Sybil Steinberg, a lifelong lover of literature and a Publishers Weekly editor for 25 years, died on March 17. She was 90.

Steinberg graduated from Smith College, where she edited the Sophia student newspaper, in 1954. Shortly after graduation, she turned down an entry-level job at Doubleday in favor of marriage and, for two decades, she served as the wife of a physician and mother to three in Westport, Conn.; PTA meetings and articles for the local paper followed, as well as a stint at the Famous Writers School.

There, she met Jean F. Mercier, who was children’s book editor at PW. Mercier asked Steinberg to write a review, which led to a fill-in copyediting role while Steinberg also continued to review for PW on a regular basis. By 1979, Steinberg had been named editor of fiction reviews, and in 1983, she began overseeing PW’s Author Interview department. As the fiction reviews editor, Steinberg introduced the boxed review concept to highlight promising talent, and selected Amy Tan’s debut novel, The Joy Luck Club, as the first boxed review.

In her role as Author Interview editor, Steinberg enjoyed one-on-one conversations with such elite literary figures as Annie Proulx, John Updike, and Fay Weldon. It was in this capacity that Steinberg experienced perhaps the crowning achievement in her illustrious career when Pantheon invited her to London in 1994 to interview Salman Rushdie, who was still in hiding six years after the fatwa had been issued. “Such an extraordinary assignment in such extraordinary circumstances is fitting testament to the trust and respect that Sybil was accorded from the highest levels of American publishing,” Michael Coffey who retired as co-editorial director of PW in 2014 and worked with Steinberg as managing editor, wrote in a piece on Steinberg in PW’s 150th anniversary issue.

In addition to her editing roles at the magazine, Steinberg edited three volumes of Writing for Your Life, a series of books that featured interviews compiled from the magazine. As a reviewer, her work was nominated for the 2015 Pulitzer Prize for Criticism. She also served on the board of the National Book Critics Circle, and made numerous television appearances on the Charlie Rose program, and shows on CBS, C-SPAN, and NBC.

After her retirement from PW in 2001, Steinberg continued to review books and maintain her ties to the publishing industry. Her annual “Sybil’s List” lecture, in which she would briefly describe her favorite books of the year, regularly drew standing-room-only crowds at her hometown library in Westport.

Steinberg was predeceased by her husband, Harold, in 2016, and by her brother, Aaron, in 2007. She is survived by her sons, Jonathan Steinberg of Westport, Peter Steinberg of Easthampton, Mass., and Richard Steinberg of San Diego, as well as eight grandchildren.

Funeral services will take place on March 21, at 11 a.m. at Temple Israel in Westport, which will also livestream the service here. The family will sit Shiva at the home of Jonathan Steinberg and Nancy Mullins, at 1 Bushy Ridge Road in Westport, on Thursday after the burial, with minyan around 6 p.m. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made in Sybil’s memory to the Westport Library, Fairfield County Hospice House, or Planned Parenthood.