Best Books of 2017

It’s 2018, kids.  I know this, but I’m still looking back, just a little.  I wanted to share my Best Books of 2017 list.  These are not all books that came out in 2017, but the best of the 70 books that I read in 2017.  (70 books is kinda insane and that is a record I’m not even going to try to top.)


Since I’d shared everything I read this year except for December I just want to real quick recap the  books I read last month.


My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante (The first of the Neapolitan novels.  Like everyone said, it took a beat to get into, but this is one of the best character/motivation studies I’ve ever read.  I’m reading the second book now.)


On Writing by Stephen King (I’ve been slowly working my way through this since September.  It’s one of those life changing books for me.  I wrote about one small lesson I took away here.)


Notes from a Blue Bike by Tsh Oxenrider (I loved At Home in the World.  This is one of her previous books.  Good, but not as strong as At Home.)


The Best Christmas Pageant Ever by Barbara Robinson (The kids and I read this in the weeks before Christmas.  I forgot how much I love those Herdmans.)


I’m Judging You: The Do Better Manual by Luvvie Ajayi (I’m all in for Luvvie.  She’s developing a show with Shonda Rhimes and I am here for it.)


Invitation to a Journey by M Robert Mulholland, Jr.  (Read this for that spiritual transformation community I’m starting next week.  It was thought provoking and helpful.)


The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt (Listened to this one on audiobook-32 hours- and got through it all because I spent a lot of hours combing through hair looking for lice in December (side note-lice is terrible and proof that Satan exists).  It’s long, and had some long winded “I’m making an important point” segments that I could have done without.  I’m glad I read it, but I wouldn’t recommend it necessarily.)



So, that was December and unfortunately none of those titles are on my best of list.  But, the following are… (drumroll please……..)


The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead (description here)

This one was so powerful, so captivating and so interesting.  It will stay with me for a while.


The Course of Love by Alain DeBottom (description here)

I literally took pictures of particularly captivating passages because it was a library book and I couldn’t underline.  This made me want to be a better partner to my husband.


Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche (description here)

I believe everyone needs to read more books that help us walk around in someone else’s shoes for a bit.  This was one of them for me.  A beautiful, well-written story.


El Deafo by CeeCee Bell (description here)

This book helped me understand Liam better and opened door for us to talk about things and if that doesn’t make it one of my best reads of the year than I don’t know what does.


Dreamland Burning by Jennifer Latham (description here)

This book not only told two excellent stories, but educated me on a part of America’s history that I had no idea about.  I’ve recommended it to many others and across the board people loved it.


This is How it Always Is by Laurie Frankel (description here)

I didn’t want to leave this family and this is another book that puts you in someone else’s shoes beautifully.


Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi (description here)

Genius premise, powerfully educational, beautiful writing.  Required reading.


The Heart’s Invisible Furies by John Boyne (description here)

I haven’t loved a main character so much in a long time.  And it takes place in two of my most favorite cities, so that didn’t hurt.


And finally, the best thing I read in 2017



The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas (description here)

I don’t know if I have adequate words for this one.  I was so sad to leave these characters, the story and its message need to be shared, and it was just phenomenal.  It’s been on a lot of people’s best of lists this year, so I know I’m not alone.  If you read one thing I’ve recommended this year, read this.


What about you???  What’s the best thing you read in 2017?