best books of 2020

Best Books of 2020 (According to Me)

Due to the pandemic many of us found ourselves reading much more than we have in years past.  Below I’ll highlight what I thought were the best books of 2020 .

In a typical year I tend to read 25-30 books but it in 2020 I doubled my book intake and read a whopping 60 bucks!

My goal for 2021 is ambitious at 100 (honestly, I don’t think I’ll hit the mark)

Here are some notable books that I read last year — they were poignant, inspiring, raw and ultimately an escape from the horrible year that was 2020. I’ll categorize accordingly.

Best Fiction Book of 2020: Normal People by Sally Rooney

normal people

I’ve never been a fan of angsty-teen love romance novels but this one hit different. It chronicles the paths of two Irish youth from their days in high school to their journeys into adulthood. Love, growing up, identity and belonging were all themes that this book touched upon.

What struck me most about this book was how raw it was. The prose was easy to follow — it read more like a blog post than an actual novel at times.

The book hit such critical acclaim in the literary world that it was quickly turned around into a Hulu Series which was just as good! A must read.

Best Science Book of 2020: Spillover by David Quallmen


While most people recoiled from all nitty gritty details of the pandemic I found myself stepping deeper and deeper into the nature of contagion in 2020. To me theres something intrinsically thrilling about the nature of pandemics and infectious disease.

Years ago I picked up the pop-fiction thriller “The Hot Zone” By Richard Preston and finished it over the course of 7 hours.

The difference between Quammen and Preston is stark. Quammen accomplishes the same thrilling telling of how Zoonotic disease spreads without sensationalizing the topic. It’s pure science: plain, simple and scary!

There’s a specific chapter that details the rise of SARS that I found specifically captivating. A must read for anyone interested in science.

Best Historical Fiction of 2020: Beneath a Scarlet Sky by Mark Sullivan

beneath a scarlet sky

Imagine Forest Gump but Italian and set in World War 2. This book is a tour de force page turner that never relents in its suspense and plot twists.

I don’t have much to say beyond that because I feel like I said enough above by referencing Forest Gump 🤪

Best Science Fiction: Midnight Library by Matt Haig

midnight library

Sci-Fi  &heavy on the philosophical vibes — this book was one of my favorites for so many reasons but mostly because it emphasizes the power of redemption.

“Between life and death there is a library, and within that library, the shelves go on forever. Every book provides a chance to try another life you could have lived. To see how things would be if you had made other choices . . . Would you have done anything different, if you had the chance to undo your regrets?” 

Beautifully written — this novel is about all the choices that go into a well-lived life.

In the novel, Nora the protagonist grapples with the myriad choices that have led her to where she is. A life full of regrets is played out in real time when she enters a mysterious library at the edge of the universe. Each book in the library offering a different reality. Her experiences lead her to decide what is truly fulfilling in life and what makes life worth living.

That’s it for now folks. I understand not all of these books were written in 2020 but were my favorite reads of 2020 and this is my blog so thats that 😉

p.s. I could easily provide a quick review of the books I like on Good Reads but nah… I prefer hosting reviews on my own blog 📚


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