These Are the Highest-Rated Books Online in Every Country Illustrated on a Fantastic Map

Every country has a unique literary sensibility. To learn more about it, all you need to do is look at their most popular books on Goodreads.

The highest-rated book of each country on the Internet
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Books are the best way to escape reality and cross borders without leaving home. Because of the cultural diversity offered by literature, we can learn more about different countries and civilizations by reading stories written by other people in other contexts, places, and times.

Any self-respecting reader is familiar with Goodreads. It's a social media platform is for bookworms—and those who aren’t so bookish—and it serves as a database of more than 3.5 billion titles worldwide. It also allows users to share the books they’re reading, recommend new ones, create lists, and even write reviews.

As the largest literary database on the Internet, Goodreads is an excellent place to study the reading trends of societies around the world, as well as their tastes and interests. WordFinderX has used all this data to create a world map illustrating the highest-rated books by local authors in each country.

The highest-rated book by local autor in every country

Click here to view the map in its highest resolution.

As you can see on the map, the highest-rated book in the world, according to Goodreads, is Svědectví o životě v KLDR (Witnessing Life in the DPRK). It’s Czech author Nina Špitálníková’s third book on North Korea, based on seven interviews with refugees from the country. Despite its critical approach to the dictatorial regime, the book paints a convincing and rarely seen picture of life in the DPRK through its testimonies.

The Highest-Rated Books in the Americas

If we analyze the results by country, the highest-rated book in the U.S. written by an American author is the sci-fi and fantasy Words of Radiance by Brandon Sanderson. It’s part of the Stormlight Archive series, a saga that combines politics, war, race, religion, secret conspiracies, magic, assassins, gods, and a host of other fantasy elements. In Canada, it’s Kukum by Michael Jean. And in Mexico, it’s Fernando’s Ghosts (Los fantasmas de Fernando in Spanish) by Jaime Alfonso Sandoval.

Biographies, memoirs, and ethnographies, along with children’s books, top the list in Central and South America. Frizzy is the highest-rated book by Dominican author Claribel A. Ortega, a former reporter who writes fantasy for young adults. The highest rating in Latin America goes to All of Mafalda (Toda Mafalda), a  collection of comics by Argentine cartoonist Quino. The list also includes nonfiction books such as Fresh Fruit, Broken Bodies by Honduran author Seth M. Holmes.

On the other hand, Peru’s highest-rated novel is a modernist classic. Mario Vargas Llosa was at the forefront of the Latin American Boom of the 1960s, along with figures such as Julio Cortázar, Gabriel García Márquez, and Manuel Puig. His Conversation in the Cathedral (Conversación en la catedral) is a portrayal of Peru in the 1950s under the dictadorship of Manuel Odría. In Colombia, That Which Has No Name (Lo que no tiene nombre) by Piedad Bonnett tops the list.

The highest-rated book by local author in North America
The highest-rated book by local author in South America

The Highest-Rated Books in Europe and the Middle East

Europe is one of the continents with the most literature. It includes all kinds of genres, from thrillers to autobiographies. As we’ve already said, the most popular title is Svědectví o životě v KLDR (Witnessing Life in the DPRK). Still, we have to mention The Botanist by M.W. Craven, the most popular book in the UK, which is part of a long series about crime and the vicissitudes of detective sergeant Washington Poe. In Spain, it’s The Warrior Behind Cherry Tree (El guerrero a la sombra del cerezo) by David B. Gil, a story of revenge and redemption in the Japan of samurai lords.

The highest-rated book by local author in Europe
The highest-rated book by local author in the Middle East & Central Asia

The Highest-Rated Books in Asia, Oceania, and Africa

According to the map, the highest-rated books in Asia and Oceania include acclaimed memoirs such as In Order to Live: A North Korean Girl’s Journey to Freedom by North Korean defector Yeonmi Park, a tough, hair-raising autobiography. In Singapore, self-help books such as Destined to Reign by famed evangelist Joseph Prince lead the list.

Finally, several political and protest books are available in Africa, such as Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s feminist manifesto Dear Ijeawele and The African Origin of Civilization by Senegalese historian Cheikh Anta Diop.

The highest-rated book by local author in Asia & Oceania
The highest-rated book by local author in Africa

Meanwhile, the highest-rated books by local authors in the Middle East and Central Asia include acclaimed novels, memoirs, and essay collections. The number one book in Afghanistan is Khaled Hosseini’s A Thousand Splendid Suns, which spent 15 weeks at the top of The New York Times bestseller list in 2007. In Iran, the ancient Shahnameh by Abolqasem Ferdowsi—one of the world’s longest epic poems—stands out. And in Turkey, Ince Memes 4, by Yaşar Kemal, tops the ranking.

Map and Graphics | WordfinderX

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