Wednesday, December 23, 2020

Favorite Books of 2020

 Good morning friends! This year I set out to read 40 books, and while I don't think I'm going to hit my goal of 40, I was still able to squeeze a lot of books in this past year. I am currently reading two more as we wrap up the year, but I think it is safe to say neither of them will end up on my favorites list. I was able to read 37 books up to this point, which is still pretty close to my goal-- and with this year being as crazy as it was-- I'll take it! As always, some of them were good, some not-so-good, and some GREAT. Today I want to share the great ones with you in case you're looking for some books to read either over the break or in 2021. I have broken them down by genre for those of you who like books from specific genres:

- Thriller-

Lock Every Door-  Earlier this year I joined a Facebook Book Club called "Reading Between the Wines" and this was one of the books of the month. The main character breaks up with her boyfriend and needs a new place to live, so she accepts a job as a house sitter on the Upper East Side of NYC. There were a bunch of creepy twists in this book and I kept finding myself staying up way too late to read "just one more chapter!!". It's currently in development to be a mini-series, like "Big Little Lies"-- I can't wait to watch it!

The Sun Down Motel- Another from the "Reading Between the Wines" book club, this one was very unique compared to the thriller books I usually read. This is about a girl who goes missing from her job at a motel in the 80's and her niece comes back in present day to try to find out what happened to her. It goes back and forth between the 80's and present day, with a few "guests" at the motel who never really left. If you like thrillers with a hint of ghost story, this one is for you!

An Anonymous Girl- Jessica is a makeup artist in NYC who is struggling financially, when she comes across an opportunity to participate in a study at a local college. A professor is doing a study on morality and will pay her for her time answering questions. Everything seems fine at first, but as Jessica progresses further into the study the more the things the professor is asking makes Jessica uncomfortable. This book makes you think "if you were desperate for money, just how far would you go to make some?"

The Other Mrs.- Sadie and Will move from Chicago to small town Maine. Shortly after their move, their neighbor is murdered. Naturally, the people in the small town start getting suspicious about Sadie and Will's family, but Sadie is determined to try to figure out what really happened. Mary Kubica, the author, is one of my all time favorites! She knows how to write thriller books that make you stay up way too late, and then wake up early just so you can read a little more. 

The Silent Patient- Whoa! I listened to this one on Audible and was listening with my headphones on while cleaning/doing things around the house. I kept saying "oh my gosh!" or "whoa!" while listening and it even made Devin curious 😄 Such a crazy twist at the end!

- Historical Fiction-

The Librarian of Auschwitz- I'm not sure historical fiction is the right category here or biographical fiction? This book is based off the true story of a young girl who was tasked with keeping the secret library for the children in the family block of Auschwitz. This book was eye opening, heartbreaking, and yet inspiring at the same time. It is astonishing to me that someone can go through such horrible conditions and still put other people and their survival above their own survival. 

Her Last Flight- This is a story about a journalist who is trying to investigate the disappearance and lives of two of the world's most famous aviators, one of them a woman named Irene. This story felt like it paralleled Amelia Earhart's life and I loved learning more about early aviation and about women in flight. I have yet to read a Beatriz Williams book I haven't loved! 

- Fiction-

What Alice Forgot- This is one of my all-time favorites that I read again this year with a friend-- it has such a unique storyline and I love it! The main character, Alice, suffers a head injury and loses 10 years of her memory. Unfortunately for Alice, in that span of time she has gone from happily married and pregnant, to a mother of 3, getting divorced, and has strained relationships with other family members. She has no memory of any of this happening. This story is about her trying to find out how her life has changed so drastically over the past 10 years and what she can do to salvage some of those important relationships.

A Man Called Ove- Such a heartwarming book about a grumpy old man whose neighbors help him see the positives in his life, at a time when he is struggling to see them on his own. A perfect feel good book!

- Nonfiction- 

There's No Such Thing As Bad Weather- As an outdoorsy person, I love that this book encourages us to get our kids outside in nature every single day, despite the weather. Even if it's rainy or cold, you can dress appropriately and get outside for at least 15 minutes. I definitely notice an improvement in myself when I spend some time outdoors, and I notice it in my kids as well. 

SuperLife- So I heard about this book after watching the "Down to Earth" documentary on Netflix earlier this year. Darin Olien, the author, was one of the hosts of the show. I don't necessarily buy into everything this book says, but it definitely lit a fire up under me about eating healthy food and paying attention to what I put in my body. I read this book months ago and I am still trying to follow some of the advice in this book daily-- including making sure I get some raw green foods into my diet. If you're looking for a book to help you get a healthier start to 2021, I recommend this one! 

And now if I had to pick my #1 favorite book of the year, it would be:

Her Last Flight!

If you love historical fiction and haven't read this one yet, please put it on your list!! 

And now, what about you? What was your favorite book you read this year? 


  1. All these books sound so good!! I set out to read 36 books this year, but now I’m at 115!! Quarantine was a game-changer for my reading!!

  2. I also have 40 books as my goal this year! I'm on 39 and oh so close!! Happy to have your recommendations, as I haven't heard of most of these titles. Definitely bookmarking Her Last Flight!

  3. Of the thrillers, I have either read them all or need to read them! I read The Sun Down Motel at the end of last year and really loved it.