The search is officially underway to find the ‘An Post Bookshop of the Year’ for 2023. After a hugely successful inaugural year in 2021, the category is now back for the third year running in the An Post Irish Book Awards, the annual literary event that celebrates and promotes Irish writing to the widest range of readers possible.
The ‘An Post Bookshop of the Year’ category is designed to acknowledge the significant role played by independent bookshops and local branches of bookshop chains in helping their local communities to find and savour the titles of their choice. Previous winners include Kennys Bookshop and Art Gallery, Galway in 2021 and Bridge Street Books, Wicklow in 2022.
Customers simply have to click onto https://www.anpost.com/bookshopoftheyear to submit their nomination for their favourite bookshop. They will also have the option to explain the reason for their choice. Readers can also enter by scanning the QR code in their preferred bookshop and following the instructions. Everyone who votes will be entered into a draw to win a €100 book voucher.
Nominations for the ‘An Post Bookshop of the Year’ will close on 17th September at midnight. The 12 bookshops around Ireland with the most votes will then be longlisted and invited by the judges to enter a written submission.
Mystery shoppers will visit the 12 shops as part of the judging process. Following this, a shortlist of six shops will be finalised for the ‘An Post Bookshop of the Year’ and they will be officially announced on the 19th October. The overall winner will be presented with their trophy at the An Post Irish Book Awards event on 22nd November 22. The winner will receive a trophy along with a prize worth €15,000 from An Post Commerce.
Each year, the An Post Irish Book Awards bring together a vast community passionate about books – readers, authors, booksellers, publishers and librarians – to recognise the very best of new and established Irish writing talent and 2023 will be no different. Other categories in the An Post Irish Book Awards include Novel of the Year, Children’s (Junior and Senior), Cookery, Crime Fiction, Popular Fiction, Non-fiction, Sports, Short Story, Poetry, Teen and Young Adult and Irish Language.
Brendan Corbett, Chairperson of the An Post Irish Book Awards, says:
“Bookshops are at the core of communities’ throughout Ireland and offer a cultural and social hub for many. We introduced this category to acknowledge the important contribution bookshops and their booksellers make to not only to their communities and readers, but the significant role they play in the Irish book trade. We are delighted to see the category returning for the third year running and encourage everyone to support and vote for their local bookshop in the An Post Bookshop of the Year category.”
Dawn Behan, Chair of Bookselling Ireland, says:
“Our local bookshops are truly at the cornerstone of every Irish village and town and work every day to connect readers with titles they will truly love. Booksellers have an important role in fostering a love of literature among children and those who are new to the wonderful world of reading. This category brings together readers and booksellers and I look forward to seeing local bookshops celebrated once again at the An Post Irish Book Awards this year.”
Garrett Bridgeman, Managing Director of An Post Mails & Parcels said:
“Irish bookshops are thriving because they know how to look after their customers and they offer seamless in-store and delivery options. In addition to providing reduced parcel and stamp rates for booksellers through the An Post Advantage Card, we are delighted to once again sponsor this very special award category which means so much to both bookshops and their customers across the country.”
The shortlist for all categories in the An Post Irish Book Awards 2023 will be announced on Thursday 19th October, while the winners will be announced on Wednesday 22nd November. A television programme will be broadcast on RTÉ One television in December and will culminate in one of the 2023 winning titles being announced as the ‘An Post Irish Book of the Year 2023’.
An Post is also continuing with their hugely successful #ReadersWanted campaign, celebrating the value and joy of reading and encouraging everyone to pick up more books, more often. Simply search for the hashtag online to get involved.