The Best Audiobooks of 2018

As 2018 wraps up, Audiobooks.com looks back at a wonderful year of exciting releases. From sensational debuts that have launched the careers of budding writers to veterans who have returned with triumphant follow-ups, 2018 in books has captured the love, heartbreak, frustration, and hope that has swept the world. Here are Audiobook.com’s best books of 2018 and personal staff favorites.

FICTION

NON-FICTION

BIO & MEMOIR

MYSTERY & THRILLER

ROMANCE

POLITICS

SELF-HELP

TRUE CRIME

HORROR

SCIENCE FICTION

FANTASY

HISTORY

SCIENCE & TECH

YOUNG ADULT

KIDS

Always Look on the Bright Side of Life: A Sortabiography by Eric Idle, narrated by Eric Idle

From the ingenious comic performer, founding member of Monty Python, and creator of Spamalot, comes an absurdly funny memoir of unparalleled wit and heartfelt candor.

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Educated by Tara Westover, narrated by Julia Whelan

Heartbreaking and moving, Educated is about Tara Westover’s quest for knowledge that transformed her, taking her over oceans and across continents. Only when she had traveled too far would she wonder if there was still a way home.

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Unsheltered by Barbara Kingsolver, narrated by Barbara Kingsolver

Brilliantly executed and compulsively listenable, Unsheltered is the story of two families, in two centuries, who live at the corner of Sixth and Plum, as they navigate the challenges of surviving a world in the throes of major cultural shifts.

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Let’s Go (So We Can Get Back): A Memoir of Recording and Discording with Wilco, Etc. by Jeff Tweedy, narrated by Jeff Tweedy

The singer, guitarist, and songwriter, best known for his work with Wilco, opens up about his past, his songs, the music, and the people that have inspired him.

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The Death of Mrs. Westaway by Ruth Ware, narrated by Imogen Church

When Hal Westaway is mistakenly bequeathed a substantial inheritance, she plots to claim the money for herself only to realize there is something very, very wrong about this strange situation and the inheritance at the center of it.

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The Book of M by Peng Shepherd, narrated by Emily Woo ZellerJames Fouhey

Reminiscent of The Passage and Station Eleven, this haunting, thought-provoking, and beautiful novel explores fundamental questions of memory, connection, and what it means to be human in a world turned upside down.

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I’ll Be Gone in the Dark: One Woman’s Obsessive Search for the Golden State Killer by Michelle McNamara, narrated by Gillian FlynnGabra ZackmanPatton Oswalt

An atmospheric snapshot of a moment in American history and a chilling account of a criminal mastermind and the wreckage he left behind.

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You Are a Badass Every Day: How to Keep Your Motivation Strong, Your Vibe High, and Your Quest for Transformation Unstoppable by Jen Sincero, narrated by Jen Sincero

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author comes bite-sized inspiration and guidance to keep your transformation on track.

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The Greatest Love Story Ever Told: A Oral History by Megan MullallyNick Offerman, narrated by Nick OffermanMegan Mullally

Megan Mullally and Nick Offerman reveal the full story behind their epic romance—presented in a series of hilarious intimate conversations between the couple.

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Enchantments: A Modern Witch’s Guide to Self-Possession by Mya Spalter, narrated by Mya Spalter

A wise, witty, and welcoming guide to modern witchcraft and magic and how you can use it to positively affect your life, from healing herbs to casting love spells.

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New York Times’ Best Books of the Year

The editors of the New York Times Book Review have selected the top books of the year. Check out the list of fiction and non-fiction audiobooks:

Exit West by Mohsin Hamid

In a country teetering on the brink of civil war, two young people meet—sensual, fiercely independent Nadia and gentle, restrained Saeed. They embark on a furtive love affair, and are soon cloistered in a premature intimacy by the unrest roiling their city. When it explodes, turning familiar streets into a patchwork of checkpoints and bomb blasts, they begin to hear whispers about doors—doors that can whisk people far away, if perilously and for a price. As the violence escalates, Nadia and Saeed decide that they no longer have a choice. Leaving their homeland and their old lives behind, they find a door and step through… Read more and listen here

 

Pachinko by Min Jin Lee

Profoundly moving and gracefully told, PACHINKO follows one Korean family through the generations, beginning in early 1900s Korea with Sunja, the prized daughter of a poor yet proud family, whose unplanned pregnancy threatens to shame them. Betrayed by her wealthy lover, Sunja finds unexpected salvation when a young tubercular minister offers to marry her and bring her to Japan to start a new life… Read more and listen here

 

The Power by Naomi Alderman

In THE POWER, the world is a recognizable place: there’s a rich Nigerian boy who lounges around the family pool; a foster kid whose religious parents hide their true nature; an ambitious American politician; a tough London girl from a tricky family. But then a vital new force takes root and flourishes… Teenage girls now have immense physical power-they can cause agonizing pain and even death… Read more and listen here

 

Sing, Unburied, Sing: A Novel by Jesmyn Ward

For Pop and Mam, their daughter Leonie, and her kids Jojo and Kayla, life is hard: Mam has cancer, Pop is preoccupied by working their small parcel of land, Leonie has a meth problem, and Jojo and Kayla seek love from their grandparents rather than their absent mother. Their lives are further complicated when Leonie gets the call from the white father of her children that he’s up for parole… Read more and listen here

 

The Evolution of Beauty: How Darwin’s Forgotten Theory of Mate Choice Shapes the Animal World – and Us by Richard O. Prum

Mate choice can drive ornamental traits from the constraints of adaptive evolution, allowing them to grow ever more elaborate. It also sets the stakes for sexual conflict, in which the sexual autonomy of the female evolves in response to male sexual control. Most crucially, this framework provides important insights into the evolution of human sexuality, particularly the ways in which female preferences have changed male bodies, and even maleness itself, through evolutionary time… Read more and listen here

 

 

 

Grant by Ron Chernow

More important, he sought freedom and justice for black Americans, working to crush the Ku Klux Klan and earning the admiration of Frederick Douglass, who called him “the vigilant, firm, impartial, and wise protector of my race.” After his presidency, he was again brought low by a dashing young swindler on Wall Street, only to resuscitate his image by working with Mark Twain to publish his memoirs, which are recognized as a masterpiece of the genre. With lucidity, breadth, and meticulousness, Chernow finds the threads that bind these disparate stories together… Read more and listen here

 

 

Autumn by Ali Smith

Autumn. Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness. That’s what it felt like for Keats in 1819. How about Autumn 2016? Daniel is a century old. Elisabeth, born in 1984, has her eye on the future. The United Kingdom is in pieces, divided by a historic, once-in-a-generation summer. Love is won, love is lost. Hope is hand-in-hand with hopelessness. The seasons roll round, as ever… Read more and listen here

 

Locking Up Our Own: Crime and Punishment in Black America by James Forman Jr.

An original and consequential argument about race, crime, and the law Today, Americans are debating our criminal justice system with new urgency. Mass incarceration and aggressive police tactics-and their impact on people of color-are feeding outrage and a consensus that something must be done. But what if we only know half the story?… Read more and listen here

 

 

How many have you read? Let us know and share your comments below!

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