The votes are in and the Goodreads community has spoken. Today, Goodreads has announced the Goodreads Choice Awards 2021 winners. This year, 4,756,261 votes were cast, as compared to 5,674,480 last year. The Goodreads Choice Awards began in 2009. Each year, Goodreads analyzes the ratings and reviews of hundreds of millions of books published during the year and selects 15 nominees in various genre categories. Goodreads members then vote on their favorite nominees during the months of November and December.
A notable difference in genre categories between this year and last year came up when Goodreads removed the separate Picture Books genre. Instead, picture book nominees, such as Eyes that Kiss in the Corners by Joanna Ho, were merged with the Middle Grade and Children’s books.
In regards to diversity amongst the winning books this year, only three authors of color and one Hispanic author were chosen, despite a number of authors of color amongst the nominees in each genre. These winners include Michelle Zauner’s Crying in H Mart, Amanda Gorman’s The Hill We Climb, Angeline Boulley’s Firekeeper’s Daughter, and Elena Armas’ The Spanish Love Deception. Last year, eight authors of color won the Goodreads Choice Awards, while only one won in 2019.
This year Goodreads also shared a list of The 51 Most Read Books of the 2021 Goodreads Reading Challenge. Each year, Goodreads poses the Goodreads Reading Challenge to its members, in which readers can select a goal number of books they’d like to read during the year. In 2021, 5,599,418 members opted to participate, with an average of 53 books pledged to read during the year.
Amongst the 51 Most Read Books of the 2021 Goodreads Challenge, only seven were written by authors of color and only three of the books were selected as Goodreads Choice Awards Winners this year. However, the Goodreads Choice Awards include only books published this year, while the most read books included books from any publication year.
In this year’s Goodreads Choice Awards winners, a couple interesting voting patterns emerged as well. In Romance, the votes came exceptionally close between the winner and the runner-up, with 88,755 votes going to People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry and 88,192 votes to The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood. The race for the Middle Grade and Children’s winner came close too, with 24,836 going to Rick Riordan’s Daughter of the Deep and 24,368 votes to Victoria Schwab’s Bridge of Souls.
Now, without further ado, here are the Goodreads Choice Awards of 2021! Don’t forget to check out the nominees in each category to find a truly exceptional selection of books from this year.
Goodreads Choice Awards 2021 Winners
Beautiful World, Where Are You by Sally Rooney
Mystery & Thriller
The Last Thing He Told Me by Laura Dave
Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid
A Court of Silver Flames by Sarah J. Maas
People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry
Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir
The Final Girl Support Group by Grady Hendrix
Broken (in the best possible way) by Jenny Lawson
The Anthropocene Reviewed by John Green
Memoir & Autobiography
Crying in H Mart by Michelle Zauner
History & Biography
Empire of Pain: The Secret History of the Sackler Dynasty by Patrick Radden Keefe
Graphic Novels & Comics
Lore Olympus: Volume One by Rachel Smythe
The Hill We Climb: An Inaugural Poem for the Country by Amanda Gorman
The Spanish Love Deception by Elena Armas
Young Adult Fiction
Firekeeper’s Daughter by Angeline Boulley
Young Adult Fantasy
Rule of Wolves by Leigh Bardugo
Middle Grade & Children’s
Daughter of the Deep by Rick Riordan