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- Kristin Hannah is the bestselling author of over 20 books, most recently “The Four Winds.”
- She writes romance books, historical fiction novels, and stories with magical twists.
- Goodreads members’ top favorites include “The Nightingale” and “The Great Alone.”
Kristin Hannah is an award-winning and bestselling author perhaps best known for “The Nightingale” and “Firefly Lane,” the latter of which has become a hit Netflix show. Though Hannah primarily writes moving romances with devastating twists, her more recent works have been vivid historical fiction stories that transport readers through time.
To rank Kristin Hannah’s best books, we turned to Goodreads members. With over 125 million users, Goodreads lets readers rate, review, and recommend their favorite novels. So whether you’re a new Kristin Hannah reader wondering where to start, or a long-time fan looking for a new read, we’ve ranked the best Kristin Hannah books, according to Goodreads members.
With nearly 600,000 five-star ratings on Goodreads, “The Nightingale” is Kristin Hannah’s most popular book. Set during World War II, this deeply moving novel focuses on two sisters living through the Nazi occupation of France. While 18-year-old Isabelle courageously risks her life to join the Resistance, Vianne is left at home to protect her daughter and herself as a German captain requisitions her home in her husband’s absence.
‘The Great Alone’
When Ernt Allbright returns from the Vietnam war broken and volatile, he impulsively moves his family to the Alaskan wilderness, determined to live off the land amongst other fiercely independent locals. But as the brutal winter darkness sets in, the Allbright family discovers they are far less physically — and mentally — prepared than they thought.
In this powerful story about the magic of friendship, Tully and Kate became inseparable friends during the summer of 1974, forming a bond that would last a lifetime. As the decades pass, Tully and Kate act as buoys in each other’s turbulent lives — until a devastating act of betrayal puts their bond to the ultimate test.
‘The Four Winds’
As the Great Depression continues to devastate Americans in the early 1930s, a ruthless drought tears through Texas, leaving families torn between fighting for their land and heading west for the chance of a better life. A portrait of the strength of American women, this historical fiction novel follows young Elsa Martinelli as she agonizes over her own choice during the Dust Bowl era, a particularly dark period of history.
“Winter Garden” is a novel that explores the intricacies of a mother-daughter bond through Meredith and Nina, two starkly different sisters who are brought home over their father’s illness. With little connection besides old memories and their mother’s disdain, the sisters finally learn the devastating truth of their mother’s past, revealing more about their family and themselves than they ever knew.
Jude is a stay-at-home mom who always puts the needs of her children ahead of her own. So when former foster child, Lexi, enters her twins’ lives, she welcomes her in and the three kids become inseparable. But when a terrible accident happens, everyone blames Lexi and she’s forced to leave behind the closest thing to family she’s ever known. Years later, Lexi returns to face Jude, the past, and the night that changed their lives forever.
“Fly Away” is the touching sequel to “Firefly Lane” and while it can be read as a standalone novel, it’s recommended to read “Firefly Lane” first to truly understand the depth of heartbreak in this book. As Kate struggles against her battle with breast cancer, her best friend, Tully, promises to be there for her children in any way she can. As Tully and Kate’s family reel from grief, Tully struggles to keep Kate’s daughters safe and come to terms with her own past in this story about forgiveness and redemption.
After a sudden tragedy ruined her career as a child psychiatrist, Dr. Julia Cates returned to her hometown to quietly recover. When she meets a peculiar six-year-old girl who seems to have emerged from the nearby woods, Julia dedicates herself to saving the child — even if it means asking for help.
Defense attorney Michael and soldier Jolene have been married for 12 years and are already struggling through everyday life when Jolene is sent on a dangerous deployment and Michael is left caring for their daughters back home. In this story of love, loss, war, and duty, Jolene tries to quell her family’s fears from the other side of the world until tragedy strikes and leaves Michael living his worst nightmare.
“True Colors” is a heartfelt family story that follows the Grey sisters, whose bond strengthened as they leaned on each other when their mother passed away. After a devastating event threatens to tear their sisterhood apart, the girls must fight through the tension to forgive each other in this compelling and emotional story loved for its romantic and dramatic elements.
When Meg was 16 and Claire was nine, a misunderstanding led the sisters to an estrangement that it seemed would last a lifetime. But as Claire’s wedding day quickly approaches, Meg decides to take time off from her successful law career to help Claire and try to reignite their bond, hoping to become the family they always wanted.
‘On Mystic Lake’
When Annie Colwater’s husband tells her that he’s in love with a younger woman, she returns to her hometown to heal and is reunited with her first love, Nick Delacrox. As Nick recovers from his own loss and tries to help his daughter do the same, the three find comfort in each other — until a shocking twist forces Annie to make an impossible choice.
Ruby hasn’t spoken to her famous talk show-host mother in more than a decade, resentful after Nora chose to walk out of their home, leaving her husband and daughters behind. So when a shocking scandal from Nora’s past is exposed, Ruby is offered a small fortune to write a tell-all book. Returning to her family home, Ruby confronts her mother’s past and her own in this exhilarating Kristin Hannah read.
‘The Things We Do for Love’
Angela DeSaria Malone thought her life would unfold perfectly just as it had for her sisters and cousins: High school, college, marriage, motherhood. But when Angela and her husband divorce after she repeatedly fails to get pregnant, she moves back to her hometown and meets a teenage girl who will change her life forever.
“Angel Falls” is an inspirational romance novel about Liam Campbell, who sits at his wife’s bedside every day despite the doctor’s warning that she may never wake from her coma. When Liam discovers a painful secret from his wife’s past — a previous marriage — he knows he must solicit the help of her ex-husband in the desperate hope for her recovery.
Elizabeth and Jackson Shore appeared to live a beautiful and happy life but when their daughters leave home, the couple finds themselves slowly drifting apart. When Jack gets an amazing job opportunity, Elizabeth decides to follow him — until a horrible tragedy forces her to question everything about her life and decide who she wants to be.
Dr. Madeline Hillyard is a famous heart surgeon whose teenage daughter feels more like a stranger to her every day: Angry, resentful, and desperate to find the father that abandoned her so many years ago. When her father, Angel DeMarco, comes back into their lives despite his devastating betrayal, it’s in search of help as a patient.
‘Comfort & Joy’
In this holiday-themed story, Joy Candellaro is struggling to find her Christmas spirit after her divorce and spontaneously buys a ticket to the Pacific Northwest, hoping for an adventure that will reignite her enthusiasm for life. In a small town, Joy meets six-year-old Bobby who, along with his father, is struggling to celebrate the holidays after losing his mom. Together, Joy, Bobby, and Daniel help each other heal and find the courage to believe in love and family once again.
‘If You Believe’
“If You Believe” is a demonstration of the emotional intensity Kristin Hannah is able to convey in a novel. When professional fighter Mad Dog Stone answers an ad to live and help on an apple farm before his next fight, he meets Mariah Throckmorton, self-exiled and hiding from a scandalous past. Against all odds, the two begin to fall for each other. As they confront their pasts, they must decide if they should stay in each other’s lives or let their love fade with the season.
‘Waiting for the Moon’
Selena can’t remember who she is or how she came to be in a beautiful mansion on the Maine coast, but she finds comfort in a strange physician-turned-recluse she meets nearby. Ian Carrick is haunted by a telepathic gift that destroyed his career but when he meets Selena, he finds she’s the only one whose thoughts he can’t hear. Selena and Ian bring light into each other’s dark lives and help each other heal, even as a figure from the past threatens to end their fantasy romance.
‘Once in Every Life’
When brilliant research scientist Tess Gregory suddenly dies before she can fulfill her longings for a husband and child, an angel allows her to choose the life into which she’d be reincarnated. Waking in a hospital bed, Tess finds herself in the body of a post-Civil War woman with a husband, children, and plenty of family and marital problems that she must conquer if she wants to find her magical love story after all.
‘When Lightning Strikes’
In this time-travel romance, Alaina Costanza, a romance writer, is thrust straight into the wild west of her most recent novel during a peculiar storm. When she’s kidnapped by her own character, the handsome outlaw Killian, the two fall into a whirlwind romance that they know must end if Alaina has any chance of reaching her child, left behind in the present.