2018 has been dominated by polemics. Michael Wolff’s "Fire and Fury," Bob Woodward’s "Fear," Tucker Carlson’s "Ship of Fools"… all signs of our divisive times. But there is one notable, and refreshing, exception that’s been giving the pundits a run for their money: Tara Westover’s "Educated." Published last February, this debut memoir was our pick for the best book of the yearso far, and for the first time in best-books history, it is also our pick for the best book of the year, overall.

“This year we read many great books across many different genres, but one story—a true story—stood out to us for its bravery, insight, and that fact that it’s so very readable,” said Chris Schluep, Amazon Senior Book Editor. “Tara Westover’s "Educated" is a rare gem of a memoir—it surprises and inspires, and we want to tell everyone: read this book!”

Best books of year (named by Amazon editors)

Large letters on a bookshelf spell out #LovetoRead. Between letters are some of the top books of the year.
covers of the Best Books of the Year - 2018
The 2018 Best Book of the Year, "Educated: A Memoir" by Tara Westover
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Best books of the year #2 pick, "Washington Black" by Esi Edugyan. The book cover has an off-white background with old-time all-caps font for the title and author's name.  In the top right corner, are two figures who appear to be sitting on a sand dune.
2018 Best Book of the Year #2 pick, "Washington Black" by Esi Edugyan
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Best books of the year #3 pick, "Indianapolis," by Lynn Vincent and Sara Vladic. In the image, a military ship is in the middle of the ocean, the sky looks dark and soon-to-be stormy.
2018 Best Book of the Year #3 pick, "Indianapolis," by Lynn Vincent and Sara Vladic.
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Best books of the year for children, "The Season of Styx Malone" by Kekla Magoon. In the image, a boy wearing a backwards baseball cap and swim trunks dives into a body of water. Below him sit two boys, sitting on a large rock, looking up toward the first boy. Both boys wear a t-shirt and shorts. In the background are trees and the sky.
2018 Best Book of the Year for kids, "The Season of Styx Malone," by Kekla Magoon
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Book cover for Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff, the font is all-caps and white, set in front of a handpainted background that looks like waves in an ocean.
Past Best Book of the Year, "Fates and Furies" by Lauren Groff
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A neighborhood scene with lush green lawns, trees, and houses near one another. The book title, Little Fires Everhwyere, is in white print.
Past Best Book of the Year, "Little Fires Everywhere" by Celeste Ng
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Book cover for The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead. The background is red, with small railroad paths in the top, middle and bottom of the page. Author's name is in black all-caps font, the title is in ivory text.
Previous Best Book of the Year, "The Underground Railroad" by Colson Whitehead
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Book cover for "Killers of the Flower Moon" - a woman's face on the left, a man's profile on the right. Both faces have a red tone of them. The background is black, and title text is white.
Previous Best Book of the Year, "Killers of the Flower Moon" by David Grann
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“I couldn't be more pleased that "Educated" was chosen Best of the Year,” said Tara Westover, author of "Educated." “It's kind of unbelievable, actually. But unbelievable in the very best way.”

"Educated" has been on the Amazon Charts Most Sold list for 34 weeks but it may surprise you that one of the questions we donot ask when evaluating best-of contenders is: “Is this going to be a bestseller?” It’s certainly validating when a book we love resonates with readers, but since we read a few months in advance of publication, we’re going on our team’s early judgement/impression. What we knew for sure is that "Educated" was special--we loved it and were excited to recommend it--and that is the criteria we use when helping customers find their next favorite read.

Rounding out our top three is Esi Edugyan’s novel "Washington Black"—an adventure and scientific exploration on a par with the novels of Jules Verne--and "Indianapolis," which shines a spotlight on a wartime tragedy that still echoes within the survivors, and the Navy, today. Our number one pick in the kids’ genre is the middle grade novel, "The Season of Styx Malone." Senior Editor Seira Wilson says that “young readers will quickly bond with Kekla Magoon’s characters and her beautifully-crafted story of three boys who wind up teaching each other about trust, forgiveness, and family.”

“Tara Westover’s "Educated" is a rare gem of a memoir—it surprises and inspires, and we want to tell everyone: read this book!”
Chris Schluep, Amazon senior book editor

Visit https://amazon.com/bestbooks2018 to see all of our favorites in over twelve categories from biographies, to literary fiction, to romance and sci-fi (and everything in between). Included are releases from literary luminaries like Stephen King, Barbara Kingsolver, John Grisham, and Jodi Picoult—but we are especially excited to introduce you to first-time authors Tommy Orange, Tomi Adeyemi, Christelle Dabos, and more.