As people start traveling again this summer, Amazon Books editors are here to help readers find the perfect book to read by the pool or on the couch, or listen to while on summer road trips.
Ranging from epic literary quests, compelling biographies and memoirs, to gripping psychological thrillers, there’s something for all readers—of all interests—on the latest list of the Best Books of the Year So Far.
Below are the Top 20 Best Books of the Year So Far titles as chosen by the Amazon Books editors, plus popular quotes from the books highlighted by Kindle readers. If you want more information, be sure to check out the full list of hand-curated titles by our Books editors available at www.amazon.com/bestbookssofar.
By: Maggie Shipstead
“Circles are wondrous because they are endless. Anything endless is wondrous. But endlessness is torture, too. I knew the horizon could never be caught but still chased it. What I have done is foolish; I had no choice but to do it.”
2Klara and the Sun
By: Kazuo Ishiguro
“I’d begun to understand also that this wasn’t a trait peculiar just to Josie; that people often felt the need to prepare a side of themselves to display to passers-by – as they might in a store window – and that such a display needn’t be taken so seriously once the moment had passed."
3The Code Breaker: Jennifer Doudna, Gene Editing, and the Future of the Human Race
By: Walter Isaacson
“The invention of CRISPR and the plague of COVID will hasten our transition to the third great revolution of modern times. These revolutions arose from the discovery, beginning just over a century ago, of the three fundamental kernels of our existence: the atom, the bit, and the gene."
4We Begin at the End
By: Chris Whitaker
“None of us are any one thing. We’re just a collection of the best and worst things we’ve done.”
5What's Mine and Yours
By: Naima Coster
“When you’re married, you think you’re going to spend your life with someone, but it isn’t true. You can only ever spend your life with you.”
6The Four Winds
By: Kristin Hannah
“A warrior believes in an end she can’t see and fights for it. A warrior never gives up. A warrior fights for those weaker than herself. It sounds like motherhood to me.”
7Punch Me Up to the Gods
By: Brian Broome
“Any Black boy who did not signify how manly he was at all times deserved to be punched back up to God to be remade, reshaped.”
By: Sanjena Sathian
“That sometimes America baffled us teenagers as much as it did our parents. That every emphasis on achieving a certain future came from the anxiety of simply not knowing, none of us knowing, what life here could be. There was no room to imagine multiple sorts of futures. We’d put all our brainpower toward conjuring up a single one: Harvard.
But. If I had roots in American soil, if we had not all so recently crossed oceans, if our collective past was more textured than I’d been led to believe, then, well, maybe there were other ways of being brown on offer."
By: Jean Hanff Korelitz
“Either it’s a good plot or it isn’t. And if it’s not a good plot, the best writing isn’t going to help. And if it is, the worst writing isn’t going to hurt it.”
10Chatter: The Voice in Our Head, Why It Matters, and How to Harness It
By: Ethan Kross
“We spend one-third to one-half of our waking life not living in the present.”
By: Taylor Jenkins Reid
“Because, just as it is in Malibu’s nature to burn, so was it in one particular person’s nature to set fire and walk away.”
12The Other Black Girl
By: Zakiya Dalila Harris
“With heightened awareness of cultural sensitivity comes great responsibility. If we’re not careful, ‘diversity’ might become an item people start checking off a list and nothing more—a shallow, shadowy thing with but one dimension.”
By: Patricia Engel
“People say drugs and alcohol are the greatest and most persuasive narcotics—the elements most likely to ruin a life. They’re wrong. It’s love.”
14The Good Sister
By: Sally Hepworth
“Angry is just a pen name for sad,” Janet had explained. “In my experience, nine times out of ten if you are kind to the angry person, you will calm them down and find out what is really going on with them.”
15Project Hail Mary
By: Andy Weir
“Light is a funny thing. Its wavelength defines what it can and can’t interact with. Anything smaller than the wavelength is functionally nonexistent to that photon. That’s why there’s a mesh over the window of a microwave. The holes in the mesh are too small for microwaves to pass through. But visible light, with a much shorter wavelength, can go through freely. So you get to watch your food cook without melting your face off.”
By: Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney
“Forgiveness is a choice. It doesn’t arrive on fairy wings; it doesn’t descend from the sky for you to take or leave. Forgiveness is an action.”
17One Two Three
"So every night, as we fade beneath our fading stars, my sisters and I discuss all the immensities and all the minutiae, the everything and the nothing of our lives. But mostly the nothing. All the intrigue that happened to us—happened before we were born. We don't need something to have happened to talk about it, though. Teenage girls don't get enough credit for this, their ability to see the potential import of everything, no matter how insignificant it seems, and analyze it endlessly. It's written off—we're written off—as silly, but it's the opposite. We understand instinctively that, like me, change is slow. If you're not paying attention, you'll miss it."
By: Will Leitch
“We are always much angrier on our phones than we are in the real world.”
By: Ashley C. Ford
“For me, panic radiates in the threads of my muscles, bangs in the back of my skull, twists my stomach, and sets my skin on fire. It doesn’t rise or fall. It spreads.”
By: Abigail Dean
“Girl A,” she said. “The girl who escaped. If anybody was going to make it, it was going to be you.”