Books on books on books. It was a great year for reading, and we wrote lists of so many outstanding books this year. As much time as we spend talking about our favorites, we’re really curious about your favorites. So we did a little research. Here are the 10 most popular books lists on Off the Shelf in 2017.
Former President Obama made it clear over the his eight years in office that books are a big part of his life—whether he’s shopping on Small Business Saturday or releasing his vacation reading list. A bestselling author himself, our reader-in-chief followed his predecessors in recommending some great nonfiction titles, but surprised us all by being a particularly prolific fiction reader as well. Here are some of the books he picked up during his time in office.
Already beloved by millions of readers, this novel follows a blind French girl and a German boy whose paths collide in occupied France as they both try to survive the devastation of World War II. The breakout hit of 2014, this beautiful novel was a finalist for the National Book Award and it just won the 2015 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. If you haven't read it yet, this one should be at the top of your spring reading list.
With dystopian classics like George Orwell’s 1984 and Margaret Atwood’s THE HANDMAID’S TALE resurfacing at the top of bestseller lists, it may feel like the world is ending–or at least radically changing. As we imagine what the future holds, we’re reminded of these 15 talented writers who envisioned, and perhaps warned, of a future more sinister than we’d like to imagine.
This horrifying vision of our society radically overturned by a theocratic revolution has become one of the most powerful and widely read novels of our time. It has endured not only as a literary landmark but also as a scathing satire and dire warning of a possible future that is still chillingly relevant.
With the days getting shorter and the nights getting longer, winter is the perfect time to sit by the fire and lose yourself in a deliciously long book. From epic fantasy to searing romance, these 13 books are some of our extra-long favorites to enjoy while waiting for spring!
A late-life romance, a murder mystery upon a snowbound train, an extraordinary kid with an extraordinary face—these are just a few of the stories we’re excited to catch on the big and small screen this fall. . . and they’re straight from the pages of our favorite books. Like any true book nerd would, we’ll be reading the source material of these movie releases before we watch them come to life on the silver screen.
Hailed by The Huffington Post as “possibly the most important piece of literature ever printed,” The Disaster Artist is the hilarious, behind-the-scenes story of a deliciously awful cinematic phenomenon as well as the story of an odd and inspiring Hollywood friendship. Greg Sestero, Tommy’s costar, recounts the film’s bizarre journey to infamy, explaining how the movie’s many nonsensical scenes and bits of dialogue came to be and unraveling the mystery of Tommy Wiseau himself. But more than just a riotously funny story about cinematic hubris, “The Disaster Artist is one of the most honest books about friendship I’ve read in years” (Los Angeles Times).
Do you remember back in March when I was telling you about the can’t-miss debut novels by authors with highly anticipated summer books? I was losing my mind over new novels from writers like Paula Hawkins and Arundhati Roy. Well, now I’m really losing it over the incredibly exciting books coming out this fall. I mean there are new books coming from Jennifer Egan and Dan Brown and Alice Hoffman and Gabrielle Zevin and, well, you get the point. To keep myself together, I’m revisiting old favorites by authors with big books coming out this fall.
I’m losing my mind over the amazing crop of new novels slated for publication in 2017. The excitement over highly anticipated new novels from Paula Hawkins, Celeste Ng, and Nickolas Butler may actually induce heart palpitations. But I shouldn’t get ahead of myself. While some of these books are already out, we still have months to wait before most hit bookstores. To quell your impatience, make sure you’ve read the dazzling debut novels and story collections that first introduced these writers to the world.
Far from the casinos and lights, the Las Vegas suburbs sprawl out into the desert. In this desolate boomtown, three desperate souls—a middle aged woman attempting to revive her marriage, a veteran just returned from Iraq, and a brave eight-year-old Albanian boy—must decide whether to give in to despair, or to find the courage and resilience to rise.
From Gillian Flynn to Agatha Christie, some of the best-loved authors of the greatest dark psychological thrillers have been women. Yet until recently, the works of female authors were often overlooked in favor of their male compatriots. We want to celebrate our favorite women behind the most ominous and suspenseful novels with this list of shivery thrillers. Be sure to read these with the lights on.
Joe doesn’t like artisanal soda, trust fund kids, Dan Brown, Brooklyn hipsters, or Vice magazine. He does, however, like you, ever since you walked into his East Village bookshop looking like Natalie Portman. Shame that Joe is a cold-blooded killer and adept stalker. In the all-too-rare second-person narrative, YOU takes place inside the obsessed brain of Joe Goldberg, who’ll stop at nothing to make boho-wannabe Guinevere Beck (the “you” of Kepnes’s page-turning novel) his. Crazy like:
Crazy like:The lovesick and the just-plain-sick.
Best crazy moment: The DA VINCI CODE reading marathon.
If you ask an Off the Shelf writer “What’s your favorite book?” don’t expect to get a short answer. We have, and will continue to, evangelize about all the books we’re currently in love with until you beg us to stop. But, if you’re into that kinda stuff, we’ll always be here for you. Here are 10 authors we’re currently crazy about, characters whose honor we will defend until death, and the well-worn books we will forever keep on our shelves—because. . . you just never know when you will need it, okay?
Who wants to hear about someone’s honeymoon? Ugh, not me. Unless it’s the story of how Lydia Millet’s Deb and Chip began their wedded bliss spotting mermaids in the Caribbean. Oddly heartwarming and super hilarious, this is an unmissable voice-driven novel about keeping it real in the face of absurdity. —Elizabeth
Who says beach reads can’t be based in reality? Each of these 11 true stories is so utterly compelling that it reads like fiction. Whether your favorite genre is political thrillers or mysteries, tales of friendship or dystopia, historical fiction or science fiction, horror or adventure, any of these compelling nonfiction titles in your beach bag will happily take you away to a truth that is stranger than fiction.
We have a confession to make. We bet you’ve done it, too, nodding along when your friends bring up the book that everyone has read. We’re just fudging, right? You can’t read everything, can you? No judgment, now: here are 8 books we’ve lied about reading. But please don’t take our lies as condemnation—these are fantastic books. We’re just really, really busy. . .