Best Books of 2017
This year’s stories let us see the world through new eyes and kept us thinking long after the last page. Presenting Google Play’s Best Books of 2017.
“Devastating.”—The New Yorker
THE INSIDE STORY ON PRESIDENT TRUMP, AS ONLY BOB WOODWARD CAN TELL IT
With authoritative reporting honed through eight presidencies from Nixon to Obama, author Bob Woodward reveals in unprecedented detail the harrowing life inside President Donald Trump’s White House and precisely how he makes decisions on major foreign and domestic policies. Woodward draws from hundreds of hours of interviews with firsthand sources, meeting notes, personal diaries, files and documents. The focus is on the explosive debates and the decision-making in the Oval Office, the Situation Room, Air Force One and the White House residence.
Fear is the most intimate portrait of a sitting president ever published during the president’s first years in office.
Over 1 million copies sold
In this generation-defining self-help guide, a superstar blogger cuts through the crap to show us how to stop trying to be "positive" all the time so that we can truly become better, happier people.
For decades, we’ve been told that positive thinking is the key to a happy, rich life. "F**k positivity," Mark Manson says. "Let’s be honest, shit is f**ked and we have to live with it." In his wildly popular Internet blog, Manson doesn’t sugarcoat or equivocate. He tells it like it is—a dose of raw, refreshing, honest truth that is sorely lacking today. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F**k is his antidote to the coddling, let’s-all-feel-good mindset that has infected American society and spoiled a generation, rewarding them with gold medals just for showing up.
Manson makes the argument, backed both by academic research and well-timed poop jokes, that improving our lives hinges not on our ability to turn lemons into lemonade, but on learning to stomach lemons better. Human beings are flawed and limited—"not everybody can be extraordinary, there are winners and losers in society, and some of it is not fair or your fault." Manson advises us to get to know our limitations and accept them. Once we embrace our fears, faults, and uncertainties, once we stop running and avoiding and start confronting painful truths, we can begin to find the courage, perseverance, honesty, responsibility, curiosity, and forgiveness we seek.
There are only so many things we can give a f**k about so we need to figure out which ones really matter, Manson makes clear. While money is nice, caring about what you do with your life is better, because true wealth is about experience. A much-needed grab-you-by-the-shoulders-and-look-you-in-the-eye moment of real-talk, filled with entertaining stories and profane, ruthless humor, The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F**k is a refreshing slap for a generation to help them lead contented, grounded lives.
#1 New York Times Bestseller
#1 USA Today Bestseller
#1 Wall Street Journal Bestseller
#1 Indie Bestseller
"President Duncan for a second term!" --USA Today
"This book's a big one." --New York Times
"Towers above most political thrillers." --Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
"The plotting is immaculate . . . the writing is taut." --Sunday Times (London)
"Ambitious and wildly readable." --New York Times Book Review
The President Is Missing confronts a threat so huge that it jeopardizes not just Pennsylvania Avenue and Wall Street, but all of America. Uncertainty and fear grip the nation. There are whispers of cyberterror and espionage and a traitor in the Cabinet. Even the President himself becomes a suspect, and then he disappears from public view . . .
Set over the course of three days, The President Is Missing sheds a stunning light upon the inner workings and vulnerabilities of our nation. Filled with information that only a former Commander-in-Chief could know, this is the most authentic, terrifying novel to come along in many years.
An unspeakable crime. A confounding investigation. At a time when the King brand has never been stronger, he has delivered one of his most unsettling and compulsively readable stories.
An eleven-year-old boy’s violated corpse is found in a town park. Eyewitnesses and fingerprints point unmistakably to one of Flint City’s most popular citizens. He is Terry Maitland, Little League coach, English teacher, husband, and father of two girls. Detective Ralph Anderson, whose son Maitland once coached, orders a quick and very public arrest. Maitland has an alibi, but Anderson and the district attorney soon add DNA evidence to go with the fingerprints and witnesses. Their case seems ironclad.
As the investigation expands and horrifying answers begin to emerge, King’s propulsive story kicks into high gear, generating strong tension and almost unbearable suspense. Terry Maitland seems like a nice guy, but is he wearing another face? When the answer comes, it will shock you as only Stephen King can.
The world of Harry Dresden, Chicago’s only professional wizard, is rife with intrigue—and creatures of all supernatural stripes. And you’ll make their intimate acquaintance as Harry delves into the dark side of truth, justice, and the American way in this must-have short story collection.
From the Wild West to the bleachers at Wrigley Field, humans, zombies, incubi, and even fey royalty appear, ready to blur the line between friend and foe. In the never-before-published “Zoo Day,” Harry treads new ground as a dad, while fan-favorite characters Molly Carpenter, his onetime apprentice, White Council Warden Anastasia Luccio, and even Bigfoot stalk through the pages of more classic tales.
With twelve stories in all, Brief Cases offers both longtime fans and first-time readers tantalizing glimpses into Harry’s funny, gritty, and unforgettable realm, whetting their appetites for more to come from the wizard with a heart of gold.
The collection includes:
• “Curses,” from Naked City, edited by Ellen Datlow
• “AAAA Wizardry,” from the Dresden Files RPG
• “Even Hand,” from Dark and Stormy Knights, edited by P. N. Elrod
• “B is for Bigfoot,” from Under My Hat: Tales from the Cauldron, edited by Jonathan Strahan. Republished in Working for Bigfoot.
• “I was a Teenage Bigfoot,” from Blood Lite III: Aftertaste, edited by Kevin J. Anderson. Republished in Working for Bigfoot.
• “Bigfoot on Campus,” from Hex Appeal, edited by P. N. Elrod. Republished in Working for Bigfoot.
• “Bombshells,” from Dangerous Women, edited by George R. R. Martin and Gardner Dozois
• “Jury Duty,” from Unbound, edited by Shawn Speakman
• “Cold Case,” from Shadowed Souls, edited by Jim Butcher and Kerrie Hughes
• “Day One,” from Unfettered II, edited by Shawn Speakman
• “A Fistful of Warlocks,” from Straight Outta Tombstone, edited by David Boop
• “Zoo Day,” a brand-new novella, original to this collection
Stone Barrington and several friends are vacationing in Florida when an extreme weather event puts a damper on their trip. Even worse, the hurricane-force winds blow a powerful, noxious politician straight onto Stone's doorstep. Though they part ways before long, Stone soon learns that he hasn't seen the last of his new acquaintance. It turns out that this official has some shady associates who may have destructive plans afoot, and Stone needs an entrée to the inside to figure out their scheme. With the fate of nations at stake, Stone must summon all of his fearless daring to put an end to the audacious plot...but this time he may be in over his head.
The worldwide bestseller—now a major motion picture directed by Steven Spielberg.
In the year 2045, reality is an ugly place. The only time teenage Wade Watts really feels alive is when he's jacked into the virtual utopia known as the OASIS. Wade's devoted his life to studying the puzzles hidden within this world's digital confines—puzzles that are based on their creator's obsession with the pop culture of decades past and that promise massive power and fortune to whoever can unlock them.
But when Wade stumbles upon the first clue, he finds himself beset by players willing to kill to take this ultimate prize. The race is on, and if Wade's going to survive, he'll have to win—and confront the real world he's always been so desperate to escape.
Harry Potter has never even heard of Hogwarts when the letters start dropping on the doormat at number four, Privet Drive. Addressed in green ink on yellowish parchment with a purple seal, they are swiftly confiscated by his grisly aunt and uncle. Then, on Harry's eleventh birthday, a great beetle-eyed giant of a man called Rubeus Hagrid bursts in with some astonishing news: Harry Potter is a wizard, and he has a place at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. An incredible adventure is about to begin!
Pottermore has now launched the Wizarding World Book Club. Visit Pottermore to sign up and join weekly Twitter discussions at WW Book Club.
The Handmaid’s Tale is a novel of such power that the reader will be unable to forget its images and its forecast. Set in the near future, it describes life in what was once the United States and is now called the Republic of Gilead, a monotheocracy that has reacted to social unrest and a sharply declining birthrate by reverting to, and going beyond, the repressive intolerance of the original Puritans. The regime takes the Book of Genesis absolutely at its word, with bizarre consequences for the women and men in its population.
The story is told through the eyes of Offred, one of the unfortunate Handmaids under the new social order. In condensed but eloquent prose, by turns cool-eyed, tender, despairing, passionate, and wry, she reveals to us the dark corners behind the establishment’s calm facade, as certain tendencies now in existence are carried to their logical conclusions. The Handmaid’s Tale is funny, unexpected, horrifying, and altogether convincing. It is at once scathing satire, dire warning, and a tour de force. It is Margaret Atwood at her best.
The complete critically acclaimed and best-selling tale is now available in one sensational volume.
BATMAN: HUSH is a thrilling mystery of action, intrigue and deception penned by Jeph Loeb (BATMAN: THE LONG HALLOWEEN) and illustrated by comics superstar Jim Lee (ALL STAR BATMAN & ROBIN, THE BOY WONDER). Batman sets out to discover the identity of a mysterious mastermind using the Joker, Riddler, Ra's al Ghul and the Dark Knight's other enemies--and allies--as pawns in a plan to wreak havoc.
This volume collects BATMAN #609-619 as well as the 6-page segment from WIZARD #0 and a 2-page origin story that originally appeared at dccomics.com.
It’s college reunion time! Who’d have thought that it's already been fifteen years since Keg-Stand Craig and the new Dad on the block went to college? This one’s like a buddy cop comedy, only there are no cops and more avoiding old flames while trying to stifle an existential breakdown, bro.
Will you go out with Teacher Dad? Goth Dad? Bad Dad? Oni Press welcomes Dream Daddy, a new comics series based on the acclaimed Game Grumps visual novel video game co-created by Vernon Shaw and Leighton Gray! Dream Daddy: A Dad Dating Simulator invites the player to Maple Bay, where they play as a single Dad new to town and eager to romance other hot Dads. The comic series tells five standalone stories, each focused on different Maple Bay Dads.
SEE! The illustrated exploits of three lovable dummies set loose in a classic fantasy adventure!
READ! Their journey from small-time bodyguards to world-class artifact hunters!
MARVEL! At the sheer metafictional chutzpah of a graphic novel based on a story created in a podcast where three dudes and their dad play a tabletop role playing game in real time!
Join Taako the elf wizard, Merle the dwarf cleric, and Magnus the human warrior for an adventure they are poorly equipped to handle AT BEST, guided ("guided") by their snarky DM, in a graphic novel that, like the smash-hit podcast it's based on, will tickle your funny bone, tug your heartstrings, and probably pants you if you give it half a chance.
With endearingly off-kilter storytelling from master goofballs Clint McElroy and the McElroy brothers, and vivid, adorable art by Carey Pietsch, The Adventure Zone: Here There be Gerblins is the comics equivalent of role-playing in your friend's basement at 2am, eating Cheetos and laughing your ass off as she rolls critical failure after critical failure.
In Christian's own words, and through his thoughts, reflections, and dreams, E L James offers a fresh perspective on the love story that has enthralled millions of readers around the world.
Christian Grey exercises control in all things; his world is neat, disciplined, and utterly empty—until the day that Anastasia Steele falls into his office, in a tangle of shapely limbs and tumbling brown hair. He tries to forget her, but instead is swept up in a storm of emotion he cannot comprehend and cannot resist. Unlike any woman he has known before, shy, unworldly Ana seems to see right through him—past the business prodigy and the penthouse lifestyle to Christian’s cold, wounded heart.
Will being with Ana dispel the horrors of his childhood that haunt Christian every night? Or will his dark sexual desires, his compulsion to control, and the self-loathing that fills his soul drive this girl away and destroy the fragile hope she offers him?
This book is intended for mature audiences.
A Riscoff and a Gable can never live happily ever after. Our family feud is the stuff of legends.
Ten years ago, Whitney Gable caught me off guard with her long legs and grab-you-by-the-balls blue eyes.
I didn’t know or care what her name was.
Like any Riscoff worth the family name, I went after what I wanted. We burned like a flash fire until she married another man.
She hates me, and she should.
I objected on her wedding day.
Now she’s home, with those same long legs and man-eater stare, but there’s no ring on her finger.
They say a Riscoff and a Gable can never live happily ever after . . . but I’m not done with Whitney Gable.
I’ll never be done with her.
Richer Than Sin is book one of the Sin Trilogy. Guilty as Sin, book two, and Reveling in Sin, book 3 are available for preorder now.
"OH MY GOD! The drama. The angst. The twists and turns. The sexy times. I. AM. MIND. BLOWN! This was ANOTHER LEVEL. And I’m coming undone after reading it. Guyssssss!!! THIS. THIS. THIS. What a freaking ride. Just wow. I can't catch my breath. Absolutely jaw-dropping." ~Angie, Angie's Dreamy Reads
"RICHER THAN SIN IS PURE, UNADULTERATED TEMPTATION...IT WILL LEAVE YOU OBSESSED!" ~Marie's Tempting Reads!
"Richer Than Sin is everything I have come to expect from Meghan March's books, multiplied by ten!" ~Naughty Book Blog
"Meghan March delivers a captivating, fast-paced, full of drama and sexy story! ~Read More Sleep Less Blog
"This is not our typical Meghan March book. It's Meghan March x 102836263. It's everything we want in her books but even more delicious...more action-packed...just MORE." ~Goodreads Reviewer
Family feud, forbidden romance, second chance romance, enemies-to-lovers, small-town romance, hidden romance, strong alpha, alpha hero, alpha billionaire, billionaire, billionaire heir, family business, celebrity, rockstar, famous, strong female lead, strong heroine
"Sorry Christian and Gideon, there’s a new heartthrob for you to contend with. Meet Talon. Talon Steel." - Booktopia
"Hardt delivers a brand-new series with rugged cowboys and scintillating sex. Talon and Jade’s instant chemistry heats up the pages..." -RT Book Reviews
"This book is so raw and addictive! Hands down my new favorite series this year." -Meredith Wild, #1 New York Times Bestselling Author
"Ms. Hardt weaves magic with her keyboard and what remains is a beautifully written first installment about two people who are broken but not destroyed... How Hardt weaves the past with the present, while keeping the reader guessing about the secrets the brothers barricade from others, is flawless." -Heroes & Heartbreaker
"This one totally ignited a flame inside me and tore me to SHREDS....buried secrets and harsh realities that test this couple will leave readers gripping the edge of their books and hoping and praying for a miracle... " -Pretty Little Books
"Talon has hit my top five list... up there next to Jamie Fraser and Gideon Cross." -Angel Payne, USA Today Bestselling Author
"CRAVING is the jaw-dropping book, you NEED to read!" -New York Time Bestselling Author Lisa Renee Jones
"Talon is a sexy, intriguing leading man and Jade, our lady left at the altar is a sweet and relatable girl you just want to hug. Together they build a steaming hot relationship you really root for from the first chapter!" -CD Reiss New York Times Bestselling Author
After being left at the altar, Jade Roberts seeks solace at her best friend's ranch on the Colorado western slope. Her humiliation still ripe, she doesn't expect to be attracted to her friend's reticent brother, but when the gorgeous cowboy kisses her, all bets are off.
Talon Steel is broken. Having never fully healed from a horrific childhood trauma, he simply exists, taking from women what is offered and giving nothing in return...until Jade Roberts catapults into his life. She is beautiful, sweet, and giving, and his desire for her becomes a craving he fears he'll never be able to satisfy.
Passion sizzles between the two lovers...but long-buried secrets haunt them both and may eventually tear them apart.
Alina Cooke—little sister of his two best friends—is the last woman DEA agent Jay Bennett should be waking up next to on the day of her brother’s wedding. But their powerful attraction ignited a powder keg of desire, and their once simple friendship has just become impossibly complicated.
Alina’s always been steady, focused, and lived on the safe side of life. Jay is totally devoted to his dangerous job. She knows a future with him will be filled with worry that one day he won’t come home. She’s done it with her brothers. She’s not sure she can face that uncertainty with the man she loves. Yet being in his arms is a bad idea they keep repeating, again and again.
When Alina is run off the road, Jay fears his job has made her a target. But the threat in Alina’s life is closer than they think. As the enemy gets more ruthless, Alina proves she’s no easy target and Jay will do anything to bring them down. Because surviving and being together is the only thing that matters.
When literature student Anastasia Steele goes to interview young entrepreneur Christian Grey, she encounters a man who is beautiful, brilliant, and intimidating. The unworldly, innocent Ana is startled to realize she wants this man and, despite his enigmatic reserve, finds she is desperate to get close to him. Unable to resist Ana’s quiet beauty, wit, and independent spirit, Grey admits he wants her, too—but on his own terms.
Shocked yet thrilled by Grey’s singular erotic tastes, Ana hesitates. For all the trappings of success—his multinational businesses, his vast wealth, his loving family—Grey is a man tormented by demons and consumed by the need to control. When the couple embarks on a daring, passionately physical affair, Ana discovers Christian Grey’s secrets and explores her own dark desires.
This book is intended for mature audiences.
Rye Mallett, a fearless "freight dog" pilot charged with flying cargo to far-flung locations, is often rough-spoken and all business, but soft on regulations when they get in the way of meeting a deadline. But he does have a rock-solid reputation: he will fly in the foulest weather, day or night, and deliver the goods safely to their destination. So when Rye is asked to fly into a completely fogbound northern Georgia town and deliver a mysterious black box to a Dr. Lambert, he doesn't ask questions.
As Rye's plane nears the isolated landing strip, more trouble than inclement weather awaits him. He is greeted first by a sabotage attempt on his plane that causes him to crash land, and then by Dr. Brynn O'Neal, who claims she was sent for the box in Dr. Lambert's stead. Despite Rye's "no-involvement" policy when it comes to other people's problems, he finds himself irresistibly drawn to the intrigue surrounding his cargo . . . and to the mysterious and alluring Brynn.
Soon Rye and Brynn are in a treacherous forty-eight-hour race to deliver the box before time runs out. With everyone from law enforcement officials to hired thugs hot on their heels, they must learn to trust each other so they can protect their valuable cargo from those who would kill for it.
"Sorry Christian and Gideon, there’s a new heartthrob for you to contend with. Meet Talon. Talon Steel." -Booktopia
"Possession brings Talon Steel's story to a conclusion, wrapping up a thrilling mystery intertwined with some amazingly hot sex scenes... the buildup to the protagonists discovery keeps the pages moving at a rapid-fire pace. " -RT Book Reviews
"I'm dead from the strongest book hangover ever. Helen exceeded every expectation I had for this book. It was heart pounding, heartbreaking, intense, full throttle genius. " -Tina at Bookalicious Babes Blog
"WOAH. Helen Hardt has truly blown me away with this series. It is dark, emotional, intense, horrifying, and utterly beautiful all mixed together. " -Pretty Little Book Reviews
"Such a beautiful torment - the waiting, the anticipation, the relief that only comes briefly before more questions arise, and the wait begins again... Check. Mate. Ms. Hardt..." -Bare Naked Words
"The love scenes are beautifully written and so scorching hot I’m fanning my face just thinking about them." -The Book Sirens
Jade Roberts’s love for Talon Steel is the real deal, and she’s more determined than ever to help him come to grips with whatever is haunting him. To that end, she continues her investigation of the Steels…and unknowingly attracts some dangerous foes from their shrouded history.
Talon loves Jade deeply and longs to possess her forever, so he faces his worst fears and exposes his rawest wounds in an attempt to heal. The road is icy and treacherous, but if he perseveres and comes out whole on the other side, he’ll finally be worthy of Jade’s love.
The untamed passion between the two still blazes, but as the horrors of Talon’s past resurface, Jade and Talon aren’t safe…
"The chemistry in Melt is explosive!" - RT Book Reviews
"Melt has earned a solid place at the top of my MUST-READ list! " -Angel Payne, USA Today bestselling author
"Just when you have one question answered more are brought to life keeping you one the edge of your seat page after page." -Wicked Babes Blog
"Helen has given us a series with men that will not only Melt your heart, they will heat up your soul." -The Book Fairy Reviews
"Ms. Hardt has continued to weave her web in this installment, and the results are every bit as good…or perhaps better…than what we have seen so far. With every answer, there is another question. " -Bare Naked Words
"Melt. That is definitely a proper name for this book. Not only did I melt many times while reading it, I also went up in flames." -Tina at Bookalicious Babes Blog
Jonah Steel is intelligent, rich, and hard-working. As the oldest of his siblings, he was charged by his father to protect them.
He failed in the worst way.
Dr. Melanie Carmichael has her own baggage. Although the renowned therapist was able to help Jonah’s brother, she is struggling with feelings of inadequacy. When the oldest Steel walks into her office seeking solace, she can’t turn her back.
As Melanie and Jonah attempt to work through their issues together, desperately trying to ignore the desire brewing between them, ghosts from both their pasts surface…and danger draws near.
And that his best friend has a crush on me.
And that I just moved in with them.
Oh, did I not mention we’re roommates?
I suppose it doesn’t matter. Fitzy has made it clear he’s not interested in me, even though the sparks between us are liable to burn our house down. I’m not the kind of girl who chases after a man, though, and I’m not about to start. I’ve got my hands full dealing with a new school, a sleazy professor, and an uncertain future. So if my sexy brooding roomie wises up and realizes what he’s missing?
He knows where to find me.
I’m in love with a man who tried to kill me. At least that’s what they tell me . . .
Six weeks ago, paramedics found me unconscious in my own home. Beaten. Bruised. Hardly breathing. When I woke up, I couldn’t remember the last three years or anything about my life in Jackson Harbor. They tell me my fiancé, Colton McKinley, is on the run for what he did to me. They tell me I’m safer if I stay away.
I don’t care if my memories ever come back. I want nothing to do with those missing years . . . until a sexy stranger with angry eyes shows up on my doorstep and demands I stop ignoring him.
Levi Jackson is my fiancé’s best friend, but seeing him sparks something inside me. As the truth unravels in my mind, I know they’re wrong about Colton. My own secrets are far more dangerous than the man I was engaged to.
I return to Jackson Harbor to search for answers and find myself running from a faceless boogeyman and seeking refuge in Levi’s arms. And in his bed.
I can’t deny my feelings for Levi. But as the pile of lies between us grows, I realize that sometimes the truth can’t set us free. Sometimes, it’s the very thing that can destroy us.