Whatever your personal reading preference may be, I think everyone can agree that 2013 was a great year for books. Let’s take a moment to reflect on the past year’s most influential, prominent and beloved titles before we celebrate and start reading in 2014.

Based on various statistics including downloads, sales, holds, samples, ratings and page views, here are the lists for OverDrive’s Best Books of 2013.

Top US

  1. Inferno by Dan Brown
  2. The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith (J.K. Rowling)
  3. Sycamore Row by John Grisham     
  4. The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman
  5. Wedding Night by Sophie Kinsella
  6. Never Go Back by Lee Child
  7. Maddaddam by Margaret Atwood
  8. The Burgess Boys by Elizabeth Strout
  9. Bad Monkey by Carl Hiaasen
  10. And the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini

Top International

  1. The Aviator’s Wife by Melanie Benjamin
  2. Fast Forward by Juliet Madison
  3. The Paris Architect by Charles Belfoure
  4. The Death of Santini by Pat Conroy
  5. The Book of Someday by Dianne Dixon
  6. Pros and Cons by Janet Evanovich
  7. The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman
  8. Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline
  9. Someday, Someday, Maybe by Lauren Graham
  10. History Decoded by Brad Meltzer

Top Juvenile and YA

  1. Allegiant by Veronica Roth
  2. The House of Hades by Rick Riordan
  3. Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
  4. The Elite by Kiera Cass
  5. Game On! by Lincoln Peirce
  6. Beautiful Chaos by Kami Garcia
  7. Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library by Chris Grabenstein
  8. Flora & Ulysses by Kate DiCamillo
  9. The Eye of Minds by James Dashner
  10. Steam Train, Dream Train by Sherri Duskey Rinker

Our staff librarians also scoured the major review sources in search of the best titles of the year. We compiled them all in one, easy location in Marketplace so your last minute Holiday shopping can be a breeze! When you click the links below, these carts will show up as a Marketplace search result and you’ll be able to easily add them to a cart.

Adults (based on the best of the year lists from: Kirkus, Library Journal, Booklist, Publishers Weekly, NY Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Christian Science Monitor, Goodreads, Amazon, Library Reads, O Magazine, Entertainment Weekly, Huffington Post, NPR)

Kids (based on best of the year lists from Kirkus, Booklist, Publishers Weekly, School Library Journal, Horn Book, Amazon)

Be sure to stock up on these titles before the big Holiday rush! Over the next few weeks, your library is going to see a large boost in new patron registrations, circulations and website activity. Below are a couple critical pointers on how best to tackle this influx of new users.

Don’t let patrons get turned away!  The experience a patron has on their first visit to the site will make or break them as an eBook user, so you want to ensure the titles they are looking for are in the collection and available.

Attack the Holds List before it gets out of control!  We strongly recommend you place an additional holds order on or before Monday December 23rd. This will ensure plenty of books are available by Wednesday and Thursday of that week, typically our largest circulation days. In the past, libraries have purchased one copy of each title on hold, filled ALL holds on ALL titles, or even filled the holds on certain top titles.  These are gifts you can give your patrons, and we suggest you tell them what you’ve done!

As always, your Collection Development Specialist is available to help create recommended lists. Email collectionteam@overdrive.com for more information today!

*Some titles are metered access and may have limited regional or platform availability. Check OverDrive Marketplace to find what is available for you.


Rachel Somerville is a Collection Development Analyst with OverDrive.


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