Library Bookshelves


The Library Bookshelves plugin allows you to curate virtual bookshelves just like you would a shelf around a theme in your library. Bookshelves are displayed as customizable Slick carousels, using cover art from, and links to, your library catalog. The plugin creates a Bookshelves post type, shortcode, widget, and custom taxonomy.

This plugin currently supports Bibliocommons, EBSCOHost Discovery Service, Encore, Evergreen, Koha,, Polaris, and SirsiDynix Enterprise and Horizon catalogs. It supports retrieval of images from these third-party CDNs: Amazon, ChiliFresh, Baker & Taylor, EBSCO,, and Syndetics.

If you would like this plugin to support another catalog system or CDN email me.

Originally developed by and for staff at the Guilderland Public Library.

We want to know where our plugin is being used and how you’re using it! Don’t worry, we’re not going to use any tracking code to find out. If you are one of the many libraries using this plugin drop us a line and say “Hi!”


  1. Go to Bookshelves>Settings to configure the plugin.
  2. On the Catalog tab enter the domain name of your catalog (default is
  3. Select your catalog system and image CDN. If this plugin doesn’t support your catalog system or CDN, email me. Note: ChiliFresh users will need to add their website domain to “Covered hosts” in the ChiliFresh Admin Panel for images to display.
  4. On the Slider tab you can customize bookshelf behavior. Defaults have been set to get you started.

Getting Started

Create a new Bookshelf using ISBNs from items in your catalog. Paste the Bookshelf shortcode to a post or page, or use the Bookshelf widget. Add location tags to your Bookshelves to display them in the widget or just to keep them organized. The widget can organize Bookshelves in tabs. Styling for tabs is located in bookshelves.css.

Known Issues

There is a known issue using the Bookshelves widget in tabbed mode and the Ultimate Addons for Visual Composer plugin.


Q: This plugin doesn’t support my library’s catalog system. Will future versions support it?

A: Yes! But only if you contact me with a link to your catalog! As soon as you do I’ll get working on an update.

Q: I don’t know which CDN my catalog uses for item images. How do I find out?

A: Right click on an item image from your catalog and select View Image or Inspect to see the image URL. If you’re still not sure, email me

Q: I’ve set my catalog settings correctly, so why don’t item images appear?

A: Try an alternate ISBN if possible. Amazon, for example, only supports 10-digit ISBNs. Not all CDNs will have images for every ISBN.


Works great!

I contacted the plugin author to get our catalog added. We receive our catalog through a consortium that uses “profiles” on the SirsyDynix Enterprise catalog so that each library in the consortium gets their own catalog page. This did not work with the previous version, but Jon was nice enough to update the plugin to work with our catalog and the ability to add profile codes, which pulls up the books on our personal catalog profile.

Our staff have even been bringing stacks of books to their desk, starting a new bookshelf, and then scanning in the items ISBN. We’re already thinking of all kinds of new possibilities, like creating virtual bookshelves to mirror the themed book displays that we do in our actual library.

Do be aware that not every book has cover art in the website, so you may get some missing books in your bookshelf. This can easily be fixed by signing up for an account at and adding the book information and cover art.

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Contributors & Developers

“Library Bookshelves” is open source software. The following people have contributed to this plugin.


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Interested in development?

Browse the code, check out the SVN repository, or subscribe to the development log by RSS.



  • Added support for item record number and UPC in addition to ISBN for Evergreen ILS and CDN.


  • Added support for EBSCOHost Discovery Service.


  • Fixed PHP 5.3 incompatibility which affected multi-site installs.


  • Changed the ISBN input method to allow copy-and-pasting of delimited lists. Added customizable Slick options for each Bookshelf. Added Evergreen support. Fixed a CSS conflict that may occur with themes or plugins that also include Slick. Fixed some other minor bugs.


  • Fixed a bug preventing some Slick CSS from rendering. Upgraded to Slick 1.8.1.


  • Fixed a bug which prevented plugin settings from being read on some non-standard WordPress installations.


  • Added profile support for Polaris catalogs.


  • Added support for Koha.


  • Fixed a bug which could occur if profile code field is left blank.


  • Added a setting for profile code and added profile support for SirsiDynix Enterprise catalogs.


  • Added support for ChiliFresh CDN. Fixed some Slick settings bugs.


  • Compatible with PHP 5.3+. Links to Encore catalog are now HTTPS.


  • Fixed bug with default settings. Added minimum PHP version.


  • Added support for Bibliocommons, Polaris, and SirsiDynix catalogs.


  • Initial version.