December 6, 2017

Women authors dominate the 2017 Goodreads Choice Awards


2017 is almost over (good riddance), which means that all your favorite (and not-so-favorite) publications are hitting submit on their “Best Books of 2017” lists. So far, we’ve had top picks from the New York Times, NPR, Publishers Weekly, GQ, Vogue, and the Washington Post, among others.

But perhaps the most democratic list of the year’s best books is Goodreads’. Goodreads, the social media platform for book lovers, hosts its own Goodreads Choice Awards annually, allowing its community to vote for their favorite books published over the course of the year. And in 2017, women authors dominated the competition.

As Scott Russell wrote yesterday at Paste, “female authors won a whopping 80 percent of Goodreads’ 2017 awards, prevailing in 16 out of 20 categories including Fiction, Nonfiction, Young Adult, Historical Fiction, Fantasy, History & Biography, and Poetry.” More than 3.8 million votes were cast by Goodreads users.

One could argue that the Goodreads Choice Awards is the end-of-year list that most indicates what actual, book-purchasing readers want; it’s not curated by book review editors influenced by publicists, awards, and buzz in the literary community. Plain and simple: it reflects whatever book-lovers liked most.

In a year dominated by a misogynistic president, the #MeToo resistance movement, and a continued call for diverse books, it’s not too much of a surprise to see women-authored books resonating with readers. The personal is still the political, and what readers choose as their favorite books of the year signifies their mindset. It’s no coincidence that Hillary Clinton’s What Happened won the Best Memoir & Autobiography category.

Head over to Goodreads to see the full list of winners, and add them to your TBR list.



Stephanie DeLuca is the director of publicity at Melville House.