Have you ever wondered how the long and shortlists are decided for a book prize? We are seeking volunteers reviewers interested in reading some of the latest adventure novels to join the long-listing process for the 2019 Wilbur Smith Adventure Writing Prize. We are inviting ten librarians to make up the review panel.


  • You must be a librarian by trade. We welcome interest from librarians working in all libraries, including schools, universities, public libraries, private libraries etc.  If you are a librarian who has recently retired, we would also be interested to hear from you
  • You must be London-based.

What is involved?

  • We will supply you with digital copies of up to x6 books which have been entered for the 2019 Best Published Novel category of the Wilbur Smith Adventure Writing Prize by 6th March. These books will all be fiction, published between 1st May 2018 and 30th April 2019 and fit our definition of adventure writing
  • We will supply you with guidelines on how to review the novels you are allocated. Each novel will be read by multiple reviewers
  • You must be available on Saturday 27th April to attend a roundtable discussion led by the Foundation from in Finsbury Park, London. We anticipate this will be 11am-4pm
  • Together, we will select the longlist for the 2019 Best Published Novel award. You must come prepared to discuss, advocate and vote for those at the top of your reading list – it will be a friendly atmosphere and a chance to meet others with similar interests
  • We take the security of these novels seriously. Each novel has been entrusted to the Prize and each file will be secured to ensure the author’s work is protected

What is in it for you?

For those with an interest in the genre and a desire to keep up-to-date with new publications, this is a chance to explore some of the best new adventure fiction today. You will meet likeminded people and enjoy a new experience while demystifying the behind-the scenes workings of an influential book prize. Together, we will select the longlist for the 2019 Best Published Novel award, worth £15,000 for the winning author.

Express your interest: 

We will be selecting ten reviewers. To express your interest, please email Georgina Brown, Foundation Manager at georgina@wilbur-niso-smithfoundation.org, telling us in under 200 words:

  • why you would like to be part of the review panel
  • a little about your experience as a librarian 

We are seeking ten volunteers from diverse backgrounds, to bring a range of opinions to the process. Please also supply as much of the following information as you are comfortable with, alongside your expression of interest: 

  1. Where you work/worked as a librarian
  2. How long you have been a librarian
  3. Date of birth
  4. Gender
  5. Nationality
  6. Education level

Deadline for expressions of interest: Thursday 28th February

You will be notified if you have been selected to be part of the panel on Friday 1st March.

This role is voluntary. You will receive a £60 One4All voucher (redeemable with over 130 high street brands) for your participation.