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2020 Reading Recap

Alison blew past her goal of 150 books in 2020 reading 160 when the year finally tapped out. For those who like to "math" it...that's about three books a week! Reading an eclectic mix of fiction, non-fiction, current best sellers, award winners, and some dug out of the depths of her Kindle, nothing was off limits, except perhaps self-help (watch that here). Read more reviews from Alison at Book Nook and follow her @theextroveredbookworm.

Here are the lists that absolutely no one asked for: my best fiction and non-fiction books of 2020.

I read 160 books this year; 132 were fiction, 28 were nonfiction. I had 32 fiction books that I absolutely LOVED, but I forced myself to narrow the list to 15, along with 9 nonfiction. Here they are in no particular order, with the caveat that the book I probably recommended the most was Hidden Valley Road, a non-fiction book that reads like a novel—my highest praise! Happy Reading in 2021!


  • Such a Fun Age, Kiley Reid

  • Followers, Megan Angelo

  • Writers & Lovers, Lily King

  • Minor Dramas & Other Catastrophes, Kathleen West

  • Greenwood, Michael Christie

  • A Good Neighborhood, Theresa Ann Fowler

  • The Vanishing Half, Brit Bennett

  • The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires, Grady Hendrix

  • The Nickel Boys, Colson Whitehead

  • The Glass Hotel, Emily St. John Mandel

  • Friends & Strangers, J. Courtney Sullivan

  • True Story, Kate Reed Petty

  • Troubles in Paradise (the trilogy), Elin Hilderbrand

  • White Ivy, Susie Yang

  • Transcendent Kingdom, Yaa Gyasi


  • Here For It, R. Eric Thomas

  • A Very Punchable Face, Colin Jost

  • Too Much is Never Enough, Andrew Rannells

  • Hidden Valley Road, Robert Kolker

  • This is Big, Marisa Metzer

  • Killers of the Flower Moon, David Grann

  • The Ride of a Lifetime, Bob Iger

  • The New Jim Crow, Michelle Alexander

  • My Own Country, Abraham Verghese

And as a postscript, the book I really hated this year that everyone (at least all critics) loved: Luster, by Raven Leilani. It was on so many top ten lists this year and left me absolutely cold. I mention it only because I love how different the reading experience is for everyone and that’s what makes books so fun and wonderful to discuss.

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