The Most Read Books on Goodreads in May

Posted by Hayley on May 13, 2019
What's popular right now? Historical fiction, thrillers with film adaptations, and several books on Kindle Unlimited, an ebook and audiobook subscription service available in most regions that allows readers unlimited access to more than a million titles.

Here at Goodreads we like to know what people are reading. From peeking at the books of our fellow commuters to not-so-surreptitiously checking out the stacks on our coworkers' desks, we embrace our curious nature. That's why we're rounding up what Goodreads members around the world are currently reading. These are the top books, ranked by the number of people who have read them this month.

Browse the books below and add what looks good to your Want to Read shelf.


#1

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#6

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#9

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#11

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#12

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#14

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#15

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Comments Showing 1-50 of 137 (137 new)


message 1: by Aenea (new)

Aenea Jones I'm baffled there are no non-fiction books (except you count the memoirs).
The world is full of interesting facts and wonder. I always enjoyed books about history, psychology, science or sociology the most.

I guess I'm in the minority since most people seem to enjoy fiction more.


message 2: by Eule (new)

Eule Luftschloss Aenea wrote: "I'm baffled there are no non-fiction books (except you count the memoirs).
The world is full of interesting facts and wonder. I always enjoyed books about history, psychology, science or sociology..."


I think it may be tied to how quickly you can finish a book. Like, I am reading Homo Deus at the moment but can only stomach up to a hundred pages a day before I need something else.
The intro says this lists only books that were fnished this month, not those who were begun or continued. Those from the list I read were pretty slim compared to what else I read, too.


message 3: by Faizan (new)

Faizan Wow, I have not read a single one... What a great year


message 4: by Paul (last edited May 13, 2019 07:12AM) (new)

Paul  Perry The only one of these on my TBR is Circe, I can't say any of the others float my boat.


I'm currently reading Mongol Empire: The Conquests of Genghis Khan and the Making of Modern China


message 5: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer Nolan Reading New Iberia Blues by James Lee Burke and A Cotswold family life by Clare MacKintosh.


message 6: by Charlotte (new)

Charlotte Mann I'm reading Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel


message 7: by Jessica (new)

Jessica Haider I've read 4 of the 20 on this list. Of those, Daisy Jones was my favorite. I am currently reading Pachinko by Min Jin Lee.


message 8: by Linda (new)

Linda Clausen I’ve read three on the list. Want to read several of them soon


message 9: by Charlotte (new)

Charlotte  I have read seven of them so far.


message 10: by Harriett (new)

Harriett Milnes I'm reading Portrait of Myself by Margaret Bourke-White. I've read two on the list and I'd like to read 3 more.


message 11: by Erin (new)

Erin Two are on my TBR list, but I'm doing the Pop Sugar challenge, so that's my priority for this year.


message 12: by Raymond (new)


message 13: by Vanessa (new)

Vanessa Jessica wrote: "I've read 4 of the 20 on this list. Of those, Daisy Jones was my favorite. I am currently reading Pachinko by Min Jin Lee."

Pachinko is such a great book!


message 14: by Belinda (new)

Belinda Women Rowing North by Mary Pipher


message 15: by Wes (new)

Wes I'm with you. It does seem that so many people read only fiction. Personally, I try to read about 50/50 fiction vs. non-fiction. There is so much interesting to be read about the world out there, not just fantasy. A particular favorite topic of mine is Travel & Exploration. Aenea wrote: "I'm baffled there are no non-fiction books (except you count the memoirs).
The world is full of interesting facts and wonder. I always enjoyed books about history, psychology, science or sociology..."



message 16: by Tanya (new)

Tanya Aenea wrote: "I'm baffled there are no non-fiction books (except you count the memoirs).
The world is full of interesting facts and wonder. I always enjoyed books about history, psychology, science or sociology..."


I just finished a nonfiction book: The Strange Case of Dr. Couney by Dawn Raffel. Read it in a day. A bit choppy, but held my interest to finish that quickly!


message 17: by б (new)

б Aenea wrote: "I'm baffled there are no non-fiction books (except you count the memoirs).
The world is full of interesting facts and wonder. I always enjoyed books about history, psychology, science or sociology..."


The nytimes book list begs to differ with this blogpost. Fiction books are fun but a mere distraction from self-improvement. Carry on as you do.


message 18: by Wes (new)

Wes Of these 20 titles, I have read 2; "Educated" and "The Great Alone". I truly enjoyed both of them. There are 2 others on my TBR; "Where the Crawdads Sing" and "The Silent Patient". I'm hoping they will be available on ebook from the library through Overdrive which I use for a lot of my reading. Often they will have the audio book but not the ebook. I make the recommendation that they get the ebooks and hope for the best. I do all my reading on my Kindle now due to two types of arthritis affecting my hands/wrists, making it difficult to hold regular books. I don't know that any of the remaing 16 books listed would interest me.


message 19: by Mackay (new)

Mackay Aenea wrote: "I'm baffled there are no non-fiction books (except you count the memoirs).
The world is full of interesting facts and wonder. I always enjoyed books about history, psychology, science or sociology..."

I think lots of people read NF, but the categories are far wider than for fiction, so picking a lowest common denominator isn't so easy. If you look at the fiction selections, they're the obvious ones.


message 20: by Katsuro (new)

Katsuro 90% women writers? Not to be whiny, but that seems like a bit of a gender imbalance.


message 21: by Coded Reader (new)

Coded Reader Currently reading The House my father built by Adewale Maja Pearce


message 22: by Kristen (new)

Kristen I'm surprised there's no YA on the list. Sometimes I feel like that's all people read.


message 23: by SJChar (new)

SJChar I've read three of these, currently reading (about to finish) Where the Crawdads Sing and will start Daisy Jones and the Six as soon as I'm finished.


message 24: by Katsuro (new)

Katsuro Kristen wrote: "I'm surprised there's no YA on the list. Sometimes I feel like that's all people read."

It used to feel that way, yeah, but as I read your comment I realized that there hasn't been any huge YA hits for over a year. I checked Amazon's top 100 print best sellers; not a single YA novel among them!

I think the YA blockbuster phenomenon is dying out. Sure, people still read the genre, but we haven't had something like The Hunger Games, The Fault in Our Stars or Divergent for a long while now.

Most of the YA hits were either about a teen rebel in a dystopian future or a terminally ill teenager, and now that people are fed up with those trends, well...


message 25: by Jasmine (new)

Jasmine Aenea wrote: "I'm baffled there are no non-fiction books (except you count the memoirs).
The world is full of interesting facts and wonder. I always enjoyed books about history, psychology, science or sociology..."


I love non-fiction books! I'm not sure what kind of non-fiction books you enjoy, but I highly recommend "The World in a Grain: The Story of Sand and How It Transformed Civilization" by Vince Beiser.


message 26: by Jasmine (new)

Jasmine Raymond wrote: "I highly recommend The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo"

I have that on my list of books to read!


message 27: by Jasmine (new)

Jasmine Paul wrote: "I'm currently reading [book:Mongol Empire: The Conquests of Genghis Khan and the Making of Modern China|1876..."

That sounds interesting!


message 28: by David (new)

David I just finished “Howell’s Storm”, very interesting NF book


message 29: by Rachel (new)

Rachel I've already read 3 of these books, and 4 others are on my TBR list. The hold queue at my library for Crawdads, Educated and Daisy Jones are into the hundreds, so I will likely be waiting for a while.

I just finished The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas over my lunch break. I plan to begin reading Watching You by Lisa Jewell once I get home from work today.


message 30: by Brandy (new)

Brandy Kovach Jessica wrote: "I've read 4 of the 20 on this list. Of those, Daisy Jones was my favorite. I am currently reading Pachinko by Min Jin Lee."
I loved Pachinko. I read it last year and it's one of the best I've read in a while.


message 31: by Addyangel (new)

Addyangel Katsuro wrote: "Kristen wrote: "I'm surprised there's no YA on the list. Sometimes I feel like that's all people read."

It used to feel that way, yeah, but as I read your comment I realized that there hasn't been..."


My recent reads were all YA movies. Five Feet Apart, Midnight Sun, Apart. But I do agree, they aren't a large multibook set. Fifty Shades, Maze Runner, Twilight, etc...


message 32: by Aenea (new)

Aenea Jones Eule wrote: "I think it may be tied to how quickly you can finish a book. Like, I am reading Homo Deus at the moment but can only stomach up to a hundred pages a day before I need something else.
The intro says this lists only books that were fnished this month, not those who were begun or continued. Those from the list I read were pretty slim compared to what else I read, too. "


Definately. Processing actual information takes longer than reading a story for pleasure. But I'd say you're pretty good with a hundred pages of Homo Deus per day, when I read Sapiens I could only stomach half that number. Homo Deus is still lying on my to-read pile...

Wes wrote: "I'm with you. It does seem that so many people read only fiction. Personally, I try to read about 50/50 fiction vs. non-fiction. There is so much interesting to be read about the world out there, not just fantasy. A particular favorite topic of mine is Travel & Exploration."

I guess fiction is the more fun and entertaining way of reading, depending on the author, non-fiction books can be heavy to digest.
Actually, when it comes down to numbers, I read more fiction as well, but the non-fiction books had more impact on me and stayed with me longer, while most fiction did not make it into my long-term memory.


b wrote: "The nytimes book list begs to differ with this blogpost. Fiction books are fun but a mere distraction from self-improvement. Carry on as you do."

While I agree self-improvement is important, I wouldn't call all fiction a mere distraction. If it evokes emotion and truly moves you, like two fictional books have moved me, it's definately worth the time. I say: Educate yourself, be hard-working, but don't forget the fun.
When it comes down to numbers, I did read more fiction books though. But the non-fictional ones made it into my long-term memory.

Jasmine wrote: "I love non-fiction books! I'm not sure what kind of non-fiction books you enjoy, but I highly recommend "The World in a Grain: The Story of Sand and How It Transformed Civilization" by Vince Beiser. "

Now that sounds interesting, I never thought of sand as so life-changing. Thank you for the suggestion!


message 33: by Katsuro (new)

Katsuro Addyangel wrote: "Katsuro wrote: "Kristen wrote: "I'm surprised there's no YA on the list. Sometimes I feel like that's all people read."

It used to feel that way, yeah, but as I read your comment I realized that t..."


I'm not sure I'd classify Fifty Shades as a YA series. I'm told it's "New Adult." Though if you were referring to the fact that it's the latest blockbuster book-and-movie series in general, then yeah, that's the last one and it came out years ago.

And while those you mention are popular, they're not nearly as big as, say, The Fault in Our Stars was. I'm not saying that to be dismissive, but I don't know anything about them. They're popular, and I'm sure they're well-written, but they're not the kind of book that everybody's heard of.


message 34: by Jennifer (last edited May 13, 2019 01:40PM) (new)

Jennifer Aenea wrote: "I'm baffled there are no non-fiction books (except you count the memoirs).
The world is full of interesting facts and wonder. I always enjoyed books about history, psychology, science or sociology..."


I'm with you on this one; I read way more non-fiction than fiction. I actually read narrative non-fiction for pleasure - to me the "stories" are just as compelling. That they actually happened is a bonus. My favorites are history and science, along with biographies, but anything that "looks interesting" can also come home with me :)


message 35: by BookCrazy (new)

BookCrazy Jennifer wrote: "Aenea wrote: "I'm baffled there are no non-fiction books (except you count the memoirs).
The world is full of interesting facts and wonder. I always enjoyed books about history, psychology, scienc..."


Paul wrote: "The only one of these on my TBR is Circe, I can't say any of the others float my boat.

Circe is on my TBR list also. Nothing else on the currently reading in May list is even in my Want to Read list. Guess I read too much history and non-fiction compared to the average reader.

I'm currently reading [book:Mongol Empire: The Conquests of Genghis Khan and the Making of Modern China|1876..."



message 36: by Addison (new)

Addison I am currently reading the to all the boys ive loved before series.


message 37: by Isamar (new)

Isamar Cortes Aenea wrote: "I'm baffled there are no non-fiction books (except you count the memoirs).
The world is full of interesting facts and wonder. I always enjoyed books about history, psychology, science or sociology..."


I love non-fiction! I haven't read many this year but I truly enjoy them.


message 38: by Stephanie (new)

Stephanie Edmonds I'm reading Where the Crawdads Sing. Next on my list is Educated, then The Silent Patient. I'd like to see more non- fiction on the list.


message 39: by Julie (new)

Julie I’m reading The Bride Test by Helen Hoang and Retribution by Yrsa Sigurdardottir


message 40: by Victoria (new)

Victoria Katsuro wrote: "90% women writers? Not to be whiny, but that seems like a bit of a gender imbalance."

For what I have read, at least in the US, women read more than men ( they also watch more tv while men prefer to play videogames and watch sports). A person writing from a female perspective is going to have an advantage then.


message 41: by Stephanie (new)

Stephanie Erin wrote: "Two are on my TBR list, but I'm doing the Pop Sugar challenge, so that's my priority for this year."

What’s the pop sugar challenge?


message 42: by Susan (new)

Susan Currently reading Lincoln In the Bardo by George Saunders and Fragrant Palm Leaves by Thich Nhat Hanh. I have a lengthy TBR list but none of the above are on it. Yet.


message 43: by Jean (new)

Jean I have read Where the Crawdads Sing, Educated, Becoming, The Wife between Us and The Great Alone. My favorite was Educated and a close second was The Great Alone. So many great books out right now!


message 44: by Sonny (new)

Sonny Victoria wrote: "Katsuro wrote: "90% women writers? Not to be whiny, but that seems like a bit of a gender imbalance."

For what I have read, at least in the US, women read more than men ( they also watch more tv w..."


I've noticed that women tend to read more than men during my daily commute. I wish everyone would read, there are still too many muppets with their faces buried in phones.


message 45: by Anne (new)

Anne Secher Aenea wrote: "I'm baffled there are no non-fiction books (except you count the memoirs).
The world is full of interesting facts and wonder. I always enjoyed books about history, psychology, science or sociology..."


I have the exact same feeling! Love the same genres!


message 46: by Jackie (new)

Jackie L Aenea wrote: "I'm baffled there are no non-fiction books (except you count the memoirs).
The world is full of interesting facts and wonder. I always enjoyed books about history, psychology, science or sociology..."


Aenea wrote: "I'm baffled there are no non-fiction books (except you count the memoirs).
The world is full of interesting facts and wonder. I always enjoyed books about history, psychology, science or sociology..."


Aenea wrote: "I'm baffled there are no non-fiction books (except you count the memoirs).
The world is full of interesting facts and wonder. I always enjoyed books about history, psychology, science or sociology..."


To everyone who agrees NF is great reading, tell us what you've read.
I have greatly enjoyed:
All of the Malcolm Gladwell books, fascinating.
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
Killers of the Flower Moon
Into Thin Air
Cod: A Biography of the Fish that Changed the World
Sapiens - on my TBR list
Love some recommendations.


message 47: by Denise (new)

Denise Everyone Brave is Forgiven, The Five People You Meet in Heaven and On Gold Mountain


message 48: by Beth (new)

Beth Roberts I've read 5; 4 on my TBR. It would be 5, but one of the books is 11th in a series. I am overwhelmed by series at the moment, not taking on new ones if I can help it.


message 49: by James (new)

James Turner Aenea wrote: "I'm baffled there are no non-fiction books (except you count the memoirs).
The world is full of interesting facts and wonder. I always enjoyed books about history, psychology, science or sociology..."


I'm with you. The world is such a fascinating place, and the evolution of discoveries in science and nature over the past 150 years have revealed things more startling than any science fiction writer can imagine. I read some fiction but have a hard time diverting my attention from the growing list of non-fiction titles I want to read. I have a fondness for biography and memoir, as well, but will admit a bias, since I have just published a memoir, "Time and Effort."


message 50: by Christian (new)

Christian Ekman Katsuro wrote: "90% women writers? Not to be whiny, but that seems like a bit of a gender imbalance."

So what do you propose GoodReads do? Lie about which books are the most common reads for this month? Come off it. It seriously does not matter if female or male authors' books are the most read in a month or not. Focus on something more important in your life.


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