2021’s Bestselling Audiobooks by Genre

Searching for surefire audiobook suggestions to send as a gift? Look no further than Libro.fm’s top sellers from our bestselling genres this year, based on purchases made through our 1,500+ independent bookstore partners for audiobooks published in 2021. When you gift a Libro.fm audiobook membership or gift individual audiobooks, you give back to your local bookstore in a big way—we share profits with bookstores without adding any extra work for them. 

Browse the year’s bestsellers below, and check out our list of the Top 10 Bestselling Audiobooks of 2021 for overall winners!


Want to skip to a specific genre?

Literary Fiction | Mystery & Thriller | Science Fiction | Fantasy | Romance | Historical Fiction | Young Adult Fiction
Biography & Memoir | History | Politics & Economy | Self-Improvement
Children’s


Literary Fiction

Malibu Rising

By Taylor Jenkins Reid • Narrated by Julia Whelan

“Perfectly paced and suspenseful from page one!”

Meagan, bookseller at Books are Awesome

Runners-up:

The Lincoln Highway

By Amor Towles • Narrated by Edoardo Ballerini, Marin Ireland & Dion Graham

The Other Black Girl

By Zakiya Dalila Harris • Narrated by Aja Naomi King, Joniece Abbott-Pratt, Heather Alicia Simms & Bahni Turpin

Mystery & Thriller

The Last Thing He Told Me

By Laura Dave • Narrated by Rebecca Lowman

“Wonderful characters, amazing writing, and a twisty plot kept me turning the pages as fast as I could.”

Kaitlin, bookseller at Copperfield’s Books Healdsburg

Runners-up:

Harlem Shuffle

By Colson Whitehead • Narrated by Dion Graham

The Sanatorium

By Sarah Pearse • Narrated by Elizabeth Knowelden

Science Fiction

Klara and the Sun

By Kazuo Ishiguro • Narrated by Sura Siu

“This is a chance to bask in the brilliance of one the greatest writers of our time.”

Caroline, bookseller at Books & Books

Runners-up:

Fugitive Telemetry

By Martha Wells • Narrated by Kevin R. Free

A Psalm for the Wild-Built

By Becky Chambers • Narrated by Emmett Grosland

Fantasy

Under the Whispering Door

By TJ Klune • Narrated by Kirt Graves

“TJ Klune has the unmatched ability to make my heart go all warm and gooey like a chocolate chip cookie.”

Amber, bookseller at Quail Ridge Books

Runners-up:

The Last Graduate

By Naomi Novik • Narrated by Anisha Dadia

A Court of Silver Flames

By Sarah J. Maas • Narrated by Stina Nielsen

Romance

People We Meet on Vacation

By Emily Henry • Narrated by Julia Whelan

“What fun! A hilariously comedic rom-com with memorable characters.”

Shelley, bookseller at Monkey and Dog Books

Runners-up:

One Last Stop

By Casey McQuiston • Narrated by Natalie Naudus

Act Your Age, Eve Brown

By Talia Hibbert • Narrated by Ione Butler

Historical Fiction

The Four Winds

By Kristin Hannah • Narrated by Julia Whelan

“This is character driven storytelling at its best—each time I stepped away from it I couldn’t stop thinking about them.”

Josh, bookseller at Underground Books

Runners-up:

The Lost Apothecary

By Sarah Penner • Narrated by Lorna Bennett, Lauren Anthony & Lauren Irwin

Cloud Cuckoo Land

By Anthony Doerr • Published by Marin Ireland & Simon Jones

Young Adult Fiction

Firekeeper’s Daughter

By Angeline Boulley • Narrated by Isabella Star LaBlanc

“”LOVED, LOVED, LOVED this book. To hear the Ojibwe words spoken is a treat not to be missed.

Suzanne, bookseller at Ballast Book Co.

Runners-up:

Iron Widow

By Xiran Jay Zhao • Narrated by Rong Fu

Concrete Rose

By Angie Thomas • Narrated by Dion Graham

Biography & Memoir

Crying in H Mart

By Michelle Zauner • Narrated by the author

“I was struck by just how much I loved this book for how it walks through grief not as a way to leave it behind, but as a way to remember its exact shape.”

Steve, bookseller at Parnassus Books

Runners-up:

Broken Horses

By Brandi Carlile • Narrated by the author

The Anthropocene Reviewed

By John Green • Narrated by the author

History

How the Word Is Passed

By Clint Smith • Narrated by the author

“Clint Smith takes us on an unforgettable journey through the history of slavery in the United States, revealing many truths we’ve never been told.”

Nancy, bookseller at Raven Book Store

Runners-up:

Four Hundred Souls

By Ibram X. Kendi & Keisha N. Blain • Narrated by Various

The Bomber Mafia

By Malcolm Gladwell • Narrated by the author

Politics & Economy

The Sum of Us

By Heather McGhee • Narrated by the author

This is the book I’ve been waiting for.

author Ibram X. Kendi

Runners-up:

Peril

By Bob Woodward & Robert Costa • Narrated by Robert Petkoff

Unbound

By Tarana Burke • Narrated by the author

Self-Improvement

What Happened to You?

By Oprah Winfrey & Bruce D. Perry • Narrated by Bruce D. Perry & Oprah Winfrey

“Both Oprah and Dr. Perry are incredibly engaging narrators.”

Will, bookseller at Newtown Bookshop

Runners-up:

Think Again

By Adam Grant • Narrated by the author

This Is Your Mind on Plants

By Michael Pollan • Narrated by the author

Children’s

Amari and the Night Brothers

By B. B. Alston • Narrated by Imani Parks

“Fast-paced, relatable, and a fun listen!”

Rebecca, bookseller at Rediscovered Books

Runners-up:

Stamped (For Kids)

By Ibram X. Kendi & Jason Reynolds • Narrated by Pe’Tehn Raighn-Kem Jackson

Ancestor Approved: Intertribal Stories for Kids

By Cynthia Leitich Smith • Narrated by Kenny Ramos & DeLanna Studi


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Kelsey Norris is a writer, editor, former bookseller, and Libro.fm's Content Marketing Manager. She is currently based in DC. Find more of her work at www.kelseynorris.com.

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