As voted by the readers.
Days before Nel's suicide — at least, what the authorities are calling suicide — Nel calls her sister Jules asking for help. But Jules ignores her, and now she finds herself having to care for the teenage girl her sister left behind — which wouldn't be so bad if she weren't afraid to return to a place she thought she left behind, and if she weren't so sure her sister didn't jump.
Reader review: "Gorgeous descriptions and visuals... an enthralling textured cast of characters, and an ending that stopped me cold." —Elyse
Wingate's novel — based on a real-life horror story involving the corrupt director of an adoption agency — travels between two timelines: 1939 Memphis, when five young siblings are forced into an orphanage led by a cruel director; and present day South Carolina, to a woman who discovers an unhappy history on a visit back home.
Reader review: "Wingate’s riveting, wrenching, and ultimately uplifting tale reminds us how, even though the paths we take can lead to many places, the heart never forgets where we belong." —Mary Beth
Magizoologist Newt Scamander is only supposed to be in New York for a brief stopover, but when he somehow misplaces his magical briefcase — which, of course, is full of some of the magic world's most fantastic beasts — he knows he can't leave until he gets it back in his possession, and gathers up all the beasts who've escaped in the meantime.
Reader review: "The Queen of Magic never fails to create a world rich in detail. An action-packed plot with the most imaginative creatures, Fantastic Beasts is a story that needs to be told." —Bill
Merit Voss is doing her best to survive in (and keep the secrets of) a family that is eccentric, to say the least. When she meets and falls for a guy who turns out to be unavailable, she finds herself lonely and unmotivated — until she discovers a family secret she can't ignore.
Reader review: "The healing elements of this story warm the heart and give hope for all families out there. No matter what secrets a family may have there’s always an opportunity to learn and grow." —Amy
Jazz Bashara is a criminal trying to make it in Artemis, the first city on the moon. It's a tough thing to do if you aren't a billionaire, which is why Jazz has turned to smuggling in contraband. But when she sees an opportunity too lucrative to give up, she goes for it — and finds herself in the midst of a dangerous conspiracy.
Reader review: "The pacing is great, the reveals believable, the twists unexpected, and the action, delightful. I really couldn't ask for more when it comes to fun science fiction." —Bradley
In a dystopian (but familiar) future, women find themselves falling into deep sleeps that transport them elsewhere, their bodies enshrouded in a cocoon-like gauze. If they're woken, or the gauze becomes disturbed, the women become horrifyingly violent; the me who are left behind become primal beings. Only one woman, Evie, hasn't been touched by this "sleeping disease" — and the rest of the world must figure out what to do with her.
Reader review: "Sure, it’s a horror novel, but who says horror novels can’t be important? It’s certainly saying some important and necessary things about our world today, and social commentary and criticism is often more accessible when wrapped in entertaining weirdness. And 'entertaining weirdness' is something for which King is a master." —Scott Rhee
A collection of personal essays by beloved actor Lauren Graham, talking life, work, love, singlehood, and growing into success — and even including some actual entries from Graham's personal diary.
Reader review: "I really enjoyed this book not because I was reading about the life of a celebrity, but because it felt like I was having a conversation with an older, successful and more experienced woman. It felt like she was giving advice on topics we all struggle with, just chatting about her life." —Michele Mattos
Actress, comedian, and YouTube star Lilly Singh uses her own experience striving toward success, and her signature hilarious voice, to create this guide to being a "bawse" — or, "a person who exudes confidence, reaches goals, gets hurt efficiently, and smiles genuinely because they’ve fought through it all and made it out the other side."
Reader review: "THIS BOOK IS GOLD. IT HELPS ME SO MUCH. Just when I needed it the most, reading this book is like having Lilly near you as a friend and a supporter to reassure you and guide you through your life. I believe we all learn best from our own experience and this memoir a personal coach speaking from her own experience and the result is amazing." —Trang Tran
Anyone who was paying attention (and, honestly, probably those who weren't) knows what a whirlwind the 2016 election cycle was — and no one was closer to the chaos than Hillary Clinton. What Happened tells her side of the story, describing with confidence, humility, and humor what it was really like to run against Trump, and how she started to heal after the loss.
Reader review: "What touched me most was the personal nature of What Happened. Politics is only a part of this book. A whole other part is about family, friendship and self care after a brutal and humiliating public defeat. This is not Hillary rising from the ashes and raining curses down on her opponents; it's a story of bitter disappointment and, ultimately, hope for something better." —Emily May
The Curies' radium discovery was monumental, celebrated as immensely valuable in the medical and beauty industries. But what about the countless girls working in the radium-dial factories — jobs which were highly sought and trendy at first, but which turned on the girls when the poisonous side effects of radium began to take hold? Theirs is a groundbreaking story of workers' rights.
Reader review: "I feel like I could ramble on for days regarding this book, but if you can stomach the horror and emotion regarding this much overlooked part of our history, I think it will ensure deep reflection and cause us to question some of how we approach living our lives and what we hold important. I know I'll hold this story deep in my soul for the rest of my life, it was that powerful." —Chelsea Humphrey
Neil deGrasse Tyson's new book is a beginner's guide to some of our biggest questions, offering info on everything from quantum mechanics to black holes to the search for alien life — all in bite-size chunks
Reader review: "Written in an engaging, approachable style, Astrophysics for People in a Hurry has reignited my interest in science, particularly in astronomy. I learned a lot, only by rereading passages several times and then putting the book down to think for a few minutes before continuing, but mostly I came away with a sense of amazement and humility in the face of the universe and the people so much smarter than me that study it." —Emily
Over 125 recipes from the famous blogger-turned-Food Network star Ree Drummond, all fast and doable but still filling and nutritious.
Reader review: "The design, the simplicity of directions, the availability of ingredients, the tastiness of the recipes themselves... I love you, Pioneer Woman. You're the best." —Jessica Rodrigues
Sarah Andersen’s “Sarah Scribbles” comics are hilariously relatable, which is why the first book in her series, Adulthood Is a Myth, took a Goodreads Choice Award home last year. This one is more of what Sarah Scribbles fans love — adorable, hilarious comics about the awkwardness of life.
Reader review: "The way she has illustrated social anxiety and over-thinking is just superb. With her awesome sense of humor she has become my favorite author." —Aneela
In Rupi Kaur's second poetry collection, she writes about family, roots, growth, and healing.
Reader review: "The poems are direct, simple, easy to grasp and full of passion. There are underlying layers and raw thoughts and emotions beneath those words that have me wanting to savor it, reread it. Annotate the whole book and find my own meaning within it." —Warda
Angie Thomas's debut was everywhere this year — for good reason — so it isn't surprising it took home two Goodreads Choice Awards. Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter struggles to balance her two worlds — the poor neighborhood she calls home, and the fancy suburban prep school she attends. And when she witnesses the fatal shooting of her unarmed best friend by a police officer, she — and her home — are thrust into the spotlight.
Reader review: "I loved The Hate U Give most because of its characters and their relationships with one another. Thomas creates such real, flawed, and personality-filled characters that you cannot help but feel heartbroken and angry when they experience racism and discrimination. Amidst all the hate Starr and her community receive, their genuine love for one another imbues this novel with hope — and it inspires me to see how Starr uses that love as a launching pad to engage in meaningful activism." —Thomas
Maas's super popular A Court of Thorns and Roses snags another Goodreads Choice Award with its third and final installment, in which Feyre has returned to the court to find out how she can stop the invading king from destroying her home — but to do so, she must play a deadly game herself.
Reader review: "Glorious, thrilling and completely enthralling ... This is how you end a series — with love and hope and happiness painting the grand finale. Maas deserves thunderous applause yet again." —Andreea Pop
Rick Riordan is another returning champ, this time for the conclusion to his beloved Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard series. Teen Magnus Chase, once homeless, now lives at the Hotel Valhalla as one of Odin's chosen warriors — which is tough for him since he's the son of Frey, the god of fertility and health. But with his friends by his side (including an elf and a dwarf) he must go on a dangerous journey to find and fight one of his world's greatest threats.
Reader review: "Riordan manages to weave challenges into a story that don’t become tiresome and add to the characters overall journey. He creates fresh characters in every series and their backstories will have you in tears." —Amber Robertson
We're All Wonders brings the story of Auggie Pullman — "an ordinary boy with an extraordinary face" — to young children, describing the ways in which we're all unique, and explaining the importance of kindness.
Reader review: "We're All Wonders has a message that should be preached around the world: We're all different, but some of us are more noticeably so. If your child feels like he or she doesn't fit in, this book can lift their spirits and let them see things in a different light." —T.E. Antonino