I do this tag every year, and it is always fun to reflect on my reading halfway through the year. 2020 has been a whirlwind in too many ways to count, and that has certainly affected my reading. If you are curious about my past posts I will link them here: 2017, 2018, and 2019.
BEST BOOK YOU’VE READ SO FAR IN 2020
Clap When You Land by Elizabeth Acevedo
Elizabeth Acevedo is one of my few autobuy authors, and Clap When You Land was one of my most anticipated books of 2020. I am so thrilled, though not at all surprised, that it lived up to my expectations. Acevedo has this magical way of bringing her characters to life and having the reader become deeply invested in their stories. I adored the dual narrative and connected to both Camino and Yahaira. Now I will just be glued to Goodreads and Twitter, waiting to for Elizabeth Acevedo to announce her next novel.
BEST SEQUEL YOU’VE READ SO FAR IN 2020
Gemina by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
I finally finished The Illuminae Files this year, and I am kicking myself that it took me this long. Gemina was BY FAR the best book in the series and had me completely hooked. I forgot how fun the format is to read! I need to find more books that are told through mixed media!
NEW RELEASE YOU HAVEN’T READ YET BUT WANT TO
When You Were Everything by Ashley Woodfolk
Ashley Woodfolk’s debut novel, The Beauty that Remains, is one of my favourite YA novels of all time. I thought it was such a compelling look at grief. When You Were Everything came out in March, and I cannot believe that I haven’t read it yet! I purchased the audiobook, so I am hoping to listen to that soon. It is about the breaking down of a friendship, which is something that we all go through but I don’t see in many books. I know that Woodfolk will do something special with the story.
MOST ANTICIPATED RELEASE FOR THE SECOND HALF OF THE YEAR
Anxious People by Fredrik Backman
It just recently came to my attention that Fredrik Backman is releasing a new book in September! The early reviews have been incredible, and I am counting down the days!
The Simple Wild by K.A. Tucker
I think I have come to the realization that K.A. Tucker’s novels are not for me, and that is okay. Her books are so beloved, and it was disappointing that I couldn’t connect with the characters (and in many ways I greatly disliked them!). I am someone who LOVES unlikable characters, but not in my romance novels. Loved the setting though! I need to read more books set in Alaska.
Frankly In Love by David Yoon
Frankly In Love has received so many mixed reviews, and I never would have read it if it were not for a buddy read on Instagram. I had low expectations going into it, but it really touched me in a way that I could never have predicted. I think what failed this book was the marketing. It was pitched as a fake dating romance, but that is such a small part of the story and takes away from what makes this book so wonderful. Frankly in Love brings up some important topics about race and culture and about pushing back against the beliefs held my our parents. I loved reading from Frank’s perspective- it felt very authentic.
FAVOURITE NEW AUTHOR
Any time I find a new contemporary romance author that I love it makes me so happy! I can be quite particular about my romance, but I find myself feeling compelled to read them quite often. I have added Jimenez to my list of autobuy romance authors, along with Helen Hoang and Talia Hibbert!
NEWEST FICTIONAL CRUSH
I say this every year, and I will say it again- the only book crush I have ever had is Mr. Darcy.
NEWEST FAVOURITE CHARACTER
Oona from Oona Out of Order
Oona is the most memorable character of all the books I have read so far in 2020. I loved reading from her perspective and getting to follow her as she time travels through all the years of her life. You really get to see her growth and the shift in her perspective over time- it was touching!
BOOK THAT MADE YOU CRY
A River in Darkness by Masaji Ishikawa
Quite a few of the memoirs that I have read so far this year have made me emotional, but A River in Darkness was the first that came to mind. It made me realize how little I know about North Korea and the horrors that go on there. My heart broke for Ishikawa, and I often find myself wondering what happened to him and his family.
BOOK THAT MADE YOU HAPPY
The Happy Ever After Playlist by Abby Jimenez
The Happy Ever After Playlist was very emotional, but it was also so sweet! I am such a sucker for a romance where the love interest is famous in some way. I though Abby Jimenez did an excellent job at tackling grief and Jason was very respectful of Sloan’s boundaries- that was refreshing to read!
FAVOURITE BOOK TO FILM ADAPTATION
I have not watched a lot of book to movie adaptations this year, but I have a feeling Just Mercy would still be my favourite even if I had. The memoir is a must read, and it is incredible to see what Bryan Stevenson and the Equal Justice Initiative have achieved. It is no secret that Michael B Jordan is one of my favourite actors, and he is incredible in Just Mercy, and so is Jamie Foxx. A must watch for sure! Warner Brothers has made Just Mercy available to watch for free during the month of June, so now is the time!
FAVOURITE POST YOU HAVE DONE THIS YEAR
I have not written as many discussion posts this year as I would like, but it was fun for me to reflect on my comfort reads and what exactly that means.
MOST BEAUTIFUL BOOK YOU’VE BOUGHT THIS YEAR
These classic editions that are illustrated by MinaLima are some of the prettiest books I own. I now have The Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid, and Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. You would have to see them in person to truly appreciate just how cool they are!
WHAT BOOK DO YOU NEED TO READ BY THE END OF THE YEAR
The Great Believers by Rebecca Makkai
I have had The Great Believers on my shelves since it came out in 2018. I actually received a copy that was annotated by the author, so I will receive further insight when reading. I don’t know why I have put off reading this book, despite the fact that I know I will love it. I am going to make it a priority and hope to read it sooner rather than later.