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Readers’ Favorite Books of 2017 … So Far
Posted by Cybil on June 29, 2017

We're halfway through 2017, and we thought it was high time to look back at the year and see what new books have been a hit with Goodreads' readers.

For this list, we took a look at readers' ratings (to be included, each book had to have a least a four-star average). Then we factored in the number of reviews each book has garnered, plus how many people have added the books to their Want to Read shelves. We then plucked out a good sampling of the books that have been trending on the site this year.

What books published this year are you recommending to your fellow readers? Tell us in the comments. And if you're feeling inspired, add some of 2017's top-rated books to your Want to Read list.

The Bear and the Nightingale
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This is How It Always Is
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Days Without End
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Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body
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Norse Mythology
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The Orphan's Tale
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Pachinko
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We Were the Lucky Ones
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The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane
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Never Let You Go
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The Hate U Give
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The Collapsing Empire
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A Court of Wings and Ruin
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Astrophysics for People in a Hurry
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The Twelve Lives of Samuel Hawley
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The Silent Child
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Beartown
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Red Sister
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Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine
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Beneath a Scarlet Sky
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King's Cage
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Killers of the Flower Moon
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Lord of Shadows
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option B
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Rich People Problems
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Saints for All Occasions
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Gwendy's Button Box
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The Alice Network
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The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo
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The Silent Corner
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Magpie Murders
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The Identicals
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The Rise and Fall of D.O.D.O.
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Borne
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Waking Gods
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The Missing Ones
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Share your favorite books of the year (so far) in the comments!

Check out more recent blogs:
Goodreads Hack: Your Guide to Book Giveaways
7 Great Books Hitting Shelves This Week
20 Years of Harry Potter: Goodreads Members on the Magic of J.K. Rowling's Books
Nina LaCour's Ultimate Pride Month Reading List


Goodreads Hack: Your Guide to Book Giveaways
Posted by Cybil on June 28, 2017

Here's a question for you: Do you like books? Well, of course you do. Here's a followup question: Do you like FREE books? OK, I think you'll see where we're headed with this.

Every year Goodreads readers win thousands of free books through our popular Giveaways program. In fact, more than 400,000 books were given away last year alone. Publishers and authors offer the giveaways to build buzz for their books. Not only do you have the chance to win a free book, but many of the books are months away from publication so you'll be one of the first readers to discover and review them.

Book Giveaways

Insider Tips for Giveaways:


New Kindle giveaways:
We have good news for everyone who loves to read Kindle books. Our Kindle ebook giveaways program is rolling out of beta and more publishers are being added, which means you can enter for the chance to win even more books. Another perk? You'll get the Kindle books right away instead of waiting up to six weeks for a physical copy of the book. You just need to make sure your Goodreads account is linked to your Amazon account so you'll get the book. You can do that here.

Choose either print, Kindle ebooks, or both:
When you're on the giveaways page, you can specifically filter for Kindle or print books at the top of the page.

Find out about giveaways for books on your Want to Read shelf:
We'll let you know when there’s a giveaway running for a book you have on your Want to Read shelf—it’s another reason to keep updating your shelf with new and noteworthy books as you hear about them.

Filter to find your perfect book:
You can browse book giveaways by most requested, popular authors, recently listed, or ending soon. You can also search for giveaways by your favorite genres. So, go right ahead and search for books ranging from science fiction novels to the latest memoirs.

Ready to try your luck with a Goodreads giveaway? See which books tempt you here. Want some suggestions? How about The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, The Electric Michelangelo (P.S.), Finding Claire Fletcher, A Column of Fire (The Pillars of the Earth #3), and The Revolution of Marina M.

Check out more recent blogs:
7 Great Books Hitting Shelves This Week
20 Years of Harry Potter: Goodreads Members on the Magic of J.K. Rowling's Books
Nina LaCour's Ultimate Pride Month Reading List


7 Great Books Hitting Shelves Today
Posted by Hayley on June 27, 2017

Need another excuse to go to the bookstore this week? We've got seven! Bulk up your Want to Read shelf with these brand-new standalone titles.


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The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue
by Mackenzi Lee

You should read this book if you like: YA historical fiction, romps around Europe, touches of magic, pirates, impossible crushes, manhunts

Check out Mackenzi Lee's book recommendations here.


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The Fourth Monkey
by J.D. Barker

You should read this book if you like: Thrillers, elusive serial killers, Chicago, devious clues, Silence of the Lambs, gripping page-turners



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Spoonbenders
by Daryl Gregory

You should read this book if you like: Extraordinary family sagas, avoiding the CIA and the mafia, superpowers, humorous and heartfelt high jinks


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Off the Cliff: How the Making of Thelma & Louise Drove Hollywood to the Edge
by Becky Aikman

You should read this book if you like: Behind-the-scenes Hollywood history, Thelma & Louise, exclusive interviews, feminism, underdog stories


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The Witchwood Crown
by Tad Williams

You should read this book if you like: Epic fantasy, elvish foes, the Memory, Sorrow, and Thorn series, old allies, the promise of war


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Machine, Platform, Crowd: Harnessing Our Digital Futures
by Andrew McAfee and Erik Brynjolfsson

You should read this book if you like: Nonfiction, emerging technologies, thriving in the evolving digital world, business, predicting the future



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The Confusion of Languages
by Siobhan Fallon

You should read this book if you like: Literary fiction, American military families, evocative prose, worlds colliding, poignant and powerful narratives


BONUS: The wait is over—check out three of the buzziest sequels coming out today!

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Use of Force
by Brad Thor

The sixteenth book in the Scot Harvath thriller series
(Start off the series with The Lions of Lucerne)



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The Sweetest Burn
by Jeaniene Frost

The second book in the Broken Destiny paranormal romance series
(Start off the series with The Beautiful Ashes)



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Now I Rise
by Kiersten White

The second book in The Conqueror's Saga YA fantasy series
(Start off the series with And I Darken)





What are you reading this week? Let's talk books in the comments!

Check out more recent blogs:
20 Years of Harry Potter: Goodreads Members on the Magic of J.K. Rowling's Books
Nina LaCour's Ultimate Pride Month Reading List
How to Get Inspired by Dreadful Movies: An Octavia Butler Origin Story

Words of Wisdom from Real-Life Book Families
Posted by Hayley on July 17, 2017

You can't choose your family, but you can drop in on someone else's. Next time you need advice or inspiration, no need to settle for what your relatives have to offer—your "book relatives" can be there for you, too.

We rounded up the best words of wisdom from some of Goodreads members' favorite family memoirs. Take a look and then share the quotes that resonate with you in the comments.


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"You can't learn about living unless you live. You can't live unless you take a chance; and your living is limited by the chances you take."

from On Gold Mountain: The One-Hundred-Year Odyssey of My Chinese-American Family
by Lisa See


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"You might be poor, your shoes might be broken, but your mind is a palace."

from Angela's Ashes
by Frank McCourt


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"'Things usually work out in the end.'
'What if they don't?'
'That just means you haven't come to the end yet.'"


from The Glass Castle: A Memoir
by Jeannette Walls


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"Things aren't 'weird,' they are just 'different,' and 'different' isn't bad."

from Raising My Rainbow: Adventures in Raising a Fabulous, Gender Creative Son
by Lori Duron


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"I have never bought into the idea that blood is thicker than water. Love and respect are meant to be earned from our children, our spouses, our families, and our friends."

from Bird of Paradise: How I Became Latina
by Raquel Cepeda


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"There is often grace in silence. But there is always power in understanding."

from The Grace of Silence: A Memoir
by Michelle Norris


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"Sure the world breeds monsters, but kindness grows just as wild..."

from The Liars' Club
by Mary Karr


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"All we need is a book… Don't panic, hit 'em with a book."

from My Family and Other Animals
by Gerarld Durrell




What's the best advice you've received from a book? Share it with us in the comments! And check out our guide to the best family memoirs here.




20 Years of Harry Potter: Goodreads Members on the Magic of J.K. Rowling's Books
Posted by Hayley on June 26, 2017



We were all Muggles once. Before Harry, before Hogwarts, before Quidditch and Sorting Hats, our lives were all a little less magical. That changed on June 26, 1997, when J.K. Rowling published her first novel, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (published a year later in the United States as Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone).

Two decades into the boy wizard's reign, Rowling's books have spawned blockbuster movies, theme parks, stage productions, and a powerful legacy that rivals those of far older classics.

"Will kids (and adults, as well) still be wild about Harry a hundred years from now, or two hundred?" Stephen King wrote in his review of the fifth book in the series. "My best guess is that he will indeed stand time's test, and wind up on a shelf where only the best are kept; I think Harry will take his place with Alice, Huck, Frodo, and Dorothy, and this is one series not just for the decade, but for the ages."

To mark the 20th anniversary of Philosopher's Stone's publication, we asked our followers on Facebook and Twitter to tell us how the series has impacted their life. Check out some of our favorite stories below and then share yours in the comments!




1. "It brought my mother, myself, and my children closer. Three generations fighting over who would get to read the next book first." -Nauina

2. "It ignited my love of reading. I essentially grew up with Harry. I will be forever grateful for its influence on my life. Always." -Andrea


3. "It was the first book I read in English! It taught me the language." -Lilly

4. "When I was in middle school, I was bullied. In my mind, I went to Hogwarts every single day to escape my own torment. Thank you, J.K. Rowling! Thank you Harry, Ron, and Hermione." -Taryn

5. "I met my best friend through reading Harry Potter, and she's now my bridesmaid. Our friendship will be 18 years old." -Erin

6. "I'm an old lady with an old kid and didn't read my first Harry Potter book until last September. Prior to that I used to wonder what there was in the way of current entertainment that could compare with what I had—shows like Howdy Doody and Westerns. Now I know that with Harry, this generation got something far better. It's some serious magic." -Judy

7. "My Dad still calls me Hermoine! It's nice to share the love of the books with my family." -Sally

8. "I had turned away from reading. J.K. Rowling brought me back…and she brought me back stronger and better than I ever thought possible. Thank you, J.K. Rowling. Thank you." -Natalie



9. "When my oldest was about ten, he asked if there would still be Harry Potter books when he grew up. I said, 'Of course, books are forever. Why?' His answer: 'I just wanted to make sure I can read them to my kids someday.' -Stephanie

10. "I want to be a writer because of Harry Potter! Because when I read those books, I experienced a feeling of incomparable love and warmth." -Gashugi

11. "It kickstarted my obsession with fantasy and science fiction—and it helped me overcome my depression." -Nitasha

12. "OMG! Where do I begin? A coworker introduced me to Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone. I read the entire book in one day and was hooked from that moment on. I've gone to all of the midnight book and movie releases. I reread the series so many times I've lost count. No words could adequately explain my love for these books." -Shanda

13. "It's been the best friend that's never abandoned me!" -Phoenix

14. "It gave me a happy and safe space I can always turn to no matter what." -Jelke

15. "I always pick up Harry Potter books when I need to be reminded that hope perseveres even in the darkest times. Thank you for the magic, J.K. Rowling!" -Desiree


16. "It shaped my politics. As a young reader navigating the world, the books helped me better understand the moral consequences of our actions!" -Rachit

17. "I have dyslexia and ADHD. In middle school, I was reading at a second grade level. I had this friend who was a big reader, and she would tell me about the world inside those books. I was so mesmerized by it. But I got tired of being told about it and wanted to see it for myself. So I went and got Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone. I read and reread that book so many times until the words started to make sense. I started trying to read everything. In the seventh grade, I went from a second grade reading level to an eighth grade level in one semester. It was all because of my friend…and because of Harry Potter. I'm such a huge reader now. I don't know who I'd be if I'd never found those books. A me who can't read—it's a scary thought. I owe it all to that series. It sounds dumb but it really was like finding a home." -Rebecca

18. "I found my fandom and my people! And we're cool now. When I was younger, I would've been ridiculed for being so bookish and nerdy." -Bri

19. "I was 11 when I read them for the first time. It seems so long ago. Those stories kept me afloat when everyone else in my life was trying to drown me. I just wish I could read them for the first time all over again." -Shivani

20. "Hogwarts is my home, and I'm still waiting for my letter." -Dounia





How has Harry Potter affected your life? Share your story with us in the comments!

Check out more recent blogs:
Nina LaCour's Ultimate Pride Month Reading List
How to Get Inspired by Dreadful Movies: An Octavia Butler Origin Story
June's 8 Hottest New Memoirs

The Year's Best Audiobooks
Posted by Cybil on June 26, 2017


This post is brought to you by Audible.

Want to listen to the best audiobooks of the year? Well, you're in luck. Every year, the Audio Publishers Association meets to select the best-of-the-best of the year's audiobooks, also known as the Audie Awards. See this year's complete list of winners (and finalists) here. These titles are guaranteed to be great listening, so add your favorites to your Want to Read/Listen shelf.

Have a great audiobook recommendation? Share it with us in the comments! And if you'd like more audiobook inspiration, check out Goodreads' audiobooks page, brought to you by Audible.


Audiobook of the Year
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Hamilton: The Revolution
by Lin-Manuel Miranda and Jeremy McCarter
The audiobook tells the story of how a Broadway musical became a phenomenon—and how brilliant outsiders continue to shape America. Narrated by Lin-Manuel Miranda, Jeremy McCarter, and actress Mariska Hargitay.


Best Autobiography/Memoir
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The Greatest: My Own Story
by Richard Durham and Muhammad Ali
The heavyweight champ chronicles his battles, inside the ring and throughout his life, in this memoir edited by Nobel Prize-winning novelist Toni Morrison. Narrated by Dion Graham.


Best Fiction
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Sister of Mine: A Novel
by Sabra Waldfogel
Two Union soldiers arrive at a Georgia plantation in 1864 to be greeted by freed slaves and their Jewish mistress. Slowly they discover the place's unusual history. Narrated by Bahni Turpin.


Best Fantasy
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The Hike
by Drew Magary
A fantasy saga that weaves elements of folk tales and video games into a riveting adventure of what a man will endure to return to his family. Narrated by Christopher Lane.


Best History
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In Harm's Way: The Sinking of the U.S.S. Indianapolis and the Extraordinary Story of Its Survivors
by Doug Stanton
A harrowing account of America's worst naval disaster and of the heroism of the men who, against all odds, survived. Narrated by Mark Boyett.


Best Literary Fiction
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Homegoing
by Yaa Gyasi
A riveting debut about race, history, and ancestry that traces the descendants of two sisters torn apart in 18th-century Africa across 300 years in Ghana and America. Narrated by Dominic Hoffman.



Best Mystery
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The Crossing (Harry Bosch #20)
by Michael Connelly and Nicole Galland
Harry Bosch teams up with Lincoln Lawyer Mickey Haller in the new thriller from bestselling author Michael Connelly. Narrated by Titus Welliver.



Best Nonfiction
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Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis
by J.D. Vance
A former marine and Yale Law School graduate recounts his childhood in a poor Rust Belt town that offers a broader look at the struggles of America's white working class. Narrated by the author.



Best Romance
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Dirty (Dive Bar #1)
by Kylie Scott
Vaughan Hewson returns to his childhood home to find a crying bride in his shower. Let's just say the distraught bride brings plenty of drama and chaos into Vaughan's life. Narrated by Andi Arndt.



Best Thriller
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Cross Justice (Alex Cross #23)
by James Patterson
Alex Cross heads home to North Carolina for the first time in 30 years after his cousin is accused of an unthinkable crime. Cross unearths a family secret as he tries to prove his cousin's innocence. Narrated by Jefferson Mays and Ruben Santiago Hudson.



What's your favorite new audiobook? Recommend it to your fellow readers in the comments! Then check out Goodreads' new audiobooks page, brought to you by Audible.

Check out more recent blogs:
Nina LaCour's Ultimate Pride Month Reading List
How to Get Inspired by Dreadful Movies: An Octavia Butler Origin Story
June's 8 Hottest New Memoirs

Nina LaCour's Ultimate Pride Month Reading List
Posted by Cybil on June 23, 2017



Nina LaCour is the bestselling author of the young adult novels Hold Still and Everything Leads to You. Her latest work is We Are Okay. In honor of June's Pride Month, Goodreads asked LaCour to share some of her favorite LGBT reading and why these books are important to her:


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I fell in love with another girl when I was nineteen. Before that, I had only dated boys, so for the first time I had trouble finding stories that reflected my newfound identity. Falling in love is falling in love. It makes you soar; it makes you hurt. Sometimes it’s unrequited and sometimes you get lucky, and the person you love loves you in return. But in spite of love’s universality, when I found myself rather unexpectedly in love with a girl, I wanted to see that specific experience reflected back at me.

Finally, I found a book—Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit by Jeanette Winterson—and I read it voraciously. It wasn’t categorized as YA, but it was about a teenage girl who had to deal with her parents and her sexuality. It was everything I wanted to find in a book. Oranges felt like a gift, and I’m happy to say that in our current era of great YA literature, the gifts are abundant.

So in honor of Pride month, whether you’re queer or straight, cis or trans, young or old, here are some gifts for you.

If you like some magic in your stories, try When the Moon Was Ours by Anna-Marie McLemore and Labyrinth Lost by Zoraida Córdova.

Sci-fi more your thing? Check out Proxy by Alex London and Adaptation by Malinda Lo.

Searching for portrayals where queer teens and religion intersect? Get yourself a copy of Georgia Peaches and Other Forbidden Fruit by Jaye Robin Brown; The Miseducation of Cameron Post by Emily M. Danforth; and The Porcupine of Truth by Bill Konigsberg; and Our Own Private Universe by Robin Talley.

Want something to make you sob? Try History is All You Left Me by Adam Silvera—and then cheer yourself up with David Levithan’s Boy Meets Boy or Under the Lights by Dahlia Adler.

How about first love and coming out? So many great ones to choose from! Honor Girl by Maggie Thrash; Tell Me Again How a Crush Should Feel by Sara Farizan; Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertali; Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Bejanmin Alire Saenz; I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson; If I Was Your Girl by Meredith Russo…(As I said—so many. I could go on and on!)

Looking for something brand new and buzzy? Check out Ramona Blue by Julie Murphy and Tash Hearts Tolstoy by Kathryn Ormsbee. Looking for something so new it isn’t even released yet? Then preorder Little & Lion by Brandy Colbert and Vanilla by Billy Merrell.

Happy Pride, everyone!

Nina LaCour's We Are Okay is out now. Add it to your Want to Read shelf here.

Have a great LGBT novel to recommend? Share it in the comments!

Check out more recent blogs:
June's 8 Hottest New Memoirs
7 Great Books Hitting Shelves Today
How to Get Inspired by Dreadful Movies: An Octavia Butler Origin Story
How to Get Inspired by Dreadful Movies: An Octavia Butler Origin Story
Posted by Hayley on June 22, 2017



Greatness doesn't always beget greatness. Octavia Butler, who was born on this day 70 years ago, credited her remarkable, influential literary career to one sci-fi train wreck.


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When she was 12 years old, Butler turned on the television and stumbled across a movie called Devil Girl From Mars. The basic plot was about a man-obsessed Martian and her mission to find humans to mate with. The movie was…not good. Critics called it "delightfuly bad" at best and "undeniably awful" at worst.

Butler could've turned the channel. Instead she watched the entire campy thing from start to finish.

"It changed my life," Butler confessed years later in an essay about why she started writing science fiction. "As I was watching this film, I had a series of revelations. The first was that 'Geez, I can write a better story than that.' And then I thought, 'Gee, anybody can write a better story than that.' And my third thought was the clincher: 'Somebody got paid for writing that awful story.' So I was off and writing, and a year later I was busy submitting terrible pieces of fiction to innocent magazines."

She was being modest, of course. Those "terrible pieces" became the foundation of Wild Seed and the rest of her beloved Patternist series. Butler was the first science fiction writer to receive the presigious MacArthur Fellowship (nicknamed the "Genius Grant"), and her books won multiple Hugo and Nebula awards.

So next time you're watching an awful movie, think of Butler. She turned one terrible film-watching experience into an award-winning writing career. What could you do?


Kindred
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Parable of the Sower
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The Unseen
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Fledgling
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Mind of My Mind
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Bloodchild and Other Stories
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Discover more of Octavia Butler's books and quotes here. And share your thoughts on Butler, bad movies, or both in the comments!

Check out more recent blogs:
June's 8 Hottest New Memoirs
7 Great Books Hitting Shelves Today
Crime Writer Don Winslow's Love for Libraries
June's 8 Hottest New Memoirs
Posted by Cybil on June 21, 2017

June has been an excellent month for readers who love memoirs.

The hottest book of the month, in any genre, is Roxane Gay's Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body. The feminist writer focuses on the connection between her struggles with her body and the violence she experienced in her childhood. Not only is it the most popular book of the month, more than 29,000 readers have added it to their Want to Read shelves and it has a rating of 4.54 stars from the Goodreads community.

The next most-popular memoir of the month is novelist and poet Sherman Alexie's You Don't Have to Say You Love Me. After his mother's death, Alexie coped by writing a memoir about his relationship with his troubled mother and his hardscrabble childhood on an Indian reservation. This book has been added to Want to Read shelves more than 7,700 times, and it has a 4.38 rating from readers.

Below you'll find this month's eight hottest new memoirs according to Goodreads' readers. For this list, we looked at the data including both early reader reviews (all of these books have at least a 4-star rating from readers) as well as how many times these new titles have been added to readers' Want to Read shelves.

Add your favorite suggestions to your Want to Read list. And tell us what memoirs you'd recommend this month.

Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body
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You Don't Have to Say You Love Me: A Memoir
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I Can't Make This Up: Life Lessons
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Daring to Drive: A Saudi Woman’s Awakening
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The Bright Hour
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Called to Rise
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Mean Dads for a Better America
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Books for Living
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Share your memoir recommendations in the comments!

Check out more recent blogs:
Crime Writer Don Winslow's Love for Libraries
6 Famous Books That Almost Ended Very Differently
7 New Books Hitting Shelves This Week

7 Great Books Hitting Shelves This Week
Posted by Hayley on June 20, 2017

Need another excuse to go to the bookstore this week? We've got seven! Bulk up your Want to Read shelf with these brand-new standalone titles.


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The Silent Corner
by Dean Koontz

You should read this book if you like: Thrillers, vengeful widows, deadly conspiracies, fugitives, not being deterred by murderous enemies

Check out the interview with Koontz here.


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Two Roads from Here
by Teddy Steinkellner

You should read this book if you like: YA fiction, high school seniors, getting to experience two potential outcomes of a life-altering decision



The Strange Case of the Alchemist's Daughter
by Theodora Goss

You should read this book if you like: Fantasy, mad scientists and feral children, London murder mysteries, classic literary monsters, adventure


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Another Kind of Madness
A Journey Through the Stigma and Hope of Mental Illness

by Stephen P. Henshaw

You should read this book if you like: Memoirs, poignant family narratives, inspiration and hope, debunking the stigma behind mental illness


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Tycoon
by Katy Evans

You should read this book if you like: Romance, ruthless businessmen who are also hot and wealthy, second-chance love stories, startups


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A Babysitter's Guide to Monster Hunting
by Joe Ballarini

You should read this book if you like: Middle-grade fantasy, secret societies, monsters that really do live under beds, butt-kicking babysitters


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Too Fat, Too Slutty, Too Loud:
The Rise and Reign of the Unruly Woman

by Anne Helen Petersen

You should read this book if you like: Nonfiction, pop culture analysis and gossip, examining why society loves to love (and loathe) non-conforming women



BONUS: The wait is over—check out three of the buzziest sequels coming out today!

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Black and Green
by C.L. Stone

The eleventh book in The Ghost Bird YA contemporary series
(Start off the series with Introductions)



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Trap the Devil
by Ben Coes

The seventh book in the Dewey Andreas thriller series
(Start off the series with Power Down)



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Salvaged
by Jay Crownover

The fourth book in the Saints of Denver romance books
(Start off the series with Built)





What are you reading this week? Let's talk books in the comments!

Check out more recent blogs:
Crime Writer Don Winslow's Love for Libraries
6 Famous Books That Almost Ended Very Differently
W. Bruce Cameron: Parenting Teens Makes You Appreciate Your Dad