In an effort to break from the year-end listing of best books that so many news and culture outlets release, NPR Books has produced the Book Concierge, a Web site and mobile app that gives readers an unusual tool to sort through over 200 recommended titles from 2013. The Book Concierge lets a reader sort through a list organized by both title, and category.
The Book Concierge organizes 200 titles from 2013 recommended by such NPR Books contributors as Fresh Air book critic Maureen Corrigan, librarian Nancy Pearl, Morning Edition host David Greene and many others. On the web the Concierge organizes books by a tiled display of clickable book covers with more info on the books.
The Concierge also organizes book recommendations into conventional categories like “Biographies” or “Comics and Graphic Novels” as well as inventive categories such as “Rather Long” or “It’s All Geek to Me”or “Eye Opening Reads.” If you’re on the web, just click on a category and the tiled book covers rearrange themselves into a new collection of titles that reflect the new category. Though organized differently on a phone or tablet, the Concierge works much the same on small screen devices though it can’t recreate the animated reshuffling of the book covers.
But if you happen to like your year-end lists, don’t despair. Online and on the mobile app there’s a button that will turn the whole inventive, book cover-shuffling application into your basic alphabetical year-end list of the best books of 2013.