2016 was a huge year in conservative publishing, thanks to the wild ride of the 2016 election. From pro-Trump tomes to anti-Hillary jeremiads to the key policy debates of our time, the Right got to write about who and what was right. There were also great books of history and reflections on the state of America’s culture and social fabric, touching on the more intellectual side of the conservative movement.
Our Top 10 Conservative Books of 2016 were selected by the Conservative Book Club’s Editorial Advisory Board and were based on three primary criteria: 1.) Influence – Did the book have a large-scale influence on the national debate? 2.) Conservative – Does the book espouse conservative values of American Exceptionalism, reverence to the Constitution, etc.? and 3.) Value-Added – Did the book add value to the conversation or provide original research?
With that in mind, here are the 10 best conservative books of 2016!
10) The Fractured Republic by Yuval Levin.
The story of the 2016 election could not be told without the underlying context of American cultural and institutional decay. The social contract is fraying under the weight of individualism — this, in essence is the problem that Yuval Levin’s The Fractured Republic: Our Dissolving Social Contract In The Age of Individualism sets out to solve. Combining the communitarian ethos of Russell Kirk with the sociological focus of Charles Murray, Yuval Levin’s The Fractured Republic offers a conservative solution to America’s existential crisis.
9) A Torch Kept Lit by William F. Buckley, Jr, edited by James Rosen
For the first time ever, William F. Buckley, Jr’s greatest eulogies have been collected together in one accessible tome, edited by Fox News’ James Rosen. A Torch Kept Lit: Great Lives of the Twentieth Century is, as the title says, a collection of eulogies for the greatest political, cultural and historical figures of the 20th century. A Torch Kept Lit lets readers enjoy Buckley’s signature style and wit while also appreciating the legacies of these great men and women.
8) The War On Cops by Heather Mac Donald
The police have become an intense topic of national debate in the aftermath of protests and riots in Ferguson, Baltimore, and elsewhere. The Manhattan Institute’s Heather Mac Donald makes the conservative case for law and order — and the case against anti-cop rhetoric and policy — in The War on Cops: How The New Attack on Law and Order Makes Everyone Less Safe. Mac Donald busts liberal lies about the use of force, incarceration rates, and so-called racial bias in policing, making it a timely, essential read in light of the Black Lives Matter movement.
7) Clean House by Tom Fitton
One of the Democrat Party’s great lies is that the Obama administration has had no scandals. Unsung hero Judicial Watch, headed by Tom Fitton, has consistantly exposed the truth, from Benghazi to the IRS to Obamacare. Fitton’s book Clean House ends the Obama administration’s furtiveness, chronicling all of Obama’s scandals and the efforts of Judicial Watch to reveal them to the public.
6) Defeating Jihad: The Winnable War by Dr. Sebastian Gorka
One of 2016’s breakout performances was counterinsurgency expert Dr. Sebastian Gorka, seen often on Fox News. His book Defeating Jihad: The Winnable War studiously details the rise of ISIS and Radical Islam, and offers a national defense strategy to win the War on Terror. Dr. Gorka reminds us that the right leadership can win this war.
5) Killing The Rising Sun by Bill O’Reilly O'Reilly
Every year, Bill O’Reilly makes a “killing” on the Conservative Bestseller List with his bestselling Killing series of history books. For the 75th anniversary of the Pearl Harbor attacks, O’Reilly wrote Killing The Rising Sun: How America Vanquished WWII Japan. From Pearl Harbor to Guadalcanal, to the atom bomb, O’Reilly recounts the victories of the Pacific theater in a fun and accessible style.
4) Guilty As Sin by Ed Klein
No one has been as thorough and prolific in investigating the crimes of the Clintons than Ed Klein. His latest book, Guilty as Sin: Uncovering New Evidence of Corruption and How Hillary Clinton and the Democrats Derailed the FBI Investigation, dives into the latest and perhaps most fatal of the Clintons’ many scandals — the FBI investigation into Hillary’s emails.
Klein exposes what really happened, from Bill Clinton’s airplane rendezvous with US Attorney General Loretta Lynch to Klein’s own exclusive interview with President-elect Donald Trump. Written during the heart of the campaign, Guilty As Sin may just have been the book that brought Hillary down for good.
3) Crisis of Character by Gary J. Byrne
Earlier in 2016, former Secret Service agent Gary Byrne reminded America what happened the last time the Clintons were in the White House. His stunning expose, Crisis of Character: A White House Secret Service Officer Discloses His Firsthand Experience With Hillary, Bill, And How They Operate ensured that America knew everything there was to know about the Clintons — including the 90s scandals that people may have forgotten. From salaciousness to corruption, Byrne blew the door open on the Clintons’ walk-in closet of skeletons.
2) Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance
The shocking victory of Donald Trump has left many in the media asking “how did this happen?” The National Review’s J.D. Vance has been rocketed into the national spotlight with his book Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis. He examines the forgotten rural white voters that made President Trump possible from two angles — one as sociologist and one as participant. Using his own life in Appalachia as a touch point, Vance examines what caused the cultural and social crisis in rural white America — and the moral and cultural solutions to their plight.
1) Hillary’s America by Dinesh D’Souza
More than any other anti-Hillary book, Dinesh D’Souza’s Hillary’s America: The Secret History of the Democratic Party did the most to prevent Hillary’s America. Accompanied by a hugely successful documentary movie, Hillary’s America gave America the truth about what a second Clinton presidency would look like and about the sordid past of the Democrat Party, from their antebellum roots to Progressivism, to their radical transformation of America in modern times. Hillary’s America took the country by storm in theaters and bookstores, and helped marshal the wave that brought Trump — and conservatism — into the White House.
In Trump We Trust by Ann Coulter
Settle for More by Megyn Kelly
Foreign Agent by Brad Thor
The Conservative Case for Trump by Phyllis Schlafly
Clinton Cash: A Graphic Novel by Peter Schweizer