Best Books of 2016 (According to Me)

Book Roundup, Chapter Books, Grown Up Books, Middle Grade, Picture Books, Young Adult Books
Best Books of 2016. Books for kids, teens, and adults from Batch of Books.

I read far more books in 2016 than I thought I was going to. My Goodreads challenge didn’t stand a chance.

I’m not sure whether to be proud of that accomplishment or embarrassed that I don’t have more of a life.

Let’s just pretend I have a life AND I read everything in sight. 😉

Looking back through my reading year, I picked out my favorite books from each age group. Whittling the choices down was really hard, but I forced myself to make some tough decisions. Some beautiful books got cut from this list.


Best Books of 2016. Books for kids, teens, and adults from Batch of Books.

*This blog post contains affiliate links.

Picture Books of 2016

The Hueys in What’s the Opposite? by Oliver Jeffers

Diana’s White House Garden by Elisa Carbone, illustrated by Jen Hill

This is My Dollhouse by Giselle Potter

I read many, many amazing picture books in 2016, but the humor in The Hueys in What’s the Opposite? made it a stand-out title. The true story of Diana’s White House Garden and the exploration of free play in This is My Dollhouse made those two books too good to pass up.

Chapter Books of 2016

Dory Dory Black Sheep by Abby Hanlon

The Princess in Black and the Hungry Bunny Horde by Shannon Hale and Dean Hale, illustrated by LeUyen Pham

With two girls smack dab in the chapter book phase, it’s no wonder we’ve been reading so many of these lately. Among all the charming books we read this year, Dory Fantasmagory: Dory Dory Black Sheep and The Princess in Black and the Hungry Bunny Horde (as well as the other PIB books) were two of our favorites.

Middle-Grade Books of 2016

Scarlet and Ivy: The Lost Twin by Sophie Cleverly

Dr. Fell and the Playground of Doom by David Neilsen

The Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly Barnhill

Strange, Unusual, Gross, and Cool Animals by Charles Ghigna and Animal Planet

Summerlost by Ally Condie

2016 was a fabulous year for middle-grade! Wow. So many amazing books to choose from. Obviously, I didn’t do so well at whittling this list down. I loved the darker middle-grade novels like Scarlet and Ivy: The Lost Twin. My family loved the comedy-horror of Dr. Fell and the Playground of Doom and the breathtaking fantasy in The Girl Who Drank the Moon.

Of all the nonfiction my kids devoured this year, Strange, Unusual, Gross, and Cool Animals was at the top of the list while Ally Condie hit a home run with her story of loss and grief in Summerlost.

Young Adult Books of 2016

Dead Girls Society by Michelle Krys

Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas

Jackaby series by William Ritter

Holding Court by K.C. Held

2016 was another good year for young adult titles. I devoured thrillers like Dead Girls Society and epic fantasy like Queen of Shadows.

The Jackaby series was a delightful and welcome surprise. I’m not sure what genre it falls under—historical fiction, fantasy, paranormal, humor, mystery, or all of the above. But who cares about genre when the books are so fun? They’re among my favorite books of the year and are going in my “reread” stack.

Holding Court kept me up all night laughing until I cried. It’s a quirky mystery with more humor than I knew what to do with.

Grown Up Books of 2016

He Wanted the Moon by Mimi Baird

The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield

Enchanted, Inc by Shanna Swendson

#Girlboss by Sophia Amoruso

When it come to grown-up books, I read a wide range of genres, and many of them were published long before 2016. I had a lot of favorites, but I kept this list to the few that really made an impression on me.

He Wanted the Moon is an incredible memoir written by a doctor as he descends into madness brought on by manic depression.

My favorite book of the year was The Thirteenth Tale. It blew me away and I can’t wait to read it again.

I loved the easy, upbeat story in Enchanted, Inc and the ambitious motivation I found in #Girlboss.


What were your favorite reads in 2016?

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  • Reply
    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction
    January 17, 2017 at 4:23 pm

    I NEED The Girl Who Drank the Moon in my life. Not only is the cover amazingly gorgeous, but I’ve heard that the book completely lives up to it (which you’ve confirmed here). I’ll have to use the excuse of buying it for my daughter. 🙂

    • Reply
      Dena at Batch of Books
      January 17, 2017 at 8:00 pm

      Ha ha, that’s what I do. Some MG titles are amazing, and when I have a good hunch about one, I buy it “for my daughter”.

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