Gift Guide: The Best of 2016

It’s that time of year—yes, the time when the best books of the year lists are flooding your Twitter feed. But that’s not a bad thing, because with the holidays just around the corner, these lists sum up of some of the best books to gift (unless you’re looking for something different that is).


We’ve rounded up some of our favourite books that have been featured on the Best of 2016 lists so that you don’t have to dig through them all to find that one perfect book. Check them out below!


The New York Times bestselling novel, Another Brooklyn by Jacqueline Woodson, is a story about when childhood gives way to adulthood and the promise and peril of growing up. The book renders a powerful, indelible, and fleeting friendship that united four young lives. This book has been featured on The Huffington Post’s 18 Best Fiction Books of 2016, Kirkus’ Best Fiction of 2016, New York Times’ 100 Notable Books of 2016, Buzzfeed’s Best Fiction Books of 2016, and Amazon’s Editors’ Picks for the Best Books of 2016 (Top 20)This book was also a finalist for the 2016 National Book Award. Read our reviewbuy it now!






News of the World by Paulette Jiles follows Captain Jefferson Kyle Kidd as he travels to deliver a young orphan, Johanna, to her relatives after her parents were killed by a band of Kiowa raiders. Johanna and the Captain forge a bond that makes the two inseparable; a bond that gives Captain Kidd a terrible choice to make. News of the World was featured on Globe and Mail’s The Best Books of the Year, Washington Post’s 10 Best Books of 2016, and Kirkus’ Best Fiction of 2016. It was also a finalist for the 2016 National Book Award. Read our review & buy it now!






Commonwealth by Ann Patchett is an enthralling story about how an unexpected romantic encounter can irrevocably change lives… forever. Spanning five decades, Commonwealth explores how a chance encounter reverberates through the lives of the 4 parents and 6 children involved. This book was featured on Washington Post’s 10 Best Books of 2016, Kirkus’ Best of 2016, and New York Times’ 100 Notable Books of 2016. Read our review & buy it now!






Moonglow by Michael Chabon was only released a few short weeks ago, but has already made tons of Best of 2016 lists, possibly because Chabon has delivered another literary masterpiece. Moonglow is a novel of truth and lies, family legends, and existential adventure-and the forces that work to destroy us. This book was featured in the Globe and Mail’s Best Books of the Year, New York Times’ 100 Notable Books of 2016Buzzfeed’s Best Fiction Books of 2016, and Amazon’s Editors’ Picks for the Best Books of 2016 (Top 20)Our review is coming soon! Buy Moonglow now!





In this unflinching and masterful collection of award-winning stories, Kerry Lee Powell holds readers in her grasp as she examines themes of belonging, the simmering potential for violence and the meaning of art no matter where it is found. Willem De Kooning’s Paintbrush was not only longlisted for the 2016 Giller Prize, but it was also a finalist for the Governor General’s Award for Fiction and a finalist for the Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize. This book was included in the Globe and Mail’s Best Books of the YearBuy it now!






The number one New York Times bestseller, Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance, has been named one of the “6 Books to Help Understand Trump’s Win” by the New York Times. This book is a passionate and personal analysis of a culture in crisis—that of white working-class Americans. Hillbilly Elegy is an urgent and troubling meditation on the loss of the American dream. Hillbilly Elegy was a finalist for the 2016 Kirkus Prize, and is also featured on Amazon’s Top 20 Overall Customer Favourites list. Buy it now!






The Wangs vs. the World by Jade Chang is an important and hilarious story about a wealthy but fractured Chinese immigrant family. The Wang’s had it all, but they lost every last cent, so they take a cross-country road trip that works to bind them back together. The Wangs vs. the World is one of the Globe and Mail’s Best Books of the Year, and Buzzfeed’s Best Fiction of 2016. Read our review & buy it now!






The Wonder by Emma Donoghue is the engrossing story of Anna O’Donnell who is thriving after months without food. Set in 1850s Ireland, nurse Lib is sent to keep watch for two weeks to determine whether or not Anna is a fraud. But is it miracle or is it murder? The Wonder was shortlisted for the 2016 Giller Prize, and is featured on the Globe and Mail’s Best Books of the Year list as well as Kirkus’ Best Fiction of 2016 (featured in the top 100, books to get your book club talking, and historical fiction sections). Read our review & buy it now!






Last but not least, The Nest by Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney was a huge hit of Summer 2016 and is one of the Savvy Reader’s favourites of the year! The Nest is a warm, funny and acutely perceptive debut novel about four adult siblings and the fate of the shared inheritance that has shaped their choices and their lives. It’s a customer favourite of 2016customer favourite of 2016 at Amazon, and one of Indigo’s Best Books of 2016. Read our review buy it now!




So Savvy Readers, what was your favourite book featured on a Best of 2016 list? We want to know (so that we can love it as much as you do). Tell us on Twitter @SavvyReader or in the comments below. Happy reading (and Christmas shopping!)!


Follow me on Twitter @SavvyReader & @ashleyposluns

One thought on “Gift Guide: The Best of 2016

  1. Of this list, I have read Commonwealth and really liked it a lot. I also own The Wonder but haven’t read it yet. Another book that has been hitting all the Best Of lists is Do Not Say We Have Nothing by Madeleine Thien, also really really good

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