So, in November we reached out to our book critics and staff to ask which books they absolutely loved in 2013. We got more than a total of 200 titles in response from trusted names such as NPR's go-to librarian Nancy Pearl, Fresh Air book critic Maureen Corrigan, Morning Edition host David Greene, and even Wait Wait ... Don't Tell Me! limericist Philipp Goedicke. Then the members of the NPR Books team locked ourselves in a small room for several hours to hash out how exactly to categorize titles ranging from Mr. Wuffles! and Unicorn Thinks He's Pretty Great to an 832-page biography of Woodrow Wilson.
After much wailing and gnashing of teeth we emerged with a taxonomy that allowed users to filter the list of our 200-plus favorite 2013 books in ways that felt both functional (i.e., or ) and fun (i.e., and ). Meanwhile, the NewsApps team was busy figuring out how this whole thing should look and work. After a couple of weeks of designing and coding and testing and editing, our books concierge was born.
And even though they aren't doing the list thing, THAT WON'T STOP ME. Here are the titles in their app-thingie that are tagged 'young adult':
Eleanor & Park, by Rainbow Rowell
The Summer Prince, by Alaya Dawn Johnson
Gorgeous, by Paul Rudnick
A Corner of White, by Jaclyn Moriarty
The Madness Underneath, by Maureen Johnson
Brilliance, by Marcus Sakey
The Coldest Girl in Coldtown, by Holly Black
Scarlet, by Marissa Meyer
Rose Under Fire, by Elizabeth Wein
Paper Valentine, by Brenna Yovanoff