Idea Boards: #CYBILS2023 Edition

idea boards goodreads

For the past several years, we’ve invited readers to use our Idea Boards, hosted by, to share their recommendations on books they believed should be nominated come October.

Thanks to you embracing the idea boards, lotts of the books YOU recommended were nominated. Some even were selected as finalists or winners. Bottom line: we wouldn’t have known about them and someone wouldn’t have nominated it without your recommendation.

We want to continue this practice for #CYBILS2023, but, based on feedback in our surveys, we wondered if there was another way. Sharing your book recommendations should be easy, if not seamless with what you already do.

So this year we are using Goodreads to host our 2023 CYBILS Idea Boards. You’re already there cataloging and rating your reads, so why go to a stand-alone platform when you can recommend books with the click of a button?!

5 Things about the CYBILS Awards on Goodreads

  • We welcome anyone as a friend. The CYBILS Awards values being a safe space for readers.
  • All of the books chosen as finalists and winners going back to our very first year (2006) are cataloged and tagged.
  • Our shelves are organized so that you can search by award year, category, and/or audience.
  • In addition to hosting a library, we also have an active Goodreads Group.
  • We have a shelf specifically for showcasing your recommendations.

How-To: Recommend a Book

book recommendation screenshotFirst, in order to recommend a book to the CYBILS Awards, we have to be friends on Goodreads. If you have books for kids and teens on your shelves, consider yourself friended.

Recommending a book to another reader on Goodreads is simple. You can do it from your mobile device or on a desktop. It’s pretty similar across platforms, so bookmark this link.

  1. Open the BROWSE Tab dropdown menu and select “Recommendations.”
  2. Locate the MORE ACTIONS box [bottom right]
  3. Click GIVE RECOMMENDATIONS, then type in the name of the book you want to recommend.
  4. Once you select the book a list of FRIENDS. Select us [and any other friend], then click RECOMMEND to send it our way.

How-To: Find a Book

With more than 1,500 books on our shelves, being able to narrow down a search is really, really helpful. Did you know that you can filter a bookshelf by multiple criteria? We didn’t until recently! In the CYBILS Awards library, you can filter books by

  • Year awarded
  • Category Name
  • Genre [Poetry, Nonfiction, Sci-Fi/Fantasy]
  • Audience [Elementary, Junior High, High School]

How you structure the filter is completely up to you. You might want to start with books in a certain year or a certain audience; or you may be more interested in a specific category or genre.

To show you what a multiple-filter search looks like, we created an example using the structure Genre >Award Year > Audience. Click each image to enlarge.

Step 1: Click Graphic Novels from the MY BOOKS list.

Step 2: Scroll down the BOOKSHELVES listing and click SELECT MULTIPLE to generate a + sign.
It will appear to the right of each label. Continuing with our example, we selected the 2019 Finalists shelf.

Step 3: With the + sign still present, choose a second filter.
We chose “high school reader” to narrow our search even more.

Pretty cool, huh? Hover the mouse over each book cover and you’ll get a summary and reader rating data. All the info you need to glimpse a new read for you or a young reader in your life.

Join the CYBILS Awards Bookies

The purpose of our Goodreads group is to keep the book talking going year ’round. Our hope is that we can extend the camaraderie and book talking that happens during the awards cycle, all in a safe space.Β  bookie goodreads groupWhat can Bookies do?

  • Recommend reads to others.
  • Ask for recommendations for yourself or young readers in your life.
  • Participate in our weekly fun book-y question. [Picture book “Pantone Color of the Year” anyone?]
  • Get news for Judge calls and announcements.
  • Refer to the CYBILS Awards category descriptions if you want to make recommendations using our criteria.

We’d love to have you join us! There are never too many people talking about great books for kids and teens.

Have a youth literature passion you want to nurture? Come on in! We’ll set you up with your own space in our group.

We are excited about this new iteration of the Idea Boards and hope you are, too! Having everything CYBILS all together in a community space makes it easier to celebrate and share great books for youth audiences. More importantly, it creates the opportunity raise and bring together more voices for positive, affirming, representative stories for kids and teens.