s where a second approach using the BiblioCommons Advanced Search option will yield the most current National Book Award titles available at the library. Using Advanced Search, you’ll find more titles for some awards (long list/short list).  You’ll find the 2016 titles in our Advanced Search by Choosing the Award pull-down and using the phrase “National Book Award” (in quotes), since we’ve been sure to add the long list titles’ award notes in our catalog.

Screen by screen, here’s how it looks on a desktop:

On a mobile device here’s how it looks:

So delving a bit into the Advanced Search and using the pre-made BiblioCommons Explore>Awards lists, together, is a sophisticated and high yielding search strategy to build your For Later shelf lists.

Q: What about searching the award in a Keyword search? A: This is not recommended, as using just the keyword search option brings much more noise into your search results. For example, comparing keyword results for the Man Booker Award versus the Explore>Awards links or the Awards Advanced Search, using Keyword, you’ll find titles with the words Man or Booker as well as the award winners.

Speaking of the lure of awards, notably the Oscars, in his recent memoir performer Alan Cumming writes, “What it boils down to is a famous people’s convention, all of them emerging from the safety of their gated homes, blinking and uneasy, bereft of the customary buffering of a publicist or assistant, and having to partake in the no-doubt leveling but utterly unusual experience of attending a series of parties where everyone else in the room is as famous as they are. Can you imagine?” Then he dishes about Hollywood’s Oscar rituals, gatherings and excesses. Isn’t this part of the appeal of award winners? A bit of the magic of well-done and recognized work, coupled with the sparkle of novel ideas and presentations. Our own Kristin Friberg was invited to attend the National Book Awards dinner last year. Thanks to Kristin for the photo of the event, taken at Cipriani in New York.

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