Emily Temple in Literary Hub:
It’s mid-December, and likely you are sick and tired of best-of lists. I know, because I am too—especially after reading 52 of them and tracking their contents for the very piece you are reading—so trust me when I say that the monstrosity below is the last best-books-of-2018 list you’ll ever have to read.
To put this together, as I did last year, I looked at all of the end-of-year best books lists I could find online, tallied up their picks, and figured out which individual books were the most often recommended. This year, I counted 52 lists from 37 sources, which added up to a grand total of 880 books. I didn’t include any books from the UK lists, since they often have slightly different publication schedules. I tried my best to balance fiction and nonfiction, but some places only offered one or the other at the time of writing, and the final compilation is probably a little heavy on the fiction side.
So while I’m sure I didn’t get every list, and more are no doubt appearing even as I write this, I feel I can reasonably attest that the books below are the ones that the literary world at large has deemed the “best” of 2018. Does that mean they are actually the best? You’ll have to read them and decide for yourself. But if you’re looking for a relatively sure bet for a gift or some holiday reading, this is a good place to start.