Coming up with my best books of 2020 was a bit challenging. 2021 will be way more robust in terms of what I devour, but let’s go ahead and work with what we have.
Even though I am an avid reader, the first few months of the year were a veritable dead zone of literature. With the accident, surgery, meds, and emotional recovery, I was literally unable to focus on anything. Words on a page blurred, ran together, and gave me a headache. There was a time I could barely concentrate on movies and TV, let alone the written word.
It was a sad, sad time.
But I’m back and reading and happy to share My Best Books of 2020! Here they are, in no particular order!
Truthfully, I didn’t want to read this book. There was too much hype, and I couldn’t imagine liking it at all, let alone having it end up in my best books of 2020.
Where The Crawdads Sing is masterfully pieced together, and beautifully detailed. I love narration and the characters, even the ones who aren’t particularly likeable.
At the heart, this is a murder mystery, but to solve the crime, readers are treated to rich storytelling and a twisting, turning, looping plot with a stunning twist.
I would 100% read it again.
A librarian friend suggested The Alice Network to me, and at first, I didn’t think I would really be into it. I was wrong.
Quinn writes of the women who trained to be part of a real-life spy network that infiltrated the enemy in 1915. We follow Charlie St. Clair on her quest to find her missing cousin in Nazi-occupied France, and meet Eve Gardiner, the terrifying and bitter woman she convinces to help her.
Of course, nothing is as it appears, Eve bears her own secrets of a hidden life long ago, and Quinn weaves the fabric of several timelines to follow the narratives of both women on their quest. I couldn’t put it down.
I loved it so much that I asked for The Huntress, another Quinn novel, for Christmas.
This made my list of best books of 2020 after several recommendations from friends. According to Amazon, this “is a page-turning and big-hearted story about race and privilege, set around a young black babysitter, her well-intentioned employer, and a surprising connection that threatens to undo them both.”
In a time when I am trying to expand the authors I read, Such A Fun Age was a great way to start. Reid is a phenomenal storyteller, and presented the perspectives of both protagonists with eloquent clarity. There were many times when I felt pushed out of my comfort zone, and even unsettled by things happening in the plot, but ultimately, things ended in a way that made perfect sense, even if it wasn’t a happy ending for everyone.
Margaret Atwood has long been one of my favorite authors, and The Handmaid’s Tale one of my favorite books.
With The Testaments, Atwood returns to give us a bit of the next piece of the story of Gilead since we last saw Offred, and what a story it is. Told from the perspective of three narrators (including Aunt Lydia!!!!), readers get first-hand accounts of all the corruption, betrayal, and lies that make up this horrifying, dystopian world.
It didn’t take me long to get through this novel. I was so excited to see how everything would come together in the very satisfying conclusion. Will there be more? Not even Atwood can say for sure, but I would be incredibly pleased to have another chapter in this incredible saga.
So What’s Next?
I have a fairly robust to-read list for the upcoming weeks.
- The Stand, by Stephen King
- Wolf Hall, by Hilary Mantel
- Bring Up The Bodies, by Hilary Mantel
- The Mirror & the Light, by Hilary Mantel
- The Huntress, by Kate Quinn
- Queenie, by Candice Carty-Williams (not pictured)
I finished The Stand a few days ago and am moving right along. And yes, I realize there aren’t any running or fitness books, but I’m just not in love with non-fiction. I have such limited reading time that I would rather fill it with beautiful (or grotesque) stories than realism.
Want to keep up with my progress? Follow me on GoodReads!
What are your favorite books of 2020? Have you read any of these?