I'll rewrite my answer;
Fist, a comment on the topic.
This question can't be answered, because it provides no context for "best"
Exactly; you can say something is best for something, but nothing is the best in absolute: not in only in ethics, but in every field.
I previously tried making a mathematical example, to make a point of ethics not being the only field in which this happens, but it ended up being nonsense so I'll try to make this point otherwise.
For example, you could say it's better to be healthy than being ill.
But what does that mean? That everyone would rather be healthy than being ill? Or, that being healthy is... just better? Ok, but better in what? If I'm given the choice between being healthy and being ill, are you saying that if I'm rational I'll always rather be healthy?
Well, that's not true; there are contexts in which being ill is better than being healthy, contexts in which my preference is guided by particular criteria that make being ill more desirable than being healthy.
For example, if I go to school and I catch a passing flu, I could be happy to stay at home for a few days. Certainly, I wouldn't be happy to stay at home forever, but I probably wouldn't be happy if I never ever got ill, not even once: for one, I could find difficulty in empathizing with ill people. Or, I could convince myself of being indestructible and do something stupid that could put my like at risk.
And this is not ethics, it's just semantics: nothing is "better" in absolute than anything else. There's no absolute because someone expressing his preference is immersed in some context anyway, so the preference is tied to that context.
This said, if we take "human life" in general as a context, we can still try to identify the subjective criteria upon which we call something good or evil;
For example, Kant would say that, to decide if an action is good or not, we can do this: imagine what the world would be if everyone did that thing. If that world would not be a desirable place to live in, that action is not good. So you shouldn't do it.
But one can find this answer not satisfactory, since it implies that lying is bad no matter what the situation, among other things, while there are plenty of circumstances when lying could be helpful or even save one's life.
The problem is that maybe "human life" is too large a context, and so, maybe there are no criteria that are better than others.
A skeptic would say this, but others would propose other arguments, trying to identify the nature of morality and criteria able to comment on every possible situation within "human life" in a satisfactory manner.
But this is another topic; about the original topic, I just have to say that nothing is better than anything else in absolute. And calling it "better" doesn't erase particular situations in which that something is not as desirable as other things, and doesn't make a situation in which there's only that something particularly desirable.
Final example: let's say I like the color blue.
If I say it's better than any other color, in absolute, I would have to wear only blue, eat only blue things, paint my room blue, wear sunglasses that shade everything in blue, and so on. Because that's what "in absolute" means.
If I say it's better than any other color, according to my general preference, I'm just saying that when thinking about colors I like to think about the color blue. That's not saying "it's just better", and I still like a world filled with all the other colors and with people that prefer other colors.
Same way with people and their morals.
That said, your question asks about things to read and information about what that "reasoning or skill" is called; I don't feel I can answer those particular questions, because I'm not sure we're talking about a particular reasoning or skill to name, and I'm not knowledgeable enough to give recommendations that wouldn't make this answer flagged as spam (not that my confused writing doesn't help in that regard).
But I still tried to say something, since I feel that "there's no absolute better" is true in general just because semantics, even if there are philosophical standpoints that can resemble that statement.