New aggregator will be a ‘Rotten Tomatoes’ for books

How do your favorite books stack up? Lit Hub will tell you with ‘Book Marks.’
How do your favorite books stack up? Lit Hub will tell you with ‘Book Marks.’

An online resource for literary content is hoping to create the publishing equivalent of Rotten Tomatoes.

Literary Hub announced Tuesday the launch of Book Marks, compiling reviews from more than 70 outlets ranging from The New York Times to the Las Vegas Weekly.

Reviews will include links to the original publications, and individual books will be assigned composite letter grades by Lit Hub editors. Any work that has been reviewed three or more times will be listed in Book Marks, and grades will be adjusted as new reviews come in.

“We understand it is difficult to summarize the nuance and complexity of a review into a letter grade,” Lit Hub Editor-in-Chief Jonny Diamond said in a statement. “But we believe that Book Marks will lead more readers to reviews, and amplify critics’ voices in a way that benefits readers and writers alike.”

Lit Hub, billing itself as “The Best of the Literary Internet,” was started in 2015 by Grove Atlantic publisher and president Morgan Entrekin, former Esquire and Sports Illustrated editor Terry McDonell and the online publication Electric Literature. Lit Hub has partnered with more than 180 publishers, booksellers, publications and literary associations. The site includes excerpts, links to publishing stories and original writing, with authors Roxane Gay and Rick Moody among the contributors.

Assistant editor Jess Bergman told The Associated Press during a recent interview that the goal of Book Marks was to build on Lit Hub’s mission of providing information for the reading public.

“We’re trying to spread the word about literature,” she said. “There are so many great books that come out every year and we want to help people make educated decisions.”