2016’s Genre Bests

serveimageThe ever-popular RUSA/CODES Reading List for the best genre books was announced during the ALA Midwinter meeting last week in Boston.

The titles are chosen from eight genres covering “adrenaline (suspense, thrillers, and action adventure), fantasy, historical fiction, horror, mystery, romance, science fiction, and women’s fiction.”

The winners, with annotations by the committee, are:


9780062429056_0a514Pretty Girls, Karin Slaughter (HarperCollins/Morrow; OverDrive Sample)

“Three sisters are driven apart in the aftermath of one’s disappearance. When a violent crime occurs new fears arise and relationships shift again. Long term effects of family grief are exploited by the compulsions of a psychopath. Brutal and disturbing, this is ultimately a story of love and empowerment.”



Uprooted, Naomi Novik (RH/Del Rey; OverDrive Sample)

“In this enchanted old-world fable, villagers threatened by a blighted magical wood allow the resident wizard to take one daughter into servitude for ten years. When he chooses klutzy Agnieszka, she faces an unexpected future and confronts the dangers of a wider political world and the roots of magical corruption.”

Historical Fiction:

9780062364838_a4cd3Crooked Heart, Lissa Evans (Harper; OverDrive Sample)

“Raised by his eccentric ex-suffragette godmother to be a free-thinker, young Noel is thrown into chaos when the London Blitz forces him into the home of a scam artist loyal only to her layabout son. Thrust together, the two oddballs are forced to find a way through the wartime landscape 


9781476782638_d985eThe Fifth House of the Heart, Ben Tripp (S&S/Gallery; OverDrive Sample)

“Flamboyant antiques dealer Asmodeus “Sax” Saxon-Tang made his fortune by accidentally killing a vampire with a horde of treasure. To protect the only person he loves, his niece, he’s forced to return to old Europe to assemble an eccentric team of vampire hunters in this gory, witty caper.”


9780062292438_8dbf8The Long and Faraway Gone by Lou Berney (Harper/William Morrow; OverDrive Sample)

“Cold cases cast a twenty-five year shadow of grief and guilt on the lives of two survivors of traumatic teenage crimes. New leads and new cases bring them back to Oklahoma City as past and present intersect in this poignant and compelling story of lives forever changed by random violence.”



Taking the Heat by Victoria Dahl (HQN; OverDrive Sample)

“Sassy relationship advice columnist Veronica overcomes her commitment anxiety and gains confidence with the help of mountain-climbing librarian Gabe. Steamy romance evolves into a strong relationship as they scale a mountain of family conflicts and share secrets against a majestic Jackson Hole backdrop.”

Science Fiction:


Golden Son, Pierce Brown (RH/Del Rey; OverDrive Sample)

“Insurgent Darrow inveigled his way into high Gold society in 2014’s Red Rising. In this dramatic, high octane follow-up, conflicting loyalties and his own ambitions lure Darrow into an untenable web of deceptions. Bolstered by new alliances, Darrow battles to overthrow corrupt lunar leadership and bring freedom to Mars.”


Women’s Fiction:

Re Jane by Patricia Park (Penguin/Pamela Dorman Books; OverDrive Sample)

“Anxious to escape the strict upbringing of her uncle’s Flushing grocery, Korean-American Jane accepts an au pair position in the pretentious household of two Brooklyn academics and their adopted Chinese daughter. Park has created a bright comic story of falling in love, finding strength, and living on one’s own terms.”

The RUSA press release also gives more fodder for readers advisors, with the four short-listed titles per category.

Comments are closed.