Libby Announces Their New Book Awards — Along With the Finalists

Libby, a free app through which patrons can check out books from their local public libraries, has joined the book award game. This year, on March 12th at 7 pm EST to be exact, the Libby Book Awards — also called the “Libbys” — will be presented.

The award-winners will be out of 17 categories and chosen by librarians and library workers across the country. The categories include but aren’t limited to: Best Adult Fiction, Best Adult Nonfiction, Best Young Adult Fiction, Best Audiobook, Best Debut Author, and Best Diverse Author.

This last category gives us a little pause. On the one hand, we’re always excited to see more diverse authors, but the category feels a little awkward. For one, how is diversity quantified? Does it just mean books by nonwhite authors? By queer authors? Does having a category labelled “Best Diverse Author” instead of just incorporating diverse authors into all other categories not reinforce the idea of The Other? We have many questions. We also realize that the category was probably made with good intentions, it just needs more of a tactful execution.

With that said, we are always excited to see books being celebrated and authors rewarded, and the finalists chosen for this inaugural Libby Book Awards are pretty solid.

Here are a few of them.

Best Adult Fiction Finalists

cover of Let Us Descend by Jesmyn Ward

Birnam Wood by Eleanor Catton
Let Us Descend by Jesmyn Ward
The Fraud by Zadie Smith
The Heaven & Earth Grocery Store by James McBride
Tom Lake by Ann Patchett

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