Of all the year end lists, I typically find the best books lists to be the most useful. These "best of" articles usually serve as extra incentive to finish up a few books before the year ends.
I've had Colson Whitehead's The Underground Railroad and Karan Mahajan's The Association of Small Bombs sitting in my backlog for awhile now. Both have been added to my gift lists.
I'll probably write my own "best of" list early next year. Until then, happy reading!